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Toyman! GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/5/23 7:10 p.m.

And just to drive the point home, yesterday my scale gave up the ghost. I guess I'm too heavy for it as well.


NY Nick
NY Nick GRM+ Memberand Dork
1/5/23 7:13 p.m.

I used WW and my fitness pal (the free version) successfully. I also fell off the wagon multiple times and really gave legitimacy to my friend who told me "my ex wife last 2,000 lbs on weight watchers " when I started!

I think you are going in with the right attitude, it's a long game. The part that is important is consistency. It is easy to have a bad day and consume 3-4K calories. That takes days to recover from. If your target is 2500 calories you can only shave so many colonies under that. You can eat over it really easy. 
Congrats on recognizing you want a change. I'm sure you are going to make some big improvements!  

STM317 PowerDork
1/5/23 7:54 p.m.
Toyman! said:

I'm also wondering if I would be better off with a larger Breakfast and a smaller dinner.

I'm open to suggestions. 

What do these meals typically look like? And when are you typically eating?

There's growing research that indicates front loading calories early in the day may be healthier:




I'm fortunate to not struggle much with my weight. I start each day with a big glass of water and a light breakfast (yogurt, granola, berries or some nut butter on work days, eggs and some toast on non work days) within an hour of waking up. I'm usually hungry again within 4 hours so I'll have a protein heavy snack. Lunch is often a sandwich loaded up with some meat and lots of veggies but not much else. Small-ish dinner typically follows that 5-6 hours later. I have a pretty firm rule about zero calories within 3 hrs of bedtime.

I don't force any of this stuff besides a bit of breakfast. I gained a bit of weight in recent years because I was less active and was eating out of habit instead of listening to my body. I recently got to my lightest weight since high school by eating only if I was hungry, rather than eating because of what the clock said. And by eating small enough portions that I'd know that I'd be hungry again in a few hours. If portions are the problem, then remember that you don't need to eat enough to last more than 3-4 hours at a time. And sometimes your body might want even less, and that's totally ok.

MrJoshua UltimaDork
1/5/23 9:49 p.m.

You tolerate carbs better in the morning. You are empty so you tolerate more food as well. The problem is your body is still not hungry because of the left overs from the mechanism that lets you fast all night without waking you up.

For the success of your diet you are better off worrying more about what psychologically works for you than what works for a lab rat.

Breakfast: Most people can tolerate only having a few small boring options for breakfast. You usually aren't that hungry, Its also usually at home and totally in your control. Take advantage of that-eat small and clean.

Lunch: Lunch has less predictability, more temptation, and you are not riding the wave of a hormone assisted fast so you are hungrier. Most people need more choices and more food to be happy at lunch. Give yourself a few more options and a bit larger meal. 

Dinner: Dinner is usually a gorge fest full of everything that's bad for you. If you try to replace that with a handful of nuts and a glass of water your diet is doomed. Have a reasonable sized meal here. This is the only one of the 3 that should get you close to full. 

Snack: the evening snack is optional. Stick to something 200 calories or less, preferably 100 that is simple, sweet, and likely already pre-packaged. If you choose to drink-NO SNACKS FOR YOU! (Alcohol can be counted into your calories and really only affects you about 1/2 the label calories, but people rarely maintain their will power after a few drinks, so if you drink its better to take the snack option off of the table. )


Personally I would shoot for 2lbs a week at a minimum for the first several months.  Your body can lose fat safely and amazingly quickly if you are disciplined, eat low amounts of fairly clean foods, and complete a basic strength routine.

Toyman! GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/5/23 10:09 p.m.

In reply to STM317 :

Previously, a typical breakfast is eggs, some kind of meat and/or cheese, and coffee. On occasion, a bowl of oatmeal or cereal is eaten instead. Call it 300-500 calories. Assuming I eat breakfast. Probably 3 days a week I don't because I'm not hungry due to the large meal I had the night before. I will probably maintain this but stop skipping breakfast. Skipping breakfast usually leads to me eating a very large lunch. I think I would be better off eating at least a small breakfast and not eating a large evening meal means I'll probably be hungry. 

