Marathon Training and Discussions

1

Not Losing Weight (Read 371 times)

    I was hoping I would lose some weight during my first marathon training. However, I haven't lost much. My diet is about the same. I might eat an extra cookie or two in the evening. Is it common not to lose much weight during an 18 week training cycle? I thought after 40 mpw I'll be dropping around 1/2 pound to a pound a week.

     


    Finally PRed!!!

      I used to lose weight without really trying during a marathon cycle (could eat mostly whatever I wanted during  marathon training and drink a lot of beer too!) but my most recent one (highest mpw ever for me) I actually gained, (not muscle but fat--got obviously plump) and ran a crappy time because of it. Seems my metabolism changed when I hit my mid-40s. Now I've been working hard to lose the extra weight before I start my next marathon cycle, really having to pay attention to what I eat.  

      PRs: 5K: 22:31, 10K:46:43, 15K: 1:10:35, HM: 1:42:49, M: 3:38:20

        I used to lose weight without really trying during a marathon cycle (could eat mostly whatever I wanted during  marathon training and drink a lot of beer too!) but my most recent one (highest mpw ever for me) I actually gained, (not muscle but fat--got obviously plump) and ran a crappy time because of it. Seems my metabolism changed when I hit my mid-40s. Now I've been working hard to lose the extra weight before I start my next marathon cycle, really having to pay attention to what I eat.  

         I stop lifting weights hoping I will lose some muscle weight. Maybe after a few more 50 mpw I will see some weight come off. I would like to lose 5 pound hoping it will help me get close to a 3:15 race time

         

        ShuffleFaster


          It's not uncommon to maintain weight or even gain some weight during marathon training.  Some of it has to do with building muscle in your legs, but I suspect a lot of it is that the increased mileage leads to eating more (often more carbs) for physiological and psychological reasons.

            It's pretty hard to argue against the old standard, if you burn more calories than you eat then you lose weight method.

             

            Maybe those extra cookies are pretty high in calories?

             

            Only way to be sure is to count calories for a while.  I used www.myfitnesspal.com on my iPhone to track calories and some things really suprised me on how many calories they were.

             

            The only other thought would be that maybe you were burning calories doing something else that you aren't doing now that you are running.

             

            The math is pretty straightforward on weight loss.

             

            At my current weight I burn right around 150 calories a mile running so at 40 mpw that's 6,000 calories.  That's almost 7lbs a month of calories burned if I didn't increase my eating.  Of course I've increased my eating and I'm losing about 2 or 3lbs a month instead of 7lbs.

             

            A candy bar here, an extra cookie there, don't forget a glass of milk to go with the cookie!  It all adds up.

             

            My worry is if for some reason I reduce my miles that I'm running I'm going to have to really be careful and reduce my food that I'm eating.

            Age: 45 Weight: 208 Height: 6'2" (Goal weight 195)

            Current PR's:  Mara 3:48:09; HM 1:43:26; 10K 44:51; 5K 21:27

            ND Wolfwood


              I've only gone through one cycle, so my experience is limited.  I averaged 58 MPW during an 18-week Pfitz cycle. Looking back at my data, I ended up dropping a couple pounds over the course of the cycle (134.8 down to 132.8), though that really could just be water weight.  It looks like my weight fluctuated +/- 3 lbs or so from the baseline during the cycle, though in most instances, the week to week fluctuations were typically < 1 lb.  I tried to eat pretty clean and deny myself the calorie bombs, though weekends and holidays would include the occasional (over)indulgence.  I had hoped to slim down a bit more during the cycle, but I found that it was difficult to reduce food intake significantly.  Gonna see how things go in the next cycle.

              R.

