Understanding Odd Daily Results In Weight Loss And Gain

I am coming off of a really great day that produced a weight loss of .7 kg. The finishing mark of 76.7 is a pretty good start to my recovery from 2 days of weight gain with no exercise.

I erased the really bad gain of .7 3 days ago, but the .4 lost 2 days ago still needs to be recovered from. I won’t take any crazy measures to do that, and it may end up being difficult because my average amount of weight loss on exercise days after an exercise day is close to .3 kg. Thus, I would have to do slightly better than average to get back down to 76.3. It’s possible but certainly far from a sure thing even with another long run. The idea is to have another typical snacks-only day.

I am going to give a few examples of the snacks-only diet that strongly appear to be caused by varying water consumption and exercise activity. This is confusing if you don’t look at the numbers as a whole. Ultimately, what you must look at are averages over time. But to do that, you need to track individual days and understand the results of those individual days. Let’s look at some actual examples.

Example 1
4 Days In a Row With Exercise

Day 1: 79.1 to 78.6 (lost .5 kg); non-exercise portion – gained .6
Day 2: 78.6 to 78.0 (lost .6 kg); non-exercise portion – gained .4
Day 3: 78.0 to 77.7 (lost .3 kg); non-exercise portion – gained .6
Day 4: 77.7 to 77.8 (gained .1 kg); could not measure non-exercise portion

For these 4 days, I was aided greatly by substantial exercise. And that exercise resulted in an average weight loss of about .9 kg for just the run portion. One showed a weight gain (Day 4), but the others showed a weight loss. The average loss was around .3 kg per day overall.

But look at what I weighed before exercising at the end of the day. Without the exercise, I would have gained weight. In fact, I would have averaged a gain of about .5 kg for Days 1 to 3.

Why are these results misleading? Well, the overall result is not misleading if you include the exercise. It looks like you would gain a lot of weight if you did not exercise, though, right? It doesn’t seem misleading, but the true nature of the .5 kg gain before exercise becomes apparent when you look at Example 2.

Example 2
5 Typical Days In a Row Without Exercise

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

In fact, these are the first 5 days that I did the snacks-only diet. I lost a little bit, but it’s basically a breakeven. So these 5 days are very close to the overall average.

Do you see the difference? When I don’t exercise, I am just about breakeven. When I do exercise, Example 1 shows a huge difference. It shows a weight gain of .5 kg before exercise. This is odd to someone who has never been exposed to such results. What is the reason? I can say for sure that I am following the snacks-only diet in both examples, but I am also drinking more water in Example 1. All the running makes me thirsty. Does this mean that drinking water makes you gain weight? Well, it has zero calories, but it does have weight. That weight does not always leave the body completely in 24 hours or less. This is the only explanation that I can come up with.

So what does this all mean to you? It means that, should you decide to do Pentamize tracking, it is advisable to at least test a full week at a time or at least a few days in a row while exercising every day and also a separate tracking period where you do not exercise at all for about a week straight or at least a few days in a row. Your own Example 2 will tell you how your diet is going without exercise, while Example 1 gives you an idea of what will or at least can happen when you add exercise.

Alternate back and forth until you have at least 20 days or so with both exercise and the separate set of data without exercise. You can average all the sets together because short spurts of only 4 or 5 days or even a whole week give varying results.

If you get results similar to mine, then the amount you gain before running can be important. For example, if you were to exercise 40% of the time, you may see something like this:

Day 1 – no exercise – broke even
Day 2 – exercise – lose .9 kg
Day 3 – exercise – lose .3 kg
Day 4 – no exercise – gain .5 kg
Day 5 – no exercise – break even
Overall – lost .7 kg and average daily loss of about .15 kg

This is just a sample. But you will see wild differences from day to day like this if you are constantly alternating between exercising and not exercising. Day 2 is the best day because you are coming off a non-exercise day and typically breaking even before exercise. Of course, all these numbers will be different for you. Day 3 is still good, but the results decline because of the body’s tendency to retain additional weight after Day 2’s exercise. Day 4 is the worst because of the tendency to gain after exercising and no additional exercise session to burn off the excess. Days 1 and 5 are typical breakeven days that occur when exercising neither on that day nor the day before.

