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Attempting a new eating plan...and gained 4 lbs. in a week. Why?

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Hello, I don't really post on these boards too often, but I have come with something that has shocked me a little bit over this past week.


I am 20 years old, 5" 10", and was 153 lbs. only last week. Now, when I weigh myself (always in the morning after I wake up), I weigh 157 lbs.! Now, I took it upon myself to create a new eating plan, which I thought would promote healthiness, as I switched out fatty meats for lean ones and refined grains for whole wheat. However, as time progresses, I feel like I have made a mistake somewhere in judgement.


I work out 3 times a week for an hour-an hour and a half and I lift weights during most of this time...I had just begun doing this 2 and a half weeks ago. My BMR is around 1800, so according to equations, I should be burning at least 2475 calories per day considering that I am lightly active. This is my eating plan.


Meal 1

1 bowl oatmeal 156 cal

1 protein shake 114 cal


Meal 2--post workout

2 protein shakes 228 cal


Meal 3

Grilled chicken on bun 250 cal

Raisin bran muffin w/ molasses 230 cal


Meal 4

4 slices non-fat deli turkey 100 cal

2 slices deli ham 70 cal

1 wheat roll (2.5 oz) 200 cal

4 oz. frozen yogurt 90 cal.


Meal 5

1 wheat bagel 400 cal.


Meal 6

1 bowl oatmeal 156 cal.

1 package granola bars 200 cal


TOTAL: 2308 cal. (312 g carbs, 44.2 g fat, 175 g protein)


Does my high sodium intake have anything to do with it? I drink coffee and diet soda, as well as water, on a regular basis. Thanks!

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It looks like you're missing cardiovasuclar exercise from your lifestyle, which should be done 3 times per week, and also loading up on carbohydrates (especially later in the day when it's harder to burn them off) and not getting enough protein.


Based on your weight: 157- If your goal is to lose fat and gain muscle, your numbers should look like this:


40%Carb, 40%Protein, 20%Fat


1884 Calories


Protein= 754 (kCal) which equals 189g


Carbohydrates= 754 (kCal) which equals 189g


Total Fat= 337 (kCal) which equals 42g


There's also a lot of sugar there- especially in the muffin and granola bars, if your oatmeal is in flavored packets- then there's a ton of sugar there too- you can switch to the old-fashoined rolled oats and sweeten them with some protein powder. Add protein to meal 5 and 6, etc. You also need some good fats such as olive oil, flaxseed oil, or natrual peanut butter.



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Here's a revised plan that would be more balanced:


Meal 1:

1 bowl natural rolled oats with protein powder


Meal 2: 1 chocolate protein shake blended with 1tablespoon. natural peanut butter


Meal 3 chicken on wheat bread or wheat wrap with a salad (no dressing, unless it's extra virgin olive oil mixed w/vinager)


Meal 4: turkey on wheat with sidedish of spinach or broccoli


Meal 5: Wheatenglish muffin with eggwhites (make like a breakfast sandwhich)


Meal 6: 1 cup fat free cottage cheese, 1 cup yogurt

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Thank you very much! I just have one question; how many calories should I eat in order to maintain my weight at my current weight of 157? Also, would dry-roasted peanuts count as a substitute for peanut butter? (ok, so I guess I had 2)


And just some input to clarify my diet:


1. Yuck, I would never eat any of that instant oatmeal! I only eat 1/2 cup of 100% whole rolled oats at a time, sweetened with cinnamon (about 6 cals worth).


2. My only two sources of sugar come from the muffin and the granola bar. However, the muffin has 10g of all-natural sugar, but the granola has 11g of refined. It is my only source of refined grains in my diet, and I use it, for a lack of a better word, as a "crutch".


3. I am a college student, so I don't have access to anything to prepare egg whites. I can only get what Sodexho is willing to provide me with (hence the muffin, in large part).


4. I have heard of the "baseline" diet being 55% carbs, 30% protein, and 15% fat to prevent ketosis. Isn't under 200 carbs per day a little bit dangerous?


5. I do utilize cardio three times a week, for 25-30 minutes. Forgot to mention that!


Thank you so much once again! And just to clarify, I am male, so that is why my BMR calculation is around 1800.

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If you are adding more protein and continuing your weight lifting, you are probably gaining muscle mass. I added more protein to my workouts and weight lifted when wanting to lose weight, and I literally went from 150 to 163 in 2 weeks, and went up a pant size My trainer told me I gain muscle faster than burning the fat and even though I was having adverse affects initially, he explained one day I would wake up and literally be leaner...however, it would be probably 2-3 months....ugh! So I quit the weight lifting because I was bulking up way too fast. Now that I have gotten to the weight I want, I will begin the lifting again.

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Ahhh, ok, I understand now. I am gaining muscle mass while keeping my body fat constant, and that is not what I wish to achieve yet. I will begin the plan suggested by BellaDonna with slight college variations, and continue onto one more carb-heavy once I reach the desired body fat percentage of around 8.


Thank you both very much, once again...all of your insight has been more than appreciated.

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The advice I gave is based on a program called Body For Life. Here's their nutrition calculator:


Youwill see there's an alternate diet which is 50%carb, 30%protein, and 20% fat- with calories increased to over 2000. That plan is if you are lookign to gain size (weight- from muscle) and strength.


Isn't under 200 carbs per day a little bit dangerous?


Not as long as you are still getting enough calories, good fats, and protein to sustain yourself.


As long as you are checking your bodyfat percentage- it will help you to see real progress. As WildChild said, the scale does not tell you everything.




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After you posted that suggested calorie intake, I actually found that same calculator using Google, and I can now clearly see what I must do in order to attain my goals.


And my trusty caliper tells me that I am around 13 percent body fat...which is lower than two weeks ago. I guess I am letting the idea of potential weight gain scare me a little bit more than it should.

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