Why is it harder to for smaller people to lose weight?

Why is it harder to for smaller people to lose weight?

The number of calories your body uses at rest will broadly depend on your size (weight and height), so if you are shorter, you will probably find that your TDEE (total daily energy expenditure) will be lower than your taller friends.

That means that the number of calories you need to eat in a day to maintain your weight will be lower, lower still if you want to create a calorie deficit to lose weight. If you are quite inactive that number could be around the 1500 calories a day range just to maintain weight (whereas for me I’m looking at around 2,500-3,000 calories to maintain).

So why does that make it harder? Well think about your average dinner, you’re probably looking at 500 calories, with perhaps 400 calories for lunch and 300 calories for breakfast.  Now if you’re tall and need to eat 2,000 calories to be in a deficit you would still have around 800 calories for snacks.  That’s enough food to feel easily full, have a high calorie treat or whatever.

What if your target to hit a calorie deficit is 1400? You have 200 calories spare, maybe enough for a couple of pieces of fruit. You essentially have less leeway to play with, battle cravings with, enjoy the foods you love with than your taller counterpart does. It’s a bit like giving two people the same shopping list but one person £100 and the other person £50 and asking them to both buy everything on the list.  The person with less money will find it a bit harder and have to be more careful.

This means smaller people might then find it more restrictive to diet, and when things become restrictive or you feel like you’re hungry all the time then you’re less likely to stick with a calorie deficit and see results.

So how do you tackle that? Well in part there are things you can do surrounding food.  Looking to fill up on more dense, low calorie foods (lots of vegetables) at main meals can help keep you full but lower the calories used, which would free up more calories to snack with.  You might find methods such as intermittent fasting which limit your window of eating help, meaning you have less time to eat the allotted number of calories (this might help mentally), even just switching breakfast for a protein shake could free up some calories for the rest of the day. 

It’s also a good idea to look at your activity levels.  You may be able to increase your NEAT and therefore increase your TDEE to allow you to increase the number of calories you need to eat each day.

If you are looking to lose weight and you have used a TDEE calculator and it suggests a super low target, it’s worth chatting to a PT or fitness professional and thinking about what tactics you can utilise to maximise your chance of hitting your goal.

2023 Goals

If you’re looking to make changes or set yourself some challenges for 2023, it isn’t enough to just want things to change, you need to work out what actions you need to take to make those changes happen.

Here’s a podcast all about goals, what, why and how…

https://anchor.fm/heather-sherwood/episodes/Goal-Setting-Your-Why-and-How-e1pver7

Christmas Day Food Survival

Christmas Day Food Survival Guide

You’re going to eat a drink a lot so just say fuck it and eat like a dick (this is my preferred strategy) … But if you want some tips…

– I like to go for a short run first thing – Wakes me up, fresh air and then I really enjoy breakfast

– Have a decent breakfast – I’m a fan of something like a bacon buttie (with Bucks Fizz) – will fill you up until the main event

– Christmas Dinner is actually a pretty nutritious event – enjoy it!

– ALL THE CHOCOLATE now look if there’s one day a year not to enter it all into MFP this is it – but if you want to show restraint get a bowl, fill it and limit yourself to that

– Cheese and biscuits – Again if you must be careful stick to one plate – go for the stronger cheeses as you don’t tend to need as much of these to be satisfied

– Think about having some water as well as all the alcohol to stay hydrated!

But when all is said an done remember it’s one day a year when you hopefully get to spend it with people you care about, don’t spend all the time thinking about your diet – all that fitness stuff will still be there in a few day!

Diet Tips for Travelling In The Festive Season

Diet Tips for Travelling In The Festive Season

If you find yourself travelling to see friends and family over the festive period you might also find yourself eating more calories than normal as you end up grabbing food and drink on trains, at stations and airports.

Here’s a few tips for damage limitation whilst travelling:

1. If you can, eat your nearest main meal (breakfast / lunch / dinner) at home before you travel, that way you’ll be less likely to need to grab fast food on vour journey

2. If you do need to eat on the go and are travelling by train buy your snacks at a supermarket near or in the station rather than at the fast food outlets – you’ll find it easier to pick up something lower in calories (perhaps some ready cooked chicken and a salad). This is also likely to be cheaper than buying food on the actual train.

3. If you’re at an airport consider somewhere like Costa where you can normally get a bacon roll – protein and carbs, filling but not as high in calories as a burger from the pub.

4. Meal deals are great for your purse but not always for your waistline – don’t buy the chocolate or crisps to go with your sandwich just because it’s more cost effective. If you fancy them fine, but if you’re only picking them up because you may as well reconsider (or buy them and give them to someone else – a little random act of kindness)

5. Coffee calories add up. If you’re going on a long trip and are likely to have multiple coffees consider switching from high calorie lattes, mocha etc to an Americano

Surviving the Christmas Party – Fitness Edition

Surviving the Christmas Party – Fitness Edition

1. Will there be food? Find out what’s on offer beforehand so you can pick (if there’s the option to pick) or plan the calories into your week to stay on track

2. Can you eat beforehand? Depending on what food will be available eating before you go might stop the kebab munchies on the way home

3. Skip breakfast. A hard one for me as I LOOOOVE breakfast but if you know you’ll eat a lot later maybe having brunch or skipping breakfast will help you stay within your calorie goal for the day

5. Think about your drinks. Now if you don’t go out often I’d highly suggest just having fun and drinking whatever the fuck you want. But if you’ve lots of parties and are worried about the calories in all the alcohol consider favouring a gin and tonic / Vodka and lime over creamy cocktails which tend to be higher in calories

6. The hangover. Often it’s the next day where you really go overboard on your calories. If you know you go overboard when hungover consider pacing yourself on the night. Perhaps having a glass of water in between each drink and having a glass of water before bed to keep yourself hydrated.

