Safe pace to lose weight

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2008 1:45 PM GMT
    Hi there

    OK, so after battling for the last four months with some health issues and finally finding a doctor that believes I can get better ... I'm faced with a monumental challenge ...

    I have to lose 88lb ... the doctor and personal trainer feel this can be done by end of June 2009 - that's about 12.5lb a month. (the excess weight is becoming a huge problem for my back, liver, pancreas ... especially the stomach)

    My concern is that this is too fast. Also, I'm rather interested in losing FAT instead of weight. I"m currently 34% body fat (using those machines at the gym, which frankly I don't trust either) and want to get down to 12% - 15% and be at a comfortable 155lb (height is 5:7 somewhere)

    What's a reasonable outcome?

    I live an incredibly sedentary life ... in the office from 7am to 9pm most days. Working on shifting the workload so I can finish work at 5pm like normal people. I am thinking of going to gym before work as the sun is up about 5am anyway ...

    I'd love feedback!

    RB
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2008 3:12 PM GMT
    NoNameGuy said
    rangerboy saidHi there

    OK, so after battling for the last four months with some health issues and finally finding a doctor that believes I can get better ... I'm faced with a monumental challenge ...

    I have to lose 88lb ... the doctor and personal trainer feel this can be done by end of June 2009 - that's about 12.5lb a month. (the excess weight is becoming a huge problem for my back, liver, pancreas ... especially the stomach)

    My concern is that this is too fast. Also, I'm rather interested in losing FAT instead of weight. I"m currently 34% body fat (using those machines at the gym, which frankly I don't trust either) and want to get down to 12% - 15% and be at a comfortable 155lb (height is 5:7 somewhere)

    What's a reasonable outcome?

    I live an incredibly sedentary life ... in the office from 7am to 9pm most days. Working on shifting the workload so I can finish work at 5pm like normal people. I am thinking of going to gym before work as the sun is up about 5am anyway ...

    I'd love feedback!

    RB


    You should lose as much weight as you can as fast as you can. And challenge those who would say otherwise to drag the equivalent of 88 lbs. around wherever they go and then get back to you.
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Nov 19, 2008 5:42 PM GMT
    rangerboy saidHi there

    OK, so after battling for the last four months with some health issues and finally finding a doctor that believes I can get better ... I'm faced with a monumental challenge ...

    I have to lose 88lb ... the doctor and personal trainer feel this can be done by end of June 2009 - that's about 12.5lb a month. (the excess weight is becoming a huge problem for my back, liver, pancreas ... especially the stomach)

    My concern is that this is too fast. Also, I'm rather interested in losing FAT instead of weight. I"m currently 34% body fat (using those machines at the gym, which frankly I don't trust either) and want to get down to 12% - 15% and be at a comfortable 155lb (height is 5:7 somewhere)

    What's a reasonable outcome?

    I live an incredibly sedentary life ... in the office from 7am to 9pm most days. Working on shifting the workload so I can finish work at 5pm like normal people. I am thinking of going to gym before work as the sun is up about 5am anyway ...

    I'd love feedback!

    RB


    I'm 5'9" and at 207lbs I was 41.5% bodyfat. I've been on a fat loss plan with a trainer at the gym and in 10 weeks dropped to 194lbs and 31.5% bodyfat.

    My trainer uses calipers to measure my fat in 9 places and compares that to my weight.

    If you do have 88lbs to lose and have been carrying it a long time, I think 6 months to lose it and keep it off is a little too aggressive, unless you are a monster at the gym and really strict with your diet.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2008 6:13 PM GMT
    You might just want to try it and see how your body reacts without trying to push to a particular number. I know that a few of us on the Weightloss Challenge dropped over 20 lbs in 2 months, and did it in a healthy way. You're a little bit more aggressive than that, but just try it and see how you feel and how your body reacts.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2008 6:14 PM GMT
    The guideline I keep hearing is 1 lb. per week. The first or two you will lose a lot more.

    Best of luck.
  • Aquanerd

    Posts: 845

    Nov 19, 2008 6:21 PM GMT
    Do not use any advise you get from a complete strangler on an anonymous website. You have already made the first step in the right direction in finding a Doctor and a PT to help you get healthy. Only take this, and any other posts on this or any other forum, with a grain of salt.

    Here is my perceptive, as someone that has lost 160 pounds. It took me 90 weeks to get to this point. That is just under 2 lbs a week, and from everything I've read and heard from knowledgeable sources, 1 to 2 pounds to a good safe pace to lose weight.

