4 Determining Factors For Your Ideal Diet-Exercise Combination

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
average: .37 kg of weight loss; non-exercise average – gained .53 kg

At some point in your quest to find the ideal diet-exercise combination, you will hopefully find something that is going to work on a permanent basis. This does not mean you will never cheat or have the occasional bad day. As long as recovery is part of your plan, then the bad days are okay.

I think I have finally found this combination for myself. It is the snacks-only diet with running sessions when necessary, but with an occasional loosening of discipline to allow for a cheat day or a partial cheat day.

The diet portion of this combination gives me breathing room to be human while also largely following a diet that allows me to more or less break even on a daily basis.

The amount of running is going to depend on how much I need, so it will vary. This flexibility is not like the diet because the diet should largely stay the same (a snacks-only diet). However, what I eat on this diet is flexible so long as I eat a somewhat balanced diet overall.

It is best to give a series of examples. If I gain .3 kg on a particular day, then a moderate 30-minute run should be enough to burn off that excess. This example is different than what I am currently doing, which is a series of daily 90-minute runs. But the reason I am doing that is to speed up the process of getting down to 75.0 kg. It’s not even necessary to do this, but I just want to speed up the process because I have grown very tired of being in the 78 to 79 range when I should be in the 75 or maybe 76 range. Being 7 to 10 pounds over my target weight is not where I need to be for a long period of time.

Now, let’s look at a really good example. I follow my diet and lose .3 kg before exercising. If I feel like it, I can go ahead and just cancel my exercise session since I have already lost weight for the day.

It’s important to cover bad situations, too. Let’s say I have a cheat day and gain .7 kg. That would be the right time to maximize exercise activity for recovery purposes. It could take me multiple days to recover. But as long this kind of recovery is a realistic part of my plan, then I don’t worry too much about the occasional cheat day.

In my case, if I could not exercise, cheat days would likely be out of the question. For now, I am able to keep up a decent level of exercise activity. So I can weather the storm of these cheat days.

But let’s say that I had an accident and could no longer run. This would force me to alter my ideal diet-exercise combination. That wouldn’t necessarily be a super dramatic change, but it could mean something like less cheat days. It is for this reason that I highly recommend that you try to formulate a diet where you can break even without exercise. Any accident putting you on the sidelines would then not be too much of a shock since your basic diet without exercise would already be in place. You wouldn’t have to start from scratch with a brand new diet.

I already know from over a month of experience that I can do all the following:

1. Stay at least close to breakeven on days with the snacks-only diet with no exercise;
2. Easily lose some weight when exercising along with the snacks-only diet;
3. Quickly recover from cheat days by exercising to my personal max, which happens to be a 90-minute jogging session but may be something totally different in your case; and
4. Maintain this diet in the foreseeable future without starving myself or sorely missing anything that was in previous diets.

If you can do all 4 of those things, there’s a good chance you have found the diet-exercise combination for you. If you miss even one of these factors, you’ll probably need to do some more testing and tracking to find the PERMANENT combination for you. A temporary fix is not going to cut it cause you will just gain the weight back in a lot of cases. That’s why the 4th thing (permanence) is crucial. You don’t have to envision yourself doing it till you are 98 years old. It is sufficient that you can see yourself HAPPILY following this combination for the foreseeable future.

After the first snack today, I was at 77.8. That was a fast increase, but I just want to stick with the plan. After yesterday’s great ending, I am not going to let myself get stressed at all today. Just let whatever happens happen. I have been in the dumps emotionally the past 2 days until the last part of yesterday turned it all around. So my only goal today is to successfully stick to my snacks-only diet and then do another run in the morning.

Before the 2nd snack, I was down to 77.6. This is the way my body normally reacts, so it is hopefully getting back to normal for a full day.

I had a big jump before the 3rd snack, to about 78.2. That is higher than yesterday, but it once again appears that a good deal of this is nothing but water. I am still getting used to this change.

After the 3rd snack and going to the head, I was back down to 78.2. My weight appears to be fluctuating more normally now as compared to the past 2 days (going up for each snack and down a little before the next snack). It looks like I may gain again before exercise but lose overall after finishing a running session.

After the 4th snack, I was at 78.3. I have noticed that I am peeing more now, too. I don’t even know why I have been eating only 5 snacks lately. But I am not starving while doing that. If I really feel hungry, then I will have another snack. 6 seems about right, but 5 is probably okay if it feels right.

I crept up to 78.5 before the last snack. It’s probably not going to be possible to stay below 1.4 kg on most days when running 90 minutes on a daily basis. I’m almost sure it’s because the body needs more water during the day after that much exercise. But as long as it still results in weight loss by the end of an average day, then I need to just get used to this and stop complaining about it. Pretty soon, I’ll be running a lot less, anyway.

After the 5th snack, I was at 78.4 kg. I am probably done eating for the night and most likely have a great chance to record another large weight loss in the morning. Say hello to the 76 range again if all goes as expected. 🙂 Before going to sleep, I hit the bathroom and then weighed in at 78.3 kg.

