Weight Loss Support - Help me figure out why I'm not losing weight?




BonVivant11
02-01-2013, 10:14 AM
Hi, I've been a lurker for about 2 months, but this is my first post. I hope you don't mind!

Since the first of January, I've been working hard at a healthy new lifestyle, but I haven't lost even a single pound? I also haven't seen any changes in terms of inches; my clothes still fit the same and I have not lost any inches. In fact, my jeans feel tighter now than they did in December.

- Starting weight: 251 lbs, 5'8" height -- plenty to lose.

- I'm not dehydrated. I drink tons and tons and tons of water - maybe too much water? More than a gallon a day, and I pee all the time.

- I haven't pooped very much since I've started eating less.

- I exercise by taking a walk 30 minutes a day. Maybe I need to ramp up my workouts? My day job is a sedentary desk job: Web designer; I sit in front of computer all day.

- Here's a typical day's food - any red flags here?
Breakfast: Oatmeal with a tablespoon of peanut butter mixed in, and a soft-boiled egg.
Lunch: Turkey sandwich from subway on wheat bread, tons of vegetables, honey mustard dressing, American cheese.
Snack: an apple
Dinner: Lentil soup, baked sweet potato, small salad without dressing
Total: 1200-1400 calories a day.

- I'm currently using myfitnesspal.com to track calories, logging every bit of food going into my mouth, weighing every food portion with a scale or with measuring cups, pretty well sure that my problem isn't the result of incorrectly estimating the calorie count. I don't have cheat days. I don't eat any "extras" that aren't logged.

- I'm not hungry! Oh, yes, the first 2 weeks were awful, but now that I'm a month into it, my stomach has, like, stopped producing hunger signals. I'm not hungry. I could go all day without eating anything. I eat at certain times of the day because I intellectually know that I need to, but I no longer feel that "Oh, time to eat!" signal every few hours. There's no way that this is a healthy or normal part of dieting, so what do you make of this? Is my lack of hunger tied to my lack of weight loss?


What am I doing wrong?


Daimere
02-01-2013, 10:17 AM
What is the calorie range of all this? I know for me to lose at that weight I need to consume 2400-2600.

BonVivant11
02-01-2013, 10:27 AM
Sorry! I edited the post!

1200 calories a day -- too low?

In the past, I've lost weight by eating 1200 calories a day though.


nationalparker
02-01-2013, 10:37 AM
Remember, as you weigh less, you'll need to cut your calories further to drop the weight, so you don't want to start out too low - you really shouldn't be cutting it lower than 1,200 as you progress, so you might be starting out too low for your body's needs at this point. Exercise is good for toning, but don't count on it to really help you with weight loss. The activity helps your body in so many ways, so it's definitely a good thing, but you can get to goal without exercise as many have done. It aids, but don't think of lack of exercise as a major factor in weight loss. Also consider - how exact was your initial weight - any chance that was off? Good luck.

April Snow
02-01-2013, 10:41 AM
maybe try more protein, less carbs?

Daimere
02-01-2013, 10:44 AM
Sorry! I edited the post!

1200 calories a day -- too low?

In the past, I've lost weight by eating 1200 calories a day though.
Definitively way too low! I'd up it. You can use a calorie app like lose it! OR find a bmr calculator + harris benedict equation to get your baseline cals and reduce them a hundred or so.

RavenWolf
02-01-2013, 11:21 AM
I think drinking more than a gallon of water a day is to much. I'd cut back a little. I personally get 64 ounces a day. I started at 229 on the first of January, and am 5 foot 2.

Are you logging each calorie you take in? Are you measuring everything you eat and drink? If not, you need to break out the measuring spoons and cups, and food scale if you have one!!

Are you having mayo on your subs? If so, cut out the mayo.

I know I wasn't losing and "thought" I was within a certain calorie range. Then I started logging everything as soon as I ate/drank it, and saw quickly I was taking in more than I thought I was.

LockItUp
02-01-2013, 11:22 AM
I agree that on paper it's too low, but that defintely should NOT mean that no weight loss should occur, especially at the beginning! Really doesn't make sense!

If you are tracking your calories diligently, weighing/measuring ALLLLLL your food, and recording every.single.bite, I'd consider seeing a doctor.

More often than not people (not you specifically, so please don't take offense) are off on their calorie count. For example not counting the creamer in their 8 cups of coffee a day (whoops didn't account for 800+ calories right there) or the cookie they snagged at the office on top of the bites of dinner that were taking while preparing it. Or just a simple matter of eye balling their portions instead of weighing or measuring. Some people are great estimaters, I for one am horrible at it! You get the idea, just examples.

