Took An Unexpected Break Day And Gained 1.4 KG

Day 379

One of my main rules when having a cheat day like on Day 378 is to not take a break day at the same time. So I like to exercise to at least burn off some of the extra calories. Of course, they can’t all be burned off in the same day if you have big cheat day. But it helps to burn some of it off right away.

Another thing that I have historically done is to start a recovery period the next day. This time, since I have already been testing 60-minute workouts, it felt like a good time to continue instead of doing a really hard recovery. I am in no rush, anyway. So it’s still a recovery, but a slow, methodical one.

That usual plan did not work out for Day 379. I was researching some stuff and just couldn’t get my mind into exercise mode. Frankly, I don’t take enough breaks, anyway. So I was happy enough just taking a one-day break from running.

Despite needing a break, it does take its toll temporarily. I ended up at a weight of 78.4 kg, which was a daily weight increase of 1.4 kg. This sounds ridiculously high. But this is my life. If I eat like I am going to exercise but then don’t exercise, that is virtually always going to result in a large weight gain. The good part is that I have a good method for recovering from such a bad result. Read the Day 380 blog for that method.

It didn’t help that today was actually a partial cheat day. I mean, it wasn’t that much out of the ordinary. But I had some coke and other tasty but crappy food. My weight got up to approximately 79.2 kg. At that time, I was expecting to work out in the morning. So this seemed decent and was about 2.2 kg above the starting mark of 77.0.

My usual procedure is to not eat or drink anything until after running in the morning. However, I had a very small snack and quite a bit of water in the morning. And at some time in the morning, I decided that the workout just wasn’t going to happen. So I did a weigh-in at 78.4 kg and called it a day. That is how I ended up gaining 1.4 kg overall on this break day.

Under my current schedule, which is doing a morning workout and then doing a final daily weigh-in only minutes after the workout, the results are going to be bad unless I plan in advance to take that break in the morning. That is because I eat with the plan to run at the end of the day and burn off all those calories. Granted, it’s actually water at the time, but I am not making that point here. I am saying that eating a regular full day’s worth of food but then not exercising as expected naturally results in a weight gain unless you are someone who normally does not gain weight without exercise. I am most definitely someone who does gain weight without exercise on a typical day. So a weight gain of 1.4, while bad, is pretty much inevitable for me on a day like this. It may be more or less than that. But it’s bound to happen.

I have discovered that I can often recover a very large amount the day after a break day. Read tomorrow’s blog post on how I do that.

Day 305: Unusual Weight Loss Of .6 KG On a Break Day

This is an unusual day, but I have some ideas why things may have happened the way they did. I had actually lost weight even before running, which is the strange part for me. That rarely happens and has almost never happened during my Pentamize tracking career. I do remember breaking even without exercise but don’t remember ever actually losing weight except one day when I was really sick. And while I was slightly sick today, as well, my diet was fairly typical (mostly meatballs and yogurt).

I started at 81.0 and weighed in at 80.8 after waking up. But the key here is probably that I was losing extra weight that my body didn’t need after coming off of vacation. That’s the only thing that I can think of. It would be nice to have more days like this to allow for more exercise break days. Unfortunately, that just doesn’t seem to be in the cards. As previously said, the last time I remember losing weight without exercise is when I was really sick and was eating less due to the sickness. That doesn’t really count in my book since it’s an unhealthy way to lose weight. But in this case, I did it pretty much as usual and had still lost weight before working out.

Assuming, though, that this is just extra weight lost from eating too much over the past few days, then this situation can’t be replicated in a healthy way. I would have to overeat on purpose, and the overall end result would be a weight gain, anyway. So there is no good weight-loss secret here that I can use on a regular basis.

I actually decided not to run today because this is that rare time when a break day still results in weight loss. The other factor was that I had a headache. That factor pushed the needle towards not exercising today. Since losing weight on a break day doesn’t come often and my body needs the rest, this is the perfect time to take a break. Still, I managed to lose .6 kg, getting down to 80.4 kg from yesterday’s 81.0. That is even better than most days where I run for 90 minutes.

Today’s developments do mean that a workout tomorrow is vital and that I should be careful about letting my diet get out of control. While taking breaks at times is important, it is also vital to keep up a regular exercise routine. If you go too many days without exercising, your body can get used to that. This may result in your getting lazy and wanting to take an even longer break.

I have decided to stick with morning/early afternoon runs and official weigh-ins right after or shortly after those running workouts. This schedule gives me flexibility in case I need to weigh in a little early or a little later than usual.

Days 299 To 304: Gained 4 KG Over Vacation

This is my first blog post since coming back from vacation. I gained 4.0 kg. However, there are a lot of details to discuss about this because it is misleading without the details.