    The quicker you lose weight the hire the chances of regaining it. If you pace your weight lose to get to you goal by the end of 2009, then you have a high likelihood of doing it through a change of lifestyle, which is the key to successful and sustained weight lose. Losing weight too fast can have be very unhealthy side effects, the stress you put on your heart and other organs through extreme weight lose, and the subsequent yoyoing that is highly likely to follow can far out weight the effect any excessive weight you currently have.

    One of the benefits to a slower weight lose pace aside from the health aspect is that the slower you lose, the less flabby skin you'll develop. icon_smile.gif
    Do not get me wrong, you will get loose skin, but when people hear I lost 160 pounds the one thing I always here is that it doesn't look like it. I'll still probably have to get some removed, but my Doctor said to use a little nip and tuck as a reward for keeping the weight off or a year.

    Bottom line is stick with the professionals that you trust. Use us as a "real world" resource of doing what they say.


    Congrats on beginning the quest, and feel free to contact me direct of you have any questions.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2008 6:22 PM GMT
    Most people can safely and healthily lose 2 lbs a week no problem. During the first quarter or so of your weight loss you may be able to push as much as 3 lbs per week, but back in clinical weight loss research we stressed that 2 was safer and played less havoc with your system.

    Once your tummy is nearly flat, weight loss should probably drop to 1 lb a week and then to 1/2 lb a week as abs start to appear.

    Remember that while exercise is very important, diet is primarily the only way you'll be losing weight.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2008 6:28 PM GMT
    [quote][cite]... I'll still probably have to get some [loose skin] removed, but my Doctor said to use a little nip and tuck as a reward for keeping the weight off or a year.[/quote]

    No need unless you're in a hurry to meet a photo op deadline and have money to line the pockets of plastic surgeons.

    "Loose skin" means one of two things:

    1) You still have fat yet to lose, a 'detached' layer deposit attached to the underside of your skin. You may have quite a few pounds of this yet to lose.

    2) Your weight loss was recent (within 1 to 4 years depending on the amount lost). Over time your skin will naturally tighten unless the loosening is because of advanced aging (senior citizen).

    Or both.

    As a general rule of thumb, the average person will see loose skin tighten in 1 year's time for every 50 lbs of fat they lost. So if you lost 200 lbs, it's going to be on average around 4 years for it to tighten up with all else equal. Please note that some people take double that time; some can do it in about half that time.


  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2008 6:31 PM GMT
    It took me about 18 months to loose 55 lbs. Slow and steady. Nothing radical or extreme. Changed my diet...portion control....common sense (like not starving yourself)....exercise (cardio, resistance?).....and also understanding your mind...boredom....why you eat....WHEN you eat...your emotions......

    It can be done. It's not that it's so hard, you just have to be smart and educated about it and focused.
  • MSUBioNerd

    Posts: 1813

    Nov 19, 2008 6:38 PM GMT
    The most commonly cited number is indeed the 1 pound a week, though I've seen others list 1.5 or even 2 pounds a week as sustainable. 12.5 per month, on the other hand, is really rapid, especially if you're counting on it being a long-term average. As has been mentioned before, picking advice from anonymous internet strangers isn't always the best idea. Have you tried telling the doctor and trainer not only that you're concerned it might be too fast but why you have those concerns? If you can ask questions which address specific concerns, you might be better able to communicate with these professionals who also know you and your specific situation.

    If you're stuck on articulating specific concerns, consider:

    "I want to be sure that I'm losing fat, not just weight in general, and high weight loss at the beginning will be a lot of water weight which won't be sustainable while high weight loss in a short period later on will probably mean I'm losing muscle,"

    "I know that my metabolism will shift as I change my eating and exercise habits, and I want to be sure that I don't prompt my body to go into starvation mode from having too high of a daily calorie deficit,"

    "I'm concerned that losing weight too rapidly will mean that my skin won't shrink as fast as the rest of me does, and the excess skin will demotivate me and interfere with the long-term goals," or

    "I'm worried that too high of expectations will make me feel as if I've failed and will cause me to go off track, while a slower, more sustained effort might actually accomplish my goals faster than something which is too intense for me to maintain,"

    You may find the doctor and personal trainer more responsive to your concerns when they're specific, so that way they aren't trying to guess whether it's just that you're not really committed to the change.

    Good luck
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2008 6:44 PM GMT
    I'm inclined to agree with Justin, and in my experience, over the years, around 2 pounds per week, is about the most one should drop off. It kind of depends how much fat you have, and how active you can and will be.

