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Old 03-03-2011, 02:27 PM   #1  
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Warning this is long

I need some advice in the worst kind of way because I don't know what i am doing wrong. Anyone who can give me some pointers or relate to my story please comment, I would greatly appreciate it!

First of all let me explain i'm a lifelong weight struggler. I have always battled it. My lowest adult weight was 138 when i was 21 after losing close to 60 pounds in college. I then continued to yo yo back and forth 30 to 40 lbs gaining it, then losing it and then at 23 ballooned up to 244. I got myself down to 168 after a year and then maintained that give or take a few til i gained at age 27 to 194.

At age 27 at 194 lbs i went on a huge plan, got a trainer, lost a ton of weight and prob weighed 140, i never used the scale but wore like a size 8/10. Then the next three years i fluctuated like 140-170 but could always get myself to 140 for short periods of time.

Well from May 2010 to now i have gained close to 100 lbs. I am 30 years old and know this is not healthy and i feel like i am in this prison i cannot get out of. I am soooo scared I will never lose the weight now that i'm 30 and that years and years of these ups and downs has made it impossible to lose.

I am doing everything I used to in the past that always worked in terms of diet and exercise but nothing is happening! In fact the scale is going up!!

I haven't started weight training so i don't think i'm retaining water in my muscles.

It's not time of the month.

I haven't been eating tons of sodium.

I even went off the birth control pill i was on because i read that can slow weight loss.

I will admit i do not drink enough water ( and i am changing that starting right now today) and haven't lifted weights yet 12 days into my program but have been dieting and working out and the scale is going up but could that be the only problem?! I am soooo upset.

As a veteran dieter I know usually in the past i could lose like 6 to 8 pounds the first week (and yes i know it was all water weight) in my younger days.

I really think there is something wrong with me because my scale is going up when i've been eating super healthy for the past 12 days. I weighed 238.5 on Feb 20th. I started my diet and the next day went to the gym and was down 236. The next day 234. The next day 233. I have been working out hard for an hour to an hour and a half and eating prob 1300 calories, i know i am not eating more than 1500 although i want to bump it up to that since i weigh so much. Well anyway on March 1st i stepped on the scale and i was up to 235. I was ready to cry. I thought it would be down a few more not up 2.

Watching all these shows on TV where people lose like a ton of weight each week has me thinking why am i not, I weight over 200 lbs, im making changes why isn't it working? Please any advice you have let me know.

Just last year i could lose 30 lbs in about 6 weeks, that was with working out in the am and pm and eating right, it wasn't easy but i put the hard work into it and got results. Now i'm putting the hard work in and getting no results and i feel like i'm destined to be fat forever for my years of abusing my body
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:38 PM   #2  
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Looks like you double posted within your post.

How many calories are you eating a day?

How long are you working out and what are the workouts consisting of.

Sounds like you may be eating too little and working out too hard.
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:51 PM   #3  
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Sounds like you are down 3.5 pounds since you started according to your posts so I'm a little confused. You have been following a plan for less than two weeks and you are down 3.5 pounds. You have not been following a plan for two weeks and gained 2 pounds. From what your telling me you sound like you are retaining water and you need to learn about natural weight fluctuations.

Yes, years of yo-yo dieting can ruin your metabolism, but you can repair it over time by sticking to a healthy consistant meal plan. Your body is on the defense because it thinks you will try and starve it. XD

Last edited by niafabo; 03-03-2011 at 02:53 PM.
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:56 PM   #4  
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If you have been dropping weight fast (30 lb in 6 weeks!) without weight training or eating sufficient protein repeatedly, there is a good chance you have lost a great deal of muscle mass over the years of doing this. This will result in a significantly lower metabolism as muscle mass is metabolically active, while fat takes very few calories to maintain. I'd suggest weight training while eating in a moderate caloric deficit with fairly high protein intake. You'll lose weight more slowly, but may be able to regain some muscle mass in the process. This will improve your metabolism in the long run.
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:58 PM   #5  
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Originally Posted by beerab View Post
Looks like you double posted within your post.

How many calories are you eating a day?

How long are you working out and what are the workouts consisting of.

