WHAT TO EAT

to keep the belly away

8 messages
27/04/2012 at 12:37

I have only been running for a few months-training for a HM in May and the GNR in September.

I am 42 (male), 5ft 11 inch, I was 11.3 stone in January this year, fairly slim build but had a bit of a "wine" belly.

I have lost 1 stone in the last few months and now just over 10 stone, the belly has nealy gone but I am also losing weight from my chest and arms-don't want to lose anymore here.

I have given up alcohol during the week, running around 80-100 miles a month and trying to eat well, I have a protein drink after every run.

I am happy to keep the belly down (doing 60 situps during each post training stretch) but don't want to keep losing weight.

My garmin gps watch data tells me I am buring between 700 and 1300 calories per run.

What so I eat to just replace these and maintain my current weight, could easily make them up in chocolate and wine but think that would just go straight onto my belly

27/04/2012 at 13:09

I think it's a myth that various foods go 'straight to your belly'. Everyone should try to eat a healthy split of food, something along the 60% carbohydrates / 30% protein / 10% fat, with this being made up of polyunsaturated fats - by eating oily fish that has some of the essential nutrients that your body cannot synthesise or obtain from other foods.

Don't be fooled by the low carb / high this that or the other diets - they promote immediate weight-loss due to the lack of carbs, as carbohydrate is stored in the body in water at a ratio of 3:1 - so if the body has 100g less carbs then it will in effect weigh 300g less. This isn't good for the body as it needs carbohydrate to be the fuel for exercise - protein only will not be an efficient fuel for the muscles, and fat is only marginally better as the body also struggles to use fat as a fuel.

The simple rule of thumb, if you want to calorie count, is to make sure your energy balance is correct. Keep a log of hte food you eat and the calorie levels, whilst at the same time as keeping a log of all exercise you do - if the exercise totals more than the food consumed then you will eventually lose weight. Conversely if fuel totals are higher than exercise then you'll put on weight - it really is as simple as that. My brother took up exercise (running and cycling) and kept a strict log of his food consumption and lost 8 stone in 8 months.

Obviously steering clear of high fat / sugar foods is a good idea, as you can only eat small volumes of these before you're up to your allowable calorie limits for the day - Weightwatchers used to do a good points system that allowed you 'free' food such as some fruits and vegetables, and put a high points weighting on the food that was bad for you, and you're allowed only a certain amount of points per day. This got my brother to focus on eating stuff that was healthy rather than what was perceived as 'nice' - all foods nice, it's just the manufacturers make their foods appeal to our tastbuds by adding salt, fat and sugar!

My final point is, do you really need to lose much more weight? Being 5'11'' myself, and weighing the best part of 2 stone more than you, I only want to trim off a few pounds myself before I feel more like my racing weight. Don't let your weight go too low, or you'll have no power for running, and you could leave yourself open to illness and injury. I suggest taking a read of the 'Disorered Eating' article that was in Runner's World last month - really interesting view on what and when to eat, and avoiding the trap of getting obsessive about losing weight.

Happy running!

27/04/2012 at 13:21
thanks for such a comprehensive answer Simon
27/04/2012 at 14:13
very tactful reply Craig
27/04/2012 at 14:41

Eh? Genuinely trying to help with my post...why would Craig be tactful or otherwise to what I put? What are you insinuating Sussex Runner?

I'm part way through an OU Degree Course on Sports and Fitness, and much of what I put was stuff I've picked up from that, and I was only too happy to help someone with the knowledge I've gained. Yes, the answer was quite verbose (some may say long-winded!) but whoever reads it can pick out of it what they want.

Anyway, it's everyone's choice to take my response however they want to - all I hope is that it was helpful for Craig who posted the original question.

WR
27/04/2012 at 16:06
I found it helpful, cheers Simon!!
29/04/2012 at 08:41
If you're worried about losing weight from your arms and chest, you could include some press ups to your warm down or do them separately. That might help.
29/04/2012 at 09:08

Trow in some other exercise, core work would be good as would swimming. Core is easier as you can do it at home, you can also use free weights but probably best to go to a gym and get proper instruction first.

 http://www.spine-health.com/treatment/physical-therapy/core-body-strength-exercises

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/core-strength/SM00047&slide=1

I also have to agree that your weight does sound low for someone of your height. Being underweight is more dangerous than being overweight.


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