Lunch could be anything from leftovers from the night before to a sandwich. Or possibly a huge hamburger or buffet if eating out. My plan is to cut out the huge lunch meals and pack something smaller. If I eat out it will be a salad or a small portion. Lunch usually happens around 11:30.

Dinners are usually my main meal. We eat around 7 usually. I'm trying to convince my wife to move that up to 5:30-6. They consist of meat, starch, veggies. This is the meal I really need to cut back on. Tonight I ate about half of what I usually would. 

There is going to be a learning curve to figuring out what will work best. As long as the overall goal is less intake I'm pretty flexible as to the best way to do it. 


Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/5/23 10:33 p.m.

You can do it!

Around our house, we find that if fruits and veggies are prepped (cut up) we eat them like crazy. Like seriously we do a fruit/veggie tray every night before dinner between the 4 of us.

Just slice up a pepper, a cucumber, a pear and an apple and set it on the counter. Watch it disappear! 

Also a great thing to snack on while cooking and have something really healthy as the first thing you eat.

KyAllroad MegaDork
1/6/23 12:16 a.m.

In reply to Toyman! :

Good for you!!  It's a hard row to hoe losing significant weight but if you simply stay aware of it, you can absolutely do it.

Lots of good advice so far (drink a glass of water before the meal is a biggie).   Some slightly random thoughts on the subject from a reasonably healthy guy who studied exercise science and nutrition once upon a time:

Carbs and proteins are 4 calories per gram, fat is 9.  So a gram of fat has a lot more "energy" in it that the other two.  And energy you don't burn immediately get stored by our ever-so-smart fat cells as......fat.

American diets are largely based around the agricultural "eat a heavy breakfast so you can work in the field all day" model.  Small light meals are the way to go.  Personally I have a piece of fruit first thing, then a yogurt around 10am.   

If you eat a healthy dinner, save a bit of it (no seconds!!) and have that for lunch.  This will save you a fortune over the year and provide you a zero effort lunch.

Dinner should be enjoyable, but many "American" dishes are far too heavy (cheese is the devil here, cut it WAY down).  A sprinkling of parmigiana is much better than a gooey mozzarella meal.

Personally, I'm a bit of an oral compulsive when I'm bored so lifesavers are my go-to between meals.

A beer is fine, a six pack is less so.  Moderation is king.  Learn to savor smaller servings of better things.

Finally.  Our stomachs are kinda stupid and don't send out that "hey I'm full message nearly early enough during a meal.   After fooling it with the glass of water, practice slowing down.   Put down the fork between bites and really be aware of each ingestion.  Learn to leave a bit on the plate (most of us grew up in "clean your plate" households, it is a bad habit to eat EVERYTHING.)

I would say good luck but luck will have nothing to do with this, it'll be a conscious decision to be healthier and enjoy being in your body more.

(And from what I remember of an article 25 years ago, it's 35 lbs to the inch.   Less of you means more of you, that's a win.)


Ranger50 MegaDork
1/6/23 4:01 a.m.

Portion control requires an easy rethink. 
Normally, around here, we used the 10" paper plates for most everything. I mistakenly bought the 8" ones. I eat less than before because it's all visual. I also haven't been going for seconds like I used to, but normally it's for what I couldn't fit on the plate the first time. 

OHSCrifle GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
1/6/23 5:29 a.m.

Is your wife fully on board with this transformation plan... and is she the evening meal maker?

I ask because my theory is big people have big kids not from genetics but from what the family eats in the house. A desire to change is great but a menu change must happen. And old habits die hard.

Unless the meals are different results won't change. If decades of steak, beans and taters got you to 350+, continuing to eat steak, beans and taters is unlikely to yield a new result. 

KyAllroad MegaDork
1/6/23 7:14 a.m.

My brother is a near 400 lb fella and his wife is super plus sized as well.  Their recreation is eating, even when they say they want to be lighter their actions argue otherwise.   They eat out super frequently, their portions are huge, they graze extra calories between meals.   It's tough to watch because I can see their kids developing the same habits.

I stated at least 8 months ago in a previous thread by you that you needed a personal trainer to hold you accountable. Which you didn't acknowledge and you stated at that point that you could get all the exercise that you needed shopping and cutting wood and that you would lose weight doing as such.



