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Loss of Body Weight

tonys

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino France's May 2008, June 2016
Camino Portuguese Sept 2018
#1
Hi everbody
I would like to here from members who have previously completed the camino, if they experienced any loss of body weight during their walk, and is it necessary to watch your diet.

Tonys
 

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William Marques

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
#2
No loss of body weight but better body tone.

It was not necessary for me to watch my diet as any extra calories taken on were burnt during the day or converted to muscles in place where I did not have them before.

I would watch your water intake in the summer. It may be me but I find being well hydrated minimises the possibility of sunburn. Someone mentioned the problems of taking on too much water so I carry some peanuts and dry fruit to nibble at when I feel like it.

Buen Camino
William
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
#3
William wrote:Someone mentioned the problems of taking on too much water
I know...I know..you're expecting me to add a comment about water vs Vinotinto! Not going to happen...where safety and health are concerned I do draw a line.

Water intake is extremely important and if you wait for your body to tell you when and how much, that's not necessarily a good thing. We've done a lot of studies on hydration in the forces and, especially in a desert environment. Here's a few thoughts:

1. William is right about hydration and sunburn...to a point. If you are not hydrating sufficiently your upper layers of skin tend to dry out thus since there's less natural cooling (sweat doesn't only help cool by evaporation, it also helps circulate heat throughout the body and away from exposed skin. Less hydration...drier skin...less circulation...sunburn becomes severe.

2. With the event of Camelbacks and hoses directly into the mouth...drinking becomes a habit rather than a need. You walk, you sip, you trudge, you sip harder. You take in water at a rate not needed and you pee a lot more than normal.

3. If you're taking in pure H2O, your body uses it for a number of critical waste missions. It gets into your kidneys, liver and stomach...each of which must vacate waste and water helps wash away these waste products. Water in the stomach softens stool and prevents painful bowel movements. In the other organs, it washes away bad chemical residue trapped there. Which brings me to point:

4. Pure water also removes electrolytes. Here's the scoop:

The level of any electrolyte in the blood can become too high or too low. The main electrolytes in the blood are sodium, potassium, calcium, and others. Most commonly, problems occur when the level of sodium, potassium, or calcium is abnormal. Often, electrolyte levels change when water levels in the body change.

Doctors refer to a low electrolyte level with the prefix "hypo-" and to a high level with the prefix "hyper-." The prefix is combined with the scientific name of the electrolyte. For example, a low level of potassium is called hypokalemia, and a high level of sodium is called hypernatremia.
Older people are more likely to develop abnormalities in electrolyte levels for the same reasons that they are more likely to become dehydrated or overhydrated. The main reason is that as the body ages, the kidneys function less well. The use of certain drugs, including diuretics and some laxatives, can increase the risk of developing electrolyte abnormalities. Problems with walking can increase the risk of developing electrolyte abnormalities because getting fluids and food may be difficult. Many chronic disorders (such as Paget's disease) and any disorder that causes fever, vomiting, or diarrhea can result in electrolyte abnormalities.

To treat a low level of some electrolytes, such as sodium or potassium, doctors usually advise eating foods rich in the electrolyte or taking supplements. If the level is very low, the electrolyte may be given through a tube inserted in a vein (intravenously). If the level is high, treatment consists of consuming more fluids. Sometimes fluids must be given intravenously.

A low sodium level (hyponatremia) may result from not consuming enough sodium in the diet, excreting too much (in sweat or urine), or being overhydrated. The sodium level may decrease when a person drinks a lot of water without consuming enough salt (sodium chloride), typically during hot weather when a person also sweats more. The sodium level may decrease when large amounts of fluids that do not contain enough sodium are given intravenously. Diuretics help the kidneys excrete excess sodium and excess water. However, diuretics may cause the kidneys to excrete more sodium than water, resulting in a low sodium level.

A low sodium level (and overhydration) can result when the body produces too much antidiuretic hormone, which signals the kidneys to retain water. Overproduction of this hormone can be caused by disorders such as pneumonia and stroke and by drugs, including anticonvulsants (such as carbamazepine) and a type of antidepressant called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs—such as sertraline). Other disorders that can cause a low sodium level include poorly controlled diabetes, heart failure, liver failure, and kidney disorders.

5. So, how do we ward off these possible problems:

A. Eat a good diet.
B. Drink water as you move along, but don't over hydrate.
C. If you're going to be away from a source of natural electrolyte replenishment, consider an additive to your water such as: Gatoraide powder, or other sports additives.

Hope that helps:

And, yes, Vino IS a good source of many nutrients and antioxidants. Moderation in all things!

Buen Camino,

Arn
 

vinotinto

Active Member
#5
tonys said:
if they experienced any loss of body weight during their walk, and is it necessary to watch your diet.
I went from St. Jean to Santiago, and lost about 20 pounds (gained it back after I got home, though). I ate pretty much whatever I wanted along the Way, and also made sure I was constantly hydrated.

