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No failure, only feedback

After 2 weeks of glacial weight loss progress (-.2/wk) and then a 1lb gain with -.25 total inches lost (possibly due to fluctuations caused by my measurement helper not always being focused on the task at hand), I re-read everything I could find on SCD and re-evaluated what I might be able to improve.

I've been skeptical of this mandate to have 30 g protein at breakfast - in the book it says 20 g per meal, and then the 30 g at breakfast is mentioned when TF helps his dad get over a plateau.

My breakfast has been 23 g, incl 3 eggs - the pkg I buy says 5 g protein per egg - in a veggie fritatta plus 1/2 c beans.

I was toying with the idea of cutting back food, which is NOT what you're supposed to do on SCD, but then I saw in the March 2012 issue of Nutrition Action Healthletter (CDN) that protein does make a difference when trying to lose weight. They recommend eating X grams of protein per day where X= 1/2 your body weight in lbs. So if you weigh 150, eat 75 g protein. So, that means if I eat 30 g protein at breakfast, 20 g at lunch and 25 at dinner I should be good.

I now vow to embrace the 30 g protein at breakfast mandate.

Other course corrections:

1-Working out before eating instead of after.

My workouts:

Walking 4.0 mph for 30 min 5x/wk 1st thing in the a.m.

Various strength training, incl kettlebell swings, posterior A&B, abs, TGU, push-ups, yoga in the evening for 30 min 5x/week (not all of those every night - a mix)

I cut out some higher-intensity cardio I was doing.

2- Logging everything into myfitnesspal so I can see exactly how much protein I’m getting. The first day I logged I couldn’t believe how low my calories are in a day without trying! On other diets I’ve struggled and starved to get down to 1600 per day. On SCD I’m at 1200 and not hungry!

Is everyone eating 60+ g protein/day? 75g? More?

Did other mid-40’s, 5’7” women at 33% BF stall at weeks 6-8? Did persistence pay off eventually?

I’m working up the nerve to post B&A pics this weekend...

Thank you, 4HB forum people for everything you have posted and shared. It really helps.


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I know the frustrations and confusion. I was there in the beginning.

All I can say is to follow SCD by the book for 6-8 weeks. It will likely take about that long before most women over 40 start seeing real results. Follow the SCD regime rigidly, doing it half-ass will only get you half-ass results as a former trainer used to tell me.

I am a female in my late 30s currently at 131lbs. I went from 27% BF to 16%BF. I had some moderate loss in the first 2 weeks and then stalled in week 3. I upped my fats and proteins and calories and got unstalled.

To give you an idea of my eating, for the last few weeks I'm averaging 1600-1800 calories with 45-50% fat, 30% protein and the rest carbs.

I've been cruising along ever since. The loss has been slow but steady. While losing fat, I also gained back a bit of my muscle with only the exercises outlined in the book and workouts 2-3x's a day. I walk throughout the day.

It takes a bit of faith and trust in the beginning since so much of the SCD is contradictory to what the mainsteam nutrition and fitness dogma is telling us.

As an athlete I would have balked at the idea of only exercising 20 minutes 2-3xs a weekin order to build and maintain my muscles in the past. Now, I'm a firm beleiver in it now that I've seen the results

Give yourself 8 weeks on the SCD program. Commit to the eating and exercise guidelines. Commit to yourself. You can do it!

  • Icandoit commented Mar 2nd 2012:

    Thanks, arctichacker. It's challenging to go against the 'less food/more cardio' mindset. I will commit to SCD fully-assed. Your results are an inspiration : )

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When I plateaued, I tried mixing up the caloric intake.1200 cal one day, 1600 cal, another day, 1400 cal another day etc etc.

It is recommended by certain diets to break plateaus (look up 'calorie confusion' or 'calorie cycling' on Google and read about it in detail)

Something to try if you're willing but it tended to make me obsessive-compulsive about food and eating in general so I stopped doing it after awhile. (I must mention that most people tend to eat different amounts of calories daily anyways so there really wasn't a need to force those calorie allowances.)

I sometimes ate less than the recommended 30g for breakfast but saw better results when I ate more than 30g (although after a certain point, I was clocking in at 150g of protein daily and had to cut back because I was afraid of ODing on protein. LOL.)

And of coure persistence always pays off. (it had helped me slim down to 116lb 16%BF. I'm 5' 6.5" female BTW.

(In between then and now I fell off the wagon and am currently trying to get back to that but that's another story for another day)

  • Icandoit commented Mar 2nd 2012:

    116! Nice. : ) 150g protein!! Okay, I will boot mine up - maybe not that high, but I could try for 100. Thanks for the calorie cycling idea. I'll give it a try.


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It sounds like you are still planning to work out an hour a day. 1200 calories is too low for someone not working out and it's way too low for someone working out an hour a day. You'll end up slowing down your metabolism, which is the opposite of what 4hb is about.

  • agknothole commented Mar 1st 2012:

    I CAN DO IT:

    This is in my head:

    1. I don't want to eat so much that I don't see results

    2. I don't want to eat too little that it makes me store fat (starvation mode)

    1. I don't want to eat too much, I've always counted calories to lose weight (and always probably burned muscle...)

    2. I don't want to eat too little that I can only use the protein for energy, not muscle building/ internal repairs

    and blah, blah, blah

    How'd all us chicks get this way? I'm fighting tooth and nail not to restrict calories too much. So, try 1200 calories, then if you get hungry, ADD beans. Do your experimenting, but protect your muscle that you've been working so hard at!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Icandoit commented Mar 2nd 2012:

    Thanks, Jake - you're right. It is too low for 1hr exercise. I'll add calories and see if that helps. I'd like to keep the walking - that's about as dialed down as I want the cardio to go. I'm way too sedentary, hunched over a computer the rest of the day.

    @agknothole - I know! I've been on the complete opposite diet of SCD before - no fat, all carbs. It seems insane now, but back in the 80's, that was the prevailing "wisdom." No wonder I'm so confused! Thanks for the advice.

  • Jake commented Mar 2nd 2012:

    "How'd all us chicks get this way?" I've been pondering that question all day and the best I can figure is that women have always gotten the message that whatever they are isn't good enough. Part of that is whatever is least attainable is what women are expected to be. In times and places of famine, slightly overweight becomes the desired shape. When fattening food is cheap and available everywhere, women are pressured not to eat.

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