Posts of Interest

If you'd like to read this blog in order, you may want to start with my first post and click "newer post" at the bottom of each page to move on chronologically.

Want to jump straight to my HCG Diet conclusions post?

Questions? Comments? Feel free to send me an email to: fatlosschronicles(at)gmail(dot)com. I am more than happy to respond!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Lean Body Mass Index

Instead of chasing the seemingly all-important weight number, we should instead look at a different one. Similar to the BMI, this number helps us to know if we have a good portion of our body as lean mass.

Lean body mass is everything but the fat in your body. Using the following formula, we can figure out our Lean Body Mass Index:

{Weight - [Weight x Body Fat % / 100]} / {[(height in inches)(height in inches)]} x 703

Ok, I know that looks massively complicated, but it really isn't. :)

Start with your weight: 150
Total Body Fat % : 24.3

Now, multiply those two numbers together and divide the answer by 100: 36.45

Find your Lean Body Mass by subtracting that answer from your weight: 113.55

Take your Lean Body Mass and divide by your height in inches times itself: .0277
(Let's say you're 5'4", which is 64". 64 x 64 = 4096)
(113.55 divided by 4096 = .0277)

Finally, multiply that answer by 703: 19.47

And there you have it-- your Lean Body Mass Index!

The higher your number, the more fit you are. Men should aim for a LBMI of 19 or more, and women 17 or more. Anything below that, you are carrying around too much body fat and not enough muscle.

Calculate your Lean Body Mass Index. How do you measure up?

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Hidden Fat

What is BMI missing?

Is it possible to have a BMI in the "normal" range, and yet still be unhealthy? The answer is yes. Let's look at our two women from before, assuming they're both 30 years old and 5'6" tall.

Woman A: 150 pounds, 34% body fat. BMI = 24.2
Woman B: 160 pounds, 31% body fat. BMI = 25.8

According to their BMI results, Woman A is "Normal", and Woman B is "Overweight". However, if you look at a table for healthy body fat percentages, we find that Woman A is in the "High" range, whereas Woman B falls within the "Normal" range.

Body Fat Is Important!

Fat has gotten a bad reputation in our society. We are told to avoid fat, not get fat, avoid fat like the plague. But body fat is vital for healthy everyday functioning. It protects internal organs, is essential for proper nerve function, stores energy, and is needed for digestion and producing hormones. While too much body fat can definitely be unhealthy, too little body fat is also unhealthy.

What Should I Aim For?

Healthy body fat percentages are different for men and women, and also change depending on your age.

20-40Under 21%21-33%33-39%Over 39%
41-60Under 23%23-35%35-40%Over 40%
61-79Under 24%24-36%36-42%Over 2%

20-40Under 8%8-19%19-25%Over 25%
41-60Under 11%11-22%22-27%Over 27%
61-79Under 13%13-25%25-30%Over 30%

Source: Gallagher et al. Am J Clin Nut 2000; 72:694-701

Monday, January 26, 2009


Let's start with some of the basics.

A helpful number to gauge your progress is the Body Mass Index, or BMI. A simple formula is used to calculate this ratio between a person's height and their weight.

BMI = [weight in pounds times 703] divided by [height in inches] times [height in inches]. If you use metrics, use the same formula, except substitute kilograms (pounds) and meters (inches).

Using the formula to calculate my BMI:

[187 x 703] / [69] x [69]
[131461] / [4761]
= 27.6

Better yet, you can use this handy online BMI calculator.

BMI Result Classifications:
  • Less than 18.5 (Underweight)
  • 18.5 to 24.9 (Normal)
  • 25 to 29.9 (Overweight)
  • 30 or more (Obese)

This tends to be what many doctors offices and medical establishments use to calculate if you are at a healthy weight.

But taking into account body fat percentages, is BMI the most accurate way to go? Or should we dig a little further?

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Weight vs. Other Measurements

I want to blog my progress using four main focus areas:
  1. Weight
  2. Measurements
  3. Body Fat Percentage
  4. Lean Body Mass Percentage
Out of the four listed, the least important is weight. Why is that, you ask? Your weight does not always accurately portray what is going on in your body. Let me give you two scenarios, of women of the same height. Choose who is the healthier woman between:
  • Weight: 150 pounds. Body Fat: 34%.
  • Weight: 160 pounds. Body Fat: 31%.
The woman who weighs more is the healthier woman.

Think about this today and try to change your ideas about what is a healthy weight for you.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Why I Want to Lose Weight

Let's get started with some vital statistics. I'm 5'9" tall, and weighed in today at 187 pounds. That's me on the right, attempting to take a picture of myself. :)

Since I am tall, I hold my weight well. People would not consider me fat-- probably more like "padded". Mostly, I really don't mind how I look. I like to think I can dress myself decently for my body type, and attempt to look nice with whatever my weight happens to be.

My main reason for wanting to shed the extra pounds I have is, as I said before, for health reasons. I have already had two back surgeries (low back, lumbar region), and am in constant pain. Every extra pound I put on puts additional torque on my back, causing even more pain. I've reached a point where the pain is really limiting my ability to work, play, and enjoy my life.

It is time.

Friday, January 23, 2009

My Fat Loss Journey Begins

Hey, everyone.

I started this blog to chronicle my fat loss journey. While I'm thankfully not obese, my BMI tells me I'm smack dab in the middle of the overweight category. I have some health problems that have led to my weight gain, which I will talk about in a future post. It is also for health reasons that I want to lose these extra pounds, too.

May good health be yours and mine.