I’m a relative newbie here, ordered my first couple of packs of Huel on January 13th with the intention of trying to replace unhealthy breakfasts/lunches and finally shift some weight.
I travel fairly frequently for work so my diet has a tendency to be pretty erratic. I’ve lost weight over the last two years with intermittent fasting but not managed to be consistent enough to lose what I need to. The overall trend is down, but I tend to lose a chunk, put a bit back on, level out at a point lower than I was and then stick there until the next push.
When I first tried Huel in January I was 240.5lbs (17st 2.5lbs). Last week I was down at 231.2lbs (16st 7.2lbs). A business trip this last week saw that jump to 16st 12lbs but I’m hoping most of that is water weight from flights.
I’m planning to make a concerted effort from Wednesday 1st May to use Huel as a way to stick to the Fast 800 kick start from Michael Moseley’s new book. The plan is to aim as close to 800 calories a day as possible in combination with 16:8 TRE. I’ve done this on and off in the last few weeks and found it fairly easy to stick to during the week at work by making up 2 scoops of Huel in the morning with some frozen fruit and mixture of 300ml water and 200ml almond milk which I have just after 12pm and making a 400 calorie (ish) meal to have when I get home at 7pm. I may try mixing things up and having some 100% Huel days.
Weekends have been my weakness (along with the business trips). I’d like to try and stick with this for 28 days before upping the calories to something more sustainable. My ultimate aim is to get to 156lbs (11st 2lbs) which is the upper end of normal for my height (5’6”). Target for the 28 days is to get back under 16st.
Posting on here so I’m tracking my progress. I see a personal trainer once a week for a one hour weightlifting session and according to my last DEXA scan back in October 2017 I have quite high muscle mass for a woman my age (44) at 122lbs. The problem is the 116lbs of fat I’m lugging around with it! I have another scan booked on 15th May so will have a new baseline to start from.
Not sure if anyone will read this, but in any case updating here will hopefully help keep me on track.
Thanks for the support! On the good news front having weighed myself this morning I’m back down at 234.5lbs or 16st 10.5lbs. Looks like that was water weight from the flight. That makes the target of under 16st by the end of May look that little bit more achievable.
From reading that I’m sure you’re aware that unless you address the underlying issue of excess calorie consumption when not following a plan (weekends, business trips etc), you’ll continue to yo-yo.
Hopefully over time you’ll become tuned to exactly how many calories you need to maintain your weight and the satisfaction of what you see once you’ve lost the excess will be enough to deter temptations and greed, at least that’s what I found.
Many of us face the same issue here and evidently in wider Western society - Almost everyone is fat because they can’t handle food being so plentiful, cheap and tasty.
@Bee how do you tackle the problem of calorie counting when cooking a meal from scratch?
I’ve tried to lose weight so many times by calorie counting and it’s fine for breakfast, snacks, simple meals, but I love to cook really delicious meals and then it seems impossible to count the calories.
Especially as I never cook just one meal at a time because I live on my own so I cook large amounts and divvy it up into batches.
To calorie count I would have to weigh every single individual ingredient (and when I cook it’s never just 5 or ten ingredients!) and then individually weigh every end product afterwards and work out what percentage of each I am eating for each meal. It’s such a headache. I mean I can do it, but it takes so long and takes the enjoyment out of cooking and I always end up giving up.
An example of a meal might be
Spicy rice with vegetables and coconut
Dahl with butternut squash
Calorie counting all of that is a nightmare.
It’s not possible for me to live without my tasty food long-term. Plus it’s super healthy, and I need to cook everything from scratch as I have allergies
Do it on a weekly basis. Calorie counting by the day isn’t as important as by the week.
Someone with a TDEE of 2000:
M, T, W, T, F - 1,500 calories
S, S - 3,000 calories
“BUT IT WAS THE WEEKEND I DIET IN THE WEEK LEAVE ME ALONE”
“…BTW why can’t I lose weight?”
It’s frustrating to read some of the posts that sometimes crop up here due to the denial involved.