It's interesting to note that at my Camino's beginning I couldn't finish a typical pilgrim meal, but as time went on, I was able to easily scarf one down. And I still lost weight. :arrow:
 

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jeff001

Active Member
#6
I lost about 5 pounds but it may have been more during the trip. I also tended not to eat enough during the first days. You need to eat even if you don't feel hungry just as you need to drink even if you don't feel thirsty.
 

oursonpolaire

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002, Toulouse/Aragon 2005, Cami S Jaume/Aragon 2007/9, Mont Saint Michel/Norte/Vadiniense 2011, Norte/Primitivo 2013, Norte/Primitivo 2014. Norte 2015, Cami S Jaume/Castellano-Aragonese 2016
#7
Like vinotinto, I lost about 20lb on my last Camino, but had no trouble regaining it on return (over four months). My basic Camino calorific intake was likely about the same as it is at home, but 25km/day eats up a lot more energy than does 8 hours each day in cubicle. I should note that, on my return, I dropped the healthy habit of consuming at least one baguette and a bottle of wine each day, returning to my normal single glass at dinner.
 

vinotinto

Active Member
#8
Arn said:
Moderation in all things!
oursonpolaire said:
a bottle of wine each day
Guess which one of the above statements I adhered to while on the trail... :wink: Indeed, the Camino is one of the few places where vino goes well with breakfast...and lunch...and dinner...and with that pre-lunch pastry...and so on (hehe)! Heck, the only day I got sick on the Way was the only day I was on the wagon...buzzkill! :arrow:
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
#9
Vinotinto wrote:Heck, the only day I got sick on the Way was the only day I was on the wagon...
My Brother, now why in the heck would you do something as crazy as that....I'm so disappointed!

I may have to reconsider that joint walk along the Way in the future. I hate to have to talk up to someone on the wagon when I still walking, er, at least still moving under my own power.

Buen Saludos Camino,

Arn
 

vinotinto

Active Member
#10
Arn said:
now why in the heck would you do something as crazy as that
I had no choice - I was at the albergue in Cizur Menor, and there was no vino to be found anywhere. Apparently, the nearby store/bar/restaurant (perhaps more than one, I wasn't sure) was closed, and I would've had to go all the way back to Pamplona for a proper sit-down meal (I think it was a Sunday).

Therefore, my repast that day was out of the albergue vending machine - raw hot dogs, bread, and cookies (no wonder I got sick, eh?). Ya gotta cut me some slack - it was only my fourth day on the Camino, so I was still a boot pilgrim. :mrgreen:
 

vinotinto

Active Member
#12
Arn said:
SLACK granted...Carry on!
Aye, aye! - Semper Fi, do or die, stick a scallop in yer eye! :mrgreen:

Arn said:
yellow footprint
At that point on the Camino, I still had the pungent scent of Cash Sales on me (in this case, REI - hehe!) Hmmm...yellow footprint, yellow arrow - both signposts to a quest fraught with danger, where the ending is uncertain - a coincidence, perhaps...? :idea: :arrow:
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
#13
VT..from what I've surmised from the many and varied threads that you'd added or commented on...there's very little that you'd not be successful at!

Many folks wouldn't understand the deep and permanent changes that come about from our shared experiences and, yet, I think that those in this Forum are either IN on what it takes, or soon shall be.

I applaud each and every one of us that have chosen to step outside our collective comfort zones and trod the Camino. The reason doesn't matter as much as the effort to succeed in reaching deep and doing your very best.

Buen Camino...my friends,
Arn
 
#14
I lost about 10 lbs. I had issues with nausea for the first week which inhibited me from eating normally. When I got into a routine, I discovered that a high-fiber and high-protein and overall high-calorie morning meal was absolutely essential. 7 Granola bars between 8am-12pm was normal (I am a high-energy, athletic, thin female). I stayed away from instant-energy foods with refined sugar or white bread because I burned through them very quickly. Eat as much as you need to- if weight loss is a long-term goal for you, the Camino is a good place to begin, but no drastic weight loss following such an event can be easily maintained. It can be an inspirational jumpstart, but most people regain rather quickly, I imagine.
 
#15
You can lose weight or not, lose more and less weight, but you always lose volume. Normally lose weight (may be not in the Camino del Norte) but always lose volume.

The Camino is not the best momento to maintain a diet.

Buen Camino, with the best gastronomy

Javier Martin
Madrid, Spain.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Home to Reims 2007
Reims to Limoges 2008
Camino Ingles 2009
Limoges to Gernica 2009
Gernica to San Vicente de la Barquera 2010
San Vicente to La Isla 2012
La Isla to Santiago Sept/Oct 2014
#16
You can lose weight or not, lose more and less weight, but you always lose volume. Normally lose weight (may be not in the Camino del Norte) but always lose volume.
Why might you not lose weight on the Camino del Norte, Javier?

Bridget
 
#17
Why might you not lose weight on the Camino del Norte, Javier?

Bridget[/quote]


Because gastronomy in the North: Very rich and caloric in Euskadi, in Cantabria, Uffff ¡¡Asturias!! and of course in Galicia.

You have to consider that meals in restaurants are "big meals", for everybody and of course for a pilgrim, you have to earn energy to walk. Have you ever tasted the fabada? The cheeses from Asturias? The cocido montañes? Only in Asturias there's 120 different kind of cheeses!! Every little region has a different speciality to taste. From the France border in Hendaya to Santiago you are always crossing little valleys around the coast. In the Camino Frances is different, a very rich gastronomy but not so caloric.

Mmmm, what a danger, spanish gastronomy!! and don't forget, in Spain the best gastronomy is said to be the one from Euskadi. So, it's well known the paella, gazpacho, cocido, fabada, but the fame of best restaurants in spain is for the Euskadi restaurants.

