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Old 07-09-2012, 11:18 PM   #1
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Default Need some honest opinions here!

So, my weight loss this go around is just absolutely pathetic. I am desperate to lose this last 20 pounds (160 to 140), but it is just barely budging. Here is the nitty gritty of what I have been doing, with a little background:

I exercise vigorously at the gym for 30 minutes a day, at least 5 times a week. I take extra walks and keep active on the weekend if I don't make it to the gym. I let myself go up to 1300 calories, although I aim for 1200, and usually land somewhere in-between most days. My carbs are low (less than 80g most days), I eat plenty of protein and guzzle a 1 liter bottle of water over and over all day (along with a good quality multi V).

I lost about 50 pounds last year by exercising every day, eating low calorie (around 1200), and just generally being more active. I got down to this weight, then over the last year I gained a couple (probably around 5 ish) pounds back due to lack of exercise and eating out with classmates. Now, I am trying to close the final stretch to 140, but after almost 2 months of dieting and exercising again, my weight has barely budged like 2 pounds. It's infuriating, and I wish I knew what to do. It's harder and harder each day to keep at this when it feels like all the emotional turmoil it is causing is for nothing.

I would really like an honest opinion/some advice from the knowledgable people here on what you all think I should do at this point. Just fyi, I have tested negatively for thyroid problems, and I am not diabetic or insulin resistant. I have heard varying information, that I should raise my calories, or lower them, and I just don't know what to believe anymore!

Thank you all in advance. I'm really hoping I can get the loss started again so I can get on with my life.
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Old 07-09-2012, 11:20 PM   #2
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Have you tried looking at your food quality, and considering tweaking your gym routine?
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Old 07-10-2012, 12:30 AM   #3
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I'd have to agree - make sure, for those calories, that your nutrition is prime. Colorful veggies, lots of good fat, nutritional goldmines like liver, eggs, sea vegetables, etc. That will help ensure a vitamin deficiency isn't a silent culprit in your issues (shockingly common in this country, despite the thousands of calories consumed!).

If that is taken care of, how is your sleep? Do you get plenty of rest and feel energetic and full of vitality, or are you dragging through your day in a daze?

Finally, try switching up your exercise routine a bit. If you're doing cardio, try HIIT. If that isn't working, switch over to a strength training regimen. If nothing else you will find yourself getting stronger and more trim, even if the scale isn't moving much. Sometimes body recomposition is they key, not more weight loss.

If you're meticulous with your calorie counting and measuring, and these troubleshoots aren't working, then the only thing required is patience. It is highly unlikely you're hitting your BMR, so this could just be a nasty stall. Consistency and time will make you victorious if you keep up the healthy habits.
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Last edited by Arctic Mama : 07-10-2012 at 12:31 AM.
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Old 07-10-2012, 05:22 AM   #4
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I know I suggest this a lot, but have you tried lifting weights? You might not lose all of that last 20lbs, but you'll probably LOOK like you did.
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Old 07-10-2012, 07:17 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arctic Mama View Post
I'd have to agree - make sure, for those calories, that your nutrition is prime. Colorful veggies, lots of good fat, nutritional goldmines like liver, eggs, sea vegetables, etc. That will help ensure a vitamin deficiency isn't a silent culprit in your issues (shockingly common in this country, despite the thousands of calories consumed!).

If that is taken care of, how is your sleep? Do you get plenty of rest and feel energetic and full of vitality, or are you dragging through your day in a daze?

Finally, try switching up your exercise routine a bit. If you're doing cardio, try HIIT. If that isn't working, switch over to a strength training regimen. If nothing else you will find yourself getting stronger and more trim, even if the scale isn't moving much. Sometimes body recomposition is they key, not more weight loss.

If you're meticulous with your calorie counting and measuring, and these troubleshoots aren't working, then the only thing required is patience. It is highly unlikely you're hitting your BMR, so this could just be a nasty stall. Consistency and time will make you victorious if you keep up the healthy habits.
To answer your questions:

I eat like a saint, haha. Fresh veggies in EVERY meal, lean protein, avocado, nuts, olive oil, and I measure every damn bite. Such a pain in the ***.

I think my gym routine might need a bit of a tweaking then, which sucks, because I hate going to the gym as it is :-\. For some reason, it has always felt like a chore to me, even when I was losing a pound a week very successfully.

I wish there was a definite way to boost my loss rate, because I'm not sure I can go through all of this crap for 1 pound a month
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Old 07-10-2012, 07:18 AM   #6
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I know I suggest this a lot, but have you tried lifting weights? You might not lose all of that last 20lbs, but you'll probably LOOK like you did.
I actually like strength training, and I do a bit of it to keep toned. I cut back, because I carry a lot of weight in my arms, and they were getting too big while for some reason I still wasn't losing fat
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Old 07-10-2012, 07:38 AM   #7
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I have read often here that once you have only a few pounds to lose/not a lot left to lose it can be harder and a longer process than the initial weight loss. I'd have a look into your exercise routine and maybe change that around and see if that helps. Sometimes you might just have to make some adjustments in order to get rid of those last couple of pounds.
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Old 07-10-2012, 08:10 AM   #8
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...
I wish there was a definite way to boost my loss rate, because I'm not sure I can go through all of this crap for 1 pound a month
But, then what will you do? Go back to unhealthful habits? I think to keep the weight off you have to continue doing what you're doing. No?
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Old 07-10-2012, 08:20 AM   #9
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I wish there was a definite way to boost my loss rate, because I'm not sure I can go through all of this crap for 1 pound a month
1lb a month is a good loss rate. What about when you're maintaining and not seeing any losses? What will you do then?

