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Old 01-09-2013, 05:40 PM   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 1

S/C/G: 292/260/160

Height: 5'5"

Exclamation Losing muscle to get to goal weight?

Hi All,

I'm new to 2FC, but I've been on my journey for about 6 months now.

Okay. So... I don't know if I'm going about this correctly, and it got me confused.
I did a body fat percentage test using a handheld Body Fat Analyzer (one of these) back in September when I weighed 280lbs. I had a body fat percentage of 44% at the time. I haven't done a test since, so I don't know if it's changed and/or how it's changed.
My goal weight is 160. I'm 5'6 and 160 is a healthy weight for my height in my books. My goal BFP is between 25% and 30%, so I've been using 27% as my goal. I figured out that in order to get down to 160 with 27% BF, I would have to (overall) lose about 40lbs of muscle along with about 92lbs of fat, for a total loss of 132lbs.
What's confusing me is the fact that I should, technically, be concerned about keeping as much muscle mass as possible. But to do that would mean that I would end up weighing 215lbs, with my BFP at 27%... which... is not going to happen. I just can't see myself looking good at that weight, even with 73% of it being lean muscle.
I'm just really confused about it all, and trying to figure out what I should be looking at more. Losing fat and keeping all my muscle and stopping at 215lbs... or getting to my goal of 160lbs and losing 40lbs of muscle along the way?
Ow. My head hurts now.
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:46 PM   #2
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Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 550

S/C/G: (HW 194) 175/168/140

Height: 5'5 1/2"


I wouldn't overthink the numbers. I used to be inclined to do that and I can honestly say it didn't help me reach any goal. Focus on behaviors that lead to weight loss, keep educating yourself on what works for your body (nutrition and fitness-wise). The ultimate goalpost really doesn't matter one whit in terms of netting those first 10, 20 lbs. Why not get to 215 with smart food and fitness decisions (that help preserve your existing muscle!), and then re-evaluate what you want to do?

I had no idea what goal weight to set last year because I've never been thin. So I picked 140 or 145 because it seemed more realistic than a lower number. And now I'm almost there and still have no idea what my goal weight is (except that it's not 145.) But it took me a whole year to get to this point - and worrying about it before now wouldn't have helped lose any of the lbs that I have lost.

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Old 01-09-2013, 05:47 PM   #3
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Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 23

S/C/G: 178/177/135

Height: 5'7


At your weight, I don't think it's realistic to expect to keep all your muscle during the weightloss process, and unnecessary. It's perfectly fine to aim for 160 and to expect to lose SOME muscle. Just do what you can to lose mostly fat.

Last edited by DecemberSun; 01-09-2013 at 06:20 PM. Reason: added info
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:51 PM   #4
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: New York
Posts: 3,655

S/C/G: 200+/115/115

Height: 5'3"


Originally Posted by DecemberSun View Post
At your weight, I don't think it's realistic to expect to keep all your muscle during the weightloss process, and unnecessary. It's perfectly fine to aim for 160 and to expect to lose SOME muscle.
exactly. You don't NEED all of your muscle when you're smaller (less weight for your body to carry around) and it's next to impossible to just lose fat and not muscle.
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Old 01-09-2013, 06:42 PM   #5
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 3,221

S/C/G: 236/135-140/More Fit

Height: 5'6"


My best advice: abandon the numbers and math! You will drive yourself batty.

For some comparison to maybe put it on perspective a little for you. . . I started at 236 pounds, I'm also 5'6", on the hand held I was 44% body fat. Today I weighed in at 137.6 and my body fat on the same devise read 23%. Now, IMO that thing always reads me low body fat wise. But there you have it.
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