Buen Camino,

Javier Martin
Madrid, Spain
 

alipilgrim

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2005), Frances (2007), Madrid/Frances (2011), 1/2 VdP (2012),
#19
Hate to say it but I actually gained weight on the Camino! It was all the bread! Save a bit from the night before for breakfast or get a little cake when have morning cafe con leche, then a bocadillo for lunch, and bread always served with dinner....else making pasta meals in the albergue for myself - the carbs add up!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Home to Reims 2007
Reims to Limoges 2008
Camino Ingles 2009
Limoges to Gernica 2009
Gernica to San Vicente de la Barquera 2010
San Vicente to La Isla 2012
La Isla to Santiago Sept/Oct 2014
#22
!! and don't forget, in Spain the best gastronomy is said to be the one from Euskadi. So, it's well known the paella, gazpacho, cocido, fabada, but the fame of best restaurants in spain is for the Euskadi restaurants.
That settles it, then, Camino del Norte it is , then.

JohnnieWalker said:
and of course it has nothing at all to do with the amount beer Spaniards drink! Nor the pata fritas with everything :)
alipilgrim said:
Hate to say it but I actually gained weight on the Camino! It was all the bread! Save a bit from the night before for breakfast or get a little cake when have morning cafe con leche, then a bocadillo for lunch, and bread always served with dinner....else making pasta meals in the albergue for myself - the carbs add up!
So if I don't drink the beer (don't like it anyway) and go easy on the fried potatoes and bread (leaving more room for everything else) I can hang on to the sin of greed and still emerge toned and lean from all the exercise?

Bridget

nb, alipilgrim - don't they say muscle weighs more than fat - you weighed more BECAUSE you were fitter! :D
 
S

SansTerre

Guest
#25
I did lose a little weight, but like everyone has said, it comes back. In Roncesvalles I met Luciano from Brazil who would carry a bottle of vino tinto. He would share some with me along the trail and it always gave me an energy boost. Here at home on long hikes I crave that vino tinto and sometimes bring some along :D
 
#26
I didn't lose a single gram. Too much chocolate and yummy village bread. And chocolate on said bread. Makes a nice christmas lunch, actually (that was what I had Christmas 2009!):



The sheer amount of food I consumed on my camino was terrifying. I remember arriving in Burgos on a Monday after everything had been shut on the Sunday before that (so I hadn't eated much), buying about five bags full of stuff, and eating most of it in one go, taking up almost a whole on of those huge tables in the municipal albergue in Burgos. I've never eated so much in my life! :D
 
#27
I came home on Thursday, put my self on the scales - I'd lost 7lb.
All I did was try and listen to my body, if I felt cramps coming, I'd eat small amount of salt, I'd have a couple of glasses of vino at night with my meal. I generally stopped for breakfast at about 10:00, and that was it until the evening meal, apart from buying an apple if I passed a shop.
Water, I kept in a bottle in my sack, it was sufficient.
 

unadara

Active Member
#28
I lost 10kgs in one night! Walked from St Jean to Santiago, on getting home very little loss on the scales, but I had not been able to eat for a few days due to illness/tummy/heat/infection -near Leon. However I now discovered I am 2 sizes smaller, i lost my thighs, a lot of my rear end, and my back! Now I had a lot to lose BUT was fit and a walker. Am hoping it will stay off as I am no longer drinking the bottle of wine, eating the beautiful artisan choc (very good for sick tummy-seriously!), we did change our habits as we went along and cut out the mid-day bocadillo..tortilla maybe but more often fruit and nuts, cheese maybe. Food generally was very good...and Drink!
PLan to go again next year, lose the other 10kgs...haha
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino del Norte (9/2012)
#29
I dropped 30 lbs while training to go on my Camino. It was my plan to get in better shape before I started. Then while I was walking the Camino del Norte I felt good & strong and ate whatever I wanted which included a lot of bread. I did not lose additional weight while walking, but did not gain any either.

It might be that losing the weight ahead of time allowed me to enjoy my Camino more than if I was trying to lose while doing it. I was able to eat & enjoy the new foods offered in Spain and not worry about weight one way or the other.
 

fortview

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino frances Sept/oct 2012 , Salvador, Primitivo 2013
Cotswold Way July 2014
European Peace Walk August 2014 (John)
#31
Peronel, your comment made me smile :)
We'd be walking along with these Camino friends all asking - when are we going to start losing weight!

My weight loss was minimal, but I ate whatever I liked, drank lots of wine and beer, and one morning, realised I'd consumed about a pound of cake before 10 am !
When I do my next camino, I tell myself Ill eat less. But that's not really going to happen :wink:

The muscles certainly toned up though. I had calves like a farmers, and the bottom of an 18 year old... :)

Does anyone know why we get the nausea, and lack of appetite in the early days ? It seems to be a common condition.
 

waveprof

Enthusiast
Camino(s) past & future
May-June 2013, Camino Frances
#32
I am male, 35, 5'7 and left for the camino weighing 185 pounds. I lost 10.

My wife, 31, 5'1, and leaving for the camino around 122, gained 9 pounds.

My mother, 60, 5'1, and leaving for the camino around 122, gained 2 pounds.

Our son, 14 months, gained 2 pounds. But then again, he wasn't walking and he developed a deep love for Chorizo :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés 2013
Camino Fisterra/Muxía 2013
Camino Inglés 2013
Camino del Salvador 2014
Camino Primitivo 2014
Caminho Portugues 2015
Camino del Norte 2016
#33
Started out at 64 kg to my 170 cm. Came back home 7 kg less. Could get in to jeans I haven't used for several years.
No bread, no wine. Lot of crisps and coke :)
 
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billbennettoz

Veteran Poster
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2013
Camino Portuguese 2014
Via di Francesco 2015
#34
I lost a couple of kilos, that's all - but my constant companion was a block of chocolate, which I rationalised kept my spirits up because I had a lot of knee pain. I also regularly had two pilgrim meals a day! But I love Spanish food, and I never got sick once. Then again, I've traveled to Spain quite a bit and so I'm used to their food.

