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Old 04-06-2014, 09:26 PM   #16
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I'm ok with losing weight slowly now. I was use to it coming off a lot faster so that's why it's surprising that I've been losing half of what I use to when I was bigger.

DO I need to eat more calories? I'll have to keep better track on it and check online to see how much I should be eating because it has been a while since I did that!

Thank you to everyone who replied.
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Old 04-07-2014, 11:59 AM   #17
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I'm also losing weight slowly. I started April in the upper 240's and my goal for the month would be to break into the 230's. The way I think about it, I put the weight on slowly so I'll take it off slowly, too.
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Old 04-07-2014, 12:33 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by lotsakids View Post
5 pounds a month is awesome, I slowed down to crawl when I got under 200 but I continue to see changes in my body. I think especially after losing a significant amount of weight our bodies need to slow down and heal from the process.
ditto^^^

5 pounds is actually a great number (it's a loss!). It will come off, as long as you keep going. If anything, you're weight loss may become less pounds as you get smaller--that's how it was for me.
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Old 04-07-2014, 12:34 PM   #19
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I have been saying over and over and over again, all you have to do is eat a bit less than your maintenance calories to lose weight at a good pace and consistently without stress or hunger. Use an online calorie calculator and say you want to lose half a pound a week. You will lose faster than that but you will likely find the going much easier.
Small deficits have their place but they are best suited for someone with very little to lose in my opinion. Half a lb a week would mean 4 years for someone to lose 100 lbs. Not very motivating. Also, it is easy to screw up if you're shooting for a 250 kcal daily deficit. If you're going for a small deficit you need to be meticulous.

My point is ... context matters. You can say it over and over but it doesn't make it the best solution for all people.

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Originally Posted by Pattience View Post
The thing is if she's eating 1300 calories per day and burning nearly 600 calories per day in exercise, she's only got 700 calories for her body to use for all its tissue repair type functions. Its unlikely she would be building muscle if her calories are this low. She's probably burning muscle.

But i think aspects of her body must be not functioning well at the moment if she is only eating so few calories. And this could be why she is not losing weight faster.
It is possible she is burning muscle but extremely unlikely for a number of reasons. The biggest one is that walking can be powered almost 100% by fat and currently she still has plenty of fuel on board in that area.

What makes you think her body is not functioning well? The only complaint we are given was slow weight loss. There are much more simple ways to explain 1 month of "slow" weight loss than jumping to the conclusion that she is suffering from mal nutrition.
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Old 04-07-2014, 12:36 PM   #20
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I also am a slow loser. I started in Jan. 2013 (with some regain at the holidays!) and have lost about 30 pounds now. It's actually coming off quite a bit faster now, which is nice, but I still have to remind myself that I won't be at my goal weight in a week or a month or even a year. And that is okay. I really hope the old adage that the slower it comes off, the easier it is to maintain, is true. And I think that gives my body and mind more time to adjust.

Good for you, 5 pounds a month is great! I hope you can learn to see that and keep going. I wouldn't change anything about how much you're eating since it's obviously working, unless you really feel the need to increase your rate of loss.
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Old 04-07-2014, 12:36 PM   #21
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I'm not trying to complain, losing is better than gaining...but it's been over a month and I've only lost about 5lbs. My scale says I'm 220.

I'm doing everything right (I think) I count my calories, eat around 1300 a day (no more than 1500) I workout often (3-4 times a week of walking a 2 hour route) could it be my workouts aren't burning as many calories as I think they are? I notice changes in my body, could the weight be muscles?

I don't have any other theories. Is there is anything I can do to speed things up?

The most likely answer is usually the correct one. You're probably just retaining water.

Having said that, if you've been dieting for a while without a break you may want to take one. I had a lot of success taking two week breaks every couple months.
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Old 04-07-2014, 01:00 PM   #22
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The most likely answer is usually the correct one. You're probably just retaining water.

