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unsuccessful efforts

8/17 9:06:31

About a month ago I stopped being in denial regarding my diet and lack of
exercise.  After several years of sporadic dieting, exercise and diet pills I
was ready to finally do it the healthy way.  I am 5'6" and 160 lbs.  This does
not seem bad but I have a load of excess "baggage" on my lower half and upper
The first week of March I cut out all junk food, soda and anything else I felt
would sabotage my efforts.  I increase my whole grains, fruits, veggies and
protein as well as drinking tons of water.  I began exercising between 2-4 hours a day, including both cardio and
weight training.  I admit I did have 3 "cheat days" toward the end of the month,
but always tried to keep at 1500-1800 calories a day.  Although my weight bobbed
up and down, ultimately I only lost a pound for the entire month.  I also took
measurements and they did not change.  It抯 hard to understand.  I thought I
burned much more than I consumed.  If I created a caloric deficit then why
didn't I lose?  It seems mathematically impossible.  
Every fiber of my being is screaming out to quit.  I'm not going to, but I am
deflated and pessimistic at this point. It feels like a 30 days of hard work
wasted. What am I doing wrong?  I need to lose 20-30 lbs, tons of fat and lots of inches.  Please...any
advice at this point would be great.

There are two important things to remember... first, that you have to give any new change in your diet and exercise routine TIME to work. It looks like you've done that, if you were faithful for a whole month. Second, if that doesn't seem to be working, tweak it and change things up. Perhaps it's not the right solution FOR YOU. Everyone's body is different - everyone's metabolism is unique.

It sounds like you're on the right track with your food... lean protein, healthy carbs, veggies, water. Your calorie range looks good for your height & weight. Make sure you're getting some healthy FAT in there too (olive oil, flax seeds, walnuts). If you go totally NO-fat, then your body will actually hold on to the fat you have. You need to eat some fat. Just make sure it's the right kind (NO saturated or trans-fats). You should be getting 10% to 20% of your calories from fat.

Also, are you WRITING DOWN what you're eating? How are you measuring your calorie intake?

2 to 4 hours a day of exercise seems like an aweful lot. I have to imagine that if you're working out THAT MUCH, you might not be working out with enough intensity. I'd like to see you crank up the heat, and workout LESS. How about 3 days of cardio and 3 days of strength training, alternating... and only 30 to 40 minutes of INTENSE training each day. Then rest the 7th day. If you BUILD muscle, you'll burn more calories at rest.

That's about all I can say right now. Check my web site for lots of tips on eating and working out.

I hope this helps you. BE HEALTHY!

Richard Rost

P.S. As a disclaimer, I'm not a doctor or health professional. Please seek the advice of your doctor before implementing any of my recommendations.  
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