Weight Loss Plateau

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 19, 2007 4:44 PM GMT
    I need a bit of help here, I've lost about 28 pounds since the beginning of the year. I still have about 5-10 more to go...I'm running 30-35 miles a week and I'm doing the 12 week workout program now, but I've been lifting weights consistently for 2-3 years. I haven't lost an ounce in about 3 weeks and it's getting frustrating. My caloric intake has been the same as it has been since I stopped drinking in April. I'm not doing anything stupid like crash dieting and then binging on junk, I have not taken any fat burners either. Does anyone have experience with this? Have I just reached my ideal body weight? Should I just be happy with what I've accomplished and accept it? How can I break through this plateau and reach what I think would be my ideal body weight? BTW, I have a scale that measures body fat, the numbers on there haven't changed either.
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    Jun 19, 2007 10:49 PM GMT
    Yes, I have the same problem. I have been losing 18 kilo eversince I try to lose weight earlier this years, then I stop and just remain at this weight. No matter what I do , it just refuse to go down further. What can I do? Please advise.
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    Jun 19, 2007 11:21 PM GMT
    Same happened to me. Body hit 16% body fat and decided that it wouldn't lose any more. I finally decided that it was better to accept my 45 year old body as it is instead of beating myself up for not looking like a 20 year old.
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    Jun 20, 2007 5:45 AM GMT
    don't give up. i think your body has acclimated to your present workout/diet. change your workout. throw in some interval training. do some sprints instead of long distance running. do some gymnastic/bodyweight exercises that work your whole body. are you working out your whole body or just doing preacher curls on a machine? are you eating at least 6x a day? change change change and your weight will change. good luck.
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    Jun 20, 2007 9:57 AM GMT
    No but what you do need to do is get wise about weightloss or your true goal which is fat loss.

    Exercise and specificly running is the most inefficient way of losing fat but running is great for losing muscle.

    Think of it like this you are running for what say 3/4 hour a go so thats an average in my experience of between 400-500 calories burnt. Whereas it takes seconds not to eat that in the first place and you could have spent that time in the gym working the muscles hard to maintain them.

    Now you say you have kept the same level of calorie intake since you started. Whys that? Whats your thought process behind that? The body will adjust to the level of calories received. Initialy as with any new fitness routine you will lose weight as the body adjusts to its new demands. But once it realises what it needs then it no longer sheds the weight but retains fat for the days where you work that just a bit harder.

    Average weight loss over an extended period and we are talking 6 weeks plus is in 90% of cases 2 to 2 1/2lbs a week. Yuo are right to steer away from the fat burners as they make very little difference ounces if anything but in most cases nothing.

    So you have choices here going ahead:

    1) Take the inefficient route and add more training, as you have seen the level of return v effort gets frustrating after a while especialy when you do plateu

    2) Change your calorie intake. Its hard to know what you are one a calorie intake needs to be matched to your training ideally you dont want your calorie intake to drop below 1400 and certainly not at the activity level you are doing. But say you are on 2400 per fay (2500 being maintenance) then follow this cycle changing it weekly not daily:

    a) week 1 2400
    b) week 2 2200
    c) week 3 2300
    d) week 4 2100

    and so on and so forth until you hit your minimum predetermined level. (Depending on your height, weight and LBM)when you hit minimum readjust your calorie intake you probably need to start at 2200 then and repeat the cycle 200 down 100 up.

    Lets have a look at your nutrition, training schedule and also confirm your water intake. 2 litres a day is baselin hydration to allow the body to effectively metabolise fat. Rule of thumb is add an addition litre for every hour of sport. But if you are serious about this then 4 litres per day should be your baseline goal. If you are going all the way to a 6 pack then its gonna work out at building up to 7 litres a day. (see Dr Timothy Dardens philosophy on HIT and superhydration)

    Hope this helps, it helped me lose over 75 lbs and hundreds others who followed after
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    Jun 20, 2007 7:01 PM GMT
    Some things that I forgot to mention.

    1. I quit drinking alcohol a couple of months ago...I was drinking about 3 beers a day. Could this plateau simply be my body being balanced back out. I know alcohol inhibits muscle growth and it dehydrates you so water weight tends to fluctuate like crazy depending on hydration levels.

    2. I'm a competitive runner, so these last few pounds are for the sake of facilitating injury prevention and performance rather than the sake of vanity (although looking good with my shirt off would be a nice side effect).

    3. I eat healthy. My diet consists of lean meats, vegetables, fruits, sports bars.

    BFG, the only way you're going to burn muscle by running is if you don't fuel appropriately before and after you run same thing as with body building, you have to feed your muscles in order to get the results you want to see. I do see your point, people exercise blindly all of the time, I've been back running for 5 years, and have read a lot...I'm definitely not one of those people.

    The change in diet suggestion's good, and easily enough accomplished since I keep track of my caloric intake through fitday.com.
  • DiverScience

    Posts: 1426

    Jun 20, 2007 8:07 PM GMT
    Things to remember:

    Your body will get used to whatever you do to it. So you may have to eat more for a little while (and maybe gain a pound or two) before you can get it to wake up and burn more.

    The more fat you lose the harder it is to lose the rest without also burning your muscle (which is the source of your fatburning power). This means weight loss WILL slow down as you progress, no matter what, simply because you cannot support the same caloric deficit at 10% bodyfat that you can at 20%

    Do not cut out all fats. If you do your body will switch into fat storing mode because your body *needs fat to survive.* Remember, for example, that your brain is mostly fat. You must eat some fat to burn fat. Olive oil, almonds, and such are good sources of fat burning fat.

    While overloading carbs is bad, so it cutting them out entirely. Eating some carbs at the right time helps fuel your body enabling it to burn more fat.
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    Jun 21, 2007 4:27 PM GMT
    i've lost over 110 pounds and have hit many platueas, sometimes your body just plateaus after losing a certian amount of weight, you just need to keep with the plan and eventually your body will be done balancing out and youll lose again. sometimes you need to take a step out and look at all the pieces, try a food journal for a week then examine it, if there is an area you could work on or substitute for healthier options then you'll know. maybe you just need to step up your cardio a little bit more. do some experiementing, sometimes you just need to change to kickstart your loses again, good luck
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    Jun 22, 2007 2:59 AM GMT
    Diver- That all makes sense, thanks.

    Requiem- 110 lbs? Wow!

    I'm switching things with my diet and exercise around a little bit I noticed I tend to eat a lot bread as a side to my larger meals, so I'm going to try an extra helping of vegetables and see if that does any good. I'm also upping my mileage a little bit. I really don't have much further to go.
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    Jun 23, 2007 8:21 PM GMT
    keep us updated i wanted to know if the changes helped
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    Jul 01, 2007 6:48 AM GMT
    They have, I weighed in this morning at 181.5 and I've moved from the 3rd to 4th notch on the belt I wear to work and the body fat reading was 13%, down from 14%. Great suggestions.