Am I Getting Out Of Control With Too Many Break Days?

Day 472

It has reached the point where I feel that my routine is getting out of control. I have been patient with myself because break days are okay on a holiday like New Year’s Day. But too much is too much.

I have now had 4 break days in 5 days when my typical schedule is to have about one break day on average per month. Certainly, one could argue that one break day a month is not enough. But 4 break days out of the last 5 days is obviously not the answer to that.

Funnily enough, I have actually LOST WEIGHT over these days overall even though only one day had weight loss. I started at 79.5 kg on December 30 and am now 78.8 at the beginning of today. The way I lost weight was having a huge day of 1.3 kg and only a small weight gain on the other days.

Despite having lost weight over these 5 days, that does not mean I have been doing the right thing. Getting out of your usual routine can be okay in some situations. But the danger is not going back to that routine because you get lazy or at least lose some motivation.

To be 100% sure that I am going to run today, I have decided to do it tonight instead of in the morning. It’s time to get a 90-minute run in the books before I reach a possible point of no return (losing too much motivation to stat doing something again that I frankly still don’t like that much).

One unusual thing that has been happening the past few days is that I am gaining less throughout the day than expected. For some reason, this happened again today. I had a little more food than what I normally would by 6 in the evening, including a small frozen pizza. Yet, when checking weight, I was only 79.7 kg, which is .9 kg over today’s starting weight of 78.8. This is obviously a welcome change, but I cannot wrap my head around why this is happening. Is it a matter of losing more weight than usual as I come off of the cheat days? I don’t know, but the good thing about the Pentamize tracking system is that you don’t need to know exactly why you get the results that you get. You just need to know that your combination of diet and exercise is working.

Today’s workout plan is to go nice and slow since I have seen that a large weight loss from exercise is not necessary. Tracking goes both ways. It can tell you that you need to do more, but it can also tell you when it’s okay to slow down. I need to run for 90 minutes, but it need not be fast at all. The idea is to not be hungry at the end of this run. If I run slow and don’t eat afterwards, then I should be losing plenty of weight by the morning weigh-in.

I got down to 78.7 as a result of a pretty average running session. That dropped to 78.5 right away from hitting the bathroom. At that point, I was already under the day’s start of 78.8 kg. However, I needed a small meal and some water. That added approximately .3 kg.

My overnight results were not great. I finished in the morning at 78.2 kg. However, because of such a great result before sleeping, the .6 kg or so was still enough to lose .6 kg on the day. This was a big weight loss day, mainly due to a successful diet. The exercise and overnight results were not even that great.

Results Through Day 32:

Day 1 – 90 minutes – lost .2 kg – 76.8 to 76.6
Day 2 – 70 minutes – gained .2 kg – 76.6 to 76.8
Day 3 – 64 minutes – gained .2 kg – 76.8 to 77.0
Day 4 – 89 minutes – lost .2 kg – 77.0 to 76.8
Day 5 – 75 minutes – gained .3 kg – 76.8 to 77.1
Day 6 – 90 minutes – gained .5 kg – 77.1 to 77.6
Day 7 – 90 minutes – lost .9 kg – 77.6 to 76.7
Day 8 – 90 minutes – gained 1.5 kg – 76.7 to 78.2 (cheat day)
Day 9 – 90 minutes – lost .1 kg – 78.2 to 78.1
Day 10 – 90 minutes – lost .7 kg – 78.1 to 77.4
Day 11 – 90 minutes – gained .2 kg – 77.4 to 77.6
Day 12 – 90 minutes – lost .4 kg – 77.6 to 77.2
Day 13 – 90 minutes – lost .4 kg – 77.2 to 76.8
Day 14 – 90 minutes – broke even – 76.8 to 76.8
Day 15 – 90 minutes – lost .2 kg – 76.8 to 76.6
Day 16 – 90 minutes – gained .6 kg – 76.8 to 77.2
Day 17 – 90 minutes – lost .2 kg – 77.2 to 77.0
Day 18 – 87 minutes – lost .1 kg – 77.0 to 76.9
Day 19 – 84 minutes – gained .1 kg – 76.9 to 77.0
Day 20 – 0 minutes – gained 1.7 kg – 77.0 to 78.7 (combined cheat day and break day)
Day 21 – 88 minutes – broke even – 78.7 to 78.7 (odd cheat where I actually broke even)
Day 22 – 90 minutes – gained .2 kg – 78.7 to 78.9 (partial cheat day)
Day 23 – 90 minutes – lost .6 kg – 78.9 to 78.3
Day 24 – 90 minutes – gained .2 kg – 78.3 to 78.5
Day 25 – 0 minutes – lost .2 kg – 78.5 to 78.3 (break day)
Day 26 – 90 minutes – lost .4 kg – 78.3 to 77.9
Day 27 – 0 minutes – gained 1.6 kg – 77.9 to 79.5 (cheat day and break day combined)
Days 28 and 29 combined – 0 minutes – gained .3 kg – 79.5 to 79.8 (one cheat day, one partial cheat day, and 2 break days)
Day 30 – 90 minutes – lost 1.3 kg – 79.8 to 78.5
Day 31 – 0 minutes – gained .3 kg – 78.5 to 78.8 (break day)
Day 32 – 89 minutes – lost .6 kg – 78.8 to 78.2