    Remember: it likely took years of bad behavior to end up in your mess. I wouldn't worry so much about about the rate, as about changing your lifestyle and realizing that being fat (not so much about weight, but, fat) is what kills folks in DROVES. Give yourself some time, It takes as long as it takes. The important part is to change from bad behavior to good behavior and to address any mental health issues that you may have that could have been contributing to your bad behavior.

    I wouldn't worry about the skin thing to much. It'll likely take care of itself, given some time, unless you're just incredibly obese and it doesn't sound like that.

    I noticed that you failed to post a start picture. If you're ashamed, or lazy, you need to fix either / or / both. Make sure you address the underlying mental health issues, and make a plan for success; learn everything you can (don't be lazy and just rely on one source,..do your research). Come to like yourself, and to not hide in the shadow, and realize that anything worth doing should be worth doing well. I'd venture a guess that your lack of activity / over-eating is symptomatic of a deeper, underlying, mental health issue.

    Track your progress.

    Even if you have an off week, plug away. Set small goals, and move towards them.

    Make sure your testosterone, T3/T4, and glucose tolerance, are where they should be. At 31, you are a prime candidate for HRT, and I've seen it help folks in remarkable ways.

    Dont' sweat the small shit. Get one foot front in front of the other, and get into motion. You got yourself into it, and you'll get yourself out.

    Make sure you include resistance training. It'll make things a bunch easier.

    Find a pro; someone who actually looks the part and isn't 12 years old. If you don't like them, get rid of them, and get someone else.

    Main thing: consistency, finding something you enjoy doing, identifying why you let yourself get so bad off (don't just fix the sympton, but fix the source, as well), setting goals and making a plan and executing it.

    Finally, remember that you may have to change your playmates, and play things. You can't hang out with fat folks, and food, and all that if you want to be successful. Study after study as shown that who we associate with is critical for success. (That makes sense to me, too.)
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Nov 19, 2008 6:45 PM GMT
    Aquanerd saidDo not use any advise you get from a complete strangler on an anonymous website. You have already made the first step in the right direction in finding a Doctor and a PT to help you get healthy. Only take this, and any other posts on this or any other forum, with a grain of salt.

    Here is my perceptive, as someone that has lost 160 pounds. It took me 90 weeks to get to this point. That is just under 2 lbs a week, and from everything I've read and heard from knowledgeable sources, 1 to 2 pounds to a good safe pace to lose weight.

    The quicker you lose weight the hire the chances of regaining it. If you pace your weight lose to get to you goal by the end of 2009, then you have a high likelihood of doing it through a change of lifestyle, which is the key to successful and sustained weight lose. Losing weight too fast can have be very unhealthy side effects, the stress you put on your heart and other organs through extreme weight lose, and the subsequent yoyoing that is highly likely to follow can far out weight the effect any excessive weight you currently have.

    One of the benefits to a slower weight lose pace aside from the health aspect is that the slower you lose, the less flabby skin you'll develop. icon_smile.gif
    Do not get me wrong, you will get loose skin, but when people hear I lost 160 pounds the one thing I always here is that it doesn't look like it. I'll still probably have to get some removed, but my Doctor said to use a little nip and tuck as a reward for keeping the weight off or a year.

    Bottom line is stick with the professionals that you trust. Use us as a "real world" resource of doing what they say.


    Congrats on beginning the quest, and feel free to contact me direct of you have any questions.


    have you tried any essential fatty acid supplements? I've been told they can help skin rebound a bit.
  • Aquanerd

    Posts: 845

    Nov 19, 2008 6:51 PM GMT
    americanjustin said[quote][cite]... I'll still probably have to get some [loose skin] removed, but my Doctor said to use a little nip and tuck as a reward for keeping the weight off or a year.


    No need unless you're in a hurry to meet a photo op deadline and have money to line the pockets of plastic surgeons.

    "Loose skin" means one of two things:

    1) You still have fat yet to lose, a 'detached' layer deposit attached to the underside of your skin. You may have quite a few pounds of this yet to lose.

    2) Your weight loss was recent (within 1 to 4 years depending on the amount lost). Over time your skin will naturally tighten unless the loosening is because of advanced aging (senior citizen).

    Or both.

    As a general rule of thumb, the average person will see loose skin tighten in 1 year's time for every 50 lbs of fat they lost. So if you lost 200 lbs, it's going to be on average around 4 years for it to tighten up with all else equal. Please note that some people take double that time; some can do it in about half that time.


