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DEANNA0725 SparkPoints: (22,157)
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Posts: 2,014
7/30/13 5:43 P

Someone once told me that if I was in a plateau that I should go to a fast food restaurant and get myself a meal which will shock my body since I don't eat like that. I have never tried it because the through of fast food makes my stomach do flips, but I can kind of see where it might help. I am not suggesting that you or any else do it, but I just thought that I would share what I heard.

RAVELGIRLY SparkPoints: (43,267)
Fitness Minutes: (23,058)
Posts: 436
7/30/13 2:57 P

I changed to a more challenging strength training program, added 100 calories per day, and am waiting to see how it goes. I did lose about 3 pounds in July so I guess that's pretty good overall.

Azulvioleta, I can't really exercise more as I do about an hour six days a week now. I keep my heart rate above 75% the entire time I'm doing cardio. Two days a week I do an hour of weight training (circuit training) and the other days are pure cardio. I use the food tracker on another app so that's why my spark tracker isn't shared.

Togemon, that's interesting re: calorie cycling. I noticed that effect when I began my weight loss journey but I have been more strict with my calories for a long time now. Maybe it's time to relax a bit!

Honeylissabee, that makes perfect sense!

Edited by: RAVELGIRLY at: 7/30/2013 (16:09)
TOGEMON Posts: 244
7/9/13 2:26 P

When I hit a plateau, calorie cycling worked for me... where I ate near the bottom of my range a couple days, then ate at the top of my range for a day, etc. I don't know how it works, but maybe it tricks the body like some other posters were talking about!

ALILOWE1 Posts: 104
7/9/13 1:57 P

JUST TO FEEL GOOD ABOUT THE WAY I LOOK AND FEEL

AZULVIOLETA6 SparkPoints: (60,347)
Fitness Minutes: (70,043)
Posts: 2,867
7/9/13 1:45 P

If you want very specific feedback, you will need to share your food and fitness trackers.

Everything does get harder the closer you get to reaching your goal. I suspect that you likely need to exercise more or with greater intensity.

SIMONEKP Posts: 2,515
7/9/13 12:27 P

In the same spot and have increased my calories on the advise of doc and trainer.

CALGREEN Posts: 15
7/9/13 11:42 A

These are great suggestions, thank you all!

PROPMAN1 Posts: 1,779
7/9/13 11:22 A

Bodies do confuse dehydration and hunger. Somehow, we perceive dehydration as a need for food instead of a need for water. Drinking water before meals does help. Not sure about green tea. Have had it but not an avid drinker.

YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,605)
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Posts: 2,171
7/9/13 11:10 A

SHARRONN, I can't speak to the tea because I don't drink it, but I do think drinking water helps. Like the other poster mentioned, the benefits are not entirely weight related. Also sometimes, if I think I'm hungry, I drink a glass of water and I'm not hungry anymore. I think our bodies confuse hunger for thirst sometimes.

FTSOLK Posts: 1,233
7/9/13 8:09 A

I agree with increasing your calories slightly. Although, you should be warned that you may gain temporary water weight initially.

Think about it. Your body stores fat in case of famine. Right now, it probably is worried that it won't be able to sustain itself if needed because the fat deposits are getting smaller. By increasing your exercise and possibly decreasing the exercise (for a little bit) you should be able to trick your body into releasing more weight because it realizes you are not entering a time of famine.

WANNATHIN Posts: 380
7/9/13 7:54 A

I can only tell you what works for ME. A few years ago, I changed nothing else but drank 2 cups of green tea a day for two weeks, and I lost 2kg. Maybe it was water weight, but my clothes felt looser.

I also know that when you don't drink enough water, your kidneys have to work extra hard and then your liver jumps in to help them out, instead of metabolising fat like it's supposed to. So if you keep your hydration up and your kidneys function well, your liver can do its own job and hopefully help you shift some fats. Drinking enough water is good for every part of your body, though. From your skin to your hair and your nails and all your internal organs. Our bodies need water to work optimally, so even if it's just for health and not necessarily for weight loss reasons, drinking your 8 glasses a day is a good idea.

SHARRONN77 SparkPoints: (12)
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7/9/13 7:31 A

Hi WANNATHIN and everyone,


- WANNATHINI: Thank you WANNATHIN for your answer. I eat healthy and try to do some exercises.
- WANNATHINI: and everyone: Do you think drinking water and tea like green tea can help to boost my weight loss?

Have a good day!