gained 1.4 kg (5 cheat days, 2 partial cheat days, and 6 break days)
minutes saved from max of 90 – 614
2276 minutes total
average run time – 71 minutes

Trying For 10th Day In a Row With No Weight Gain; Thoughts On Mental Burnout

I have now achieved 9 days in a row without gaining weight on any of those days. I did break even on one, but the other 8 have resulted in weight loss. This streak is so good that it is motivating to keep maximizing my exercise sessions to keep alive as long as it can naturally keep going.

There is one thing I do not want to do, and that is to push the intensity of my workouts past the level of slight discomfort. I can certainly keep running the same duration of 90 minutes until the streak is over. But pushing the intensity is something that has its limits. For example, my speed stayed fairly low yesterday the whole way through. I got up to a heart rate of about 128 at the end. However, there were some “spurts” during the session where I picked up speed in an attempt to have enough weight loss to keep things going. The point is that my life doesn’t depend on this streak. Running 90 minutes at a “slightly uncomfortable” intensity is something I can do for days and days. But pushing it to a heart rate of 160 every day is a no-go for me. It will totally burn me out on a mental level. No streak is important enough that a mental burnout is acceptable.

For me, consciously avoiding mental burnout is my norm and is different than a weight loss challenge like you see on TV or challenging yourself to lose 5 pounds in a week to fit in a dress or something. Those are comparatively bad in my opinion because I want a permanent lifestyle change, not possible but aggressive short-term results that simply can’t be achieved for a long period of time due to the required intensity level.

Every time in the past that I have stopped working out has been due to mental burnout except one time where I recently took a break due to a physical neck injury. That was actually when I got up to my max weight of 106 kg (233 pounds). That was so high for me that I made the decision to never go there again. And if I am never going to go there again, it’s also important to try to avoid necessary injuries that might come from high-intensity workouts. While it’s sometimes possible to keep on exercising despite injury, any additional pain also brings an increased risk of mental burnout. So the two are very related, depending on your personal situation.

If you are prone to injury, do you really want to push yourself physically beyond a reasonable level just for short-term results? Are short-term results really going to make you happy if the results don’t end up being permanent? Think about these things and the risk of mental burnout when planning your exercise duration and intensity. If you agree with my approach, then you may have to increase the duration of your exercise session to burn enough calories. That is one thing that Pentamize tracking techniques help you develop – the right combination of intensity and duration for your own exercise regimen.

I woke up a bit late today (8:30) after sleeping late (2:30 in the morning). When going to bed at 8:30, my weight was around 79.3 kg. I had finished eating at approximately 79.8 kg. At 8:30, my weight was 78.8 kg, which is just about what it was yesterday. If I can manage to lose .3 kg before running, then I will easily lose weight today. Otherwise, this could be close. Of course, the only thing I can do before running is go to the bathroom and also avoid eating and drinking. So there is nothing special to do now until wait. I will run at about 10:30 in the morning.

Despite running at 11, my weight didn’t seem to want to drop after waking up. I was still a 78.7. But the run result was great. I knocked off 1.6 kg during a run that was not so fast at the end (about 136 kg). However, my average speed seemed to be above average. I didn’t measure my exact speed and don’t usually do that. But I kept up a good pace during this session, just estimating from my breathing and the overall feeling of intensity.

After hitting the bathroom, I ended up suddenly getting down to 77.0 kg. That is a large daily loss of .5 kg. I didn’t really expect that result. It means I have also recovered completely from the London vacation. It took about 3 1/2 weeks to recover. I’ll talk more about this successful recovery period in my next blog post.

Is Putting Pressure On Yourself To Exercise Hard a Good Thing?

Day 313

Today was a mixed bag in terms of diet. I intentionally decided to give myself a reward after losing .7 kg yesterday. So we bought a liter of coke, and I had a few cups of it as my reward. However, as far as the rest of the diet went, I did not cheat. Thus, while my coke reward was probably a little too big, it was not completely over the top, either.

The results throughout the day and overnight were pretty good. I had risen from the start of 78.5 to about 80.5 by bedtime. This 80.5 was better than yesterday’s bedtime weight of approximately 81.0.