Goodness gracious. Even after using the bathroom, I was still at 78.0 after sleeping. That is I believe the 2nd lowest drop overnight in my Pentamize tracking history. It literally cannot get much worse than that. However, it was also 6 hours before the official weigh-in. And the run might be enough to get me below the daily start of 77.1 all by itself. Then, I will have to hope that more comes off naturally in the 4 hours between the run and the 12 noon weigh-in.

My scale was acting nutty after the run, but it appears I was at about 77.3 on the conservative end. That means I need to lose some weight naturally over the next 4 hours to have a good day. It’s very hard to have a good day when you only go down .3 kg overnight. Very strange result. This is one of those days where destiny seems to be against me.

Things just are not improving. I have about 1 1/2 hours to go and am still at 77.2. It’s like when a needle gets stuck in place on a gauge in your car.

The last 3 days have been like The Twilight Zone. I gained .1 kg and then suddenly lost .7 kg (a huge portion of it only from the run and the 3 hours after that) and am now struggling again to try to just break even. There is NOTHING ELSE to do with my diet. I can’t eat less. It wouldn’t be healthy and certainly would not be realistic as a permanent lifestyle change.

With one hour to go, I was finally at the breakeven point of 77.1. Very disappointing but a slight relief at the same time.

I finally hit a decent stretch and ended the day at 76.9 kg. At least that is back in the 76 range and marching to 75.0. I lost .2 kg today.

Here are my recent daily and overall stats for the snacks-only diet with and without exercise:

Day 35 – lost .2 kg
Day 36 – lost 1.0 kg
Day 37 – gained .6 before exercise; lost .5 including exercise
Day 38: gained .4 before exercise; lost .6 kg including run
Day 39: gained .6 before exercise; lost .3 kg including exercise
Day 40: gained .1 kg including run (could not track before exercise)
Day 41: lost .7 kg including run
Day 42: lost .2 kg including run

“No Exercise Days” (or non-exercise portion before running) when no exercise the day before – lost .1 kg – 34 days
Exercise Days: lost 4.5 kg – 9 days
30-min Days: lost .3 kg – 1 day
90-min Days: lost 4.2 kg – 8 days
Non-Exercise Portion On Days After Exercise: gained 1.5 kg – 4 days

Lost .7 KG Even When Exercising The Day Before (Best So Far)

Here are the results so far for my weight-loss trek from 79.1 to 75.0 kg. I was flying high for 3 days, and then Day 4 put a halt to that for some reason. I will be discussing Day 4 below in more detail. It was the first day with a weight gain, although it was the minimum gain that can be tracked on a regular bathroom scale.

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
average: .4 kg of weight loss; non-exercise average – gained .53 kg

If I did not have about 2 years of Pentamize tracking experience, I would be highly upset now over yesterday’s results. I did practically everything that I am supposed to do:

1. Drank plenty of water;

2. Followed a snacks-only diet; and

3. Did an exercise session that consisted of a full 90-minute run.

My weight did go up to a max of about 1.7 kg over the starting point, but that was apparently mostly due to water. For some reason, my weight just would not go down throughout the day like it usually does.

Without the tracking experience, I would probably think I did something wrong. That is doubtful. It seems like I did nothing wrong at all. Obviously, taking in a lot of water is not a mistake.

I do have a concern, though. Is this an occasional thing or something that is going to keep happening again and again? I hope it’s just a bad exception and does not become the new norm. I still would like to get down to 75.0 again but don’t necessarily have to stay there all the time.

Because of yesterday’s results, I am going to track after every single snack today. If it does happen again, I’ll then have even more information to analyze.

Starting Weight: 77.8 kg
After First Snack And Bathroom: 78.2 kg (+ .4 kg)
Before 2nd Snack: 78.3 kg (there will be water in between these snacks)
After 2nd Snack: 78.5 kg (+.3 from previous and .7 overall)
After 3rd snack: 79.0 kg (+.5 from previous and 1.2 overall)
Before 4th snack: 79.1 kg and then 78.9
After 4th snack: 79.1 (only had half a cucumber and 1 banana; +.1 from previous and 1.3 overall)
Before 5th snack: 79.0 kg
After 5th snack: didn’t check, but it was about 79.2 kg (+.1 from previous and +1.4 overall)
wakeup time (after bathroom): 78.5 (another smallish loss of about .7 overnight)
After Run: 77.4 kg
Final: 77.1 kg

Overall: lost .7 kg

I am now about to get sick to my stomach of this. I don’t think I have ever experienced weight sticking on me like this for hours during the day. And this is now the second day in a row. Really tired of this. I am 100% sure that I am not overeating. In fact, I only ate 5 snacks yesterday and am only at 3 today. Yet, I am already 1.3 up with what should be 3 more snacks. I am not cheating, but weight is sticking to me like glue.