MAYBER SparkPoints: (81,204)
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Posts: 9,023
7/7/13 8:44 P

emoticon Keep with the program one day at a time
Love prayers peace
Bernice


AKISTLER8 SparkPoints: (35,708)
Fitness Minutes: (13,039)
Posts: 22
6/28/13 4:42 P

Wow, what a great bunch of recommendations! The articles are great, but personal experience, expertise, etc. are also so helpful. I'm "stuck" where I can get down about 10 and then something happens where I gain 5 of those back and keep doing the up and down motion. It's frustrating, and I feel your pain as far as not losing more. I've been trying to track my food as close as possible, but I will not lie, I am not good at it at all. And my other nutrients often suffer. I find I never hit my protein goal unless I go over my calorie range of 1550.

Also wanted to add my 2 cents to your exercise routine. Are you only doing cardio or are you also including strength training? While cardio is important and is a higher fat burner sometimes changing it up to focus more on strength training will help you attain what you're pushing for. Also remember that sometimes it's not the number on the scale we need to be most concerned with; after losing almost 50 pounds I'm sure you've had to go shopping for some new clothes, how do the newest size pants fit you? Have you noticed a change in the way they fit in the waist, butt, and thighs since you started wearing those x # of pounds ago?

PROPMAN1 Posts: 1,779
6/28/13 4:01 P

You're right WANNATHIN. We must sometimes 'trick' our bodies into dropping pounds.

WANNATHIN Posts: 380
6/28/13 5:13 A

Sharronn77, are you only dieting or exercising as well. If you are only watching what you eat and your weight loss has slowed, perhaps you should exercise so you burn more calories every day.

If you are exercising, then perhaps you need to change it up a bit and do something different. Sometimes if we "surprise" our bodies with a different activity, it starts to drop the lbs again.

SHARRONN77 SparkPoints: (12)
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Posts: 4
6/28/13 5:05 A

Hi I'm Sharronn77,
I allow to join the discussion because I've the same problem. I eat healthy and I'm careful with the food but it's very difficult for me to lose weight. I'd like to find a way to boost my weight loss. Could you give me some advices please?
Thank you in advance.

WANNATHIN Posts: 380
6/27/13 7:58 A

Having gained back all the weight I'd lost when I was on SP before, I am perhaps not the ideal person to give YOU advice.

However, when I was hitting several plateaus back then, I decided to find other ways to measure my progress. Something that worked for me was measurements body fat assessments. I was doing a lot of strength training and even though the scale wouldn't move for weeks on end, I kept losing cm's and my body fat came down a lot.

Perhaps you could (in addition to all the great advice already given) consider re-focussing away from the scale for a while and find other ways to get confirmation that your efforts are bearing fruit.

WADINGMOOSE Posts: 1,044
6/26/13 5:15 P

We have to fuel our bodies and we do that through food. I spent some time today researching the concept of cardio consuming muscle mass - a potential concern for me as a runner. Basically, what I read indicates that this only happens with overtraining and/or undereating. If you don't give your body enough fuel, it will start to take that fuel from other places - such as your fat stores, muscle tissue or both.

In that situation, our bodies are also very efficient at conserving energy in order to stay alive. Historically, we've gone through feast and famine cycles - food hasn't always been as readily available as it currently is. In order to make it through famines, bodies adapted and became efficient.

And those whose bodies were most efficient were most likely to survive those periods, meaning our DNA likely comes from people who were very very very good at staying alive during a famine.

This is not to say that you should head out and nosh on a couple thousand calories. emoticon But you can probably increase your intake slightly for a short period to see if it changes anything.

NIRERIN Posts: 11,911
6/26/13 5:11 P

as you get closer to the weight you want to be, you eat closer to your maintenance calories. to some degree, you don't eat fewer calories the less you weigh. in other words, let's say that 50lbs ago you were burning 2200 cals a day. since you had all the extra weight, it was fine to create a 1000 cal a day deficit and eat 1200 cals. now that you've lost 50lbs, you might only be burning 1800 cals a day. which is fewer calories than at your highest, but since you don't have nearly as much excess fat left, you have to have a smaller deficit, so you need to eat 1300 cals. plus at 200+lbs you also had enough weight on you that that extra calorie burn from exercise could count as bonus calorie deficit calories, in other words, it would be fine to not eat those calories back. when you have less weight to lose, you really do need to be eating those 200 cals you burn on average through exercise back so that you can maintain that 500 cal deficit. which brings you up to eating 1500 cals. does that help some?

DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (57,027)
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Posts: 9,646
6/26/13 4:59 P

Yes, you REALLY CAN lose 1 lb per week at 1600 calories. In fact, when I got started here, I was 211 pounds. Because of the amount of exercise I was doing at the time, my range was 1900-2200, and I tended to eat around 2000.

And I lost. 10 lbs in my first few weeks.

After that, it settled to a steady 1 lb per week.

Now, I average 1500-1700, and I'm still losing. (That's an estimate, I'm not calorie-counting at the moment, but I've been at the calorie counting game long enough that I'm pretty good at estimates.)

Here's a thread you may enjoy, that is filled with people who stopped undereating and found their weight loss got started. www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/messageboard.a
sp?imboard=7&imparent=27376270


Basically, the more you exercise, the more you can eat and still lose weight. ;) You adjust your diet to the amount of exercise you do; not the other way around. No matter how much you exercise, you're still aiming for the same rate of healthy weight loss per week. That's the beauty of it!

YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,605)
Fitness Minutes: (120)
Posts: 2,171
6/26/13 4:56 P

I know it doesn't make a ton of sense. But, for me at least like I explained above, it works! I don't know the scientific reasons behind it though. My thought is, your body gets used to functioning at x amount. Once you change that amount, your body sort of "freaks out" and starts working to burn off the extra that you've started to give it. Who knows if that's correct though, that's just my own silly thought :)

And, I only lost an average of a pound a week over the span of around a year. More at first, less at the end, and even had a month where I didn't lose anything (hence me increasing my calories).

RAVELGIRLY SparkPoints: (43,267)
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6/26/13 4:49 P

Hmm... I understand that weighing less = burning less, I guess what is confusing me is the fact that I'm being told to eat MORE now that I weigh less. That seems counterintuitive to me

I'm sorry if I am not expressing myself clearly - I've had a migraine since 4 am and I'm just not at my best today.

Edited by: RAVELGIRLY at: 6/26/2013 (16:50)
MEGAPEEJ Posts: 732
6/26/13 4:42 P

"Is it normal for weight loss to get tougher/slower this close to a healthy BMI?"
Yes! When you're heavier, your body needs more calories to maintain the weight that it's at, and it takes more calories to move a 200 lb body than it does a 150 lb body. You're able to create a larger deficit between how many calories your body needs to stay where it is and to lose weight. But when you're closer to your goal weight, you're not able to create that large deficit because you need fewer (but still enough) calories.

Think of it like a sculptor working on a marble sculpture - when it's a huge block of marble, you can take of big hunks of it at a time to get down to a basic shape. But the closer you get to that shape, the smaller the pieces are you can take off, to the point where you're chiseling off dust at the end.

RAVELGIRLY SparkPoints: (43,267)
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6/26/13 4:16 P

Yes, i do try to change up my workouts every few weeks. I recently started doing intervals of walking/running, trying to transition into running, instead of just walking. I do use my elliptical machine a lot, but I do try to vary the ramp, resistance, and speed.



WADINGMOOSE Posts: 1,044
6/26/13 4:04 P

One final thing - you're working out a significant amount, but have you changed that at all? the reason I ask is that our bodies get more efficient at an activity the more we do it. So if you've been running 3 miles in 30 minutes 3x a week for the past 6 months, it's likely that your body isn't burning the same number of calories it used to burn doing that activity. You may want to change it up, add intervals, go longer or do something completely different once or twice a week.

I wish I regularly lost 2 lbs a week.

RAVELGIRLY SparkPoints: (43,267)
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6/26/13 4:02 P

Thanks, Coach Jen.
I am grateful for your help. I really don't know what to expect now because I've never lost this much weight before.
When I adjust to one pound per week, Spark puts my calorie range at 1260-1610. Can I really lose a pound a week eating 1600?

I weighed 210 in December and today I weigh 161. The top range of healthy BMI for my height is 136. I'm currently aiming for 150 because my lowest adult weight was 145. Is it normal for weight loss to get tougher/slower this close to a healthy BMI? Or is it because I'm not eating enough for the 45 minutes 5 x week exercise I do?

SPARK_COACH_JEN Posts: 56,147
6/26/13 2:07 P

I agree with the previous posters that you'll want to lower your weekly weight loss goal. If you had 100 pounds to lose, 2 pounds a week would be reasonable. But based on your ticker, 1 pound is more in line with what you should expect.