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Originally Posted by stunzorz View Post
I actually like strength training, and I do a bit of it to keep toned. I cut back, because I carry a lot of weight in my arms, and they were getting too big while for some reason I still wasn't losing fat
How long did you try it? If your arms were getting bigger they were likely retaining water. After a heavy weight training session my arms are always a little bigger from water retention.
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Old 07-10-2012, 09:12 AM   #10
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I think you should increase calories, actually. How tall are you? Have you calculated your BMR?

I'm averaging 15-1600 calories/day lately with working out 3-4 days per week, and lose about a pound a week.

If your body isn't getting enough fuel for what you are putting it through, it can cause you to plateau.
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Old 07-10-2012, 09:38 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by sontaikle View Post
1lb a month is a good loss rate. What about when you're maintaining and not seeing any losses? What will you do then?



How long did you try it? If your arms were getting bigger they were likely retaining water. After a heavy weight training session my arms are always a little bigger from water retention.

Listen to this lady! Seriously, she and I both talk up weight training ad nauseum, but it works. I'm not talking "I lift 10 pound dumbbells in an effort to "tone"", but some real ***-kicking hard core heart pumping HEAVY stuff. I change my workouts every week focusing primarily on weight training and I have NEVER hit a plateau. Ever.

You said you exercise "vigorously" for 30 minutes, but what does that mean? If you have been running hard for 30 minutes 5 times a week, that is fantastic, but your body has likely adapted to it. You can try sprinting (like Arctic Mama suggested) trying a spin class, using some new equipment (the stair machine is my personal favorite) trying out kettlebells, CrossFit, different workout splits, circuit training, Body Pump classes... the things you can do are endless but the common theme is that you need to challenge your body.

If you do what you've always done, you'll get what you've always gotten... right?
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Old 07-10-2012, 11:52 AM   #12
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And one other tidbit - if bulking up is seriously an issue for you, I cannot more highly recommend TTap. I LOVE it and it is an effective, efficient workout to do at home. Even weighing the same I have lost many inches and look visibly more toned thanks to the workout.

I actually weigh two pounds more in the picture on the right, after seven weeks of consistent TTap workouts and nothing else. No dieting, no cardio, no lifting, just the bodyweight resistance exercises from that routine. And yet I am visibly firmer and smaller than I was in the 'before' picture on the left. The differences in the TTap program were dramatic and nobody would guess I weighed the same most of the challenge and slightly more by the end (I built several pounds of lean mass, my diet was otherwise controlled for maintenance ).



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Last edited by Arctic Mama : 07-10-2012 at 12:04 PM.
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Old 07-10-2012, 12:05 PM   #13
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Quote:
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And one other tidbit - if bulking up is seriously an issue for you, I cannot more highly recommend TTap. I LOVE it and it is an effective, efficient workout to do at home. Even weighing the same I have lost many inches and look visibly more toned thanks to the workout.

I actually weigh two pounds more in the picture on the right, after seven weeks of consistent TTap workouts and nothing else. No dieting, no cardio, no lifting, just the bodyweight resistance exercises from that routine. And yet I am visibly firmer and smaller than I was in the 'before' picture on the left'



Interesting, I am definitely going to look in to this! I really enjoy bodyweight resistance workouts.

In general, I love having muscles and muscle tone is my best friend, but when your arms can't fit in your sleeves from a combo of fat and weight lifting, you know you have a problem I had been hoping that the weight would go down as the muscles went up, but after several months I had to accept that the weight was going to be more stubborn.
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Old 07-10-2012, 12:07 PM   #14
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not on topic whatsoever...but did you cut all your hair short arctic???

and the pics are awesome! way to go!
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Old 07-10-2012, 12:07 PM   #15
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My arms are big and shoulders tend to be broad, I definitely hear you on that! TTap is designed specifically to not increase bulk, but uses the full range of the muscle and engages many muscle groups at once to be more efficient. There are no more than 8 reps of almost any move and the workouts range from 15-45 minutes, five days a week. I did 15 minutes three days a week and then longer workouts two days a week and took each weekend off. Not bad for such short workouts, right?

ETA - I should caveat, short doesn't mean 'easy'. These made me shockingly sore when I began and since my form has gotten better and better they persist in being some of the most challenging workouts I've done. I can't sing the praises of TTap enough and the gals on their support board and about the sweetest and most helpful on the web!
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Last edited by Arctic Mama : 07-10-2012 at 12:11 PM.
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