Are you having "cheat" days? If so that could very easily cancel out any deficit you've created throughout the week.

If you are 100% without a doubt sure you are intaking 1200-1400 calories a day plus not having any higher calories days on the weekends or whenever, I truly have no idea what the problem could be aside from something medical!

sassyangies
02-01-2013, 11:30 AM
I would start using an app or online calorie program to help you track your calories. Myfitnesspal.com is a good one that I use. I would also weigh or measure all your food just to make sure your portions aren't off.

Good luck. You can do this!!

BonVivant11
02-01-2013, 11:45 AM
Yeah, the calorie count isn't the problem. I diligently weigh and measure every morsel I put in my mouth. I'm using myfitnesspal to track my calories. I am not having mayonnaise on my sandwiches, or any extras. I log the honey mustard dressing, I watch to make sure the clerk doesn't put too much dressing on my sandwich, I log to the calories in the cheese, I log the calories in each slice of meat (I mentally watch and count as the sandwich is being made.)

When measuring food portions, I always use either a scale or measuring cups. If I'm supposed to eat "2oz. chicken," I'll put it on a scale and make sure of that!

I am absolutely sure beyond a shadow of a doubt that my daily calorie count is 1,200. I'm very diligent about recording every bite, and I am already using myfitnesspal.

I don't know what's up. This is really frustrating and confusing, but maybe there could be a medical issue at play.

I was a little shocked to see that I gained 5 pounds over Christmas this year - that's never happened before.

LockItUp
02-01-2013, 11:50 AM
I'd consider seeing your doctor then. If you are taking any medication that could be one factor, there's always a chance you have some kind of issue with your thyroid, or some other thing like PCOS which can make it more difficult to lose weight. Or who knows! Maybe nothing and it's just going to take some more time, water weight can definitely mask fat loss on the scale!!!!

Keep at it! And call your doc! Best of luck!

elvislover324
02-01-2013, 11:51 AM
Based on all that I have read on 3FC and MFP, I'd say 1200 is way too low for your body.

Since it's the 1st of the month, what if you "experiment" with your body and do 1500 calories a day (or some other number you pick) and see how it works out as of March 1st?

You have nothing to lose (but weight!) seeing that your low calorie diet didn't produce the results you were hoping for.

And remember, if you vamp up your workouts, you will have to watch your calories too in order to make sure you are getting enough to eat.

Our bodies are like science experiments, we have to figure out what works for us. And I found that what worked for me in the past doesn't necessarily work for me now (older, different activities, medicines, etc.).

Good luck! I hope you find something that works for you. Your dedication to the month of January proves you can stay on track and keep going from here!

RavenWolf
02-01-2013, 11:52 AM
What about your sodium intake?

Maybe you need to try the low carb/higher protein diet and see if that makes a difference.

Batou
02-01-2013, 11:56 AM
I would definitely speak to a doctor if I were in your position.

It sounds to me like your metabolism has slowed considerable as a result of cutting too many calories too quickly. Of course I'm not a medical professional by any stretch of the imagination, but its something to consider.

SoMuchFattitude
02-01-2013, 01:17 PM
EAT MORE

I know that seems crazy, but seriously. Eat more. You are depriving your body of healthy nutrients, etc.

- Starting weight: 251 lbs, 5'8" height -- plenty to lose. I plugged your age in as 25 (because I don't know) and you as sedentary. With that, you should be eating between 2008-2321. - http://www.freedieting.com/tools/calorie_calculator.htm

- I'm not dehydrated. I drink tons and tons and tons of water - maybe too much water? More than a gallon a day, and I pee all the time. I would not drink that much. I'd aim for 64oz a day. Too much water and you will mess with your PH levels.

- I haven't pooped very much since I've started eating less. You're probably not taking in enough nutrients/fiber.

- I exercise by taking a walk 30 minutes a day. Maybe I need to ramp up my workouts? What's your day job like?

- Here's a typical day's food - any red flags here?
Breakfast: Oatmeal with a tablespoon of peanut butter mixed in, and a soft-boiled egg.
Lunch: Turkey sandwich from subway on wheat bread, tons of vegetables, honey mustard dressing, American cheese.
Snack: an apple
Dinner: Lentil soup, baked sweet potato, small salad without dressing
Total: 1200-1400 calories a day.