When I woke up, I had dropped .8 kg, which is not so great but okay considering that I cheated a little on my diet. That got me down to 79.7 kg, which is at least .5 kg better than yesterday. That figure did not change over the next couple of hours before the run. So it may be difficult to even break even today. It’s probably going to all come down to the weight lost during my run. Incidentally, a breakeven day would not be that bad. Yesterday was so good that my body might not be ready to drop anymore until it somewhat stabilizes. However, I won’t know that for sure now because of today’s cheating.

The difficulty in getting to yesterday’s finishing mark of 78.5 is that, while my diet results were good enough overall, my weight lost during the run yesterday was an above-average 1.5 kg. And that was partially due to a rather fast run, where my finishing heart rate was about 164. It would be hard to replicate that result today. For some reason, I had gotten an energy boost yesterday, which might not come today.

From this point until official weigh-in time, I will have to drop about 1.2 kg to break even or more in order to actually lose weight on the day. So it should be possible to at least break even with one more 90-minute run today. However, regardless of what happens today, I am going to reduce my run time tomorrow, probably to about one hour. Keeping that in mind, I will attempt to have at least an average run result today in anticipation of probably lesser results tomorrow. When possible, it is valuable to plan at least a day ahead like this so you can modify your exercise intensity to fit the situation. In some cases, you may even be able to reduce your intensity a little if you know you are going for a hard run the next day.

Personally, I don’t usually plan high-intensity exercise because it’s impossible to predict how much energy my body will have on a particular day. But in today’s case, I will at least try to have a decent run that is at least average. However, I will not promise myself to run at a particular pace or anything like that because it’s too much mental pressure for my tastes. If you are like me, you may wish to avoid putting a lot of pressure on yourself, particularly in terms of exercise intensity. However, I do, in fact, pressure myself to finish a run based on a scheduled duration. This is the only way I can maintain my weight or lose in a recovery period. Pushing myself in terms of intensity is too much for me. But the reason I can hold myself to a set duration for a workout is that my intensity can easily be modified by just running slower if necessary.I have enough willpower to finish my workouts even if I don’t have the willpower to do the workouts at a high intensity. This has been the key for me.

A lot of people blindly recommend high-intensity workouts. But if, like me, you find the pressure of such intense exercise simply too great to withstand over time, then my method of simply increasing the duration while keeping roughly a medium-level intensity may be the key to get weight-loss results for you.

At 9 in the morning, I took off and had a pretty good 90-minute run. My pace was similar to yesterday’s good run. However, it wasn’t quite to that level at the end. I finished with a heart rate of about 144. There was just no way I was getting back up to yesterday’s near-record pace. Still, this seemed like a solid jogging session to me. And I will be happy regardless of the results because the effort was definitely there.

My scale was acting crazy, registering between 78.0 and 78.4 kg. After weighing in several times, it seemed the best estimate was 78.2 kg. So I lost about 1.4 to 1.5 kg on the run and lost .3 kg today overall. That makes about 1.0 kg in the past 2 days. This is a very pleasing result heading into tomorrow’s shortened session of about 60 minutes.

Using a Catchphrase To Help Motivate You For Exercise

Day 310

I will be sharing a little psychological exercise tip in today’s blog post. By no means am I a psychologist or mental health professional or anything like that. As always, I am just sharing the little things that I have personally tested and successfully used in losing weight and now mostly keeping it off for almost a year now.

Although I have now lost weight 5 days in a row (this is bound to end soon, but I am trying to keep the streak going), it has not been without its challenges. My diet has been decent except for today, where I ate too much at the end and have now jeopardized my streak. But the more difficult aspect has been my mental state when it comes to exercise. I am not at a high emotional level for some reason. In order to get through this, I have found it helpful to keep repeating a catchphrase in my head when running.

My catchphrase is not really catchy at all from a marketing perspective, but it works for me. Here it is:

“Human beings were not made to lounge on the couch.”

Like I said, it’s probably not going to be catchy for most people. I am not a songwriter or don’t write “hooks” for songs or poetry or whatever. But I just came up with the phrase that helps motivate me. My mind works via logic more than feelings. And this is the kind of logical message that keeps me going when I don’t feel like running.

It seems clear that humans are built to hunt and gather food for survival, and that hunting and gather involves significant physical activity. Most people would agree that sitting around and lounging on the couch is not what nature intends for us. Yet, this is what a lot of us tend to do in the modern world because someone else prepares all the food for us as far as hunting and gathering and other types of food processing. Even if you cook, that is limited physical activity and certainly won’t be enough exercise for many people to avoid being overweight.