I finally dropped a little before the 4th snack. And the very healthy 4th snack raised me to 79.1 again, or 1.3 kg over. I am not thirsty anymore and not all that hungry, either. So hopefully I will see a little drop before the 5th snack.

I may or may not do well by the end of today, but there are doubts about keeping this up because I really should be having 6 snacks, not 5. While I am not super hungry or anything, my energy level is on the low side. Things were great until yesterday. There is still hope that this is just a temporary trend. On my old diet, my 90-minute days literally ranged from a weight loss of about 1.2 kg at the best to a gain of about .5 or .6 kg at the worst. Uncontrollable factors, such as the rate of digestion, can create a huge range of results. What I really need to do is to lose a bunch of weight overnight to turn this around. And that is out of my control. It’s a waiting game.

That overnight drop was not very good this time. I was at 78.5 kg, which was only good enough for a weight loss of about .7 overnight. However, the run came through for me today. I lost 1.1 kg, reducing my weight to 77.4. That put me at a daily loss of .4 with 2 1/2 hours to go until the weigh-in. The recovery continued after that, as I went down another .3 before the final weigh-in.

Even the past 2 days are fine if I average them. Averaging a .1 gain and a .7 loss gets an avg. weight loss of .3. And my average loss the past 5 days is .4.

Here are my recent daily and overall stats for the snacks-only diet with and without exercise:

Day 35 – lost .2 kg
Day 36 – lost 1.0 kg
Day 37 – gained .6 before exercise; lost .5 including exercise
Day 38: gained .4 before exercise; lost .6 kg including run
Day 39: gained .6 before exercise; lost .3 kg including exercise
Day 40: gained .1 kg including run (could not track before exercise)
Day 41: lost .7 kg including run

“No Exercise Days” (or non-exercise portion before running) when no exercise the day before – lost .1 kg – 34 days
Exercise Days: lost 4.3 kg – 8 days
30-min Days: lost .3 kg – 1 day
90-min Days: lost 4.0 kg – 7 days
Non-Exercise Portion On Days After Exercise: gained 1.5 kg – 4 days

You Might Appear To Be Gaining Weight The Day After Exercise If Not Exercising On That Second Day

The 4 days mentioned below include today’s results. Today is also the first time I gained weight on a snacks-only diet with a 90-minute run. Overall, the record is great, although the average loss on such days looks like it will be less than I was hoping for. That is because of the phenomenon discussed in detail in this 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
average: .325 kg of weight loss; non-exercise average – gained .53 kg

For this blog post, I am going to be describing a scenario that you might encounter over the course of 2 days. To keep it as clear as possible, I will refer to these as Day 1 and Day 2.

Day 1 – exercise day (with substantial exercise, not just a super light workout)
Day 2 – day with no exercise

In a perfect dieting and fitness world, we would all ideally be exercising every day. But we know that is not always possible and not even desirable since the body does need rest.

You will have many situations where you exercise on Day 1 and do not exercise on Day 2. The scenario I am describing here involves substantial exercise, not just a short stroll in the park with the puppy dog. In my case, that is running 90 minutes and losing about 2 pounds during that session. It is actually about 1.0 kg or slightly more. I will just say 1.0 kg for this example.

I will just use estimates of the numbers I have so far on the snacks-only diet. These are estimates only:

Scenario 1

When not actively exercising, I more or less break even on a snacks-only diet. So Days 1 and 2 would typically look like this with no exercise at all, including no exercise before Day 1. Note that exercise right before Day can totally change these numbers. I mean no exercise even on the days leading up to Days 1 and 2.

Day 1: break even
Day 2: break even

Note that daily results always vary, so the above are average days.

Scenario 2

Now, imagine that I decide to exercise on Day 1 at the end of the tracking day but have not exercised for a week or so before Day 1. This is important. These numbers do not apply if you exercised right before Day 1. Also, in this example, you do not exercise on Day 2.

Day 1: lose 1.0 kg (exercise day at the end of the day)
Day 2: gain .5 kg (no exercise)

I will explain scenarios 2 and 3 together below.

Scenario 3

Now, imagine that you exercise for several days before Day 1 and continue to exercise on both Days 1 and 2.

Day 1: lose .5 kg (exercise day when you have exercised every day for several days before this)
Day 2: lose .5 kg (another exercise day)

OK. So why was Day 1 in Scenario 2 so good? It was because the exercise on that day is not going to show how the body adjusts to exercise. That adjustment (water retention or whatever it is) will show up on Day 2, not Day 1. That is because the exercise session was at the very end of your tracking day.

On Day 2 in Scenario 2, it shows you actually gaining weight. So why did you gain .5 when you usually break even with no exercise? This is the body adjusting to exercise in Day 1. At first blush, this may look bad to you. But dive into the numbers to see the actual results.

Scenario 1 with no exercise at all: break even
Scenario 2: lose 1.0 kg + gain .5 kg = a weight loss of .5 kg

See what happened? Yes, you gained on Day 2, but you still lost .5 kg when combining Days 1 and 2.

