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Why can't I lose weight?
Any advice?

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19 replies to this topic

#1 TwoHeadedGirl

Posted 05 February 2013 - 09:43 AM

Since having DS, I have lost 15kgs through changing my diet and exercising regularly. I am at a health weight now but I'd still love to lose around another 5kgs to just feel better about myself but it seems that I'm stuck at this weight and no matter what I do, I can't shift even another kilo.

I usually count my calories to around 1200. I try to do 3-5 classes at the gym (the les mills ones, usually I do either combat or pump). I try to go for a 30min walk/run 4 or 5 times a week. I drink lots of water and do my best to eat as clean as possible.

I feel like I'm doing what I'm meant to be doing but in getting no where. Any advice that could help me shift the last few kgs?

#2 harper_

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:27 PM

You're either absorbing too many calories or not doing enough high intensity exercise. Every one is different and some people that are taking in 1200 calories and exercising would lose weight, but for you that is not the case. So you either need to exercise more or eat less. You also need to remember, you burn very few calories with exercise. A 30 min walk equates to 120 calories burned, little more than 1 tim tam biscuit. So you may have a day when you eat like a bird, go for a long walk, but have a little treat and that little treat has negated any calorie burning from the walk. You don't want to get to the point you're starving yourself, but you have to be very honest with yourself about what you eat and what you drink. Also I would look at building up from walking to running for 30 - 40 minutes 5 times a week. Walking is great, but the weight is not going to fall off you.

#3 harper_

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:29 PM

How often do you drink? And how much do you drink?

#4 9ferals

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:40 PM

It sounds like you are already eating pretty minimally and exercising, so I don't think you will gain a lot by cutting calories even more or ramping your exercise up to unrealistic levels (you're already exercising 7 - 10 times a week, how much more could you possibly do?)

I think that once you are a healthy weight it is harder to lose weight because you don't have a big amount to lose.  
My best suggestion is that you continue to eat a healthy diet (if anything I'd say you should be eating more) and exercise regularly. Your body will settle at the weight that is right for you.

Also, don't only measure your success by the scales. If you are getting stronger you may find that your weight doesn't change but you feel leaner and fitter and healthier.  This is much more important than some arbitrary number on the scales which will always change day to day.

My other thought about losing weight is that making the number on the scales go down isn't the real victory.  The real achievement is in finding a way of eating and exercising that works for you.  That you can keep up for the LONG term.  1200 cals and hours at the gym just isn't going to be a long term possibility for most people.  So, don't focus on short term results (you've already done a great job, you should be congratulating yourself!) but start to make a long term plan.
I wish I had done this 20 years ago when I was in my 20s, I would be much healthier now.

#5 Donuts08

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:40 PM

how much did you weigh to start with?

#6 Libertine

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:43 PM

Maybe you need to mix up your exercise routine a bit? Challenge yourself a bit more?

Couple of ideas - forget the Pump class and start lifting free weights, get a trainer to show you correct form then set some goals to get stronger. As we all know muscle burns more calories so gaining muscle is a good thing for weight loss.

Or up the cardio. Pick a longish race/event (depending on how far you are running just now you could pick a 10km or a half marathon) and start following a running plan that involves 2 easy run, one speed session and one long run a week. The speed session and long run in particular can really torch through the calories.

You also might want to talk to someone re your diet. 1200 calories is not very much, I know not everyone agrees but some theories suggest that the body can get 'used' to a low level of calories (yes the starvation theory lol) so you might in fact have to eat a little more to keep losing weight.

#7 ~kacee~

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:45 PM

I find I lose weight better when I have a big breakfast - eggs etc, then have small meals for lunch and dinner. It's tempting not to eat much in the morning, but breakfast kickstarts my metabolism.

#8 Just Steph

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:49 PM

Maybe you aren't eating enough cals. maybe your body is going into starvation mode and holding onto what you have left because it thinks you aren't getting enough.

#9 veggiepatchfamily

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:55 PM

I know a lot of people won't agree with this but I am a believer in a well timed and planned fast for 48 hours.
I think sometimes when you hit a plateau it can help shake things up.
Your not doing it for long enough to have health issues or go into starvation mode etc.
There is lots of ways to do a short fast.
If that was something that would interest you I'd suggest finding some credible websites.

#10 emlis22

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:58 PM

You might be eating too much/the wrong foods at night! You should consume the calories when your body is going to burn them. In other words, I would avoid large, carb rich dinners - you don't need the energy to sleep. I try to keep my calories under 300 for dinner.

#11 RiverOfDreams

Posted 05 February 2013 - 01:00 PM

I'm not a health expert, but I wouldn't be reducing calories below 1200.  I use My Fitness Pal (MFP) and there are daily discussions on this topic in their forums.  

My 'layman's' understanding of what some people are saying is that if you continue at a low calorie rate your body adjusts, and although it's not starvation mode, it's kind of like preservation / storage mode.  