So while my “lounging on the couch” phrase may not be catchy, it’s what works for me. And how I use this is simple. I just keep repeating over and over in my head when I feel like quitting during a run. That’s really all there is to it, and this simple method has helped me a lot the past couple of days. I really needed that help the past couple of days, as both showed a very modest weight loss of .1 kg. This quite clearly means that I would have gained weight on both days had I failed to complete my 90-minute runs.

Your job is to find and use a catchphrase that helps keep you motivated. It might not be the one I use, and that’s perfectly fine and expected. The beauty of my Pentamize techniques is that I try hard to make things customizable. You can choose any diet if that is what works for you. The same goes for exercise plans. Everyone can and probably should have a different plan since bodies and minds differ drastically in many respects.

Today, I ate a little too much pizza at the end of the day and also had a can of coke. This hurt me badly, as my weight rose from about 80.5 to 81.3. However, I woke up at 3 in the morning and weighed in at about 80.6 kg. So it seems like that weight is dropping pretty well overnight. Sometimes, you are naturally bailed out from a mistake even though you don’t deserve to be bailed out. The weight drops more than expected despite your diet mistakes. Well, hopefully I am getting bailed out here from an unexpectedly high weight drop overnight even though it is not deserved. The key, of course, is to avoid consistently making these mistakes because you won’t get bailed out like this every time. The mistakes usually eventually take their toll.

Before my 6 a.m. run, I dropped a little more to 80.3 kg. This means that I dropped about 1.0 kg overnight. That may be enough to save me from losing my streak here. But I am still 1.5 kg above the starting weight of 78.8 kg. So this will probably require the run plus some extra something, such as going to the bathroom or some extra natural weight loss.

My run had a disappointing result of 1.0 kg, which took me down to 79.3 kg. While it was a pretty slow run with an ending heart rate of 120, only 1.0 kg is disturbingly low. I can’t begin to understand why that is so low. This left me .5 kg above the starting weight and now has me in trouble. I do need to go to the bathroom, and that is going to help at least some. And it actually helped a great deal. An hour after the run, I was down to 78.8 kg. This left about 1.5 hours before the weigh-in. I should be able to lose at least .1 to .2 kg during that time. If so, that would extend my streak of weight loss to 6 days in a row.

For the third day in a row, I lost .1 kg, finishing at 78.7. This one feels better because I cheated too much last night on my diet. It seems to be a stroke of luck that I was able to lose that much weight. Such a result should not be expected, and I have to do better to keep this streak alive.

Day 47 – A Good Psychological Tip For Exercise – “Just Slow Down”

Pentamize Weight Maintenance Blog
November 4, 2016
Day 47
Result: end weight of 74.2 kg and large weight loss of .7 kg

In the morning, I was still experiencing some abdominal and side pain from the gallstones. But I finally felt better in the evening. So this made it a little easier to run for one hour as compared to the past few days.

I do understand that some people may have certain kinds of physical pain that is so unbearable that they cannot jog or do other types of exercise. For me, there is nothing in general that stops me from working out most days. I have the gallstone problem. But unless the pain gets really severe, it does not stop me from working out. I just go more slowly than usual. That is one of my common-sense psychological methods.

You can use small but important psychological techniques like this to help you exercise. And I go into them in more detail in my Pentamize ebook. It can be purchased from the home page of this website.

I definitely did not starve myself today, and my weight had risen to 75.4 by the time of my 7:30 p.m. run. And I went back to 74.6 as a result of the run. That is a loss of .8 kg.

After the run, I was still hungry and decided to eat some chicken patties, a couple of meatballs, and a piece of bread. That caused me to rise back up to 75.1 kg. This is a very good ending point for the night, and I will undoubtedly lose weight today by the time of the morning weigh-in.

Actually, I am not sure why I am doing so well today as far as losing weight. I ate an average amount and ran at an average speed. But these daily results are impossible to understand, anyway. The important thing is to learn exactly how to track every key metric in a weight loss plan so you can measure every aspect of your performance. My book can help you personalize this tracking for yourself.

My results were even better than expected. I dropped to 74.2 kg. That is a bigger drop than average for me as far as weight lost while sleeping. The overall weight loss of .7 kg during this 24-hour period is way more than average. Sometimes, you just have a really good day, just like you sometimes have a really bad day.

I had a very good day today and am not even tired. So the plan will be to work out again tomorrow. I have plenty of energy to do that. In fact, I may even go 90 minutes, giving me some chance of dropping below 74.0 kg. However, it’s possible that my weight will bounce back up since I just lost so much today. So it’s not wise to set a one-day goal for actual weight loss or gain. Rather, your daily goal should simply be to stick to your regular diet and exercise plan.