I knew of one lass who constantly had at least one full packet of Oriole cookies, and she put on weight.

So the lesson I learnt is that irrespective of how far you walk, if you want to lose weight you have to be careful what you eat. And drink.
 

piogaw

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino frances (05/06 2012) sjpdp-sdc; vdlp/camino sanabrea (02/03 2013) sevilla-sdc; hospitalero sdc june 2013, august-september 2013; caminho portugues (03 2014) lisboa-sdc
#35
Talking about food, this is one of my favorite restaurants in Santiago:
http://travel.nytimes.com/2007/03/11/travel/11Bite.html

Hello ivar,

Don't publicize all the good restaurants in santiago. I want to be able to go to any good restaurants without a big crowd. I know this restaurant very well. You forget to mention pimtentos de padron, tortillas.

I lost more than a stone (14 pounds) in each of my long distance caminos without watching my food intake.



Ivar
 
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Carol06

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (May 2012)
Frances (May 2015) all going well and with my husband this time.
#36
I lost 10% of my body weight. I am still one size smaller in clothes than I was before I started my Camino and that was 18 months ago. I soon stopped eating all the bread that was served. And I ate lots of lovely fruit. The wine was good too.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Easter weekend to May 8th 2013
#37
There are easier ways to lose weight than walking 500 miles carrying a pack! In my non Camino life I am very careful about my diet,no bread or sugars while maintaining a daily exercise routine.
On the Camino, I ate and drank everything I was offered and more and lost 15 pounds. I did not consider weight loss or gain. Even when I felt too tired to wait up to eat the pilgrim's meal I did and ate anyway.
Being present,getting stronger were the focuses I had.
 
Camino(s) past & future
2012 Dieppe, FR Bici CF.
2014 Ruta Vasco/CF/Primativo
#39
I lost a few pounds... I ate a pretty hearty breakfast when I could get it. Toast and jam does nada for me except spike my blood sugar and cause a crash. I did not eats tons of crap but always had a little something in my pack. The bread and cheese is good. Oh and the Jamon Iberico, mmmmmmmm... If you can afford to spring for the good stuff, do it. Carried a can of corn (don't ask me why I started eating that), some fruit, tomato, cucumber whatever.
But to answer your question, unless you have dietary concerns (I can get hypoglycemic), eat whatever you want and walk a little faster than maybe you normally would...
Good luck,
Robin
 
#40
I know...I know..you're expecting me to add a comment about water vs Vinotinto! Not going to happen...where safety and health are concerned I do draw a line. .........


Hope that helps:

And, yes, Vino IS a good source of many nutrients and antioxidants. Moderation in all things!

Buen Camino,

Arn
Arn, PLEASE can you write something comprehensive next time ?
 
#44
Ate whatever I wanted, lost 45 pounds, been home 20 days and have lost another pound. I will say however, now that I'm home and not walking every single day, I am not eating "everything in sight".
 

kathrynwb

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis (2013);
Camino Portuguese (2016)
#45
I just got back from the Camino last week. I ate whatever I wanted. Had wine and chocolate every day. I lost 21 pounds. Now I just have to constantly remind myself that I can't eat like that any more!
 

hecate105

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2009 Portuguese 2009 Estellas, 2014 Aurelia, 2016 St Davids, 2017 Via Augusta/V dl P
#51
I spent 4 months cycling from Portugal to S de C and home to the UK. I imagined I would return svelte, healthy and at least 3 stone lighter. In fact I lost 7 pounds in the first two weeks then nary a ounce more! My husband pointed out it was the slabs of chocolate cake that I kept eating and the de rigeur bottle of wine...
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances-(2013/14/18
Camino Salvado Perth -(2015)
West Highland Way (2016)
Lyon France 2017
#52
I lost a fair bit of weight but, I ate a huge amount of food....much more so than I normally would eat here at home. I have put on about one quarter of what I lost....been home since late june.
smiles....susanawee
 
Camino(s) past & future
August 2013
#53
Talking about food, this is one of my favorite restaurants in Santiago:
http://travel.nytimes.com/2007/03/11/travel/11Bite.html

Ivar
Oh yes!
I cannot really compare it to other restaurants but I had a fabulous meal here on day of arrival in Santiago. and apart from the wonderful food, there was the extraordinary service.
We found it because a lady in Portomarin where we bought stamps, wanted a chance to practice her English so we chatted for awhile. in appreciation she told us that this is her favourite restaurant in Santiago and that we should try it. It was such a fitting celebration of having arrived.

antoinette
 

mspath

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
#54
In 2004 at 65 when I first began walking my height was 172 cm and weight 65 kilos. By the end of that camino and ever since my weight remains 61 kilos. Yet each time entering Santiago I physically feel remade; my bones may be the same but they seem re configured. Perhaps even more important than any physical slimming down and tightening up has been the psychological change during each camino. I have learned my limits as well as the importance of personal tenacity and endurance. Compared with nine climbs up O Cebriero daily trivialities in ordinary life now have little importance!

Nevertheless, what matters is to DO IT! As Churchill said after Dunkirk "we will go on to the end".