Scenario 3 shows an average loss of .5 kg and a total loss of 1.0 kg. Why is it twice as good as Scenario 2? Because you exercised 2 times in Scenario 2. It’s as simple as that. You got double the results due to double the exercise.

In Scenario 2, if you exercise on Day 2, you would actually lose 1.5 kg. However, the added .5 kg of weight loss would only be for that one scenario. And the first day you do not exercise, you would lose that additional .5 kg. So it evens out over time to an average of .5 kg per day.

no exercise before
Day 1: lose 1.0 kg (exercise for the first day in a while)
Day 2: lose .5 kg (exercise again)

It looks at this point that you have magically lost an extra .5 kg. That is not true unless you exercise every day for the rest of your life.

Day 3: lose .5 kg

Now, on Day 4, you need a break.

Day 4: gain .5 kg (no exercise)

Do the math, and you will see that it now works out:

lose 1.0
lose .5
lose .5
gain .5

The total loss is 1.5 on 3 days of exercise. That is an average of exactly .5 kg. There is no magic here. It’s just that the average is different until the first day that you do not exercise.

—-

Now, how do you apply this to your situation? The way you apply it is to exercise on some days and not exercise on others and track all those results. Use Scenario 2 above and make sure that the amount you lose on Day 1 (exercise day) is more than the amount you gain on Day 2 (non-exercise day). Get several weeks of results to make sure you have at least a decent estimate.

If you like to work out almost every day, then you can also use Scenario 3 and just take the average. But be aware you are likely to gain a little on the first day you do not exercise. This must be factored into your results. It may be negligible if you take almost no break days. But if you take 2 break days a week or more, then it becomes crucial to factor in how much you gain back on those off days.

Let me give the last piece of this puzzle. None of this matters all that much if you have a diet that allows you to break even with no exercise AND you are able to maintain that diet without overeating even when adding exercise. If you can do that, then the exercise is a bonus that will allow you to lose weight, at least until there is no excess body fat left to lose. At that point, the non-exercise portion is pretty much just a statistic. In the meantime, it’s always good to know how your body reacts to exercise so you can understand the results you are getting. It’s not exactly intuitive to me, so I was surprised to see how the numbers work in reality. But it ends up being good in the long run, at least for me. And that is because I am able to maintain my diet even when exercising.

Note: I still have cheat days and make mistakes. That is the other value of exercise. It allows you to recover from those cheat days and mistakes.

—-

Today, I am experiencing the same thing I have seen the past 3 days. After a run to finish the previous day, I start following the snacks-only diet and drink plenty of water. The weight stays in my body, and I am once again not peeing much yet. In periods of non-exercise, I pee like a racehorse on the snacks-only diet. That completely changes when adding a 90-minute running session.

This tendency is not easy for me to get used to because it’s not what happened when testing the snacks-only diet with no exercise. In that case, the weight would go up and then back down pretty quickly. But it doesn’t go down much at all or at least slowly goes down after these 90-minute jogging sessions.

I was already at about 1.0 kg over even before the 3rd snack. This kind of thing doesn’t make me feel relieved. But I must have this water to survive, and it’s even more vital after a long run. So I am just going to have to get accustomed to it and watch my actual food intake closely to ensure that I am eating snacks only. The water weight will have to take care of itself on its own time.

Today will be my first day without tracking the non-exercise portion. To do that tracking, I must be free to check my weight directly before exercising. Unfortunately, my schedule for the next few weeks is not going to allow me to do that unless I were to cut one day really short. I don’t want to mess up my tracking like that right now because I am right in the middle of determining how many days it takes to lose down from 79.1 to 75.0 kg.

There will be plenty of time later to test the non-exercise portion of exercise days. For now, suffice it to say that every single one of these marks has shown a weight gain – bar none. But every single day with exercise on the snacks-only diet has shown a loss even with the gain from the non-exercise portion. You can’t ask for much better than 100% success when measuring by the day in this manner. Of course, I will eventually hit some bad day and gain weight despite exercising. That is bound to happen. But the success rate is literally 100 so far in 6 days.

I was still about 1.0 kg over after the 3rd snack. It is clear that I am doing fine on my actual diet in terms of food. And the water weight is apparently starting to reduce now. It probably helps that I am not drinking coke today. LOL. Yesterday was not a disciplined affair.

I am taking in large amounts of water, and it is showing on the scale. After the 4th snack, I was at 79.4 kg. We’ll see what happens with this by morning. It’s even higher than yesterday’s max increase. But I am almost positive that this is not a matter of overeating.

Nothing is changing here after another hour. I am at 79.4. Nothing else to do at this point but to wait and have at least one more small snack. I can totally understand large increases due to water, but what I am not understanding is how the weight doesn’t seem to start coming back down for hours. This is so different than the days I have tracked without exercise because my weight fell so fast on those days between snacks. It’s still not clear to me yet whether this is a normal change due to the substantial added exercise, but I presume it is.