You have goals. You have an objective. What you lack is a decent plan. You've come up with another plan but it's still not a good one as there's nobody to hold you accountable and you don't want to be held accountable and you need to be or else you will die. I don't mean to sound rude, but it is factual. So cut the crap, save your life and get a Berkeleylying trainer

Also, I'm not undermining the importance of the step you're taking in monitoring and reducing consumption, it's as important, if not more important than the physical activity, but the accountability and having a responsibility to someone other than yourself is paramount for success. 

Toyman! GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/6/23 9:04 a.m.

In reply to Captdownshift (Forum Supporter) :

I understand what you are saying but if I can't be accountable to myself then this has already failed and a trainer won't help. I can say, I will not go to a gym. I already know that so there is no reason to sign up for it. For starters, I make the time to spend hours a day or even every other day at a gym. Meaningful labor, sure but not just lifting weight for the sake of lifting it. Second, some people do well with someone like a trainer pushing them, I don't, so I just won't go.

You guys will have to be my motivation. laugh

I have successfully lost weight through dieting before. I'm not worried about being successful. The keto diet just isn't a sustainable diet long term and further reading shows it to have some health issues, so I came off of it. I stopped it about the time COVID hit and at the same time, I transitioned to a desk job. The weight came back with a vengeance. I went from 275 to 360 in 2 years. I'm guessing my 55 yo metabolism came to a screeching halt about the same time. 

I think looking at weight loss as a diet or a finite event with a finish line is a poor way to control weight. This time around, I'm not really looking at it as a diet but as a permanent change to my eating habits that I can use for the rest of my life to maintain a healthy or at least healthier weight. My goal is 250. As I stated in my first post, I'm not in a rush to get there. I don't have a deadline to meet or a swimming suit to fit in by summer. If I lose a pound a week, great. If it's a pound every 2 to 3 weeks, that's great too. As long as there is a steady decline in weight, it will be enough. 

I could also be full of E36 M3. 

In which case, you are free to call me out. wink


NY Nick
NY Nick GRM+ Memberand Dork
1/6/23 9:31 a.m.

From my experience you will loose ~15 lbs in the first 3 weeks. That will really help with the motivation. After that it will slow down and you will start to loose weight like the app says. I am not sure if it is water weight or what happens but 3 times I have started an app diet from a heavy weight and the first few weeks have been huge weight loss. 

Would a trainer be better? Probably. That said I think that incremental change is better than no change. I'm here to encourage and your plight is making me pay more attention to my deal so thanks for getting the ball rolling. 

pres589 (djronnebaum)
pres589 (djronnebaum) UltimaDork
1/6/23 9:46 a.m.

The focus on diet and general habits is important.  What are you doing for physical activity?  Maybe I missed it but I don't see that in here yet?

Captdownshift (Forum Supporter)
Captdownshift (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
1/6/23 10:06 a.m.

In reply to Toyman! :

I greatly appreciate that response, as it's the response of someone who's ready to be pushed, which is an important part of the formula to create success. 

ShawnG MegaDork
1/6/23 7:45 p.m.

In reply to KyAllroad :

Friends of ours were like that.

"Wanna go for coffee" means one of those whipped cream covered things at Starbucks. 

That's not coffee, it's dessert, three or four times a day. 

I'm not skinny but I also have no delusions about why.

ShawnG MegaDork
1/6/23 7:47 p.m.
Robbie (Forum Supporter) said:

You can do it!

Around our house, we find that if fruits and veggies are prepped (cut up) we eat them like crazy. Like seriously we do a fruit/veggie tray every night before dinner between the 4 of us.

Just slice up a pepper, a cucumber, a pear and an apple and set it on the counter. Watch it disappear! 

Also a great thing to snack on while cooking and have something really healthy as the first thing you eat.

I'm going to be using this at home.

wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L)
wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
1/6/23 8:18 p.m.

Opinion: Cut out as much high fructose corn syrup as you can. It impedes our brain's ability to receive the signal from our stomachs that we are full. 

It is the devil, and it is in everything. Ketchup. Candy bars, chips. Everything. I believe it to be a major contributor to America's obesity problem. 

Again, just my 2 cents. Also, walk as much as you can, and drink water,as mentioned. 

