I’d agree with the simple mentality of the 500 calories deficit approach.
also if you are genuinely committed to losing weight correctly and actually changing body composition… do it over the right time period.
Here’s my 2 cents (as our American friends say) - if you can train full time, I’ve no doubt it would be possible to not only lose body fat but also gain muscle, increase endurance as well as power etc etc.
However, which of us has the kind of life!? For me - I have decided to do everything different from how I have approached things in the past. I always wanted to achieve all of the above at the same time but would end up falling off a cliff, injuried or just fed up. Weight back on and back to the start. This time (starting May 2018) I decided I would take a long term approach - (like 2-3 years long term). Since May 2018 I started managing my diet and doing some more exercise. Starting at 220lbs, by Mid Sept I was down to about 205lbs. No serious training - more social riding outside and just eating less overall calories. I was and still do eat chocolate etc but I just eat like at least 1000 less calories per day (remember I was gaining weight at that point). I don’t count them, I just know myself the difference. Your appetite will shrink over time, just be willing to commit to the changes. Importantly for me - eat normal food, don’t do any diet that is overly focused on one thing or another. I typically have wheatabix and raisins for breakfast or a smoothie if I train before work. Smoothie is half frozen banana, half cup frozen blueberries, half cup almond milk, half cup water, squeeze honey, table spoon of sunflower seeds and same of something like cashew nuts and pumpkin seeds, 1/3 or 1/4 cups speedicook oats and a big tea spoon of cashew butter. if I don’t have the smoothie at breakfast I will have for lunch. After lunch - cup of tea and some chocolate. Just a small amount. I used to eat chocolate by the kg - so this has taken some will power and prob always will, but I’ve now got long term goals.
In work at 11am I go get a cup of tea in the canteen and watch everyone eat their fried food. Sometimes I want some and other times I’m just thankful I don’t do that so often. Sometimes I will have something - in part to ensure I don’t go from having no control over my eating, to still having an issue, but of a different kind.
By changing my breakfast and lunch to this - my calories are way down! Dinner is then before training (for me) - just have normal dinners - nothing special but swap out potatoes for a mix of veg, or if having pie - have salad or sweet potato instead of chips. Just make sure it’s maybe 300 calories less than what you’d normally chuck in you. pasta and sauce - skip the garlic bread. Burgers? have one. some folk are thinking why would you ever have two full burgers… others are thinking yeah I know what he means…
After training in evening - cup of tea and more chocolate. I love chocolate so I still eat it often, just in very small amounts now compared to past days.
Start Oct started a base plan - through to end Nov. Dec - outdoor riding and rowing (got a concept 2 which I love). losing more weight. January, added some treadmill running. Intentionally taking it easy - Z2 mostly, as I know I need to get miles in my legs so I don’t create potential for injury. Now sitting at just under 185lbs. So 35lbs lost… Cycling ability coming on very well. FTP 234 to 254.Watt/kg just over 3.
However, the body fat is only stage one. target weight about 178lbs. then I will start increasing the power elements to my rowing and the speed of running. will promote some muscle adaption/gain. then while that ongoing, some weight training for adding some muscle mass. I’m intending to focus on strength and conditioning rather than size. so heavy weights, low reps, good form, focus on core.
I know I’ve ended up with a massive post here but the point is about having a long term plan and being willing to be patient. the extra fat around my belly is still really annoying but i’m starting to learn to trust the process.
haven’t read the whole thread yet and I’m sure there will be loads of good posts but hope this helps.