    [/quote]

    Thanks for that info. I think my extra skinis a bit of both. Still have about 10 pounds of fat to lose. I knew that I had a year at lest to wait on the skin firming up, but hadn't heard that it might be as long as 4, so I'll keep that in mind.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 20, 2008 3:01 PM GMT
    americanjustin said[quote][cite]... I'll still probably have to get some [loose skin] removed, but my Doctor said to use a little nip and tuck as a reward for keeping the weight off or a year.


    No need unless you're in a hurry to meet a photo op deadline and have money to line the pockets of plastic surgeons.

    "Loose skin" means one of two things:

    1) You still have fat yet to lose, a 'detached' layer deposit attached to the underside of your skin. You may have quite a few pounds of this yet to lose.

    2) Your weight loss was recent (within 1 to 4 years depending on the amount lost). Over time your skin will naturally tighten unless the loosening is because of advanced aging (senior citizen).

    Or both.

    As a general rule of thumb, the average person will see loose skin tighten in 1 year's time for every 50 lbs of fat they lost. So if you lost 200 lbs, it's going to be on average around 4 years for it to tighten up with all else equal. Please note that some people take double that time; some can do it in about half that time.


    [/quote]

    Seriously? I thought the loose skin was a lost cause.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 21, 2008 12:28 AM GMT
    @Aquanerd & NoNameGuy:

    Here's a test you can do on "loose skin":

    Pinch it.

    Skin isn't all that thick, test this by pinching the skin on your forearms on both sides of the forearm. How thick is that?

    The skin you're pinching there is very similar to the type of skin on you belly and sides.

    If the skin on your belly and sides is a lot thicker feeling, then you've got a good deal of fat adhered to the underside of the skin, which is different than abdominal fat packed on top of your abs and which doesn't "slide around with your skin".

    It's harder for skin to 'shrink' if its area is being kept spread out (into larger area) in order to support fat deposits beneath and attached to your dermis. Losing this fat will rapidly accelerate how fast your skin shrinks and tightens up.

    And yeah, the closer you get to visible six pack the harder each additional bit of fat is to lose, but it can and will happen in time and with proper diet regimen.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 21, 2008 12:31 AM GMT
    Oh.. forgot to mention the other result:

    So if you pinch your belly skin and it's rather thin thus indicating you've got little to no subdermal fat attached to the dermis, then the skin should be in the process of tightening up rapidly (1 to 2 years tops). If its not, then the skin is damaged due to advanced aging (typical among senior citizens) or damaged heavily due to sun exposure (which can happen in younger people who tan frequently).

    Damaged skin will not tighten as well and may require surgery. Normally surgery should be delayed for 2 years to give the body a chance to tighten naturally as surgery carries risks both financial as well and physical.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 29, 2008 7:23 PM GMT
    Hi there from another South African, now living in Canada. I'm by no means an expert in fitness but I can share my own experience which supports a lot of the points made in earlier posts.

    To start with, losing weight needs to be part of an overall lifestyle change. It involves a good self-analysis about how you got to where you are now - and a really good plan for where you want to be. A man who works until 9pm every night is missing out on all the things he could be doing with that extra time. It's probably tough to maintain friendships, a relationship or other interests and hobbies when you get home exhausted.

    Changing your eating is critical - and should not be seen as a short-term change to lose the weight - but an ongoing nutritional plan to enhance and maintain your health into the future. Exercise works best when you find something you really enjoy. As long as you're moving your body and breathing. Finding an exercise buddy - or even doing it virtually here on RJ - is a great way to stay motivated. I know it's helped me.

    I personally struggle with depression, and its side effects, which include fatigue, lack of hope and motivation, are deadly when it comes to maintaining a good exercise and nutritional program. I have to literally force myself to act in exactly the opposite way to what I feel like doing (staying in bed all day surfing the net). But I have managed to go down from 200 to 187 and stay there. I chek into RJ every day as well as another brilliant site called www.sparkpeople.com.

    All the best to you, maaitjie.
  • JohnDallas

    Posts: 87

    Nov 29, 2008 7:49 PM GMT
    The plan from your trainer does sound reasonable. However as others have pointed out in order for that goal to be reached that quickly you are going to ave to make some major lifestyle changes. Your diet will have to be near perfect and you will have to exercise as directed by your trainer more than likely atleast 6 days a week. Since you are a beginner you will work up to that. But if you are dedicated to the goal and make the proper lifestyle changes you can achieve it.