Yesterday was one of the best days ever during my whole Pentamize tracking history. It was not because of total weight loss, which was a decent but not phenomenal .3 kg. Rather, I am now in the positive on all types of one-hour running sessions, meaning net weight loss on overall 60-minute runs, on fast runs, and even on slow runs. After 17 days of slow runs, including one cheat day, I have lost weight. It has now been 51 days without a single 90-minute run. Despite that, I have achieved weight maintenance and have an overall weight loss of .6, including a loss of .3 with the slow sessions.
I was up from 76.8 to 77.9 after the first meal and rehydration. This is a somewhat typical increase of 1.1 kg from the first meal. It’s not a great but not a bad start.
The second meal resulted in an increase to 78.2 kg. As usual, the second and subsequent meals are smaller than the first. Some people will have a good breakfast and then smaller meals the rest of the day. I am not going to try to say what is best for you because everyone has his or her own preference and results. But you might want to try this if you haven’t done it yet and would like to see if it is even an even better plan than what you have tried so far.
Having a larger first meal and smaller meals the rest of the day has given me the following two main benefits:
1. Eating the biggest meal first allows plenty of time for the food to digest (keeping in mind that it sometimes takes more than 24 hours for food to digest); and
2. Having smaller meals the rest of the day after the bigger meal is a better opportunity for diet control. Getting into a habit of smaller meals later in the day makes it less likely that you will accidentally overeat.
Today is proving to be difficult. I have managed to get to what should be only one more meal left. However, I am already up 1.6 kg, or 78.4 kg. This would be great if it were the end of the day and time to sleep. But it’s not because I still another meal to go and am not sure what to eat. I have run out of yogurt, and smoothies weigh too much. If I were to have smoothies, I would likely jump to about 79.0, which would be more than yesterday and into the Danger Zone. So I am kind of stuck at the moment and will just wait an hour or so and make a decision on my last meal.
About 2 1/2 hours later, my weight was still at 78.3. It’s like it’s just stuck in place, and I still need to eat something. I may have some smoothies, but it would be awfully risky at this point. I remember my weight going up about .6 kg the last time I had strawberry smoothies. But it just feels like the right thing to do even if I go over 2.0 kg (78.8 kg).
For my last meal, I had a number of different things and rose more than expected. I ended at 79.1 kg, which is a pretty ridiculous 2.3 kg daily max increase. But to be honest, I have not one regret. I needed that food. If it causes me to gain some weight, then it was meant to happen because my body was screaming for more sustenance. This would be a problem if it happened every day. Thankfully, it does not. So I am still good so far overall even with the slower 60-minute runs. At my current weight, the only real expectation is to break even with these slower sessions. So there are going to be ups and downs all the time.
I got very little sleep last night, but my weight did go down from 79.1 to 78.3 from about 9 at night to 7:30 in the morning. So that was almost .1 kg per hour, which is the desired amount in non-exercise periods (of course, it drops dramatically more during a good exercise session). Still, if you crunch those numbers and figure that I will be weighing in at about 12 noon, this is going to be one ugly day. I might gain more than .5 kg. Well, one day in the 76 range again (yesterday) is better than no days. It’s right back to struggling again after today.
About 2 1/2 hours after getting up, the situation was not really getting much better. I had had a nominal drop to 78.1 kg, or a little less than the desired .1 kg drop per hour. Things were already bad, and there seems to be no chance of a recovery today. In fact, I may now gain as much as .8 kg and am just hoping it is not more than .5.
This is my 18th day of doing short one-hour runs only. One persistent pattern is these huge swings. I go down for a while, and then I go up. Although I was legitimately hungrier yesterday, my max was still a 2.3 increase, which actually is not even all that bad.
I don’t know if I can personally get comfortable with these crazy swings. It just seems to be too much for me because mental stability is important in maintaining my diet and exercise lifestyle. I expect some swings and obviously know that cheat days require considerable recovery. But those cheat days are worth it. The problem for me is that I keep experiencing these wild swings even when not taking a cheat or break day.
Waht I am saying should not be misconstrued as my thinking about not maintaining my weight. In fact, the idea is to work out even harder, not to work out less. Over this test of slow runs, I have intentionally held back even when wanting to run faster at times. Maybe the slow runs aren’t enough for me. I already sacrifice a lot on diet. So far, I am maintaining my weight with this test or at least getting close. I will be back to a small overall weight gain after today’s inevitable large increase. I am going to keep doing the slow runs for 4 more days (including today) to give me 21 days. At that point, I am going to sit down and make a detailed assessment of everything. That includes the results and my psychological and mental condition when doing these slow runs. Ultimately, it looks like I will need to opt for a more flexible approach. If a day like today happens, the only way to at least partially avoid a huge disaster is to have the flexibility to do a longer or more intense exercise workout. Forcing myself to hold back every single time even when I need to exercise more or harder seems to be a potential recipe for failure.
The other thing to think about is that I have also not had a single break day yet during this period of 17 days (not counting today yet). I am at one cheat day and zero break days. I have my doubts that this can be sustained. I will talk more about this when completing 21 days of this test.
The last point today is to reiterate that this is not a serious negative in my weight loss and weight maintenance journey. I was always skeptical about slow 60-minute runs as a permanent solution. The idea was to see what would happen. At the very least, I have learned that they are an option on days when my diet discipline is good and my weight drops a reasonably good amount overnight. If those things don’t happen, forcing myself to stick to an unreasonably easy workout is proving to be a risky affair. The main goal was to somewhat reduce my exercise requirements. And that goal has been achieved.
The run had a typical result. Unfortunately, that is not enough on a day like this. I was 77.5 after the run and then had a 77.4 kg official weigh-in shortly thereafter. That is a huge weight gain today of .6 kg. I am now back to gaining .3 kg with slow 60-minute runs after getting into the weight-loss column yesterday. I expect a roller coaster, but this was ugly. It seems like I would have gained some weight even if staying under 2.0.
Total 60-Minute Days: 52
Result: breakeven (77.4 to 77.4)
Total Hard Runs: 34
Result: lost .3 kg (77.4 to 77.1 kg)
includes one break day, one cheat day, and one semi-cheat day
Total Slow Runs: 18
Result: gained .3 kg (77.1 to 77.4)
includes one cheat day but no breaks