Having said that, if you've been dieting for a while without a break you may want to take one. I had a lot of success taking two week breaks every couple months.
This is really, really interesting. Thank you for sharing! I inadvertently took a break from my diet (and working out) for about two weeks while ill, and the weight flew off, and is still coming off much faster than ever before. Very strange. I think I will (purposefully this time!) plan a two week "break" in June when I'm on vacation. It wold be a perfect time to not have to think about dieting.
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Old 04-07-2014, 01:46 PM   #23
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5 pounds a month is reasonable. In fact, I'd love to say that was my rate of loss the last few months.

Yes, there are probably myriad ways you could "ramp it up" But please take in to consideration the time, effort and mental stress that could entail. Find a sweet spot where you can handle the effort/restriction, and still lose steadily.
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Old 04-07-2014, 07:54 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by JohnP View Post
Small deficits have their place but they are best suited for someone with very little to lose in my opinion. Half a lb a week would mean 4 years for someone to lose 100 lbs. Not very motivating. Also, it is easy to screw up if you're shooting for a 250 kcal daily deficit. If you're going for a small deficit you need to be meticulous.

My point is ... context matters. You can say it over and over but it doesn't make it the best solution for all people.



It is possible she is burning muscle but extremely unlikely for a number of reasons. The biggest one is that walking can be powered almost 100% by fat and currently she still has plenty of fuel on board in that area.

What makes you think her body is not functioning well? The only complaint we are given was slow weight loss. There are much more simple ways to explain 1 month of "slow" weight loss than jumping to the conclusion that she is suffering from mal nutrition.
Unless she's on a low carb diet, she will not be burning pure fat. Where do you get that idea?

I found i think that i lost more than half a pound when i used that goal as the basis for calculating my calories. The reason is logical. The half a pound is an average over a certain period of time that the calculator told me. If i had kept on with that same daily intake it would have slowed down much further later on, but instead, then i changed my calorie count again. Perhaps two pounds is a good aim at the beginning of a diet but its not sustainable over a long time so better to readjust the calorie intake. If on the other hand, you start with a calorie intake that claims to enable you to lose 20 pounds a month, you will quickly come unstuck. And i think we are seeing that in the initial question.

Though she didn't say at the outset that she was happy with a loss at 5 pounds per month so it was obvious to assume that she found this a problem.

A small deficit - I actually don't know what my actual deficit is - i keep in check by keeping a food diary. I don't stress over what i eat. I just keep make small adjustments when it seems necessary but also because life is not a text book, the odd incursion shouldn't be a matter of disappointment and self beating up but just life.

Well people may think its not the best solution for them, but given the failure rate of diets, i think it is a pretty good solution and worth trying. But a smaller calorie deficit in itself is not the whole story either. People need to eat better quality and more nutritious food in order to be satisfied.

I didn't say she was suffering from malnutrition. But she probably will soon be diagnosable with it if she were to continue on such a low calorie diet. It wouldn't hurt to read some article on what malnutrition is. continuing on this path will likely lead to getting run down will lead to a range of symptoms from depression, to catching every passing virus to fatigue. So if the OP wants to continue on this path as John seems to think is a good idea, then she should go for it. But she must complain or be surprised when problems arise.

Don't get me wrong OP, i want you to succeed but don't believe you can do it on your current program without significant modification.
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Old 04-07-2014, 08:00 PM   #25
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This is really, really interesting. Thank you for sharing! I inadvertently took a break from my diet (and working out) for about two weeks while ill, and the weight flew off, and is still coming off much faster than ever before. Very strange. I think I will (purposefully this time!) plan a two week "break" in June when I'm on vacation. It wold be a perfect time to not have to think about dieting.
Not really mysterious at all nona. Johns version of two week breaks from time to time is pretty much the same thing i advocate when i talk about doing it slowly, the article i read about why weightloss fails with most people, and staging your weightloss, though his is a slightly different formula.

It is basically about tricking your body back into thinking its not going to starve to death (from living on a calorie deficit diet) Read the article about Leptin in the nutrition wonderland website if you want to understand better what that is all about.

I think somewhere in either that article or the one on seratonin she suggests having a high calorie meal once a week. This is another approach to a two week break.
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Old 04-07-2014, 08:25 PM   #26
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Unless she's on a low carb diet, she will not be burning pure fat. Where do you get that idea?

