The rate in which your metabolism goes is based on a few different factors;
- Body Composition- If you are heavier because of either fat or muscle you burn more than a leaner person would at a resting state. The body burns calories while doing hidden functions such as circulating blood, breathing, digestion/storing food (10% of the calories daily burned are due to this) and repairing cells (Plus more.)
- Age- As you grow older, you lose lean muscle which decreases metabolic rate.
- Gender- Men burn fat than women at the same weight mostly because men have more muscle than women do.
How does all this play into weight loss? In order to lose weight you need to create a caloric deficit. In other words burn more than you take in. With me being at a higher weight, my body is ready to shed pounds just by restricting my diet alone. The formula is 3,500 calories equal 1 pound. So if you cut 500 calories a day per week from what you eat then you'll lose a pound a week. At this stage of the game, I don't need to do any kind of exercise to lose weight. Just like when people get lap band or bariatric surgery they lose the large chunk of weight just by reducing their intake. What I'm doing to aid the process of losing fat is adding physical activity to my daily routine. Physical activity covers the remaining 15-30% of the calories you burn per day. I don't have to burn 3k+ calories to lose weight, but the more exercise I do, the more weight I'll lose. Adding muscle will boost my metabolism as well. So by doing the extra work now I'm getting myself set up for the proper habits that I'll need down the road as my metabolism slows down due to fat loss. There is no miracle way to boost metabolism. Weight loss is purely diet plus exercise.
Through word of mouth the results started getting skewed until what we have left is "Starvation mode." And it is FALSE. The results of this study did show that the body gets messed up when you keep it on a steady intake of few calories a day. NONETHELESS, the body still continues to burn fat until there are no fat stores left. Even when the people were at 5% body fat, and lean muscle was being consumed, the body still tried to burn what fat is left. You cannot dispute that. It does not address the body's reaction to missing one meal though. So I furthered my search in the Wild World Web until I came across this page. A little nugget from Weight Watchers. Restricting the calories you take in does effect metabolism, but not enough to offset the caloric deficit. A diet of under 800 calories daily can slow metabolism by a fraction. Overall, by lightening the load of weight off yourself, your body has to work less to function all around. So metabolism will dip regardless. I'm going to take this next part directly from the site because there is no way to better put it.
...if an individual needs 2,000 calories per day to maintain weight, reducing intake to 1,500 calories, assuming exercise stays the same, should provide a 1 pound per week weight loss (Note: 1 pound of weight is equivalent to about 3,500 calories). Furthermore, reducing to 1,000 calories should result in a weight loss of 2 pounds per week and going down to 500 calories a day should result in a weight loss of 3 pounds per week. However, if an individual actually reduces their intake to 500 calories, the weight loss would not likely be a steady 3 pounds per week because of the reduced metabolic rate. It would likely be around 2¼ to 2½ pounds. This "lower than expected" rate of weight loss is a lot different than "no" weight loss as the "starvation mode" notion proposes.
My BMR is at roughly 3340 calories a day. Recently I've been keeping myself on a 1,600 calorie a day diet while increasing exercise. Regardless of how much of a dip my metabolism is going to dip from halving my intake, the deficit is still there. And I'm at the point now where I can actually see minute differences myself (More on this later.) Some days I don't eat breakfast. Regardless of what I do I make sure to adhere to the intake guidelines I've set for myself. Once I get things situated (ie job, place of my own) then I will begin serious nutrition overhauls to make sure that I am eating properly. Even though I won't go into "starvation mode" over one missed meal metabolically, the likelihood of me overeating because of it is great since the mind doesn't know when to stop once real hunger is achieved.
Finally The update on me!
- I went to the new gym Sunday through Sunday without missing a day!
- On the elliptical I decided to stop pushing for distance and start really challenging myself. I went 2 miles a day on the fat burning program for five days, except the canyon day. I only ran 1 mile.
- After reading about how fat burner is good but interval is better for you since higher heart rate=more calories burned I switched over to that for the final two days. I've also been pumping iron.
- After working out Chris and I play some basketball when the open court is available at the gym.
- I hiked a mile through the rugged terrain of Runyon Canyon.
- Between the 13 miles on the elliptical machine and the additional 10 miles I added going to the library I totaled over 23 miles walked last week. So in the past two weeks I've walked over 48 miles. In the past 4 weeks, I've walked almost 60! That is incredible!