Sounds like you may be eating too little and working out too hard.
Im eating prob 1300. i know it should be more i think it said i can maintain at like 2350 and so i was going to start eating like 1600 and then if i lose like 20 lbs go to down to 1400 then 1300 etc.

I do the ellpitical and walk at an incline on the treadmill and i take classes sometimes. I work out intensely and always have and the weight always comes off but i feel like its not.

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Originally Posted by Sindaena View Post
If you have been dropping weight fast (30 lb in 6 weeks!) without weight training or eating sufficient protein repeatedly, there is a good chance you have lost a great deal of muscle mass over the years of doing this. This will result in a significantly lower metabolism as muscle mass is metabolically active, while fat takes very few calories to maintain. I'd suggest weight training while eating in a moderate caloric deficit with fairly high protein intake. You'll lose weight more slowly, but may be able to regain some muscle mass in the process. This will improve your metabolism in the long run.
When i lost the 30 lbs in 6 weeks i was doing weight training (nautilus) and free weights. I plan on doing nautilus, i just had been away from the gym so long i am easing my way back into cardio.

Do u think once i begin weight training again... like next week i can expect to start noticing a difference?
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:04 PM   #6  
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Do u think once i begin weight training again... like next week i can expect to start noticing a difference?
Not immediately, no. It takes a long time to build muscle, particularly as a female in a caloric deficit. You may see visual differences fairly quickly in the sense of appearing tighter, and some pump from water retention and increased glycogen storage in trained muscles. But other than the actual calorie burn associated with weight training, you won't improve your metabolism in a short time span. Weight training and good diet can do amazing things, but it takes time.
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Old 03-03-2011, 04:07 PM   #7  
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We evolved as a species "yoyo" dieting. Think about it ... hundreds of thousands of years of foraging for food ... sometimes there was a lot sometimes there wasn't much.

My point? Most likely no. Here is an outstanding article on this subject and maybe will help you understand what is going on.
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Old 03-03-2011, 04:12 PM   #8  
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There are a few things going on, and I don't think "slow weight loss" is the problem (you aren't losing slowly at all, you're losing at a very good pace).

You seem to obsessed with repeating past succeess. I have sad news, you may not be able to, ever. It doesn't mean you can't have success, even great successs (you are having great success, but you're not able to see it as success because you're comparing your current body with a body you don't have anymore).

I've been there. I've dieted (mostly crash dieted) all of my life, and already in my early 20's I began noticing (and going nuts doing it) that every diet required harder work and yeilded slower results. It happens. It happens to many of us.

You can't dwell on the metabolism you don't have any more. Maybe you'll get some of it back. Maybe you won't. Either way, you've got to live with the metabolism you have.

A lot of people believe (there's some research support) that repeated yoyo dieting, especially crash dieting is a huge contributor to metabolic slowing (to the point that you burn fewer calories at your current weight, than you did at that same weight because of the dieting. Some say it's because of muscle loss and is therefore reversible. Others say the changes may be permanent).

In my experience, crash dieting did seriously drive down metabolism. The calories I'm eating now to lose a couple pounds a month, is the same calorie level that (at the same weight I am now) once yielded 7 to 8 lbs per week.

If I compare my current nearly 45 year old body and metabolism to the 25 year old me, I'm going to be very sad, frustrated, and depressed.


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Originally Posted by bellastarr View Post
I need some advice in the worst kind of way because I don't know what i am doing wrong.
What you're doing wrong is driving yourself insane for something out of your control. Try to "forget" how you did in the past. Trying to replicate past results is going to drive you nuts and it's going to make very unhealthy methods of weight loss very tempting. And those unhealthy methods may errode your metabolism even further.



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Originally Posted by bellastarr View Post
I am doing everything I used to in the past that always worked in terms of diet and exercise but nothing is happening! In fact the scale is going up!!
No the scale is not going up. Upward fluctuations for a couple days are normal. If I took in absolutely zero calories but was drinking water, I would still gain weight with pms/tom. Perfectly on plan, I gain up to 10 lbs with PMS/TOM (starting about a week before my period, into a few days in. It can last almost two weeks). Some women report gaining water during ovulation week too. It's not even unusual for people to lose weight only during one week out of 3 or 4.