You're eating less, but not well balanced. You should be aiming for 5-8 servings of fruits and veggies; healthy oils, lean protein. I know if I ate that I'd be STARVING all day long.

I'd add a piece of fruit to your breakfast and lunch. I'd add the oil and vinegar to your sub. I'd put some protein with your apple - like a piece of light cheese (think babybel light), you're lacking protein in your diet, in my opinion.

I'm not a Doctor, I'm just going by my own person experiences and my weight loss. :hug:

EagleRiverDee
02-01-2013, 01:30 PM
maybe try more protein, less carbs?

I would try this. It's what works for me. I cut all grains, all sugar, alcohol, and processed foods. My doctor told me that some people have a metabolic issue where if they eat carbs they can't lose weight. In paleo/primal, they say it's due to constantly spiking your insulin- insulin is the hormone that feeds your fat cells. Stop spiking insulin, and you reverse that- you stop feeding the fat cells and start taking fat out of them for use as energy. That's a simplification, mind you, but it works for me. I can lose weight on a high protein and fat but low carb diet, and I don't even bother counting calories.

chubbiegurl
02-01-2013, 01:33 PM
Everyone has pretty much covered everything. But I was drinking over a gallon of water in the beginning and losing. Now that is has been cold I don't feel as thirsty and only drink 8. -9 glasses a day and have stalled. I don't think they r related, but I don't think a gallon is too much. I also was sort of constipated in the beggining so I added chia seed and chlorophyll. All the extra fiber made me go really well every day. Chia has 5 grams of fiber per serving I have 2 a day. I can't rave enough about those two things. So try adding those or just more fiber
Maybe your calories r too low, but I would say watch the carbs when adding more, and see a dr if posible. I remember growing up hearing my aunt had a thyroid problem that inhibited her weight loss, I know she had a gym in her house that she used regularly and I hated eating at her house because her food was super healthy, as a kid all those veggies grossed me out. Well thats my 2cents if it means anything. Best of luck and if at first u don't succeed try try again!

BonVivant11
02-01-2013, 01:47 PM
Also! I want to add:

The first 2 weeks were really hard, but I am not the least bit hungry at all right now.

I just had to force myself to eat my sandwich for lunch. I could probably get through the entire day without eating any food. My desire to eat has switched off. My stomach does not produce hunger signals.

What do you make of that? What does it mean that I'm not hungry? I should be starving.

Rana
02-01-2013, 01:54 PM
I think if you're not eliminating your food, your body is probably sending signals to not eat anymore because... well, WHERE is it going to put it?!

I would consider taking some magnesium supplements (preferrably citrate, rather than oxide) to see if it will get things moving again in your bowels.

Or you can try to walk more that can also help constipation.

I think if you get your digestive system moving again -- and you can consider food enzymes and probiotics -- you might find you're hungry again and things are moving better for you.

Ellemphriem
02-01-2013, 02:06 PM
If i was you i'd try NOT to eat anything made outside my house. I'd use original ingredients, cook them in olive oil, use flour to make my own whole wheat bread and make my own sandwich....also more fruits and more salads without heavy dressings.....

PS: My red flags in what i read (although pls i am not from your country and my cooking/meals are totally different than yours, are the words Oatmeal, peanut butter, honey/mustard, american cheese, sweet potato). For example lentils i have no idea how you make them there, but here we boil them with carrots and a dry onion add some fresh tomato and add some salt pepper and vinegar with olive oil. That on it's own is a FULL meal here and it is eaten at lunch as a very small bowl. I'd suggest take out such heavy eating at night and replace the 'empty salad with something more elaborate. Like lettuce/tomato/cucumber/hard boiled egg, some low fat cheese (don't know what you have there), and make a sauce out of vinegar, olive oil and PLAIN mustard without added ingredients. For example the Dijon is VERY fattening.....Eat it with ONE slice of whole wheat bread. It will fill you up and it will be FAR lighter than the lentil soup.

mkroyer
02-01-2013, 04:36 PM
Fatloss is an equation of energy balance. Period.
If you are not losing fat, than you are not creating a substantial deficit (or you might be most days, but wiping the ENTIRE weeks deficit away through cheat meals, and believe me, thats MORE than possible to do).
If you arent creating a substantial enough calorie deficit, then you are either -eating too much (knowingly/unknowingly)
-not moving as much as you believe you are (ie; not accurately accounting for the calories you burn in a day)

Either way, your energy balance is approximately equal over a time span, and you arent losing weight. How people go about creating their deficits, and medical conditions that slow metabolism, reduce activity, etc are all factors that play into how much you take in vs how much your body puts out.
but at the end of the day, its cals in vs cals out.

