Am I doing something wrong?

  • sfboy987

    Posts: 212

    Sep 07, 2008 9:11 PM GMT
    For the past 6 weeks I've been working on losing body fat, and I haven't really seen any serious results yet. Yea I know it takes a while to see results, but it does kinda discourage me. I've been sticking to an 1900-2000 calorie diet to lose 2 pounds a week. Several people on these forums have told me that's too few calories, so might that be one reason I haven't seen any results? I've been cutting down on carbs, and also making fat and protein a third of diet respectively. I've been eating fruits, vegetables, tons of chicken, turkey, whole grain cereal, yogurt, almonds, milk, granola bars, etc. A lot of this food is organic. I have like one or two cheat meals a week, but nothing to bad mostly mexican food. I've been lifting weights at least 3 times a week following a workout my friend gave me. I didn't really do cardio for the first month, but for the past 2 weeks I've doen cardio at least 3 times a week (just 30 minutes on the treadmill). I get the feeling I'm doing something wrong, or that this isn't good enough. AM I doing something wrong? If you any need any stats or other from me, please ask. I'm 5'7, 160 lbs, 19 yr old. Any advice will really help thanks!
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    Sep 07, 2008 9:52 PM GMT
    Brace yourself... you're gonna get a shitload of advice on here. So I'll just toss my hat in before you get buried in it. icon_wink.gif

    Check out some of my previous posts on what I did to do the same thing as you. I was going for a pretty dramatic look of keeping muscularity while being as lean as possible. Mostly I cut out fats and most carbs, upped my protein, and split meals into about 5 sessions a day supplemented by snacks of fruit, raw almonds, and beef jerky.

    But that's what I did for me, my body type, and what I was going for in terms of looks and weight. It might be different for you. But in the end losing weight is fairly simple: eat leaner/less fat/less sugars smaller portions more frequently, and workout/exercise more.
    Good luck dude.
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    Sep 07, 2008 10:19 PM GMT
    Sounds like the only thing you're doing wrong is being impatient. Keep at it, try a little harder and keep your eyes off the scale.
  • sfboy987

    Posts: 212

    Sep 07, 2008 10:39 PM GMT
    Wait I thought you're supposed to keep up a good amount of fat cause it raises the testerone levels or something? Am I supposed to take in less fat? Oh and yea I know I'm really impatient, but I'm also posted this in case I actually am doing something wrong.
  • MuslDrew

    Posts: 463

    Sep 08, 2008 1:12 AM GMT
    When I want to speed up my fat loss I eat mostly protein & vegetables, small amounts of oatmeal at breakfast, brown rice or small sweet potato at lunch. for the time being, I'd lay off the yogurt, milk, almonds & granola bars. I've also done as much as 45 minutes of cardio, twice a day. I didn't do that very day. And this would be for short term, not a long term lifestyle.
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    Sep 08, 2008 1:25 AM GMT
    I agree with McGay about the scale... don't get too caught up in the number. Just be patient and the results will come.
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    Sep 08, 2008 2:24 AM GMT
    Hey SFBoy, I did some research and read up on other posts you'd made on here already; it looks like you've already gotten tons of really good advice. BFG1 in particular gave you some really good advice here:

    My partner is about 5 inches taller than you, but had about the same bf% that you did. He started seeing a trainer, and she put him on a 1500 calorie a day meal plan. With all of the extra uncounted's (cream in coffee, ketchup on stuff, sauce on other stuff), I would guess that he was actually eating about 1700 or so a day. He did that, 3 x 1 hour long runs a week, plus two full body workouts with weights a week. Doing that, he managed to lose about 1.5 pounds of weight a week. I know for a fact that he was putting on muscle, so the overall weight loss, while a good ego massage, didn't tell him the whole story.

    So, what am I trying to say?
    1) Listen to what others have said; don't go (just) by the scale
    2) Consider lowering your daily calorie intake, until you start seeing results on the scale
    3) If you're focusing on losing weight, make sure that everything you do is intense! Run for a loooong time and lift heavy weights, or do other intense cardio.

    You don't actually mention whether or not you have been losing 2 pounds a week. Have you? If you have, that's great progress!