I finally got back down some to 79.2 kg. It would really behoove me to stop worrying about the total weight and focus more on just the food. This water is going to take care of itself. I am in the process of readjusting my expectations on this. It is so different than what I am used to seeing under any other diet. My “max increase” may have to be disregarded in this scenario (snacks-only diet with loads of water when doing 90-minute running sessions). I’m not going to go back over my max increase in this post, but there is plenty about it elsewhere in this blog.

A little after the final snack, I was at 79.3 kg. That is 1.6 over the 77.7 starting weight. This is the most I have seen while doing the snacks-only diet. But I know a lot of it is water, so I’ll just wait and see what happens with it overnight and for the rest of this 24-hour period. I’ll be running early and then waiting a few hours before the official weigh-in at about 12 noon.

A couple of hours after my last snack, my weight got down to 79.0. Now, that is the way my body usually acts. It seems there is a delayed effect with this diet-exercise combination. However, it seems doubtful that I could get down to breakeven without exercise.

I woke up early and went to the bathroom and then weighed in at 78.7. This was at 5:30 in the morning. That is still a low rate of drop of way less than .1 kg per hour. However, I have 6 1/2 hours left until the official weigh-in. I will almost definitely be losing weight again today because the run should reduce my weight by approximately 1.0 kg. That will put me at close to even. Then, whatever naturally falls off over the next 6 1/2 hours is the amount I will lose today.

After the run and peeing, I was down to 77.6 kg. That left 4 more hours until the weigh-in. So I’ll definitely be losing weight today and keeping the streak of 7 days alive. Interestingly, that is 7 days of weight gain pre-exercise and 7 days of loss after exercise. While I don’t have the exact non-exercise result today, it almost certainly would have been way over. But I can officially say that all 7 snacks-only days with exercise have been a weight loss.

This wait is a very slow burn. With 2 1/2 hours to go, I was still only down to 77.5. This is positive weight loss, but I was expecting more. I really did not eat that much yesterday. Maybe I am just expecting too much too fast. Also, there may be a major correction soon that shows a day with huge weight loss. Meanwhile, I am at least happy to be back in the mid 77 range and moving in the right direction.

As far as today goes, I have about had it and just want it to be over. I checked with 2 hours to go, and the scale actually said 77.6. I am literally stuck in place here, and it appears that my body is destined to keep the weight on for a while longer. At least it is going to be a weight loss even if it is a small one. I don’t remember seeing anything like this. It’s crazy stuff.

Wow. This is why you don’t count your chickens before they hatch. The previous weigh-ins were done quickly, which sometimes causes bad readings. After checking carefully at 12 noon, my weight was 77.8 kg. I actually gained .1 kg today. That ends the streak I was talking about above. And this also ends one of the strangest days I have ever experienced. It’s like there was a magic hand preventing me from losing weight. Well, it’s not good to worry about a one-day result. This will probably take care of itself within a day or so.

——

Here are my recent daily and overall stats for the snacks-only diet with and without exercise:

Day 35 – lost .2 kg
Day 36 – lost 1.0 kg
Day 37 – gained .6 before exercise; lost .5 including exercise
Day 38: gained .4 before exercise; lost .6 kg including run
Day 39: gained .6 before exercise; lost .3 kg including exercise
Day 40: gained .1 kg including run (could not track before exercise)

“No Exercise Days” (or non-exercise portion before running) when no exercise the day before – lost .1 kg – 34 days
Exercise Days: lost 3.6 kg – 7 days
30-min Days: lost .3 kg – 1 day
90-min Days: lost 3.3 kg – 6 days
Non-Exercise Portion On Days After Exercise: gained 1.5 kg – 4 days

What is a realistic healthy weight-loss pace?

Starting Weight: 78.0 kg
Ending: 77.7 kg

It doesn’t take an expert, which I don’t even claim to be, to know that there is no definitive answer as to how fast you should lose weight in a healthy manner. I say “healthy” because I am not even going to discuss unhealthy or dangerous methods. But even with healthy weight loss, how fast you should be losing depends on your diet and exercise routines that you can and are willing to do. For example, some people may love a vegan diet, while others demand some meat. Some people can jog for 90 minutes, and others only have 30 minutes to get in a workout. These considerations are likely going to affect the pace of your weight loss, meaning that what is realistic for you is going to be different than what is realistic for someone else.

Since everyone is different, I am going to focus on what I am doing temporarily. I have faltered a bit recently and decided it is time to maximize my efforts by using a snacks-only diet plus running 90 minutes a day. It should take far less than a month on this schedule to drop from 79.1 to 75.0 kg, which is 4.1 kg (about 9 pounds). Even in the first 2 days, I have already lost 1.1, getting down to 78.0.

For this discussion, keep in mind what “non-exercise portion” means. It is the approximate 23 hours before I finish each tracking day by running 90 minutes. The non-exercise portion is not expected to show weight loss or at least significant weight loss. It may even show a gain. But the exercise portion is where the weight loss kicks in.