              _____________________________________________________________________________

              PR's: 5K - 19:21 (6/15/13) | 10K - 40:27 (7/4/13) | 10M - 1:06:44 (9/21/13)  | Half - 1:29:50 (2/17/13) | Full - 3:12:09 (10/26/13) | 6 HR - 37.05 mi (11/16/13)

               

              Upcoming Goal Race: Snickers Albany Marathon (3/1/14)

                Different people have different ways of losing weight - you have to find what works for you. I find that it's quite hard to lose weight during hard training, because the training stimulates appetite. Very easy aerobic exercise of long duration seems to help (walking, very easy running, gentle cycling for example). If you really want to lose weight then you're probably going to experience a bit of hunger. Many people are not used to this and find it difficult initially, but with a bit of practice denying yourself immediate eating at the first onset of hunger you soon learn that it's really not a problem.

                 

                I lose weight every January simply by denying myself booze, chocolates, sweets, cakes etc., eating sensible meals and restricting snacks to fruit or raw veg. The trouble is I don't want to spend the whole year like that so often it creeps back on through the year (although I'm 5kg down on where I was last year at this point, so things are OK).

                 

                Simple sugars are pretty much the worst thing - lots of calories, crazy insulin fluctuations and don't really satisfy hunger. Trouble is they taste nice! Smile

                Coastal


                  When do you weigh yourself?  I always gained after my long runs but in a couple days my weight would return to normal, so I figured it was water.  This was while I was going to weight watchers meetings so I learned to move my long runs to a different day.  Fortunately my group leader at that point ran marathons and I'd see her running while I was out running so she knew I wasn't cheating the program.  I also learned that my weight goes up anytime I have sore muscles, but when they recover the weight goes back down.

                   

                  The previous comments about tracking are right on.  Running doesn't result in weight loss.  Eating less than you burn does.  if you are doing gels or something like HEED during your run you have to track that, too.
                   
                  A lot of folks have commented that they either didn't lose, or actually gained during marathon training.  The more I run the hungrier I get, and others have reported a similar phenomenon.

                  FatSweatyBullDog


                    I know very little about physiology but was under the impression that your body adapts to changes very well.  So as your body gets used to the training load it burns less calories to move you that distance.  The more you work out the less calories you burn to go the same distance.  So in the beginning running 40 mpw slowly burned more calories than running 40 mpw slowly does after your body has adapted to that level of stress.  To break this cycle you need to add new stress.  So add in a day of High Intensity Interval Training to your routine and that should help.  Other than that counting calories is the other thing I would recommend..  


                    [Competitive] Jerk

                      It's pretty hard to argue against the old standard, if you burn more calories than you eat then you lose weight method.

                      The math is pretty straightforward on weight loss.

                       

                      +1. Calories in vs. calories out. Simple as that. I would love to be 20 lbs lighter for my next marathon but it's a painful and hard journey to lose that weight. I use the metric of 100 calories per mile so 35 mpw would be about 1lbs/week lost if you ate exactly what you ate before you started running. If you eat more the weight loss would be even slower.

                       

                      While I was on summer vacation I managed to gain 8 lbs while I was running 70+ mpw. It can be done. And sadly it's not even that difficult.

                         

                        +1. Calories in vs. calories out. 

                        This really all there is too it.  I track with the Lose It! app or you can use myfitnesspal which was mentioned above.  It keeps me in check on what I put in my mouth and also gives you a breakdown of the macros.  Looking at your picture, it seems you might not have too much fat to lose.  But if you do just a keep a decent protein intake and keep the junk out of your body like processed carbs, saturated fats, etc.  and you will probably lose majority of fat.

                         

                        In theory, losing weight will give you a better time, but if some of that weight is being coming from muscle mass in your legs then the time will not fall linearly with weight.  In this weight calculator this is mentioned http://www.runningforfitness.org/faq/we .

                         

                        Good luck on your 3:15.

                          Oops Just realized I posted this on a very old post.

                            It's more important that you measure your waist.

                            You'll put muscle on with high mileage,

                            and you might be losing fat. Tape measure

                            will let you know if %fat is going down.

                            Enjoy training!

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