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I’m off to a bad start today. For some reason, I was up 1.2 kg before the 3rd snack. At this point, I am just about used to this, although it still stings a bit when I step on the scale and see that. By way of comparison, my MAXIMUM weight increase all day yesterday was about 1.2 kg. This is the difference in Examples 1 and 2 that I laid out earlier.

I was up 1.4 after the 3rd snack (78.1), including quite a bit more water. The actual snack was only a measly .1 kg or so.

I was back down to 1.4 before the 5th snack. This is still going to be a rough day, and I need more water, too. Nonetheless, my diet discipline seems to be okay.

The 5th snack got me to about 1.6 kg. That is about .4 kg higher than yesterday’s max weight increase. At this point, it might be difficult to just break even, much less lose weight. But I have no regrets today. My diet was just fine as far as I am concerned. That .7 loss yesterday is not something that I see continuing for days. There is usually a decrease in loss or maybe even a gain the next day, as this is the way the body finds its average.

Completely confounded. I was still at 78.0 when waking up, which is 1.3 kg over the day’s starting mark. It may be that my body does not want to lose any more weight at this point. These numbers are insane. I am so upset now that I am not going to run 90 minutes. I don’t like doing everything right and still gaining weight. I’d rather run for 45 minutes and maybe gain a little weight. At least that would make some sense. This is it for me. No more trek to 75.0 kg. That short-term project is suspended for being unrealistic and unnecessary. It’s time to start testing different run durations (30 minutes, 60 minutes, etc.) instead of pushing for a specific weight. This is not good for my psychological well-being. The snacks-only diet is fine, and I like that. But one thing I will not do is run for 90 minutes and still gain weight. It’s unacceptable. This was fine under my old diet, but it’s not going to work with the snacks-only diet. It feels like my body is sabotaging me.

To be clear, I will still run for 90 minutes sometimes on my snacks-only diet. This is not a switch to being lazy or anything of the sort. Rather, I am no longer going to keep pushing to lose more weight when I have essentially lost pretty much all the weight that I need to lose. It’s time to accept that I am in maintenance phase and stop trying to force my body to lose even more.

My current BMI, as of yesterday, is a 26.5, down from a max of about 36.5. If that’s not a success, what is? And the 26.5 is only slightly into the overweight range. I have been unrealistic now, and it seems my body is screaming to tell me that.

I decided not to run at all today. My weight dropped to 77.6 in the 3 hours after getting up. That left 2 more hours. A decrease of .4 is definitely a decent mark.

Just dumbfounded again. 2 hours later, I thoroughly checked and had a final weigh-in of 77.7 kg. This solidifies my belief that my body does not really want to lose more weight (or at least much more weight). I am completely halting any short-term goals and am going to transition to Pentamize weight maintenance on the snacks-only diet. More about that in the next blog post.

Day 1: 79.1 to 78.6 (lost .5 kg); non-exercise portion – gained .6
Day 2: 78.6 to 78.0 (lost .6 kg); non-exercise portion – gained .4
Day 3: 78.0 to 77.7 (lost .3 kg); non-exercise portion – gained .6
Day 4: 77.7 to 77.8 (gained .1 kg); could not measure non-exercise portion
Day 5: 77.8 to 77.1 (lost .7 kg); no non-exercise tracking
Day 6: 77.1 to 76.9 (lost .2 kg); no other tracking today
Day 7: 76.9 to 77.0 (gained .1 kg); no non-exercise tracking
Day 8: 77.0 to 76.8 (lost .2 kg); no non-exercise tracking
Day 9: 76.8 to 76.3 (lost .5 kg); no further tracking
Day 10: 76.3 to 77.0 (gained .7 kg, but no exercise at all); non-exercise portion – gained .7
Day 11: 77.0 to 77.4 break day and also not a snacks-only day; not included in averages below
Day 12: 77.4 to 76.7 (lost .7 kg); no other tracking
Day 13: 76.7 to 77.7 (gained 1.0 kg); no exercise, so non-exercise portion was the gain of 1.0 kg
average: about .34 kg of weight loss on exercise days; non-exercise average – gained .6 kg

Day 13 above is the last day of this trek to 75.0 kg. There is no further point in pushing for that. However, I am still at a weight loss on the snacks-only diet. This is nothing against that diet in general, which I have happily adopted.

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