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Should have lost 4 pounds in the last 3 weeks...

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Old 05-24-2009, 01:03 PM   #1
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Default Should have lost 4 pounds in the last 3 weeks...

....but instead I've lost .4lbs. Grrrrrrrr. I know I should have lost 4 pounds because my total deficit in the last three weeks has been about -14,000 calories. I've been making decent food choices, we've been eating out a little more than usual, but I'm confident that my calorie estimates are close if not even over-estimating, and I've been exercising like CRAZY, I'm sore all the time!

I'm not always great about getting 64oz of water a day, and I don't really try to limit sodium, but really, no loss in 3 weeks? Can that really be water retention? It just doesn't seem fair. :P
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Old 05-24-2009, 01:16 PM   #2
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One thing I see in your post is the "exercising like crazy, sore all the time" remark. Muscles break down with exercise and retain fluids to repair themselves. I can't remember the technical name for that, but I know that there are other threads on water retention with exercise. I find that when I change up my exercise routine, particularly when I change or up the strength training routines (even as minor a change as changing out one exercise for another), I retain water that hangs on for two, sometimes three weeks. Sometimes up to 8 pounds. When I was actively losing this caused my loss to stop, now that I'm in maintenance it actually causes me to show a gain on the scale that settles out after a little time. Also, any time I have even a little extra sugar or sodium I can hold onto three-four pounds of water for several days, or even a week.

I know it is frustrating to not see any scale changes when you are working so hard! Plus, I see you are wearing a GoWear Fit, so you know your calories burned are correct. I've found that the weight loss isn't linear - a 3500 calorie deficit doesn't always mean a pound lost that week no matter how good you are with exercise and food choices. I would sometimes go two-three weeks with no loss at all with a 5000-6000 cal deficit each week, then would drop five pounds in one week.

Hang in there, it will even out.

Oh, You probably already do this with the GoWear, but what really helped me was having a chart that showed me the average over time.
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Old 05-24-2009, 01:26 PM   #3
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Thanks Shannon, it's really helpful getting your feedback. Every day I wake up now hoping this'll be the day those 4 pounds just go away, but every day I see the same darn number. When you were losing and had the 8 pound water retention, did you see the water retention drop off suddenly, or was it a permanent plateau in your loss?
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Old 05-24-2009, 01:29 PM   #4
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I'm in the same situation. I also wear a Gowear Fit daily so I know I'm burning more than I am consuming and have been at a total stand still for a week now. It is very frustrating when all the math dictates a loss and you see nothing. I'm hopeful it's water retention as like you, I've been busting my rump exercising daily and sore a lot myself. I hope we both figure it out soon.
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Old 05-24-2009, 02:18 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shannon in ATL View Post
I know it is frustrating to not see any scale changes when you are working so hard! Plus, I see you are wearing a GoWear Fit, so you know your calories burned are correct. I've found that the weight loss isn't linear - a 3500 calorie deficit doesn't always mean a pound lost that week no matter how good you are with exercise and food choices. I would sometimes go two-three weeks with no loss at all with a 5000-6000 cal deficit each week, then would drop five pounds in one week.

It's funny how that happens... it's like our bodies take time to process and "let go" of the burned fat and calories.. maybe someone here knows the exact science.
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Old 05-24-2009, 03:01 PM   #6
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I'm with ya, I lost an abysmal .6 two weeks prior to this one and then GAINED .6 this week AND, like you, I've been exercising like a maniac, most of the time I can't lift my arms over my head and don't even get me started on trying to stand up from sitting down.... *sigh* We just have to hang in there and know that at least all the exercise is building beautiful muscle underneath all that water and fat, lol. I was feeling soundly sorry for myself this weekend and made some bad choices but I'm ready to pick myself up and carry on today, starting with my 2 hr kill-me-now mountain bike ride!
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:49 AM   #7
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There are lots of reasons you may not have lost what you think you should have. Water retention is one answer, but one question is how sure are you of those calorie estimates?

Do you really know how many calories you've eaten? I find unless I'm very careful and weigh and measure everything it's much to easy to underestimate how much I've eaten.

Second, do you really know how many calories you've burned? If you're estimating calories burned in exercise, you should know that many estimates are VERY high. For example, the elliptical at my gym might tell me I've burned 400 calories, but my heart rate monitor (which knows better how hard I've worked) always has a much lower number -- usually 60-70% of the elliptical number!

Don't get discouraged!!
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Old 05-25-2009, 09:43 AM   #8
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Hey!

First, I see that you are getting close to the normal weight range (BMI). That can make weight loss slower.

Second, you don't say what your calorie target is and how close you are coming to it, so it's hard to know what's going on.

More information?

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Old 05-25-2009, 10:44 AM   #9
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Here's a link to an abstract for a recent research article you might find interesting (it's pretty readable). If you can't get a PDF let me know, I have one.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17848938
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Old 05-25-2009, 10:55 AM   #10
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I was on a frustrating plateau for almost 4 weeks and this week I've lost 3 pounds all of a sudden. Just hang in there - the weight WILL come off!
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Old 05-25-2009, 11:10 AM   #11
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Quote:
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Here's a link to an abstract for a recent research article you might find interesting (it's pretty readable). If you can't get a PDF let me know, I have one.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17848938
Drina, it sounds like they're saying as you are closer to goal, it should take less of an energy deficit to lose - in other words, it should get easier not harder
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Old 05-25-2009, 11:29 AM   #12
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It could mean a lot of things... I wasn't clear on that.

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Old 05-25-2009, 11:32 AM   #13
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That's how I read it too, Julie--that it may take more of a deficit than just 3500 calories to burn a pound if you have more body fat to begin with. It states, "The resulting model predicts that a larger cumulative energy deficit is required per unit weight loss for people with greater initial body fat-a prediction supported by published weight loss data from obese and lean subjects." And then as you get thinner, it may take less of a calorie deficit: "Furthermore, additional weight loss is predicted to be associated with a lower average cumulative energy deficit since a greater proportion of the weight loss is predicted to result from loss of lean body mass, which has a relatively low energy density in comparison with body fat. That kind of flies in the face of what we as dieters experience. It always seems to take more of an effort to lose weight the thinner you are!
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Old 05-25-2009, 11:47 AM   #14
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Please keep in mind that when you lose a significant amount of weight, you typically undergo a loss of lean body mass as well as fat mass, and consequently experience a reduction of resting metabolic rate over and above what you would expect from just being smaller. Additionally, you burn fewer calories during exercise since you're moving a lighter body. So even if the calorie deficit per unit of weight loss is lower in lean individuals, this absolutely does not mean losing weight is easier.

Did you manage to find the actual article?

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Old 05-25-2009, 12:06 PM   #15
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Gaaaaah.... I was upset about this all day yesterday, and we went out to a baseball game, so I made some not-so-great choices, mostly involving tons of salt! So today the scale says I'm UP another 2 pounds! So that's like 6 pounds of water retention I think I'm carrying around. Is there no limit to how much I can retain? If I keep eating lots of salty foods, but keep maintaining a good calorie deficit, will my weight keep going up??

I am so freaking pissed off about this salt thing, I can't even tell you. It just seems so unfair, when I'm doing everything else right, to have to stress out about canned soup and downing pint after pint of water on top of it all. Boooooooooooo!

Okay, tantrum finished... I'll go have some more water now.
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