I am trying to imagine a scenario where I routinely break even on the non-exercise portion of a day on the snacks-only diet and then lose 1.0 kg when adding a 90-minute run. Is this even realistic? Maybe I am destined to gain back some on the non-exercise portion simply because not doing that would result in an unrealistic amount of fast weight loss.

If I were to break even on the non-exercise portion on average and also lose 1.0 kg on average, that would be a weight loss of about 14 pounds in a week and 60 pounds in a month, assuming no break days at all. That is an extreme amount of weight loss over a short period of time.

Here is where it suddenly seems like gaining a little on the non-exercise is not just natural, but maybe even desirable. Would it even be healthy to lose 14 pounds a week or about 60 pounds in a month? I really don’t know the answer to this, but it doesn’t sound particularly normal. Under my old diet, I was pulling about 11 pounds of weight loss per month until losing most of that extra weight. This would be an enormous 5 times more than that previous amount, which I thought was rather good, itself.

I am going to keep tracking this. But when looking at things from that perspective, I am not even going to bother being upset if I gain on the non-exercise portion. These numbers seem to suggest that it is the body’s natural way of avoiding excessively fast weight loss.

I also have to keep in mind that I am no longer seriously overweight and am now only a few pounds over my theoretical ideal weight. So losing a large amount fast is more difficult for me at this point in time.

The last 2 days have averaged a loss of .55 kg, or about half of what I would expect to see if breaking even on the non-exercise portion. That would amount to 7 pounds a week or a crazy 30 pounds a month since it is about a pound per day. Even this wild pace is likely unrealistic in the long run but may be realistic for short-term spurts of weight loss when you are on your A game. If I can keep this A game up, then I’ll have lost the 4.1 kg in only 7 to 9 days. Then, I can ease back on the running instead of going 90 minutes all the time. I’ll ease back even if it takes longer than 7 to 9 days since the pace is less important than just reaching the goal.

For now, it is still too early to determine the likely pace under this system. But by the time I would get a decent estimate on the average, I probably will have already achieved my goal. I can say that one pound a day may actually be a realistic scenario, but that sure is a lot of weight. I have done it the past 2 days, but can I sustain that for 10 days or two weeks? I doubt I can even test it for a month because I will reach my goal by then and will start to see natural diminishing returns since that happened before when reducing to 75 kg. This new system may allow me to get below 75 kg, but the pace is likely to slow down either around that point or soon enough.

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 (these are today’s results)
average: .43 kg of weight loss; non-exercise average – gained .53 kg

Today is a little complicated because I kind of cheated for the 2nd snack, including having a can coke. To try to make up for that, I used that as both the 2nd and 3rd snack. This seemed to at least help a little, as I was at 79.0 kg after the 3rd snack. But that was after walking for about 45 minutes, which probably helped a little, too.

Like yesterday, I have peed very little in the hours after running. So the 1.0 kg is hopefully mostly water weight. At any rate, this is not a total disaster. I just have to be more careful than usual the rest of the day. Just like 2 days ago, I have made a mistake and need to recover the best I can.

I had a small 4th snack, but the water and coffee that I have been consuming got my weight up to 79.4 kg. I am still peeing very little. Anyway, it is interesting to test all these things, and we’ll see what happens by morning. My non-exercise weigh-in will be at about 9. Regardless of what happens on a single day like this, it is clear that I have a winning formula. Just how fast it is is not that much of a concern. But it would be mighty interesting if it turns out I can lose about a pound a day during times of maximum effort. It wouldn’t even have to be all the time.

Things just aren’t getting better yet. Despite only taking a little coffee over the next couple of hours, my weight stayed at 79.4. Yet again, I only had a small pee. At least one more snack will be necessary, and probably more like 1 1/2 snacks all together.

One bright thing occurred. I was 79.4 after the next snack and bathroom. Maybe the tide is finally turning. I was down to 79.3 a little later and then about 79.0 at 11:15 at night. That left about 10 hours until the official weigh-in.

I am not happy with today’s course of events. The cheating earlier forced me to almost starve the rest of the day to make up for it. This lack of discipline is all my fault, but I at least resolved to fix it and appear to have successfully done that.

Overnight, I finally lost a good portion of weight that had been added during the day. I was at 78.7 when getting up, and that was with roughly 3 hours to go before the non-exercise weigh-in. Being .7 over with about 3 hours to go puts me in a similar spot as the past 2 days, where I was .6 or .4 over (.5 average) before running.

It is becoming more and more apparent that exercise is causing a completely different weight cycle. While I can ony theorize that water is staying in my body longer, the reason is less important than the fact that the system is still working great so far. After today’s run, I’ll be back in the 77 range from a start of 79.1 only 3 days ago. That includes today.

The key is to understand that non-exercise portions make it appear as if you are gaining weight, but that you should not be discouraged by that because the true daily measure occurs after you finish exercising.