The person who loses 10 lbs in a month who loses one week and stays the same or gains the other three is losing just as well as the person who loses 2.5 lbs every week. But the person who weighs daily has to remember that.




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Originally Posted by bellastarr View Post
I am doing everything I used to in the past that always worked in terms of diet and exercise but nothing is happening! In fact the scale is going up!!
You're exagerating here. You've been losing consistently, you're just over-reacting to a few days (not weeks, not months) of weight fluctuation.

You also have to stop living in the past. It doesn't matter what you did in the past. If it's not working, then you have to change it. But it IS IS IS IS working, you're just catastrophising a few days of fluctuation.




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Originally Posted by bellastarr View Post
I haven't started weight training so i don't think i'm retaining water in my muscles.

It's not time of the month.

I haven't been eating tons of sodium.

I even went off the birth control pill i was on because i read that can slow weight loss.

You don't have to be eating "tons" of sodium for sodium levels to affect your weight loss. For me, one restaurant meal will do it. Or one can of ready made soup. A serving of potato chips. Or a higher carb diet. I follow an low-carb exchange plan, but I do have a back-up plan that's higher in carbs for days when low-carb may not be possible. Switching between low-carb and high-carb always involves water weight being added or released. That's not "fat," and I'm not worried about it, because the water I gain on high-carb, disappears within three days of returning to low-carb. I

Just because it isn't TOM, doesn't mean you can't have temporary water gain for hormonal reasons. Some women gain during ovulation (which can happen any time, even off-schedule, but is usually about 2 weeks before TOM). Some start gaining as early as 10 days before TOM begins. Before I was on bc, I usually could lose weight only during one week a month. It drove me nuts then too, but it was how my body worked.




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Originally Posted by bellastarr View Post
I will admit i do not drink enough water ( and i am changing that starting right now today) and haven't lifted weights yet 12 days into my program but have been dieting and working out and the scale is going up but could that be the only problem?! I am soooo upset.
Water may or may not help. It's worth a try, but don't drink more than 4 quarts a day of all fluids without talking to your doctor - and if you're taking any medications especially for blood pressure then make that 3 quarts.

Learning to accept normal fluctuations probably is a better strategy, because you can do everything right and still have water retention. As I said, I gain with TOM no matter what I'm eating. I could waste a lot of energy trying to make it different (and maybe I'd even succeed), but just accepting the fluctuation and moving on is much less stressful (and you CAN learn to accept normal wieght fluctuations).




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Originally Posted by bellastarr View Post
As a veteran dieter I know usually in the past i could lose like 6 to 8 pounds the first week (and yes i know it was all water weight) in my younger days.
I lost 11 lbs in one week. I did this two or maybe three times in my life. Every time it was the first week of a plan. The first time, I weighed 225 lbs. (my highest weight at that time). I was 14 and prescribed amphetemine diet pills.

The second time I weighed 275 lbs and it was my first week on Nutrisystem (and a herbal product that contained caffeine and other herbal supplements, including the now banned ephedra).

At the time I wasn't happy with the 11 lbs, because since I weighed 50 lbs more, I thought I should have been able to lose more.

I was crazy. Trying to replicate past success drove me crazy, and inspired all sorts of crazy attempts at weight loss which I firmly believe only drove my metabolism lower.


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Originally Posted by bellastarr View Post
I really think there is something wrong with me because my scale is going up when i've been eating super healthy for the past 12 days. I weighed 238.5 on Feb 20th. I started my diet and the next day went to the gym and was down 236. The next day 234. The next day 233. I have been working out hard for an hour to an hour and a half and eating prob 1300 calories, i know i am not eating more than 1500 although i want to bump it up to that since i weigh so much. Well anyway on March 1st i stepped on the scale and i was up to 235. I was ready to cry. I thought it would be down a few more not up 2.
Up two is not a tragedly. Up 10 isn't a tragedy (I gain 8 to 10 lbs every month with TOM, starting 7 to 10 days before). I'm not "gaining" weight during those 10 to 12 days. It's just water. I know as long as I stick to my food plan, it will disappear as quickly (and as slowly) as it came.

