When a Week Of Pentamize Tracking Is And Is Not Enough To Assess Your Diet And Exercise Plan

Day 329

Yesterday, I finally broke through on my third day of recovery from 2 cheat days in a row. On the first day, I lost .3 kg. Then, I had some trouble and lost only .1 kg. But yesterday was finally the day where things turned around big time. I lost .7 kg.

As usual, I really don’t have a clear reason why yesterday was so much better than the 2 previous days. I basically did the same thing all 3 days and got 3 different results. In fact, I ran harder on Day 326 than on Day 328. Yet, my results on Day 328 were much better. Never let daily results drive you crazy unless you see that what you are doing is simply not working. I usually give a plan about a week.

If you just keep on gaining weight almost every day after a week, it’s probably a flaw with your system. This does not mean you have to have lost weight after 7 days. What it means is that you probably need to tweak your system if you are gaining weight on half of the days or more over a one-week period. Something is often wrong there that needs to be fixed. But if you lose weight on 5 of 7 days but gain overall due to a cheat day or something, then it’s easy to see it was the cheat day that probably hurt you. The easy solution to that is to avoid the cheat day.

I will show some examples of when tracking for a week is not enough to let you know for sure whether your plan is working. Then, I will show an example of when a week is sufficient to let you know that you probably have a bad plan.

Example 1
Tracking Insufficient Due To Middling Results

Day 1: lost .1 kg
Day 2: gained .2 kg
Day 3: lost .1 kg
Day 4: lost .4 kg
Day 5: gained .2 kg
Day 6: lost .1 kg
Day 7: broke even

In this example, you lost or broke even 5 out of 7 days and gained on 2 days. Overall, you did lose .3 kg. While this is starting to look like you may have an effective diet and exercise plan, it’s too early at this point to say one way or another. Although you lose, it was less than a pound. The next week, you could actually gain .3 or more and end up breaking even or even worse. The tracking results here are almost meaningless after only 7 days.

Example 2
Tracking Insufficient Due To Wild Swings And Middling Results

Day 1: gained .4 kg
Day 2: lost .5 kg
Day 3: broke even
Day 4: gained .1 kg
Day 5: lost .6 kg
Day 6: gained .3 kg
Day 7: lost .1 kg

This is similar to Example 1. You lost .4 kg, which is not that bad. But the swings are crazy, and they can affect short-term results enough that the .4 you see here could be an inaccurate estimate of long-term results.

Example 3
Tricky Due To Cheat Day But Should Track Some More To Be Sure

Day 1: lost .1 kg
Day 2: lost .3 kg
Day 3 : gained .7 kg (cheat day)
Day 4: lost .2 kg
Day 5: lost .1 kg
Day 6: gained .2 kg
Day 7: lost .3 kg

In this case, you lost .1 kg despite having a cheat day. And you also lost weight 5 out of 7 days. This is looking more like a good plan. But one week is rarely enough to say for sure that you have a good long-term plan. Typically, one week is only enough to show that you have a bad plan, such as in Example 4.

Example 4
Most Likely a Bad Plan That Needs Changing

Day 1: gained .2 kg
Day 2: gained .3 kg
Day 3: lost .1 kg
Day 4: broke even
Day 5: lost .1 kg
Day 6: gained .2 kg
Day 7: gained .2 kg

You gained .7 kg in this case, and you lost a small amount of weight on only 2 days to go with one breakeven day. This is about a pound and a half. And if there were no diet cheat days during this week, this is not looking like a good plan. In addition to the .7 kg gain, also consider that you are losing weight on well less than 50 percent of the days. Do you really think this looks like a winning plan? Although one week is never enough to say for sure, I would make some modifications right away instead of going another one or two weeks with a plan that doesn’t seem to be working. In other words, it’s probably time to exercise a little more or eat a little less and track those results.

In short, a week of Pentamize tracking (I mean tracking your diet and exercise and daily weight loss or gain) is generally not enough to say that you have a good plan. Just keep on tracking another week or two to make sure. I prefer a tracking history of about 3 weeks before reaching a firm conclusion about whether your current plan is going to help you lose or maintain weight in the long run. However, one week might show that you have an ineffective plan that needs some modifications. You could go ahead and test a seemingly bad plan for weeks. But you will risk gaining more weight and wasting a lot of time in the process. It is advisable to make modifications after that first week and then start tracking anew after making those changes. Then, after 7 days, you will have a new set of numbers to analyze.

Today, something happened overnight, causing me to lose almost no weight. I went to bed weighing about 80.8 kg and woke up at 80.2 kg. That is an absurdly low amount compared to previous overnight weight-loss results. I am typically losing 1 kg or more, but this was not always the case. Today just apparently was not meant to be a good day for some reason. And while these days are inexplicable, I have grown accustomed to not being too upset because they are predictable and, more importantly, NOT fatal to my overall efforts.

I was still 79.9 kg about 3 hours after getting up. It was then about time to go for my run, which will have to be 90 minutes again today because of the weird overnight results.

I am deciding now to run only 75 minutes tomorrow regardless of what happens today. And even though today’s result will probably be a weight gain, it’s time to remind myself that recovery is a slow process that can’t be rushed. I will get there and can’t overwork myself to rush this process. So it’s best to just decide right now that I will reduce to 75 minutes tomorrow since it seems like I need that. But it does mean I need to finish a full 90 minutes today.

I delayed a little bit until 12 noon to run. So my final weigh-in will be at approximately 1:30 in the afternoon. This is a little later than usual, but it’s not so late that I would call it cheating. Sometimes, I also weigh in a little earlier.

Something came over me with about 40 minutes left, and I sped up dramatically for the remainder of the run. The last 20 minutes are so were very hard for my ability, and I had a heart rate of about 168 at the end of this tough session. The first 50 minutes were fairly slow. But at the end, I weighed in and had lost a large 1.7 kg. This actually dropped me so far that I lost .1 kg today. My finishing weight was 78.2 kg, down from yesterday’s 78.3. That is now 4 days in a row of weight loss during this recovery period.

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