There is one other thing you need to understand, and that is you may generally appear to be gaining weight the day after substantial exercise if you do not exercise that very next day. This is also not a problem if you understand what is going on. I’ll discuss this in the next blog post.

Over the next 3 hours, I did not lose that much weight at all, coming in at 78.6 kg. So I gained about .6 today before exercise.

This is going to be the last day that I can do non-exercise-portion tracking for a while due to scheduling issues. But I can still do daily tracking that shows a combination of 90-minute runs and the snacks-only diet. This is the part that really counts. Non-exercise tracking is extra information.

The day did not end very well, but I still lost .3 kg, finishing at 77.7. On a day where I fouled up my diet, this is pretty darn good. Now, I just have to get back to even better discipline.

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Here are my recent daily and overall stats for the snacks-only diet with and without exercise:

Day 35 – lost .2 kg
Day 36 – lost 1.0 kg
Day 37 – gained .6 before exercise; lost .5 including exercise
Day 38: gained .4 before exercise; lost .6 kg including run
Day 39: gained .6 before exercise; lost .3 kg including exercise

“No Exercise Days” (or non-exercise portion before running) when no exercise the day before – lost .1 kg – 34 days
Exercise Days: lost 3.7 kg – 6 days
30-min Days: lost .3 kg – 1 day
90-min Days: lost 3.4 kg – 5 days
Non-Exercise Portion On Days After Exercise: gained 1.5 kg – 4 days

Lost .6 KG On 2nd 90-Minute Day

Starting Weight: 78.6 (plan is to end day at about 8 in the morning for non-exercise tracking portion and then run)

Final Weight: 78.0 kg

Today, I really must get my diet back in order. Yesterday would have been a bad gain of .6 and was that before running. Although it was supposed to be a snacks-only day, I definitely ate too much on one snack, turning it into a regular meal. The reason I still counted it as a snacks-only day is that a temporary lack of discipline must be included in the results of a diet. Otherwise, you end up only including the really good days and get skewed results that look better than what they should.

I lost .5 kg overall only because of a 90-minute run. But that initial .6 gain is not forgotten and must be my motivation to do better on diet today.

In order to help myself, I need to track the Pentamize way again, which is basically to weigh everything throughout the day. You don’t have to do it after every single snack, but a few times a day is good. Certainly, you at least want to weigh yourself after eating about half your snacks for the day. This allows you to readjust the rest of the day’s diet if necessary. The reason checking in the middle is sometimes not enough is that you may eat so much in the first half of the day that you have already ruined the day’s results. The more disciplined you are and the more consistent your diet is, the less you have to weigh in.

How much you need to weigh in (track) throughout the day is going to depend on your typical results, tendencies, and practices. Really disciplined people don’t have to weigh in much as long as they are familiar enough with their diet to avoid mistakes. Less disciplined people (I am in the middle on this scale but certainly not highly consistent on diet) will find that they will make mistakes if they don’t track more often. There is no perfect answer except to say that you must practice tracking like you practice anything else until you have the right amount that works for you.

The small but significant problem I have with the snacks-only diet is that I do prefer eating a little more. I am not the type of person that likes to stuff my face except on special occasions and the odd cheat day. At the same time, the snacks-only diet keeps my stomach a little less full than desired.

In my case, I am going to mess up sometimes, like yesterday. But also in my case, I can jog to make up for any mistakes. If you cannot exercise for whatever reason, I suppose the only thing you can do short of dangerous drugs or surgery is to avoid cheat days almost entirely. This is the worst-case scenario, however. If you are able to exercise and think you can get used to snacks only like I have (with some mistakes and cheat days), then please try this if nothing else has worked for you on a permanent basis.

Yesterday’s run ended at about 9:30 in the morning. However, I plan on doing a final non-exercise weigh-in in the morning at about 8. This might cause my “non-exercise” portion of the day to be inaccurate by .1 or .2 kg. But if it is, it will show as gaining more weight, not less weight. I am fine with this because I want to underestimate weight loss, not overestimate it. Weighing in early is always going to be a conservative estimate that does not overstate weight loss or maintenance results. If anything, it shows a little more gain on days with gain and a little less loss on days with loss.

I have had it with being 8 to 12 pounds over my target weight. It’s too much and bordering on failure. Now that I am finally stabilized in my new place and having very little pain in my ankles, it’s time to exercise every day until reaching 75.0. And the plan is also to do the snacks-only diet every day for a while. There will be NO CHEAT DAYS until I reach 75.0, although a partial cheat day is not completely out of the question if I feel my body needs a little more for a day.

Note that the snacks-only diet has been a big success, and I am actually under the start of 79.0 with far too many cheat days and partial cheat days. Some of this has been out of my control because of moving to a different city, which is not a very good situation for staying on a snacks-only diet. Finally getting some stability is going to allow me to get to where I need to be.

The other issue is that my ankles are ready for long runs again. One healed up within a week or so, but my right ankle still hurts a little even after more than a month and only 4 running sessions during that time. Nevertheless, it held up nicely yesterday and seems ready for another round in the morning.