I used to bulk produce chicken curry for work, 5 portions, one chicken breast each day. I’d weigh all of the ingredients I put into the slow cooker before, total them up in a notepad somewhere, add it as a meal in MFP, then tell it I’d had 1/5 of that meal. Maths is done for me and as long as an entire chicken doesn’t sneak into the slow cooker while I’m not looking, there’s no where extra calories could come from
Of course now I just Huel all week with one chicken burger every few days to satisfy my need to chew…
After my initial weight came off quite easily this was me for a while. Then I realised that the closer you get to your ideal weight the harder the weight loss becomes so if you slacken off or pig out on a weekend you lose that entire weeks progress.
I do make my meals complicated lol
When I’m eating simple meals, calorie counting isn’t a problem, but I really love cooking complex meals and weighing everything ruins my enjoyment of it.
Maybe I just need to simplify a little bit
You’re actually very right!
I would like to be back to my super slim self that I was 2 yrs ago, but I’m also pretty happy at my current weight. I’m fit and healthy and exercise loads, and although my BMI is technically in the overweight category, I don’t feel any sense of urgency.
To be honest, I’m much less worried about it since Huelling because my appetite has regulated at last and I’ve stopped putting weight on which is the most important thing.
And I already eat healthily - I always have done. My problem is I used to be really active and also had the kind of metabolism that meant I could eat huge amounts and stay slim.
Now I’m a lot more sedentary during the day, and was on meds that messed up my appetite and metabolism so I’m having to get used to eating about 1000 calories less than I used to just to not put on weight
Huel is good in that you can regulate the calorie intake easily, but realistically, it is all about portion sizes and making good choices. I’ve no idea of the calorie count in some of my meals. Yesterday I had a home-made chilli made with lentils (for the mince), tomatoes, onions, kidney beans, chillis, red pepper, garlic, veg. stock. There was no fat at all as I cooked it in a slow cooker, but I made up for this with home made guac with a splash of olive oil and the fat from the avocado; and some home made houmous. A small grating of vegan cheese too. Ate with brown rice. I’ve no idea of the calories, but guess no more than 700. Tonight I am having a roast with roast potatoes and parsnips, squirted with low call frylight stuff, and loads of green veg: wild garlic, broccoli, savoy cabbage, peas, and a vegan quorn fillet. Small portion of home-made stuffing too. Again not weighing anything but making sure the portion size looks healthy and favours veg over stodge,
Yeah I think that’s the approach I need to go with - counting everything is just super tedious. Seeing as I’ve got ‘maintaining’ sorted now, I might try to do one week of calorie counting using mainly Huel and very simple meals to have a deficit, then one week of eating how I am now at maintainance level and not need to count.
It’s not like I need to lose weight fast. Even 0.5 or 1kg a month would be progress
When I decided to lose a bit of weight (and I was luckily not massively overweight, but had started to become much ore sedentary), I found Huel extremely beneficial and a regime of 100% Huel made it easy to shift the kilos I wanted, and I achieved what I wanted in a couple of months. Now Huel is back to 2 of my 3 meals a day, I’ve cut down (not out) on snacking, and drink a bit less beer. My weight has been consistent (up and down a few hundred grams each week) but no up or downward trend since mid-Nov. 2018. I am happy with that, and I don’t calorie count anything apart from Huel, but of course Huel is 2/3 of my meals.
I’m not a bad cook really, I learned when I was 15. I’m overall better than my wife (as she agrees too), although to be fair she does make the best Thai and Sri Lankan curries and Indian dishes, so I generally leave those sorts of meals to her and do the rest. We don’t eat that many ready meals…apart from pizza now and again, and occasional quorn (like today) or meat substitute…despite being a long term vegan I do still like those things now and again.
Crisps have been my biggest hurdle, so more recently I’ve been having popcorn and things like home made kale chips instead. Couple weeks ago I made some wild garlic chips which I thoroughly recommend if you have any growing in your area. Fantastic.
I approximate when I go out for a meal. Agree with @hunzas re portion size.
My IBS rules out onions and garlic but I can use garlic flavoured olive oil, chives and asafoetida (also the green parts of onions and leeks if I want to throw away half of what I buy - which I don’t). Spices contain very few calories which is great.