Extremely Low Weight Loss During Run Takes Its Toll; Is Freezing Weather a Factor?

Day 445

Today was one of those days where that one thing that is pretty much out of your control ruins the end result. Granted, I could have run for 90 minutes to reduce the risk of gaining weight even more. But considering the run of 89 minutes yesterday and the cold freezing weather, which was about -2 Celsius here in Denmark, it seemed like the right time to reduce my session duration. I was willing to take a little risk of gaining maybe .1 or .2 kg.

During the current 100-day test, risks like this are part of the equation. This is actually a weight maintenance experiment, not weight loss. So I am supposed to pretty much break even, which means some days will have a nominal weight gain. However, in order to avoid having to run 90-minute sessions for a week straight or more, it’s important to try to avoid really bad days that put me into a long recovery period.

What I did not expect was the horribly low weight loss of only .6 kg as a result of the run. I don’t have any idea how that happened unless it was from the freezing weather. Running for 75 minutes and losing only .6 kg is a major downer and almost guaranteed a weight gain today.

Although I ended up with a .3 kg weight gain, finishing at 77.1, it probably wasn’t quite that bad despite the poor exercise result. The reason is that I weighed in a couple of hours earlier to get back to the more convenient time. If I had chosen wait the extra 2 hours, I might have dropped to as low as 76.9, but likely would have still gained a little weight. In return for that, though, I am back to the more favored schedule of weighing in shortly after the run instead of waiting a couple of hours or more. It’s always inconvenient waiting to weight in after already finishing an exercise session because that is the time you are typically the thirstiest even if you are not that hungry.

I could have done a little better on diet but am not too disappointed in my performance. I did rise to about 2.0 kg, which is right at the Danger Zone mark. I made the rather common mistake of eating a little too much for the last meal of the day. That is when my discipline must usually kick in the most to avoid diet errors. Up until the last meal, I was still at 78.2 even after eating a frozen pizza. Thing were fine. I needed to have a last meal of no more than about .3 kg.

Unfortunately, my weight went up to about 78.7 for that last meal, or about .2 kg more than what I should have eaten. That “mistake,” was still reasonable in my opinion. I stayed below the 2.0 kg increase mark, and I believe that it was the absolutely terrible run result that hurt me the most. I ran much harder than usual and still only lost .6 kg.

The point today is that, overall, I don’t believe I made any big mistakes. Hopefully, that low result from the run is just a temporary weird thing going on with my body. As long as this doesn’t become a persistent problem, I’ll probably be fine.

Results Through Day 5:

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
gained .3 kg overall
minutes saved from max of 90 – 62
388 minutes total
average run time – about 78 minutes

Very Disappointing Overnight Results, But Still Lost Weight With 90-Minute Exercise Session

Day 444

This is the 4th day of my 100-day test. I ended up losing weight today, to the tune of .2 kg. So it was a good day that probably should have been a lot better. Something happened overnight, and the usual overnight loss, which does vary, was very low. This was disappointing because my diet was quite good. So it required a 90-minute run to avoid a potential weight loss.

During this experiment, I don’t have any issue with running less at times even if it appears that it will result in an overall daily weight gain. But today, I had already decided that a 90-minute would probably be good because my run times the past 2 days were only 70 and 64 minutes. Actually, I ran about 89 minutes today. Since I want to get a specific average for this entire 100-day test, I will give specific times instead of rounding off. Otherwise, that could affect the overall numbers.

I started today at 77.0 kg, and the big issue to consider was that I had just gained weight 2 days in a row. Gaining 3 days in a row is definitely a bad sign. So I was already leaning towards running 90 minutes, but was waiting until the pre-run weigh-in to make a final decision.

At 4:30 in the afternoon, I was at an extremely low 77.7, for a daily increase of only .7. This is not normal for that time of day, but I did go to the bathroom a couple of times. Maybe that’s why it was so low. The next meal did raise me up to 78.5, which was more normal. At that point, I needed to limit food intake to one more meal or certainly not more than 2 smaller snacks.

The rest of the day was successful as far as diet goes. I had a smallish amount of food and some popcorn and went to bed weighing about 78.4.

Everything seemed fantastic, and then reality threw a curve ball. For some reason, I only dropped to 77.9 overnight. That is a paltry low .5 kg. Occasionally, that happens, although the average is about .8.