Coach Jen

NANLEYKW SparkPoints: (56,707)
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Posts: 846
6/26/13 1:49 P

I agree that 1.5 lbs/week is likely to aggressive a goal for you at this point. Adjust your goal to be between .5 and 1 lb/week and see what your calorie range is then.

SUSAN_FOSTER Posts: 1,228
6/26/13 1:39 P

1.5 pounds is very likely a too fast goal for you. Re-set to be closer to a pound a week, and use that range.

MEGAPEEJ Posts: 732
6/26/13 12:17 P

I would agree that you may want to up your calorie intake. Do you have your settings right to show you're burning 1900 calories a week? By comparison, I also burn 1900 calories a week, and my range is between 1500-1850. I have to fuel all that exercise!

Also, especially when it comes to our bodies, math can lie. We're not calculators, and it's a trick to find the perfect balance of fueling our bodies to where it feels comfortable letting weight go. .5-1 pound a week is still a success, it's not a race and you may very well not be heavy enough to lose 2 pounds a week. The "math" that says I should lose a pound a week just wouldn't work for me - it's not true math.

YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,605)
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6/26/13 12:05 P

Yeah try adding 100 at a time and see what happens. Also give your body a chance to adjust, so don't make a change one week, then change it again a week later... do it for about a month to see what happens.

RAVELGIRLY SparkPoints: (43,267)
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6/26/13 12:01 P

Thanks for sharing your experience!
Spark set my calorie range at 1200-1500 with the goal of 1.5 lb loss per week. I suppose I could add 50 to 100 calories at a time and see what happens?

YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,605)
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6/26/13 11:50 A

Don't be scared to increase your calories. As I got somewhat close to my original goal weight (which was 150, still in the overweight BMI category)), I started notice a stall in my weight loss too. So, I decided to try increasing my calories... I had been doing around 1300 (I wasn't exercising either), I increased to around 1500. And, it worked! It jumpstarted my weight loss and was at my goal weight within about two months after doing that. Heck, I slowly lost 11 more pounds after hitting goal weight even though I was eating 1600-1700. I'm now just 1 pound under the very tippy top of the "normal" BMI for my height and am maintaining by eating 1600-1700 on weekdays, and eating whatever I want on weekends, including alcohol. Heck, I just spent 4 days on vacation eating complete junk (chocolate covered donuts, fries, corn dogs etc etc etc) and drinking a decent amount of alcohol, and I am back to my 139 weight today (had a temporary gain up to 141 for a few days, probably because of the alcohol and extra sodium).

Also, think about it... if you increase and stop losing, and just maintain, what's the harm? You're not any worse off than you are right now. You aren't going to gain by eating a couple hundred more calories a day. So, I think it's worth a shot to increase your calories.

Edited by: YOJULEZ at: 6/26/2013 (11:51)
RENATARUNS SparkPoints: (3,758)
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Posts: 1,176
6/26/13 11:39 A

Yup, with as much exercise as you're getting and as heavy as you still are, it is entirely possible that you are eating too little. (This is assuming you are tracking completely accurately and aren't eating more than you think you are already, always triple-check that first.) I'm quite certain I myself never dropped below 1500 calories daily while exercising that much, for instance, and I started out at only 25 pounds above normal BMI.

As scary as it sounds I think this is something you might want to look into for yourself. There are people here who have done it and been successful, and hopefully a couple of them will stop by to give you some details as to how. At a guess, you'd just take the changes in intake very slowly, but I can't be certain.

RAVELGIRLY SparkPoints: (43,267)
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Posts: 436
6/26/13 11:28 A

Thanks for the reply. I'm still 30 pounds above the normal BMI level for my height. I've lost nearly 50 pounds and I'm happy about that but the past month it's been discouraging to feel like the results don't equal the work I'm putting in.

Honestly I'm scared to increase my calories.

LGREGG07 SparkPoints: (24,865)
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Posts: 117
6/26/13 11:23 A

You might be eating too FEW calories. I am having the same problem, but am working on adding calories in little by little. You might also be at a "normal" weight for your height, so weight loss will be slower.

Just don't give up! You can do this (:

RAVELGIRLY SparkPoints: (43,267)
Fitness Minutes: (23,058)
Posts: 436
6/26/13 11:09 A

I'm eating around 1250 calories a day and burning 1900 calories a week through exercise. I try to eat clean and limit my carbs to around 50%. Based on the math, I should be losing 1.5 to 2 pounds a week. For the last month, weight loss has been really slow - half a pound one week, one pound this week.

Why is it getting harder to lose? Should I be eating more?

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