My 3 Month Report Card, Round Two

Three months ago I started a weight loss program, much as I'd done over a decade earlier. Now in my 50s, I didn't know if I could expect to see the same results. In 2012, I lost 37 pounds in 3 months. What was possible in 2013?

Even better results. This time I didn't exercise nearly as much, focusing most of my attention to eating 1,500 calories per day -- enough to satisfy my basal metabolic rate (BMR). In doing so, my body didn't go into starvation mode. It pulled energy from stored fat, just as it should, resulting in a loss of 45 pounds.

As I observed back in 2012, exercising complicates your net calorie intake. It depletes some of those eaten calories, requiring you to eat more in order to ensure that your BMR is satisfied. But who knows exactly how much energy you are burning through exercise? Apps like Fitotrack or Runkeeper make a best guess. Wearing a heart rate monitor can also provide estimates.

It was a hassle, I decided. This time I chose to exercise less, and thus burn fewer excess calories. In turn, my body was never in a serious deficit and burned fat to make up for the calories I budgeted (1500/day).

Once I reach my weight goal, I intend to continue with the nearly-daily walks and add free weights back into the mix.  And I also have to continue logging and stay connected with a community. Visibility and accountability are necessary for me, or the weight will come back again a third time.