Having already gained weight the past 2 days and then having this weird overnight result, it seemed clear that 90 minutes was the way to go. So I ran 90 minutes and had a better result than expected. I finished the day at 76.8, which was a daily weight loss of .2 kg.

The better thing is that, after 4 days of this test, I am exactly back at the breakeven point of 76.8 kg. So my weight maintenance is going fine so far despite dropping a total of about 47 minutes off of the max average of 90 minutes per day.

Since I just had a good day here, there is some chance to reduce the run tomorrow. I am usually making this a “game time decision.” It depends on how much I need to lose right before the run. Again, though, the idea for this 100-day experiment is to be flexible. So at times, I will make the decision to run less regardless of the anticipated outcome. Otherwise, it wouldn’t really be a flexible schedule if I always inflexibly decided to run 90 minutes every time it looks like I might gain a little weight.

Here are the results of the first 4 days:

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
same weight as the beginning right now
minutes saved from max of 90 – 47
313 minutes total
average run time – about 78 minutes

Gained a Little Weight After Cutting Run Short

Day 443

One of my weaknesses today was not being more resolute about what needed to be done in terms of exercise to at least break even. I found myself too far over at run time, needing to probably run at least 70 minutes to break even. But when I got back close to home early, I got a little lazy and ended at about 64 minutes. That 6 minutes very well could have made a difference. Nonetheless, it was a small mistake on a day where I at least shaved another 26 minutes off of the max of 90. However, the bad result of a weight gain of .2 kg means that I will probably need to run 90 minutes tomorrow morning.

I like the flexibility of this 100-day test so far (this is only Day 3), but flexibility does not mean stupidity, laziness, or lack of discipline. I already know that laziness is not going to cut it when attempting weight loss or maintenance. And while I had a pretty good run of 64 minutes and would not ever use “laziness” to describe that, there was a slight lack of discipline that I need to be careful to avoid when moving forward with this test. 70 minutes was my estimate of what was needed, so I should have finished up those last 6 minutes. I can always make this up by running more the next day, but that’s not a good habit to slip into. It can lead to having to do more 90-minute runs than necessary to make up for bad days.

The real killer today, though, was that my run result was just bad. I was 77.8 before running and still 77.2 despite having a fairly hard 64-minute jogging session. My heart rate was up to about 140 at the end. This seems like it should have produced a weight loss of at least .7 or more. A loss of .6 was definitely lower than expected. But the cold weather and hard wind may have played a role in that result.

Using my new flexible exercise scheduling, it looks like a 90-minute run is in order. I am now .2 kg over the starting mark for the 100-day test. That is not a particularly bad start, though, all things considered. I have only run 90 minutes on one of three days, and today was only 64 minutes. All this means is that 90 minutes is probably necessary a certain portion of the time. What portion that is is not clear yet.

There is a possibility of running less than 90 minutes again in the morning. This depends on what I weight at that time. So if I lose plenty overnight, I may be able to run less. However, I might go ahead and run 90 if my body and mind feel up to the task. I don’t hate running that long all the time. The loathsome part is doing it every day for an extended period.

Here are the results of the first 3 days:

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
overall gained .2 kg
minutes saved from max of 90 – 46
average run time – 75

Second Day Of 100-Day Test Sees Slight Weight Gain On 70-Minute Run

Day 442

When looked at in a vacuum, today may look like a failure. After all, I did gain .2 kg, which was from a rise to 76.8 from 76.6 kg. However, to determine whether you maintain weight, you must look at the overall Big Picture. Looking at the first 2 days of my 100-day test, I am at the exact breakeven point. So the first two days are a weight maintenance success. When you read these blog posts, keep in mind that the goal of this experiment is not to produce a weight loss. I am in weight maintenance phase, not weight loss phase. It’s just that I will have to lose some in recovery periods.

Today’s starting weight was 76.6, and I was off to a somewhat bad start by 4:30 in the afternoon. I had risen to 78.2. However, that was still well below 2.0 kg, which is still a rough guideline of the amount over which I should not increase on a daily basis.

I didn’t track my weight very closely the rest of the night, but there was definitely an effort not to overeat and go over the 2.0 mark. After sleeping, I was back down to 77.5 kg, which was .9 kg over the starting weight.

