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  • Competitive Swimmer and Weight Loss

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    Old 11-13-2013, 05:10 PM   #1
    swimmergirl247's Avatar
    Join Date: Nov 2013
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    swimmergirl247 HB User
    Competitive Swimmer and Weight Loss

    Hello everyone!

    I've had a few questions about my diet a few times and posted through a variety of threads, but I end up always confusing myself between what coaches and researches say. Some websites specify that girls need 1,300-1,800 calories a day, while others say that they need 1,800-2,200 calories a day without any exercise! I am 5'2" and weigh about 131 pounds. However, I know that having a lower percentage of body fat can improve both my performance in the water and how I look and feel about myself. My goal is to reach within the 120-125 pounds range, but I'm not quite certain how to drop the weight. It's not a lot of pounds to shed off, but I just can't seem to drop below 130, no matter the calorie or food restrictions I put in my diet (I haven't made any cuts below the 500 of what I used to eat, which was about 2600-3000). I know that dropping too much very quickly can lead to muscle loss and that is absolutely the last thing I want to do.

    I know that as a swimmer, you need to eat a great variety and amount of food. A common mistake that many athletes make is eating whatever they want because they think they can simply burn it all away. Most of the swimmers I know and train with usually have a massive amount of food and they manage to stay relatively thin (and by massive amounts, I mean over 3,000 calories daily!). If I, however, eat as much as they do, I end up gaining rapidly. I know that it is affected by the rate of metabolism, body type, height, age, gender, etc., but is there a certain way to find out or calculate the amount of food I should have daily to healthily lose weight?

    I am currently swimming with my high school swim team. We have 45 minutes of either cardio, weights, or plyometric workouts in the morning. After school, we have a 2 hour practice. The difficulty of the day depends on what we work on, that being either pull, kick, stroke, technique, etc., just like any other practices out there.

    I'm a fairly healthy eater. For breakfast, I usually try including whole wheat cereals/breads, eggs, meat, and/or fruit. I make sure to pack in some protein through all my meals. For my sweet tooth at the end of the day, I usually include some very sweet fruits (usually berries) with about 1/2 - 1 cup of Greek Yogurt. I don't drink any soda and rarely ever intake any of the high-sugar-high-fructose-corn-syrup kind of foods (which get's annoying since most of the people I swim with snack on that all the time). I will have to insinuate, however, that I have been trying to diet since the beginning of the summer. I went Paleo for two months and lost 10 pounds, but I backed out because I was a bit frightened of trying to get used to the idea that I shouldn't intake any wheats, especially since most of the coaches I have talked to have approved very highly of it.

    I would also like to add that I feel like I am constantly hungry and never feel full. I know that I am eating enough because if I eat anything over 2500-3000 calories I have a slight upwards shift in weight.

    I guess that my questions isn't much about trying to lose weight as much as it is to make myself healthier as a whole. I know being 'thin' doesn't mean you are a healthy individual, but I want to get rid of any excess fat that I don't need to carry around to make my races faster and to slim down a bit.

    What are your suggestions? What do you believe can help me burn off the excess and to fight off the hunger? Any recommendations on food or calorie intake?

    Thank you! I greatly appreciate it to anyone that answers!

    Last edited by swimmergirl247; 11-13-2013 at 06:22 PM.

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