The main thing to keep in mind is that I did not work out at all before doing my return weigh-in. However, I was actually 83.3 kg the first night. But that was right after eating one final large meal. With no exercise, I managed to drop all the way to 81.0 kg for the morning weigh-in.

Even the figure of 81.0 would have been lower had I worked out before weighing in. Due to timing, I was not able to do that. Thus, the 81 could have been in the 79 range, which would have been a gain of 2 to 3 kg instead of 4.0 kg. With that said, this was still obviously a large weight gain no matter how you look at it. So I have a lot of work to do ahead of me.

During the trip, we did a lot of walking around for sightseeing. However, in no way did I “exercise” in any way that would be considered medium or higher intensity. It was all low-intensity walking. And this is probably why I gained so much weight despite considerable walking in the Kensington Gardens/Hyde Park area and around other parts of London. As a result, I consider all of these days to have been break days and cheat days at the same time.

The lack of results from walking is yet another reminder that low-intensity walking has never worked to help me lose, maintain, or even keep off weight. Even with a reasonable diet, walking has not worked for me. And this reaffirms that.

I had wanted to work out over vacation, and it turned out that Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park have a lot of great running trails. However, I just couldn’t find the time to do it. So I ended up having no serious exercise workouts at all over the course of the 6-day trip. This, of course, greatly increased the amount of weight that I gained.

Despite the terrible results, it’s another good reminder that I simply won’t be able to avoid gaining weight and being overweight unless I follow my Pentamize techniques. And that goes for both diet and exercise. Both are indispensable components.

I’ll just briefly talk about my diet over this trip. It was pretty much atrocious. I drank a lot of coke and ate plenty of snacks. Interestingly, though, we had no unlimited buffets. So the results could have been potentially even worse than what they were. I don’t know how bad they would have been with 2 or 3 buffet meals.

Another thing that did probably hurt a lot is that I had a lot of bread and other carbohydrate-rich foods. This is not what I really wanted. But the continental breakfast was far too heavy on that and unfortunately did not have any meat products or much good fruit or vegetables. So I was stuck with eating a lot of bread every morning, which probably hurt a lot in the weight-gain department.

Going forward for a few weeks, it’s clear now that I have a lot of weight to lose again. This is a major recovery period. I am 6.0 kg above my target maintenance weight. That is 75.0 kg, which is 165 pounds. My current weight is 81.0 kg, which is 178 pounds. So my needed weight loss is about 10 to 13 pounds since I am okay with being slightly above the difficult target weight. If history is a guide, this could mean several weeks of hard work. Last time, I seem to remember taking something like close to 2 months to get back close to my target weight. We’ll see how it goes this time, but I am going to try to do it a little faster.

Break Day Vs. Break/Cheat Day

Day 276

This is one of the most important blog posts I have written so far. It is important to talk about exercise break days because these are one of the types of days that can destroy your weight loss plan.

The main thing I want to talk about is the difference between a break day with good diet discipline and an undisciplined break day that includes too much food. The worst thing is to have an exercise break day that also becomes a diet cheat day. However, let’s assume you don’t want to have a combined cheat and break day. Even still, you need to differentiate between a break day with good diet discipline and one with lax diet discipline.

When you take a break day, it’s possible to almost break even. But it’s also possible to gain a lot even if it’s not a cheat day. I can easily compare the last two days to show you just how big this difference can be.

Day 274 was a break day with relatively poor diet discipline. Conversely, Day 275, although not a break day, would have resulted in a much smaller weight gain. Day 274’s break day resulted in a gain of 1.2 kg with typical food intake. And this was not even a cheat day. Yet, that is still over 2 pounds of weight gain on a single day. Conversely, before starting my run yesterday, I was only .2 kg over.

Let me tell you the difference between these two days and the dramatic 1 kg difference. On Day 274, I did not know it was going to be a break day. Instead, I made that decision at the end of the day. Thus, I was not focused on maintaining a high discipline level all day. On the flip side, I decided to exercise more discipline yesterday because I knew it was time to recover from the really bad break-day result.

On Day 274, I started at 76.3, went up to around 79.4 at the max, and then got back down to 77.5. On Day 275, I started at 77.5 and got up to around 79.2. That then dropped to around 77.7 by exercise time. What this means is that, although my max weights on these 2 different days were within .2 kg of each other, my increase during the day on Day 274 was much more. Let’s do the math. An increase from 76.3 to 79.4 is 3.1 kg. Compare that to Day 275. I increased from 77.5 to about 79.2, which is 1.7 kg. Thus, my much improved diet discipline gave me a 1.4 kg advantage on Day 275. Thus, by the time I ended the run and got down to 76.4 kg, I had lost 1.1 kg for this period.