In this situation, a 90-minute run would almost guarantee breaking even or even losing a little. But I made it even a little worse by eating and drinking a little before the exercise session. Thus, I was actually 77.6. Again, I would have had to run 90 minutes in this situation to avoid a likely daily weight gain. But I am now in flexible exercise testing and didn’t really feel like running 90 minutes.

The results were pretty bad. I was 76.9, for a loss of only .7. I was hoping for at least .8. It was about time to weigh in, so I went to the bathroom and had a final daily weigh-in of 76.8 kg. This put me .2 kg over for the day, up from 76.6.

So here are the results of the first two days of my test:

Day 1: 90 minutes – lost .2 kg – 76.8 to 76.6
Day 2: 70 minutes – gained .2 kg – 76.6 to 76.8
overall minutes under 90 per day: 20
duration average: 80 minutes

Looking at these numbers, you can see that I broke even across the first 2 days despite having one pretty good day and one pretty bad one. However, I already shaved off 20 minutes from the max total time of 180 (90 minutes x 2). Instead of 180 minutes, my total time was 160 minutes. Hopefully, I can break even averaging less than 80 minutes on daily runs (on average). But at least I am already seeing signs that this system can work. Things went pretty bad the day after this when doing a 64-minute run, but that was mostly because of that shorter run and another poor result. I’ll probably have to run 90 minutes on Day 443.

Overall, I am happy with the progress of this test. The one thing I really want is to be able to run less than 90 minutes a substantial period of time. I hope that “substantial” is approaching or even exceeding 50 percent in this context.

First Day Of 100-Day Test Of Flexible Exercise Scheduling

Day 441

The big 100-day test has finally arrived. My starting weight is 76.8 kg. Here are the parameters and ground rules for this experiment:

1. I am going to determine on a daily basis what level of exercise is needed instead of sticking to a rigid schedule. This decision may be made at the last minute since my run is the last thing to do (besides going to the bathroom if needed) before each official weigh-in. For example, if I see that I need to lose 1.2 kg to break even, that’s usually a 90-minute run day. But if I have only .6 to break even, I can reduce to 60 minutes and still typically break even or possibly lose some.

2. All exercise sessions will be jogging, not weightlifting or anything else. I have already determined that jogging is the exercise type that works for me. So there will be attempting to reinvent that during this 100-day test.

3. I might run less than an hour, but I will never run for more than 90 minutes. Going over 1 1/2 hours is not good for me on a mental and emotional level. It makes the next day too hard. However, running less than 60 minutes is not very effective. So most runs will probably last at least an hour.

4. There are no specific factors for determining how long I need to run or how hard (intensity) that I will run on any particular day. However, it is highly likely that any recovery period after a cheat or break day will include mostly 90-minute runs in order to get back to what my weight was before the cheat day or break.

5. As usual, there will be very few cheat or break days. But they will all count in this 100-day test. So part of this test is to try to maintain weight and recover when necessary while also using a flexible exercise routine.

6. If I am on a streak of losing weight, then I may decide to run shorter on a day and see how it goes. Similarly, if I have just gained some weight the day before or am on a bad streak, then the general idea is to increase to a longer run to make that up. But no rigid rules are in place for this test. There is only the one main guideline, which is to do what I feel is necessary to achieve weight maintenance.

If I were still in full weight loss mode, then of course I would be working harder and would not be looking for ways to scale back on some days by running less. But since the idea is to maintain this weight maintenance lifestyle on a permanent basis, then running less than 90 minutes at least on some days certainly sounds like a good idea to help me maintain this lifestyle. Doing that almost every day becomes a difficult mental exercise, even if not an overly strenuous one from purely a physical standpoint. I just don’t like running 90 minutes almost every day. So it’s time to get this test done and see if it’s possible to have several 60- or 70-minute days per week (maybe even more than 50 percent of the time) and still maintain my weight.

—-

By the end of this first day, I had gotten off to a good start with a weight loss of .2 kg, which put me at 76.6 kg. This was after a 90-minute run that was necessary because my weight only dropped from 78.6 to 78.0 overnight. That necessitated a long run.

My overnight weight loss was bad, but my run made up for it. I lost 1.2 kg. That put me at 76.8, and I then went to the bathroom and got down to 76.6, for a solid first day of my 100-day test.

Starting Weight: 76.8 kg
Day 1: 90 minutes – lost .2 kg – 76.6 kg – overall lost .2 kg