MM
 

MichaelSG

Retired member
Camino(s) past & future
Not enough
#55
I lost a net 7kg from 97 to 90kg. I say that's the net loss because on the Camino, I ate a LOT. I had a full breakfast, lunch and dinner every day with all the dinners and many lunches the 3 course pilgrim meal. I mistakenly kept eating like that because of habit when I was in Santiago for 4 days after arriving. I think I really lost 10kg but put back on 3kg in those few days.

Funny story about eating though... In Roncevalles there are not many places to eat. After arriving though I had a very nice lunch and the bean soup was outstanding. We went back to the same place for dinner and I recommended the soup to a Norwegian woman. I had told her that I had it for lunch. She turned to me with the most incredulous expression and said "You eat TWICE a day?!?!?!" Oops. I decided not to mention breakfast or the snacks while walking.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Astorga to Santiago, 2010
Camino Frances SJPP to Muxia, 2011
Camino del Salvador, 2012
Camino Primitivo 2012
Camino Portuguese, Coastal, 2013
#56
I've walked several different caminos and I never never lost weight while walking...because I eat more bread and chocolate, and drink more wine on the camino than in day-to-day life. I don't gain weight while walking either. However, I always gain weight in the month or two after a camino, as I struggle to adjust to changing my diet back to normal, while not walking 10-20 miles a day.
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF011, CF012, CP013, CF014, CA015, S.Anton015, CF015, CI015
Ditch Pig016, CF017, CP017, CdN(018)
#57
I dropped from 99 kg to 90 kg, but frankly I should only weigh 80 kg. I am looking forward to getting back to work next year on the Camino.
 
Camino(s) past & future
September - October 2014
#58
Hi everbody
I would like to here from members who have previously completed the camino, if they experienced any loss of body weight during their walk, and is it necessary to watch your diet.

Tonys
I don't know how much I have lost yet because I still have over 80 km to go and the Finisterre and Muxia. I am just grateful for the extra shoe string that is holding up my pants. I don't drink wine. I am sure I will gain it back when I get home. Perhaps it has all turned to muscle.
 

tploomis

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Sept. to Nov., 2013
#59
I used to think that long term endurance type activities were an anecdote to all dietary indiscretions, but personal experience has proven otherwise, at least for me. I bicycled across the United States four years ago, ate what I wanted, lost 30 pounds, and ended up with all kinds of medical problems, including kidney and liver malfunction, elevated blood sugar, and elevated cholesterol. Fortunately, the medical problems were temporary and corrected when I got back on a healthy diet. When I walked the Camino last year I was much more conscious of eating healthily, although also in larger quantities than normal for me. I lost 8 pounds and had good lab test results at the end. I concluded from that that diet, at least for me, is more important than exercise in keeping me healthy. I don't get a pass because I'm exercising 8 hours a day while walking. Rats!
 
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
#61
Hi everbody
I would like to here from members who have previously completed the camino, if they experienced any loss of body weight during their walk, and is it necessary to watch your diet.

Tonys
I not only lost 10 pounds over 15 days of walking but my metabolism was so revved up that I kept losing a pound a day for 10 days after comming home. That was on CF 6 years ago. This year I was on el Norte and the food is soooo much better in the restaurants. Fabada should be a meal of its own, not a premier plato! But there is also wonderful grilled fish to offset it. I tend to buy chorizo and carry it with me in case I need a snack, or have it for breakfast. Beats stale white bred with jam: very paleo ;0) Other good breakfast is tortialla de patatas, at least it has egg. I know try to have my large meal at lunch time to take advantage of the better menus in restaurants and have a snack at night, an ensalada mixta or small bocadillo, just like the locals.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#62
Fabada - Asturian Bean Stew - Fabada Asturiana

Prep Time: 20 min.

Cook Time: 1 hr. 45 min.

Ingredients:
Generous 1 lb lacón (cured, air-dried pork shank), boned, or cured pork belly or spareribs
14 oz large dried white beans (fabes)
3/4 cup smoked bacon, finely diced
1 onion, chopped
1 clove of garlic, chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
1 bay leaf
A few saffron threads
1/2 tsp sweet paprika
Pepper
2 Spanish blood sausages (morcilla)
2 chorizos
Salt

Preparation:
- Soak the shank overnight, changing the water once.
- Soften the beans overnight in cold water.
- Sweat the bacon, onion and garlic in a pan containing the olive oil until transparent.
- Add the meat and beans and just enough water to cover the ingredients.
- Season with the bay leaf, saffron, paprika and pepper.
- Bring to a boil and simmer on medium heat for around 1 1/2 hours.
- Stir several times during cooking and add more water if necessary.
- When the beans are almost soft, add the sausages.
- Adjust the seasoning and leave to simmer until the beans are completely soft.
- Before serving, remove the meat and sausage from the pan, cut it into pieces and combine with the beans.

Recipe courtesy of Culinaria Spain book.
 

ivar

Administrator
Staff member
Donating Member
#63
Ivar, there is a restaurant on the same street a friend took me to that I loved. If memory serves me right it was in the basement of an old house and they serve meat, meat and more meat. Any idea which one it may be?
It is called O Dezaseis, and they serve traditional Galician food. Still a great place. Located in Rua do Sanpedro 16, on your way into Santiago on the Camino Frances.
 