I didn't say she was suffering from malnutrition. But she probably will soon be diagnosable with it if she were to continue on such a low calorie diet. It wouldn't hurt to read some article on what malnutrition is. continuing on this path will likely lead to getting run down will lead to a range of symptoms from depression, to catching every passing virus to fatigue. So if the OP wants to continue on this path as John seems to think is a good idea, then she should go for it. But she must complain or be surprised when problems arise.
Walking is powered by fat. Thus, walking two hours a day does not mean your body is catabolizing muscle even if you're in a steep deficit. It might be but the body catabolizing muscle results in faster weight loss (not fat loss) than if the body was only burning fat. This is because a lb of muscle breaks down into far fewer calories than a lb of fat. Roughly 700 vs 3500. Since the complaint is slower than expected weight loss it does not follow that her body is catabolizing muscle.

Regarding the nutrition - it really depends on what the OP is eating. You appeared to be making the case that one reason the OP was not losing faster was that her body was not functioning correctly. I don't "hear" any evidence that is happening. Certainly I've never seen the case made that lack of micronutrients would slow weight loss.
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Old 04-07-2014, 09:22 PM   #27
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5 pounds a month is reasonable. In fact, I'd love to say that was my rate of loss the last few months.

Yes, there are probably myriad ways you could "ramp it up" But please take in to consideration the time, effort and mental stress that could entail. Find a sweet spot where you can handle the effort/restriction, and still lose steadily.
Great advice RadioJane. I find sometimes if I ramp up my exercises I look for and easily find reasons to skip it, so I just do my little number of reps, and have been able to keep it going for a few months now and am developing little muscles in my arms, so I'm happy.
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Old 04-07-2014, 09:29 PM   #28
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I know how you feel, OP! They say if you're at a higher weight, the pounds should be flying off. But in my case, the first 20 came off fast and the rest has been 5-6 pounds a month, even when strictly calorie counting. But 1-2 pounds a week falls into healthy weight loss, so keep it up!
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Old 04-07-2014, 11:21 PM   #29
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Walking is powered by fat. Thus, walking two hours a day does not mean your body is catabolizing muscle even if you're in a steep deficit. It might be but the body catabolizing muscle results in faster weight loss (not fat loss) than if the body was only burning fat. This is because a lb of muscle breaks down into far fewer calories than a lb of fat. Roughly 700 vs 3500. Since the complaint is slower than expected weight loss it does not follow that her body is catabolizing muscle.

Regarding the nutrition - it really depends on what the OP is eating. You appeared to be making the case that one reason the OP was not losing faster was that her body was not functioning correctly. I don't "hear" any evidence that is happening. Certainly I've never seen the case made that lack of micronutrients would slow weight loss.
I don't see you making much of a case for saying that fat powers walking. I just read an assertion that doesn't actually make much sense anyway. If you want to convince me, you will have to provide some a link to some a reputable source that this is what happens.

Everything i've read about the way the body provides energy for exercise involves a higher proportion of carbs to fat. And if the carbs aren't there, the body makes glucose from muscle. the fat is always the less part of the ratio.

What you've said more or less contradicts the notion entirely that the body burns muscle at all, when calories carbs are not available.

The exception to this is if the body is in ketosis or whatever the right terminology for the way people burn on a low carb diet. The OP didn't say she was on a low carb diet. she just said she's eating low calories.

Given her weight, and the fact she's exercising, normally she'd be losing faster than 5 pounds a month whether its muscle or fat if she's eating carbs in a normal sort of ratio to protein
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Old 04-08-2014, 02:10 AM   #30
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Everything i've read about the way the body provides energy for exercise involves a higher proportion of carbs to fat. And if the carbs aren't there, the body makes glucose from muscle. the fat is always the less part of the ratio.

What you've said more or less contradicts the notion entirely that the body burns muscle at all, when calories carbs are not available.
Either you haven't read very much or you are reading from very poor sources. Most of the body can use fat as a fuel source. The CNS is the big exception. If the body catabolized muscle as often as you have been lead to believe humans wouldn't have made it as a species.

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