And rest assured, one month of dieting at 1200 cals (especially when no fat loss occured!) did NOT slow or destroy your metabolism.
I wont get in

Vex
02-01-2013, 05:16 PM
I'd consider seeing your doctor then. If you are taking any medication that could be one factor, there's always a chance you have some kind of issue with your thyroid, or some other thing like PCOS which can make it more difficult to lose weight.

I also suggest this. Seeing nothing on a 1200-1400 strict plan for an entire month seems odd to me, especially at the beginning.

You could try upping your calories, but I don't know, I've been on 1200 since I started. I know everyone is different though.

Marniadec
02-01-2013, 07:30 PM
I haven't seen anyone say this and I don't know if it's stupid, I haven't searched for any information on it, but I know that it's true for me: If I stop eating fat, I stop pooping. Could that be true for you? If it is, maybe you lost in the beginning and then you stopped because you eat way too little and the bit of weight you lost doesn't show because you're constipated? Just wondering...

Ellemphriem, if you don't mind me asking, are you Greek? Because you just described fakes. :p

JohnP
02-01-2013, 07:59 PM
Fatloss is an equation of energy balance. Period.
If you are not losing fat, than you are not creating a substantial deficit (or you might be most days, but wiping the ENTIRE weeks deficit away through cheat meals, and believe me, thats MORE than possible to do).
If you arent creating a substantial enough calorie deficit, then you are either -eating too much (knowingly/unknowingly)
-not moving as much as you believe you are (ie; not accurately accounting for the calories you burn in a day)

Either way, your energy balance is approximately equal over a time span, and you arent losing weight. How people go about creating their deficits, and medical conditions that slow metabolism, reduce activity, etc are all factors that play into how much you take in vs how much your body puts out.
but at the end of the day, its cals in vs cals out.

And rest assured, one month of dieting at 1200 cals (especially when no fat loss occured!) did NOT slow or destroy your metabolism.
I wont get in

Exactly right.

Please do not think you need to eat more to lose fat faster. It is not true.

What you need is patience and to be honest with yourself about your intake. (Not saying you're not being honest just that you need to be)

If two more weeks go by with no change see a doctor.

P.S. eat more veggies

Robin41
02-01-2013, 08:08 PM
The fact that she should, or should not be, eating more than 1200 calories a day really has little to do with the issue at hand. A month at 1200 has not affected her metabolism and it would be very unusual for somebody at her starting weight and eating that many calories to not lose more than she has. She sounds quite diligent about the measuring and logging, and says there are no cheat meals involved and there is no reason to doubt her.

Personally, I'd probably get a full physical, with blood work, and be sure there isn't something medical going on. Your situation is pretty unusual and probably calls for more input than you can get on a forum.

As an aside, you can lose weight quite successfully on the 1200 calorie plan, I did it, but it requires more effort to be sure that you're supplying your body with everything it needs. Generally this means fewer grains and more lean protein, fruits, vegis and healthy fats. Subway is fairly low calorie, but tends to be full of sodium and most of the breads are simply empty calories.

Marniadec
02-01-2013, 08:15 PM
That's not true for me. When I eat way too little, I can tell after a few weeks because I have Hashimoto's and severe iron deficiency and my boatload of symptoms get worse very quickly. And I lose nothing.

I also wanted to suggest that you go to a doctor, but I forgot.

shcirerf
02-01-2013, 08:59 PM
I'm not a medical expert either, but at this point, and having read the whole thread, I do believe it's time to go see your Dr. and get a good physical, and discuss what's going on. And be honest with them, and yourself.

They can't help you if you fib. (my hub is great at not telling all! Dork)

Beyond that, different things work for different folks.

It's a grand experiment in learning what works for you.

I know, what works for me, does not work for either of my sisters. While we have some common things that work, we also have other things that we can or cannot do. Just depends.

Hang in there, success is there, you can do it!:carrot:

Ellemphriem
02-01-2013, 09:37 PM
I haven't seen anyone say this and I don't know if it's stupid, I haven't searched for any information on it, but I know that it's true for me: If I stop eating fat, I stop pooping. Could that be true for you? If it is, maybe you lost in the beginning and then you stopped because you eat way too little and the bit of weight you lost doesn't show because you're constipated? Just wondering...

Ellemphriem, if you don't mind me asking, are you Greek? Because you just described fakes. :p

Yes i am :D :hug:

Amarantha2
02-01-2013, 10:20 PM
I think you should have a complete physical & discuss this with your doctor.