If you can't stop JUDGING your weight loss by the day, then you have to stop weighing daily. You're going to be stressed and miserable (which release hormones that make weight loss harder) until you can recognize and calmly accept normal weight fluctuations.



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Originally Posted by bellastarr View Post
Watching all these shows on TV where people lose like a ton of weight each week has me thinking why am i not, I weight over 200 lbs, im making changes why isn't it working? Please any advice you have let me know
This is NOT reality. Did you know that sometimes a "week" on these shows is actually two weeks?

This isn't real weight loss. If you want to see real weight loss, join a TOPS chapter (or get three or four friends together and start your own chapter). At TOPS groups, every week everyone announces whether they've gained, lost, or stayed the same. If you've stayed the same or last, everyone claps. If anyone gains, everyone says "we're glad you came." The the leader announces how much total weight was lost for the month, and how much was gained. You see what the average weight really is (at least if you divide it by the number of members).

My current group almost always has a net loss, but if you average the weight loss per member, a very good week is an average loss of a half pound. The "biggest loser" every week wins a prize. The average weight loss for the biggest loser is 3 lbs. Sure every once in a while someone loses 5 lbs, but it isn't every week, and it isn't the same biggest loser every week.

Almost no one goes a month without a gain. We have an apple-tree contest every month. Everyone has an apple on the tree with their name on it. If you gain or miss a meeting, your apple "falls off" the tree. We don't have many people miss meetings, and yet out of a group of 25 members, there's always fewer than 4 people left on the tree. It's not unusual for only one person to be left on the tree (everyone left on the tree at the end of the month, splits a $10 prize). That means that almost everyone in the groups has a gain at least one week (for me it's always the week before or of TOM, sometimes it's both weeks. In January I had TOM weight gain over two meetings. I was a bit annoyed but it was ok). Often no one wins the prize (meaning everyone, even the KOPS at goal weight had a gain - then the prize money rolls over to the next month and the winners split $20).



You can't compare yourself to others, not even previous versions of yourself. I learned that the hardway. Not only am I losing slower than than ever before. I never once in the past considered this slow "success." When I started, I wasn't even losing 1 lb per month. I think the worst loss I ever had in previous attempts was 2 lbs a month, and I thought that was failure.

By my old definition of failure, I've failed off every one of my 88 lbs.




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Originally Posted by bellastarr View Post
Just last year i could lose 30 lbs in about 6 weeks, that was with working out in the am and pm and eating right, it wasn't easy but i put the hard work into it and got results. Now i'm putting the hard work in and getting no results
You are not getting "no results" you're going bonkers over a couple days. You're ignoring the great days of weight loss and dwelling on a couple days of normal fluctuations. Get a grip or it's going to drag you down.

Do your best and accept the reward whatever it is. Don't judge your weight loss by the day, or even by the week. Record it every day if you want, but only "count" one day a week (I count Tuesday's because it's the day I go to my TOPS meeting). And even then don't judge your weight loss by the week, judge it by the month (yes, it may drive you crazy at first, but trust me - you will lose by the month if you stay on plan. If you don't then change your plan, but in the meantime don't panic).


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Originally Posted by bellastarr View Post
I feel like i'm destined to be fat forever for my years of abusing my body :
You're losing at a cheetah's pace compared to me. Here's where you can compare yourself to others. You're doing better than I am. You're doing better than most people are. (Most people give up, so as long as you stay in the game, you're succeeding in a way most people don't).

On a hopeful note, I am losing better than when I started. When I'm on plan (and I still have trouble sticking to plan, but I'm not going to let that stop me), but when I'm on plan, I can lose about 1 to 1.25 lb per week. That's a dramatic improvement. I also can do more exercise, so I can burn more calories (don't be afraid of building muscle. It can add a pound or two on the scale, but in the long run it helps you burn more calories so you can lose weight better on more calories).

It's a myth that you always will lose most in the beginning of a food plan. It sometimes happends, but it doesn't always happen. Either way though, don't get hung up on the speed of your weight loss (or the lack of it). Do your best, and accept the results.