M

Mark Lee

Guest
#64
On both Caminos I lost about 10 k's of body weight. Wasn't really trying to. Walked anywhere from 20-30 km's a day. About a 10 k pack. I did not hold back on eating, or drinking beer. I can only think the consistent walking, some up and down hills, combined with a load on my back must have boosted my metabolism and I was consuming less calories daily than I consumed. I was thinking that if I was in my twenties again, with the metabolism I had then, I would be needing to chow down twice as much while walking the Camino.
I'm a non-smoker, workout regularly, and do some running, but walking the Camino is definitely the physically healthiest thing I have done in years.
 
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
#65
It is called O Dezaseis, and they serve traditional Galician food. Still a great place. Located in Rua do Sanpedro 16, on your way into Santiago on the Camino Frances.

Ivar,

happy to know I at least remembered it approximate location. It is great. Well priced and you are getting copious amounts for what you are asking. Just make sure you buy a few veggies on your way out of offset the protein!
 

tominrm

Hiking to Celebrate the End of Working Life.
Camino(s) past & future
CF(2014)
del Norte ( 2015)
Portuguese ( 2016)
Primitivo ( 2017)
VdlP (2018)
#66
I drank either wine or beer everyday while on the camino and lost 13 pounds in 37 days while walking 600 miles to muxia via finnisterre from sjpdp. But unfortunately I gained them all back in 4 months after return.
 

paul.ferris

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2011 Camino Frances
2013 Camino Frances
2015 To be decided
#67
My wife and I each lost about 15 lbs (approx. 7kg) despite the fact that we both developed a craving for chocolate croissants.(SJPDP-Santiago, 36 days).
 

marie s-g

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Lisbon to Finisterre August 2014
#68
Hi everbody
I would like to here from members who have previously completed the camino, if they experienced any loss of body weight during their walk, and is it necessary to watch your diet.

Tonys
I did Lisbon to Finisterre in 26 days and lost 1 stone 2lbs in weight ! As I am a vegetarian, I did have difficulty finding places to eat that didn't only serve meat. When we had to merge our walking days, we did " carb up " in advance to boost our energy levels
 
Camino(s) past & future
2014 2016
#69
Hi everbody
I would like to here from members who have previously completed the camino, if they experienced any loss of body weight during their walk, and is it necessary to watch your diet.

Tonys
Hi there good question I lost nineteen pounds and ate anything and everything drank a lot of water, for me the weight loss was welcome.
 

philip a tobin

irish scouse
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013....2014....2015.......2017...2018
#70
I am also a 'veggie' and had problems with eating on my first Camino in 2013,and I lost 30pounds.People thought I was I'll on my return but I soon regained the weight.I managed much better on my second Camino in 2014 knowing what to expect.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances [May 2012]
VDLP (September 2015)
#71
I ate what I wanted and when I wanted and I only lost 4 kg's over 37 days. BUT I came down 2 sizes in my clothes and my body was toned - muscle weighs more than fat. Needless to say, I picked up the weight over the next 8 months after I returned home :-( Just no time to walk 24 km's a day!
 

Stivandrer

Active Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
I´ve got Camino plans until 2042,
- or till I fall flat on my face, whichever comes first !!
#72
I did my Camino in the end of yearlong weight slimming period and lost around 4 kilo in a month, and I really was not worried about what I ate. My longest stretch of 37 kilometres earned me over 3000 Kcal burned, so what is there to worry about, you will walk 6 - 8 hrs a day - easily.
You have earned the right to eat what your heart desires and what your body needs. I loved to be able to crunch a whole packet of these lovely salted nuts a day, because it gave me salt and essential fats, the lovely soups and fish and I truely deserved that ½ liter of wine at the Peregrine meal, - and the friggin´ dessert too.
I can see both sides of the coin , though, and I did one sensible day and then one day going whole hog, and every time I happened to be staying at a perfect Albergue with the perfect selection of meals, it was my feasting day...call it meaningful coincidences...

Enjoy, for crying out loud, don´t count on you losing some weight, but rejoice if you do...

Lastly, if you are on the un-slimmed side, I would guess that you would lose a lot of that loose blubber, that you so want to drop, and a lot of retained fluid, and experience better circulation;
- and yes I gained my own loss back after my trip, but then again, I had already lost 30 kg over 2,5 yrs....
Now I am slowly getting rid of the last 5 kgs that I will ever need to lose, but that is, as they say another kettle of fish entirely...

Solvitur Ambulando and Buen Camino
 
Last edited:

paage

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2015
#73
Well i am going on the Camino France, starting the walk at the 10 of may from sjpdp all the way to Santiago. And like so many before me i am curious as to what my end state will be :) (is it state or .....) anyway i have weighed and measured myself. will do the same when i get home and maybe on the road. just for the fun of it. Weight 104 kg. measurements are calf 58. thigh 57 cm. hips 112 cm. waist 116 cm. chest 112 cm. upper arm 38. my height is 181 cm. so yes i am overweight :) but i'm in good spirit, and loves to eat good food and drink good wine and beer. Will be fun to see what the end result is.. feel free to add the measurement and weight in pounds and inch.
 

Stivandrer

Active Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
I´ve got Camino plans until 2042,
- or till I fall flat on my face, whichever comes first !!
#74
again, I would say; do not get on the scale to see What you have lost in weight and Where -

- Do look in the mirror and look How you have changed !!
 

cher99840

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013, 2017 Camino Frances SJPP-Santiago
2015 St. Olav's Way Oslo-Trondheim
2017 VdlP Seville-Merida
#75
again, I would say; do not get on the scale to see What you have lost in weight and Where -

- Do look in the mirror and look How you have changed !!
I agree. Weight loses significance as the body tones and changes shape. I'm glad I wore a belt because I would have lost my trousers without it. I am careful of what I eat at home but on the Camino ate whatever and whenever I wanted. Daily bread, cheese, chocolate, chips (crisps), coca cola, and ice cream whenever I could get it. Then there was the daily pilgrim's meal and often a pastry with my coffee. I don't do alcohol so skipped the wine and beer.
 