I rose more than expected the first part of the day, from 78.6 to 79.7. I hope this is mostly water. It does seem that I have not peed much yet today, and that is despite having a lot of water. As far as food goes, it’s a typical snacks-only diet so far. It doesn’t seem like I am making mistakes, so this water weight will hopefully drop in the next few hours.

Even 2 hours later, I was still at 79.6 after a small pee. There’s nothing else to do here except wait it out while taking my normal small snacks. I am not going to starve because I don’t see that helping matters. However, I don’t seem as thirsty as earlier. So this will hopefully work itself out over the next 16 hours before the non-exercise weigh-in.

I am still testing weight lost after an exercise day, which has been kind of bad so far (.5 kg weight gain in 2 days). However, even if these numbers turn out to be a small average gain, that gain seems like it will be far less than the amount lost due to exercise. So far, it’s a nice net weight loss.

After the 4th snack and bathroom time, I was at 79.7 kg. That makes things a little better since this is the same weight after the 3rd snack. It looks like the water in my body is starting to get used up now. It’s 5:15 as I am writing this, and there are 2 snacks left today. Discipline is paramount. There is no room for any mistakes right now.

I finally had a good “sitting” in the bathroom and reduced my weight from 79.8 to 79.6. The 79.8 is where I was after the 5th snack. Today is looking pretty good now, and I just have to avoid mistakes on the last snack. If I do that, then I will at least be around breakeven, but also with a chance to lose before running. Regardless, it looks like I will finish somewhere in the 77 range tomorrow.

After the last snack, I was at 79.7 kg. The alarming fast increase to 79.7 after 3 snacks almost certainly was due to water since I am still at 79.7 after the 6th snack. I may have eaten even a little less than a typical snacks-only day, but I am not that hungry. The amount doesn’t seem out of line, although much less might border into undereating. I could never expect better than this, although faster water-weight reduction often occurs on days involving no exercise the day before. This day had a 90-minute run directly before it started, so that initial water retention is probably perfectly natural for this situation.

Holy smokes. I lost almost no weight at all overnight, waking up at around 79.3 kg. That was still .7 kg over for the day, and with only about 2 hours left for the non-exercise weigh-in. That is extremely poor. But again, it may well be that I am going to find out that the day following substantial exercise will have corrections like this. It will not stop me from losing weight or maintaining, though. Even with this poor result, I can easily go out, run again, and lose weight. I will map out this cycle as soon as I have the actual results, but I envision it looking something like this:

Day 1 – run – lose .6 kg
Day 2 – run – gain .3 before exercise – lose .5 including exercise (lost 1.1 overall)
Day 3 – no run – gain .3 kg (lost .8 overall)
Day 4 – no run – broke even
Day 5 – run – broke even before run – lose .9 with run (lose 1.7 overall)
Day 6 – no run – gain .5 (lose 1.2 overall)

The above cycle is the trend that I am seeing so far, but I don’t have enough tracking days yet to determine whether this is what is actually going on.

With one hour left before the non-exercise weigh-in, I was down to 79.0. This is looking better now. I am still .4 up, but that’s way better than .7. This also puts me on track to probably be in the 77 range by the end of the run.

My weight was kind of stuck after that, and I finished at 79.0. That is a gain of .4 kg on the non-exercise portion. This trend is going to take some getting used to if it turns out to be a normal thing. Read tomorrow’s blog for more on this topic. There may be a very good reason for the body to react in this manner. If so, it would be ridiculous to fret over it so long as the overall result still shows a weight loss.

Non-Exercise Portion: gained .4 kg

The run produced a weight loss of 1.0 kg. This gave a net loss of .6 kg today. I am not complaining about that. If this is a typical result (lost .5 kg today and .6 today to average .55 kg), that would be a massive 1 pound a day, 7 pounds a week, or 30 pounds a month. This is when running 90 minutes every day, though. I am talking about a hardcore schedule when you are primed and ready to lose a lot of weight. At this pace, I would reach my 75.0 target in only about 6 days. It will be interesting to see if I can do that or if the results can’t keep up this pace. But as long as I do this in 2 weeks or so, I’ll be happy.

Here are the first 2 days on my challenge to reach 75.0 kg:

Day 1: 79.1 to 78.6
Day 2: 78.6 to 78.0

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Here are my recent daily and overall stats for the snacks-only diet with and without exercise:

Day 35 – lost .2 kg
Day 36 – lost 1.0 kg
Day 37 – gained .6 before exercise; lost .5 including exercise
Day 38: gained .4 before exercise; lost .6 kg including run

“No Exercise Days” (or non-exercise portion before running) when no exercise the day before – lost .1 kg – 34 days
Exercise Days: lost 3.4 kg – 5 days
30-min Days: lost .3 kg – 1 day
90-min Days: lost 3.1 kg – 4 days
Non-Exercise Portion On Days After Exercise: gained .9 kg – 3 days