Hang in there, it's the only "secret" to success.
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Old 03-03-2011, 04:12 PM   #9  
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i would suggest weighing in only once a week. You need to look at the big picture and not get yourself down over your body's day to day fluctuations.
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Old 03-03-2011, 05:03 PM   #10  
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Consider staying on plan since Feb. 20th and working out 1 1/2 hours a week as a success. A big one.

It sounds like your long term goals are to be at a healthy weight and having a healthy active body. You are succeeding not failing. Pat yourself on the back everyday you stay on plan and everyday you exercise. Doing so day after day will result in the changes you seek.

Many people worry as they near their goal as to whether they will be able to maintain the weightloss which has also been an issue for you in the past. Slow and steady with realistic expectations that result in long term change should be the goal. Instead you have fluctuated up and down large amounts of weight which indicates that you haven't found the answer yet. Try something different this time. Be kind to yourself. Accept that fast short term results are unsustainable. Maybe even think about eating a few more calories per day so you don't end up feeling deprived. This should be a way of life rather than a diet. Good luck and hang in there you can do it.
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Old 03-03-2011, 05:50 PM   #11  
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It is a recorded fact that after a lot of yoyo dieting every time you start again the body automatically goes into famine mode and will shut down to maintain that which you have stored. Therefore it takes a while to get things up and running again so that the weight will start to come down. Also, as you start to do weight training youwill develop muscle which will be as heavy as the fat that you are losing so that will mean that you won't see any benefit for a few weeks.
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Old 03-03-2011, 05:56 PM   #12  
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First, see the success you've had in sticking to plan and losing 3.5lbs in 2 weeks.

Second, weigh yourself once a week. Record and accept that number and move on to the next week, learning from your weigh in what you can.

Third, are you accurately journalling everything you eat and drink? Are you weighing and measuring portions?

Our bodies change over time. This is natural. What worked in the past may not work now. Record what you're eating and doing and look back at that each week to see what you can learn from it.
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Old 03-03-2011, 06:09 PM   #13  
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Kaplods give wise counsel you'd do well to heed. You're defeating yourself, not your body defeating you. Give it time, ignore daily fluctuations or don't weigh daily, and realize that sustainable loss sometimes happens slowly. Better to lose five pound forever than drop fifteen in a month and regain twenty five the next.
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Old 03-03-2011, 07:21 PM   #14  
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Thank you for taking the time to reply to my post. It made me cry to know someone else gets what i am going through and is struggling and as you have said has "been there, done that". You gave me alot to think about and i cannot thank you enough for writing and sharing your story with me.

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Originally Posted by kaplods View Post
You seem to obsessed with repeating past succeess. I have sad news, you may not be able to, ever. It doesn't mean you can't have success, even great successs (you are having great success, but you're not able to see it as success because you're comparing your current body with a body you don't have anymore).
You are absolutely right, i am always thinking about how last year at this time i was this size or could fit into these jeans or weighed this much. The sad truth is when i think back last year when i weighed about 100 lbs less i still wasn't happy, still thought i was too fat, so that is a big reason why i look at how i am now and know how far away i am from where i was and i do just get overwhelmed. Like everyone i want to lose 20 lbs overnight and i hate accepting that there is no way that can ever happen.

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I've been there. I've dieted (mostly crash dieted) all of my life, and already in my early 20's I began noticing (and going nuts doing it) that every diet required harder work and yeilded slower results. It happens. It happens to many of us.
And that is what i have been soooo worried about, like what if it cannot be fixed. I know it is going to take time but me being such an all or nothing person and pessimist fear what if i give it lots of time and it still doesn't work, i always think the worst and am trying to change that.