    If you haven't, change things up. Life's too short. You should be able to lose at least a pound a week on average. So some weeks 2, some weeks 0, but on average, you should be able to lose at least 1 pound a week.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 21028

    Sep 08, 2008 4:17 AM GMT
    Portion control is key...when you say you've been "eating tons" of something, it raises a red flag. I know you didn't mean that literally, but...

    Make sure you are drinking a lot of water throughout the day, as it will keep your appetite at bay. Also, have healthy snacks to nibble on like almonds, an apple, banana, etc., but don't over eat those either. 5 meals a day really can work, but they have to be small meals. Also, no late night eating allowed, and stick to only protein after 6pm.

    The other key factor is exercise, specifically cardio. Spinning classes do wonders if they have them at your gym, but start out only doing 15 minutes of the class, then work up to 20 minutes, then 25, and so on, until you can get through the full 45 minute class. It may take you several months to get the endurance up to get to being able to do the full class, but don't get discouraged. It is more important to do 15 minutes and give it 100%, then a full class that you give 50%. You will get stronger with each passing week, and the results will come if you can be patient and dedicated.

    Good luck, buddy!
  • sfboy987

    Posts: 212

    Sep 08, 2008 8:44 AM GMT
    Ok I don't mean to complain, but people on this post are completely throwing me off. First I read that I should maintain a 2000 or more caloric diet and now you guys are telling me to eat less? I'm particularly confused by some of the stuff "unclevername" said. From what I read and what others have told me, eating less burns away lean muscle doesn't it? I don't want to lose muscle, that's why I'm specifically saying I want to lose body fat and not weight. Also, I thought running long distances can also burn muscle? I know I sound impatient, but I am trying to do this for the long run not the short run. I do appreciate the help, but it's frustrating how I'm hearing so many different things.
  • sfboy987

    Posts: 212

    Sep 08, 2008 8:52 AM GMT
    Oh and I'm also really keen on what you guys think about fat intake? I read this article on men's health that says you should make fat a third of your diet if you wanna lose body fat. However, people on this post say different. Any advice on this? Oh and btw this also the article I followed to set up my diet.
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    Sep 08, 2008 8:55 AM GMT
    Keep in mind that you're hearing different things because bodies work differently. Each person is telling you what has worked for them. It's going to take a bit of experimentation for you to figure out what works best for you. So just try different things. If anything, at least you won't get bored with doing the same workouts week after week, and neither will your body.
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    Sep 08, 2008 10:56 PM GMT
    Sorry if I confused you more SFBoy. Not my intention.

    Keep in mind that you haven't posted any pics, which makes it harder for people to give you advice tailored to you.

    Here goes again:

    1) Nobody has a magic bullet for you, so that's why you are getting different and sometimes conflicting information. Badcat is right; everyone's body works differently, so what works for me might not work for you.

    2) The simplest way to look at it is that to lose weight, you need to have a caloric deficit. If you want to gain weight, you need to have a caloric excess. For that simple rule to be useful for you, you have to know how many calories you need each day to survive, and if you want to lose weight, eat less than that, and if you want to gain weight, eat more than that.

    3) Others have mentioned this before, but I'll re-iterate: it's not very easy to lose body fat while not losing muscle. If that's what you want to do, using the scale is a terrible way to measure progress. How will you know what type of weight you lost? Did you lose muscle, or fat?

    4) Focus on either putting on muscle, or on losing weight.

    If you focus on putting on muscle, and eat cleanly, your body fat % will go down, even as your weight goes up. You'll need to measure your body fat % though in order to know if you're packing on muscle or just more fat. The advice I gave you in my first post is not for putting on muscle the fastest way.

    If you focus on losing weight first, then make sure you eat less calories than you need, and do lots of exercise intensely each week. The easy thing about trying to lose weight is that you can go by the scale, and the mirror. Your muscles will look bigger even if they get smaller when you lose weight.

    And considering the stats that you posted (maybe on another forum), it doesn't sound like you're at the point where you need to be super smart and diligent about how you do things. I think it's going to be more effective, and ultimately keep your morale up better, if you just focus on doing tons of exercise and eating a low calorie diet. This alone will make your body really efficient, and when you've lost enough body fat percentage, your body will respond nicely to the increased calories you'll want to consume to bulk up with muscle.

    Hope that helps. If I have confused you more, I apologize again, and suggest that you ignore what I've posted icon_smile.gif