JohnP
02-02-2013, 12:48 AM
A month at 1200...

Personally, I'd probably get a full physical, with blood work, and be sure there isn't something medical going on. Your situation is pretty unusual and probably calls for more input than you can get on a forum.

I agree. For some reason I thought it had been two weeks. Assuming accurate logging something else is going on.

zoesmom
02-02-2013, 07:58 AM
I found a couple of great reads yesterday on why we have problems losing weight. One (http://www.marksdailyapple.com/how-long-do-i-have-to-exercise-before-i-see-changes/#axzz2JkJMqJzr) is regarding how long we must wait to see any results worth a flip. The other (http://exercise.about.com/od/weightloss/a/10_weightloss.htm) is why we have a hard time losing weight.

Chin up sweety. I was dieting and exercising for six months before a single pound dropped off me. I am now over 30 pounds lighter. I changed my dieting technique and that did the trick. I checked with a nutritionist, who helped me figure out what was best for my body. You'll get there. Hugs!

deadkittens
02-02-2013, 12:45 PM
i stopped losing weight for a bit over 2 weeks then i binged and gained 2.6 pounds in one day and i kept eating 1200-1380 and still couldnt drop weight plus i couldnt lose the 2.6 so i upped my calories back to what myfitnesspal said would have me losing 1 pound a week (i always lost 2 a week tho on 1640cals) and the next day i dropped 2.4lbs. its very possible that your eating too little. even 1380 was too little for me to lose weight. go by what MFP suggests will make you lose 1 pound a week, you should lose more than 1 pound maybe even more than 2 as long as you dont go over that MFP suggests.

the other option is that your not counting every calorie but if you feel you are then you must be under eating which i think you are since the same thing happend to me.

JohnP
02-02-2013, 01:14 PM
i stopped losing weight for a bit over 2 weeks then i binged and gained 2.6 pounds in one day and i kept eating 1200-1380 and still couldnt drop weight plus i couldnt lose the 2.6 so i upped my calories back to what myfitnesspal said would have me losing 1 pound a week (i always lost 2 a week tho on 1640cals) and the next day i dropped 2.4lbs. its very possible that your eating too little.

Fat loss is not the same thing as weight loss. Learning the difference between the two is very helpful to understanding what is and what isn't happening with out bodies.

bingefree2013
02-02-2013, 01:25 PM
Sorry! I edited the post!

1200 calories a day -- too low?

In the past, I've lost weight by eating 1200 calories a day though.

I was actually going to ask, have you dieted in the past?

But that answered my question. It makes sense from your body's POV that you aren't losing; possibly even gaining. The first few times you probably lost on 1200, but then put the weight back on. During the restriction, your body lowered its metabolism, so that the next time you were "starving" it, you wouldn't drop as much weight so fast like the first time. Now you're at it again, but this time your body knows what's coming with only 1200 calories, so it hordes fat, and even takes everything you eat and stores it. It's like if you suddenly lost your job and your savings was being depleted. Well, you wouldn't go out and spend like crazy would you? No. You'd hang onto every last penny until you got another job.

The body has no idea that you want to lose weight for health or looks or whatever. At your height and weight, and at 1200 caloies(!) your body thinks you live where no food exists, so it's trying to keep you alive.

Point: you need to eat more. Loss of hunger signals also happens to people with anorexia. The body no longer bothers sending them because it thinks you have no access to food.

EagleRiverDee
02-02-2013, 07:20 PM
People that say fat loss is calories in, calories out think they're right but it's not the case for people like me. I have Hashimotos and am metabolically sensitive to carbs. "Metabolic Syndrome" I think is the catch-all term but all it means is that I'm sensitive to insulin spikes.

Between the two, I cannot lose weight simply by cutting calories. PERIOD. It matters much more WHAT I eat than how MUCH I eat. Fat/Protein is good. I am satisfied and my insulin levels stay low and I lose weight almost without effort. Carbs, for me, are bad. They spike my insulin, drive up my hunger, assist my body in storing fat and make it impossible for me to lose weight.

I'm not saying strict calorie control doesn't work for some people, but I get very frustrated when people preach that it's the only thing that matters for EVERYONE because that is NOT the case. If someone who is strictly controlling their caloric intake is not losing weight, they may indeed have one or more metabolic issues like I do that is hindering their efforts. Address the underlying issue either through medication or dietary changes and the problem may go away entirely. As it did with me.