Over Indulged?

We all have days when we over indulge – whether that be food, alcohol or both. It’s not a case of trying to never do that because that would make life pretty miserable. We can however choose to respond more positively to these over indulgences so we don’t sabotage our results in the long term.

Over the Christmas period this is going to happen more often that normal so creating some positive responses to days or evenings of overindulgence is important!

So what do you do if you’ve had over indulged?

Do drink more water/

Depending on how you over indulged you may be dehydrated, but regardless extra water will make you feel fresher.

Don’t do extra exercise/

Avoid using exercise as a punishment for over eating as this will create a negative association with training, plus if you have a hangover exercise isn’t really what you want to be doing.

Do use the extra calories to fuel your next workout/

Whilst you don’t want to add extra training in you could use those extra calories to push yourself harder in your next scheduled workout and come out feeling really good.

Don’t starve yourself/

Punishing yourself by drastically reducing your calories in the days after will create a negative cycle of eating. You could look to slightly reduce your calorie intake for a few days subsequently (couple of hundred calories max) but reducing what you eat

dramatically to make amends will only make you feel worse.

Do eat nutrient rich / dense foods the next day/

Eat foods that will both fill you up and make you feel good the next day, making you feel better without starving and allowing you to mentally get back on track.

Don’t skip meals/

By the same token don’t purposefully skip meals to try and compensate.

Do Move on/

One bad meal or day doesn’t define your diet overall, so rather than punish yourself for it look at it as a day / meal you enjoyed and focus on the next day / meal instead.

Don’t scrap the rest of the week/

Try moving on straight away instead of saying well I may as well start again Monday now. This essentially ensures damage limitation.

Do you Meal Prep?

Three Reasons to Meal Prep Over The Christmas Period

1. Save time / When you’re busy through December with extra jobs and social occasions taking a couple of hours at the start of the week to prep some meals can actually save you time in the week, reducing stress

2. Save Money / Instead of grabbing food on the go having something to take to work with you will save you cash to spend on having fun over Christmas

3. Manage Your Calorie Intake / There’s temptation everywhere in December. If you’ve taken in prepared meals and make sure you eat them you can still pick at the goodies, but you’ll probably find you pick less as you’ll already be full

Christmas Socialising Survival Guide

Christmas Socialising

1. Meals Out! Will there be food? Find out what’s on offer beforehand so you can pick (if there’s the option to pick) or plan the calories into your week to stay on track

2. If you know you’ll eat a lot later maybe having brunch or skipping breakfast will help you stay within your calorie goal for the day

3. Drinks! If you’ve lots of parties and are worried about the calories in all the alcohol consider favouring a gin and tonic / Vodka and lime over creamy cocktails which tend to be higher in calories

4. Consider volunteering to be the designated driver on a couple of nights out to reduce your calories and also have a the smugness of a clear head in the morning!

5. The hangover. Often it’s the next day where you really go overboard on your calories. If you know you go overboard when hungover consider pacing yourself on the night. Perhaps having a glass of water in between each drink and having a glass of water before bed to keep yourself hydrated.

6. Alternatively just have your Uber eat McDonald order at the ready for speed the following morning

7. Suggest some fun activities that don’t involve food or drink – ice skating, walks, Santa Runs … that way you’re moving rather than eating and drinking whilst still seeing friends!

Christmas Coffees

Who doesn’t love a Christmas Coffee?

Now you’d need to have lived in a cave for several years to not know that these Christmas Coffees are pretty high in calories.

So as a plus – they are often delicious

As a minus – If you’re TDEE is around 2000 calories one of these can account for up to 25% of that (FYI that’s a lot – this is a drink ladies and gentlemen not a meal)

So get yourself a CPA (Coffee Plan of Action) & Enjoy them in moderation

– A couple over the festive period won’t hurt the waist line, two a day and you may be asking Santa for a borrow of his trousers

-Know what your drinking. There’s nutritional information available so be aware and factor them into your eating.

-Maybe buy some zero cal syrup and make your own Christmas Coffee at home (black coffee and a bit of syrup

Christmas Markets

Christmas Markets And Your Diet

There everywhere now meaning a trip to the Christmas Markets is pretty much as mandatory as eating Brussels Sprouts on Christmas Day.

Things to be mindful of if your trying to watch you calorie intake this December…

1 / You will feel like a kid in a sweet shop – so many options. Have a look around all the stalls before you buy anything so you don’t end up eating three different burgers and four types of waffle because you keep coming across something you really must try!

2/ There’s lots of meat available (hog roast yum) so you could skip the bread and go for something meaty to reduce calories

3/ If you buy chocolates as a gift see if they will gift wrap them so you aren’t tempted to break into them on the way home!

4/ In Manchester at least the prices have risen this year! Go with a set budget and stick to it – if you can’t overspend you’ll have to limit your food and drink intake!

5/ Make time to look at the non food and drink stalls to and watch any entertainment – that way you still enjoy the markets without vet more calories