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You can't dwell on the metabolism you don't have any more. Maybe you'll get some of it back. Maybe you won't. Either way, you've got to live with the metabolism you have.In my experience, crash dieting did seriously drive down metabolism. The calories I'm eating now to lose a couple pounds a month, is the same calorie level that (at the same weight I am now) once yielded 7 to 8 lbs per week.
That last sentence is soo depressing, but i know i am experiencing the same thing. I always look at people like Oprah, when she did her Optifast diet and lost those 67 pounds she had screwed her metabolism up sooo badly back in 1989 and then it gives me some hope to believe she was able to lose weight when she started with her trainer in the 90's... i just want to believe i can turn this around too


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What you're doing wrong is driving yourself insane for something out of your control. Try to "forget" how you did in the past. Trying to replicate past results is going to drive you nuts and it's going to make very unhealthy methods of weight loss very tempting. And those unhealthy methods may errode your metabolism even further.You also have to stop living in the past. It doesn't matter what you did in the past. If it's not working, then you have to change it. But it IS IS IS IS working, you're just catastrophising a few days of fluctuation.
Good point.

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Water may or may not help.
I googled water and weight loss, i used to drink TONS of water, like a couple of tall Smart Water's a day and i read if you don't drink enough your kidneys and liver can't work properly and it hinders weight loss.

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f you can't stop JUDGING your weight loss by the day, then you have to stop weighing daily. You're going to be stressed and miserable (which release hormones that make weight loss harder) until you can recognize and calmly accept normal weight fluctuations.
I used to NEVER weigh myself when i dieted. One year i went from a size 16 to an 8 and i looked dramatically different and people would ask me "how much weight have you lost?" and i honestly had no idea because i NEVER weighed myself. I am doing it now i guess because i have this negative idea in my head how it isn't going to work because of all my past years of ups and downs. Maybe i should just not go on the scale.


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Originally Posted by kaplods View Post
At TOPS groups, every week everyone announces whether they've gained, lost, or stayed the same. If you've stayed the same or last, everyone claps. If anyone gains, everyone says "we're glad you came." The the leader announces how much total weight was lost for the month, and how much was gained. You see what the average weight really is (at least if you divide it by the number of members).
I have joined and rejoined Weight Watchers 5 or 6 times, always lost weight but again, i was never satisfied, it was never enough, even after i'd lose 30 lbs i'd still think BUT I"M STILL in the 170's... what i'd give to be there now

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By my old definition of failure, I've failed off every one of my 88 lbs..
That is wonderful!!!!!!!!!!

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Originally Posted by kaplods View Post
It's a myth that you always will lose most in the beginning of a food plan. It sometimes happends, but it doesn't always happen. Either way though, don't get hung up on the speed of your weight loss (or the lack of it). Do your best, and accept the results.
I hope that mine will just fall off if i'm patient and give it time. Thanks again soo much for your words of advice and can others keep commenting i TRULY appreciate it!
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Old 03-03-2011, 08:09 PM   #15  
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Relax, darlin!!! You are going to be JUST fine. Your body will lose weight again, but really, really think to yourself about how you are going to approach it this time. You've dug yourself into a big hole doing what you always did -- HURRY UP, POUNDS, BE GONE NOW! I'll do whatever it takes to get this weight off as soon as possible. And if you're anything like me when I did this 5 or 6 times in my 20s and 30s, you'll get all crazy restricting to make it go FAST, then freak out, pig out, and gain it all back plus more. Yeah, been there, done that, several times.

The good news is, that I just turned 40, and I have lost 90 lbs since last May. I did the work in the beginning to make sure that I was feeding myself the most nutritious foods possible with the most bang for my calories I could find, and then I just stuck it out. When I first started, I was weighing once a month because I could not tolerate the ups and downs -- EVERY time I stepped on the scale I had to see something worth seeing. Also, I REALLY focused on getting my new habits/behaviours ingrained rather than focusing on what the scale had to say about it. I averaged about 10 lbs a month. Now that I'm weighing weekly, yeah, it's not very dramatic to stay the same some weeks, lose a lb or 2 others, or stay the same for 2 freakin weeks and then have a 3-5 lb reward for waiting it out. Boring, really! And frustrating at times. But when I look back to last May - HA, I've really done something! Best of all, I'm working out moderately, really, really satisfied with my food, and certain (as confident as a person with my history can be at this point) that I can do this for life, continue to lose, and then on into maintenance.

So again, I say relax! If you really want to do this, if it's finally clicked for you that you want to LIVE an active, nutritious lifestyle, then there is NOTHING stopping you. May not be as fast as you like, but entirely, no question about it, possible.
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