Datsun310Guy MegaDork
1/6/23 8:28 p.m.

Once I heard Joan Rivers mention her dieting.

Eat like a King at breakfast.

Eat like a Queen at lunch.

Eat like a Prince at dinner.  

Fueled by Caffeine
Fueled by Caffeine MegaDork
1/6/23 8:47 p.m.

My trick to sticking to something is hanging goals out there in the future.  

so last year it was complete a triathalon. I lost a bunch of weight and trained like crazy. I attempted the shortest distance and did it. This year. I'm going to do 3 sprint Triathalons. maybe a mountain bike race. 

so for you maybe aim to complete the bridge walk/ run?  Something cool.  4 months away. You can totally walk it.  Do it with one of your kids. 



i know it sounds like a lot but that goal/ purpose really helps  


RevRico UltimaDork
1/6/23 8:55 p.m.

I was thinking about making a very similar thread this year. I'm even shooting for the same goal weight, but starting a bit lower. I haven't seen 250 since 2014 when I moved back to PA and immediately ballooned back to 300. I've been yoyo between 275-290 ever since.

I haven't weighed myself since before Xmas because frankly I'm scared of how much I might have put on. 

My biggest plans of attack are to scale back breads and carbs, sugar, and try to add more fruit because I don't like veggies past peppers onions and taters. 

My other big pan is to force myself to eat throughout the day so I'm not snacking so much before bed. I think that's a big factor for me. My typical day has a 530am wake-up, maybe a hot dog or some leftovers around 12 if I actually eat lunch at all, dinner at 5, then usually a snack around 8-9, asleep by 11. 

I think most importantly though I need to work on the physical activity. I watch the number on the scale get smaller, but so are my clothes. That's a problem. 


I'll try not to steal your thread, but I'm going to be following along with interest, and maybe it'll help me too.

dj06482 (Forum Supporter)
dj06482 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
1/6/23 9:12 p.m.

I've lost weight and gained weight over the last few years.  A lot of it comes down to individual things. I'll outline what works/doesn't work for me in hopes that it might help someone else.

What works:

- Weighing myself daily. It keeps me accountable, and stops me before I go completely off the rails. I don't obsess over it, but want to have an idea of where I stand when I start the day.

- Tracking my calories in an app. I use MyFitnessPal, but I scanned a bunch of foods in before that became a paywall feature.

- I eat a lot of the same greatest hits foods every day. Things like chicken breast, cottage cheese and blueberries, celery and peanut butter, oatmeal and raisins, apples, grapefruit, cucumbers and white bean garlic dip, turkey meatballs with spinach, hard boiled eggs, and a shake with matcha tea and flax seed oil.

- Spacing my eating. I have to eat, pause for a few hours, then eat again. Otherwise I eat and never stop until I've consumed my calories for the day in a 3 hour window.

- Not having junk food in the house. If it's here, I eat it. All of it. In a few hours/days. My discipline has to start at the store.

- Cardio (run or bike) first thing in the morning before I eat. It actually helps to dull my appetite.

- Intermittent fasting helps me, but with the right controls 

What I've tried that doesn't work so well:

- Intermittent fasting without counting calories and spacing out meals. I've consumed a day's worth of calories in 1.5 hours!

- Winging it by not counting calories

- Overdoing it with intermittent fasting

- Buying junk food

- Eating a lot with one sitting

Again, each person is different, so what works for me won't work everyone. 

We're rooting for you, Toyman!

JThw8 UltimaDork
1/6/23 9:35 p.m.
CrustyRedXpress said:

EDIT: Have you heard of or considered Semaglutide or a similar medication? 

Out of curiosity are you curious about sema or do you have some experience with it?  Its not a magic bullet, if you arent making lifestyle (eating) changes it will only do so much, but it can help.

Sonic UberDork
1/6/23 10:09 p.m.

The thing I like to try and remember, as a generally active person for my whole life, with a bit of extra weight as I get older (44, 5'11", 205lb) is that you can never outrun a fork/spoon, and as you get older (and I have found out painfully), your metabolism is going to slow down even with 30/min of active daily exercise.  I'm amazed at how little I need to eat these days.  

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