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
#76
Paage, while losing weight is fantastic, and perhaps the reason why I go back to the Camino for 3 weeks year after year, please do not skip meals or deprive yourself to lose weight on purpose. 30 000 steps a day will take care of that! Because if you don't nourish your body enough you will hit a wall, and won't be able to finish your days safely. And is this can motivate you to still eat well on Camino: I lose a pound a day for about 10 days after getting back home because my metabolism is so revved up. For 15 days of walking, 20 pounds. I just love the Camino! Make sure you bring a belt or nappy pins to hold your pants up! ;0)
 

VNwalking

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2014, 2015)
St Olav/Francés (2016)
Baztanés/Francés (2017)
Ingles (July 2018)
#77
I stayed about the same weight--increased muscle mass and lost fat.
Like others, here I ate whatever I wanted and lost all sense of restraint once in Galicia. No, it was NOT the pulpo (ick...I'm vegetarian)--it was the Pimentos de Padron. They are soooo delicious, and after a month living mostly on bread and tortilla, unbelievably so.
I have ordered seeds and look forward to another fix in late September!
 

VNwalking

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2014, 2015)
St Olav/Francés (2016)
Baztanés/Francés (2017)
Ingles (July 2018)
#78
Like this:

(Sorry, gang. I'm sure I'm not the only one out there having a Pavlovian moment...)
 
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
#79
Like this:

(Sorry, gang. I'm sure I'm not the only one out there having a Pavlovian moment...)
Yummy! Love these little suckers. Remember them in Pedrouozo and wished they had been available every day before that!
 

VNwalking

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2014, 2015)
St Olav/Francés (2016)
Baztanés/Francés (2017)
Ingles (July 2018)
#80
I first saw them in Ribadiso...and wondered how I'd missed them completely on my first Camino.
 

Anniesantiago

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 will be Camino #14.
#81
I eat anything I want on the Camino and drop about 20 pounds each year (which I promptly put back on at home!)
 

Walli Walker

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances '2009', Camino Portuguese from Porto '2015', Camino Ingles from Ferrol '2015', Finisterre and Muxia '2015'. Tentatively planning Camino from Granada '2017'.
#82
I'm taking drawstring pants this time as I lost so much weight on the Frances that I could take my pants of without undoing them. I ate and drank everything I could get my hands on and, once, burst into tears because all the shops were closed (siesta time) and I was hungry. Not attractive in a 60 year old woman!
 

Walli Walker

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances '2009', Camino Portuguese from Porto '2015', Camino Ingles from Ferrol '2015', Finisterre and Muxia '2015'. Tentatively planning Camino from Granada '2017'.
#83
I'm taking drawstring pants this time as I lost so much weight on the Frances that I could take my pants of without undoing them. I ate and drank everything I could get my hands on and, once, burst into tears because all the shops were closed (siesta time) and I was hungry. Not attractive in a 60 year old woman!
 

Peregrinopaul

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP(2012) Madrid(2014)Frances(2015) VdlP(2016)
VdlP(2017)Sanabres (2018) Frances reverse(2018)
#84
Might as well weigh in on this one. The VdlP cost me 8kg, but that meant I went down from 60kg to 52. My wife was pretty horrified.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2014)
#85
I lost 15 lbs on the Camino and I ate whatever I thought my body needed, and boy did it need a beer or two before dinner every night ;-) I could also take my trousers off without undoing the button by the end... woohoo! I've since lost another 19 lbs. The Camino was the kickstart I needed... mentally, emotionally, physically.
 
#86
I lost 15 lbs in 43 days and ate anything I wanted. However, what I "wanted" was not always what I got. I really need eggs for breakfast, not bocadillos, and I was so tired of bread bread bread bread that I almost didn't bother with breakfast . . . would rather grab fruit in the morning. BUT then I learned a couple of things. Many restaurants serve eggs for dinner, and if I asked, were happy to make me a couple of eggs for breakfast. AND I could ask for just the meat and cheese instead of a whole sandwich . . . all of that made things much better down the road. I'm marginally diabetic, but was able to enjoy fresh orange juice all along the way. No problem with blood sugar, since I was walking 20-25K per day. My zip-off shorts were practically falling down before I found safety pins to take in the waistband. I gained half the weight back when I got home, over a period of a year, but I'm going back, this time on the Norte, not the Frances, in late August, so I suspect I will lose more weight again this year. Buen Camino!
 

Peter Fransiscus

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
All that we are is the result of what we have thought.
#87
I just got back from the Camino last week. I ate whatever I wanted. Had wine and chocolate every day. I lost 21 pounds. Now I just have to constantly remind myself that I can't eat like that any more!
Hello, I got back about 6 weeks and I lost about 4 kg. I did almost the same as you. Be back in Portugal next year. Wish you well , Peter.
 

Donna Sch

Active Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
VdLP-Sanabres-Fisterra (Summer 2015); Future? Levante-VDLP-Invierno (Feb/Mar 2019);
#88
I'm in the no weight change club and I wanted to maintain my weight. Just made sure I kept the protein up especially early on when the calves are growing dramatically. Lots of body changes though. Calves and shoulders are bigger, chest bigger, pretty good abs an thighs and bum more toned. In pretty great shape at the moment!
 