As you can see, numbers throughout the day are impossible to predict with pinpoint accuracy. But the huge 1.4 kg advantage in terms of diet allowed me to turn a 1.2 kg gain on Day 274 into only a .2 gain before the run on Day 275. And that large 1 kg difference is what put me in position to lose 1.1 kg on Day 275 by final weigh-in time.

As you can see, there is a big difference between a break day with solid diet discipline and a break day with poor discipline. It is a good idea to plan your breaks 24 hours in advance so you will be ready to exercise some extra discipine. That is not required. But as you can see from this example, there is great value in planning in advance. But even if you don’t, you can make up for it the next day like I did on Day 275 in this 2-day example.

On Day 276, I may have celebrated a little too much, including a bit of ice cream and cake. My weight rose to about 79.1 by 9 at night. It would be better to keep this in the mid 78 range or below. However, if quite a bit of it is due to water, this is not a bad thing.

Ouch. I woke up and was still 78.4 kg. This was bound to eventually happen on some day. My weight has been pretty consistent lately about dropping .8 kg or more overnight. Today was only about .5 because my weight was about 78.9 at bedtime. However, this first morning weigh-in was at about 6:30 in the morning. That is approximately 5 hours before the official weigh-in. Thus, things will hopefully work out like they usually do by that time. I will soon do a 90-minute run.

Running for 90 minutes produced a nice drop today. I weighed in at 76.9 kg, which was a loss of about 1.3 kg. These numbers are all within an expected range based on my extensive Pentamize tracking. More importantly, the day has essentially been somewhat saved. I will either break even or lose or, at the absolute worst, gain a fairly small amount. It was looking extremely bad when I got up but is not quite as bad now.

The most I could get down to today was 76.7 kg, which was a .3 kg weight gain. This is the day after a huge loss of 1.1 kg. So maybe this is to be expected or at least a natural partial “bounceback.” It’s time to eat now and get something to drink, as I don’t feel like waiting any longer. I am accepting today’s weight gain and will move on and try to lose some tomorrow.

Big Weight Loss Helps Make Up For Break Day

Day 275

Starting Weight: 77.5 kg
Ending Weight: 76.4 kg
Result: lost 1.1 kg

After yesterday’s break day, I started out with one advantage as far as short-term weight loss. I did not need to drink a lot of extra water. However, I naturally ate what I felt was needed and had my usual cups of coffee. Nonetheless, I ate a little too much, finishing at 79.2 kg at about 9 at night. This was up from 77.5 kg.

1.7 kg is a bit more than what I would have wanted. Part of this was due to some questionable snack choices, like a little bit of cake and a smallish amount of ice cream. However, the good part is that I will definitely be able to lose weight today. But how much is not clear. It depends largely on how much my weight drops overnight. If it drops to just 78.5 kg, that would still be pretty good and would put me in great shape to lose a lot of weight today.

It would be nice to immediately get back into the 76 range. To do that, though, I may have to drop to about 78.3 by morning. That is a drop of .9 kg. Since I did not drink much water today, that seems a bit high of an overnight drop. However, I am just guessing here. Even having done over a year of Pentamize tracking, one thing I have never found a way to predict with any accuracy is how much weight I will lose overnight. It varies like crazy.

When I woke up and urinated, my weight was 78.3 kg. That was an overnight drop of .9 kg, as I had gone to bed at 79.2. This drop is not as much as the recent average. However, it may simply be due to the fact that I didn’t drink as much water yesterday. Thus, the expectation is there would have been less water in my system to begin with. All in all, I am happy with the .9 loss, and that was at 7:30 in the morning. So I am setting up for a very big weight loss today by the time my run is completed.

At 11 in the morning, which was right before my run, I had achieved a big drop down to 77.7 kg. That was an additional .6 kg in about 3.5 hours since getting up. A lot of this was from going to the bathroom. The weight loss will be huge today, although it would be difficult to get all the way back down to 76.3, which was Day 273’s final tally. Nonetheless, this is big even if I come up a little short.

If I took another break day today, then I would still only be .2 kg up. However, I am ready to run now and drop this weight after yesterday’s break.

I had a great run, finishing at a heart rate of about 156 to 160. The downer is I lost only 1.2 kg during this run, which seemed extremely low for the work that I put in. However, I was thinking that it may be because there wasn’t so much water in me to sweat out since I didn’t drink much over this daily period. That may be the reason for the low 1.2 loss. At any rate, I lost .1 kg more after going to the bathroom and weighed in at 76.4 kg. This is a HUGE daily loss of 1.1 kg, which is more than 2 pounds. I almost got back to my 76.3 in one day. That is, I gained 1.2 on yesterday’s cheat day and then lost 1.1 today. This is great to me because it shows that a break day is something you can recover from quickly if you watch your diet on that break day and get in a good workout. More on this topic will be included in tomorrow’s blog post.