There are a lot of advocates on MFP who think you should eat more than your BMR but less that your TDEE (Total Daily Energy Expenditure). I still haven't got my head around it so won't even try to explain, but if you're interested seek out the forums on MFP.

#12 TwoHeadedGirl

Posted 05 February 2013 - 01:01 PM

Thanks everyone for your ideas!
I was 70kgs when I started trying to lose weight, I'm 55kgs now and would like to get down to 50kgs possibly. I'm only short, 155cm, so I think that's still a healthy goal.

I don't drink alcohol at all, or rarely. I think the last time was my birthday almost 6 months ago. Daily I just drink water, coffee or tea. If I have milk I make sure to factor this into my calories.

I think I will try and save up for a few PT sessions at my gym to see if they can mix up my work out ideas. I am really limited to when I can exercise because I don't have a lot of support from people to watch my kids so my walk/run I do at 4am and I just don't h e the energy at that time for more intensity. I try to push myself more when I'm at the gym so I consider those my real workouts.

I have been using My Fitness Pal to work out my calories in an out so I know that my exercise can sometimes not burn too many calories but I feel like it's better than nothing. I try to focus more on eating healthy as opposed to just counting calories so some days it could be more or less but I don't think it would be healthy for me to eat less than I already do so maybe I will try and up the intensity of my workouts.

Thanks again for the replies, if anyone else has any ideas I'd love to hear them!

#13 ~flaxen~

Posted 05 February 2013 - 01:01 PM

I would also mix up  and ramp up your exercise routine a bit. Change up your classes...try RPM or Body Attack, put up your weights in Pump and/or get a trainer to set up a weights program for you that is reviewed regularly
With the running/walking...run for longer, walk less, throw in a few short sprints, incorporate hills, or like a PP suggested pick a race as a goal and train for that.

Edited by ~flaxen~, 05 February 2013 - 01:01 PM.

#14 millej13

Posted 05 February 2013 - 01:01 PM

Eat more- 1200 calories is ridiculous- try bumping it up to 1800 and introducing some weight training - someone mentioned this earlier in the thread

Lift weights- heavy weights. Studies show weight lifting burns more calories long term than cardio - plus your body needs to burn more calories to maintain muscle mass, so your furnace will be burning more calories the stronger you are

If you're eating clean, drinking at least 2 liters water per day, and eating 5-6 times a day, you should be ok

Plus- try not to follow the scale too much- it may be that you're building muscle- remember the body cannot lose weight and put on muscle at the same time - although if you're eating at 1200 calories, your body doesn't have enough fuel to really build muscle anyway

What is your weight? How did you come up with your goal weight?

#15 kez71

Posted 05 February 2013 - 01:08 PM

1200 calories does sound very minimal to me and youre doing the right exercise. id say you need to change things around a bit. maybe go and see a dietician or fitness coach and see what they have to say.
I remember back when i did weight watchers a few years ago i hit plataus a lot and was told to try things like eating fish as my only meat for a few days, or eat all vegies raw . Just change something that you always do to something else.

#16 auntpriscilla

Posted 05 February 2013 - 01:11 PM


Edited by Willoughby Chase, 24 February 2013 - 08:46 PM.

#17 Phoenix Blue

Posted 05 February 2013 - 01:56 PM

Just another idea... Michelle bridges has what she calls 'accelerator days'. These days are slightly lower in calories, and almost carb free I think. You do 1 day a week and I think it's on your exercise rest day (as you won't have as much energy for a big workout).

Anyway, it's about shaking your diet up a bit, so your body doesn't know what to expect.

If you get her book Losing the last 5kg, she goes into more detail there.

Also, I'd say your in a bit of a fitness rut with your body very adapted to what you do. I'd say try some body attack, free heavy weights, spin class, or something different that will challenge your body.

#18 StudyMum

Posted 05 February 2013 - 02:01 PM

Another who suggests upping your calories and adding weights to your gym routine.

#19 jessie123

Posted 05 February 2013 - 02:43 PM

Track everything religiously for a few days. Weigh everything. If your not doing this its very easy to underestimate how much your really eating.

#20 emlis22

Posted 05 February 2013 - 02:46 PM

QUOTE (Phoenix Blue @ 05/02/2013, 02:56 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Just another idea... Michelle bridges has what she calls 'accelerator days'. These days are slightly lower in calories, and almost carb free I think. You do 1 day a week and I think it's on your exercise rest day (as you won't have as much energy for a big workout).

Anyway, it's about shaking your diet up a bit, so your body doesn't know what to expect.

If you get her book Losing the last 5kg, she goes into more detail there.

I like this. I'm currently doing her crunchtime cook book meal plan (which are less than 1200 and I'm definitely not starving and am losing weight). Her literature is really helpful (IMO) and her books are very well priced (go to Coles).

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