Camino(s) past & future
SJPdP-Santiago (2014), SJPdP - Logroño (planned spring 2016)
#90
I lost 20#s from SJPdP to Santiago - mostly my swimmer's upper body. Body craved vegetables so ate as much as I could. Didn't "watch" what I was eating just ate what body needed protein and veggies. Did NOT miss the chocolate museum in Astorga. Well worth the visit . And fueled the climb up O'Cebreiro.
 

williamlittig

Active Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013 Camino Frances SJPP / 2014 Camino Portugues / 2015 Camino Ingles / 2015 Hospitalero Training
2016 (fall) Camino Sanabre / Hospitalero?
#91
I know...I know..you're expecting me to add a comment about water vs Vinotinto! Not going to happen...where safety and health are concerned I do draw a line.

Water intake is extremely important and if you wait for your body to tell you when and how much, that's not necessarily a good thing. We've done a lot of studies on hydration in the forces and, especially in a desert environment. Here's a few thoughts:

1. William is right about hydration and sunburn...to a point. If you are not hydrating sufficiently your upper layers of skin tend to dry out thus since there's less natural cooling (sweat doesn't only help cool by evaporation, it also helps circulate heat throughout the body and away from exposed skin. Less hydration...drier skin...less circulation...sunburn becomes severe.

2. With the event of Camelbacks and hoses directly into the mouth...drinking becomes a habit rather than a need. You walk, you sip, you trudge, you sip harder. You take in water at a rate not needed and you pee a lot more than normal.

3. If you're taking in pure H2O, your body uses it for a number of critical waste missions. It gets into your kidneys, liver and stomach...each of which must vacate waste and water helps wash away these waste products. Water in the stomach softens stool and prevents painful bowel movements. In the other organs, it washes away bad chemical residue trapped there. Which brings me to point:


Thanks Arn, I lost 25 lbs. on the Camino Frances, most of the walk afforded little nutrients "boccadillos" when I walked the Camino Portugues 'Litoral" there was an abundance of seafood and I gained weight.
I first used electrolytes (too salty) a freind helped by adding "Emengen_C" that was much better. Since I have been using NUUN, it comes in a variety of flavors and doesn't taste like punishment....... Willy/ Utah/ USA

4. Pure water also removes electrolytes. Here's the scoop:

The level of any electrolyte in the blood can become too high or too low. The main electrolytes in the blood are sodium, potassium, calcium, and others. Most commonly, problems occur when the level of sodium, potassium, or calcium is abnormal. Often, electrolyte levels change when water levels in the body change.

Doctors refer to a low electrolyte level with the prefix "hypo-" and to a high level with the prefix "hyper-." The prefix is combined with the scientific name of the electrolyte. For example, a low level of potassium is called hypokalemia, and a high level of sodium is called hypernatremia.
Older people are more likely to develop abnormalities in electrolyte levels for the same reasons that they are more likely to become dehydrated or overhydrated. The main reason is that as the body ages, the kidneys function less well. The use of certain drugs, including diuretics and some laxatives, can increase the risk of developing electrolyte abnormalities. Problems with walking can increase the risk of developing electrolyte abnormalities because getting fluids and food may be difficult. Many chronic disorders (such as Paget's disease) and any disorder that causes fever, vomiting, or diarrhea can result in electrolyte abnormalities.

To treat a low level of some electrolytes, such as sodium or potassium, doctors usually advise eating foods rich in the electrolyte or taking supplements. If the level is very low, the electrolyte may be given through a tube inserted in a vein (intravenously). If the level is high, treatment consists of consuming more fluids. Sometimes fluids must be given intravenously.

A low sodium level (hyponatremia) may result from not consuming enough sodium in the diet, excreting too much (in sweat or urine), or being overhydrated. The sodium level may decrease when a person drinks a lot of water without consuming enough salt (sodium chloride), typically during hot weather when a person also sweats more. The sodium level may decrease when large amounts of fluids that do not contain enough sodium are given intravenously. Diuretics help the kidneys excrete excess sodium and excess water. However, diuretics may cause the kidneys to excrete more sodium than water, resulting in a low sodium level.

A low sodium level (and overhydration) can result when the body produces too much antidiuretic hormone, which signals the kidneys to retain water. Overproduction of this hormone can be caused by disorders such as pneumonia and stroke and by drugs, including anticonvulsants (such as carbamazepine) and a type of antidepressant called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs—such as sertraline). Other disorders that can cause a low sodium level include poorly controlled diabetes, heart failure, liver failure, and kidney disorders.

5. So, how do we ward off these possible problems:

A. Eat a good diet.
B. Drink water as you move along, but don't over hydrate.
C. If you're going to be away from a source of natural electrolyte replenishment, consider an additive to your water such as: Gatoraide powder, or other sports additives.

Hope that helps:

And, yes, Vino IS a good source of many nutrients and antioxidants. Moderation in all things!

Buen Camino,

Arn
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (Fall 2015)
#92
Over the course of 31 days, I lost 13 lbs. You could have broken a beer bottle across my calves, they were so hard. My waist trimmed down and my belly shrank. I also lost a noticeable amount, but not too much, of upper body mass, muscle and fat. When I got home, I saw that my blood pressure had dropped to a very healthy zone, my resting pulse rate was around 50, I slept better, and felt better. Then, I gained 25 lbs over the next year. I don't feel as good as I did.
 
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