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hug_of_war's avatar

My weight loss has slowed, I am discouraged and looking for advice?

Asked by hug_of_war (10725points) May 28th, 2011

I have lost 35 pounds since August, the healthy way, at a steady rate without much trouble. Now I am 10 pounds from a normal BMI. But I haven’t lost even a two-tenths of a pound in 2+ weeks. I have tried upping my protein, upping and changing my exercise, lowering my calories, I am sleeping better than ever, yet still the scale doesn’t budge. I pretty much want to throw it across the room every morning when it says 148.8.

I am seriously de-motivated, it is hard to keep eating healthy when the scale gives me nothing. I am ugly and still have a huge tummy so I don’t really feel better by thinking about how far I’ve come. I am just really, really frustrated and I know eating healthy is great but nothing will be as good for my health as a normal weight.

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14 Answers

chyna's avatar

You haven’t gained weight, so that is a huge motivator. It really sounds like you have done all the right things, so you are just at a standstill with your weight loss. Why don’t you try just weighing yourself once a week so you won’t be so frustrated. And along with your routine exercise add summer type fun things that are also exercise such as swimming, biking, and hiking. Congratulations on all your hard work.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

A few things could be adding to your frustration. If your weight has staid for the last few weeks then it could be your body storing water in sync with your periods and also since you’re young, you may be growing a little bit so the body is holding all it can to accomplish that.

Anytime your body holds weight you have to remind yourself it’s an organic machine, there’s a reason for it aside from wanting you to feel ugly and mad. Being female, your hormones will spark constant changes, prepping your now and then to be primed to get pregnant. It’s kind of scary and gross to some people but it’s true. Give yourself another month doing what you’re doing and see what happens.

Also, do you just jump on your scale or do you take measurements? Get a plastic/fabric measuring tape from the grocery or drugstore, they are usually cheapest if you buy the little sewing kit thingie which includes one of those tapes. Measure across your bust, directly under your bust, your waist (loop the tape around the smallest area and then let it out as you slide it down towards your hips and write down the largest measurement) and around your hips. Write your measurements down every week or however you want.

wookielove's avatar

How many times a day do you eat? That could possibly be another reason why you haven’t lost, if you’re not eating often enough throughout the day (they say 5 small meals is perfect).

Apart from that I agree with Neizvestnaya . There could be many reasons your body has hit a plateau, you just have to be patient and try and work with it.

Also what kind of exercise are you doing? If you’re not doing any resistance or weight training and are only sticking to cardio this might be another reason. Muscle really helps to burn fat, and although cardio is good for blasting calories, it doesn’t help to tone you or keep your body burning that much through out the day- or at least not as much as muscle does.

Hope that helps! As someone who is also on a weight loss journey I just wanted to tell you- don’t let yourself get discouraged. Try (as hard is it may be) to focus on the positive and really be happy that you’ve lost so much weight already! I had a friend that lost 120lbs, and was super skinny by the time I met her and she was always talking about how fat she was and how much more weight she needed to lose. She was fine and healthy, but her mentality of herself from when she was 240lbs kept getting her down.

Judi's avatar

You are probably eating and exercising at your maintenance calories. The less you weigh the less calories it takes to maintain your weight.
In order to continue to loose you are going to have to deficit your calorie intake and increase your calorie output. It sucks, but that’s what it will take.
A rough estimate to calculate maintenance calories is 10 calories per pound for women and 11 calories per pound for men.

hug_of_war's avatar

I can’t lower my calories lower than 1200, it’s not healthy. I said I’ve lowered calories if you read so that is no help to me, thanks anyway

marinelife's avatar

After a large weight loss, a plateau is normal. Two plus weeks is not a huge plateau at all. Your body is resting. If you keep to your plan, you will resume losing weight.

I suggest that you don’t wiegh every day, but once a week.

Here is an article from the Mayo Clinic on busting the plateau.

Sunny2's avatar

@marinelife said what I would say. Be patient with yourself and expect plateaus as your body gets used to its new weight. Keep up the good work!

filmfann's avatar

Losing weight and keeping it off are different things. It is easy to drop weight, but they will come back if you do that.
You are doing it smart. Keep on going.

Coloma's avatar

It’s called a ‘plateau’. It will shift again soon.

Just like gaining weight. You think ” Oh, I’ve been eating a lot for weeks and not gaining” then..BOOM! 10 lbs.registers practically overnight. haha

Same with weight loss.

Give it a few more weeks and then, BOOM! again…10 lbs. gone, practically overnight!

Don’t go by the scale, go by how you FEEL, and how your clothes fit!

jeleia's avatar

I know you’re eating healthy which is really good and I agree with the others that it is probably just a plateau which usually resolves itself after a while. Just a thought and I apologise if you have already thought of this – does any of the food you’re eating contain a lot of sugar? Sometimes when foods are “low-fat” they put more sugar in to give it flavour and this could be an issue with the plateau. You’d be surprised which so-called normal foods contain lots of sugar – for example bbq sauce contains more sugar than chocolate sauce!! And some breakfast cereals are over 20% sugar.
Other than that it sounds like you’re doing really well, good luck with your weight loss and health goals! :-)

Judi's avatar

@hug_of_war, do you weigh about 120? 1200 would be around the maintenance calories for 120. If you are wanting to continue to loose weight you would need to pump up the exercise calories.

Dutchess_III's avatar

It simply means that you have been eating exactly the amount of calories that it takes to maintain that weight. For example, let’s say that you weighed 170 when you started your diet. You began eating calories that would maintain you at 135, not 170. So you started losing till you hit 135. Now you’re maintaining at 135. You just need to cut a little something out, or change a little something that cuts back on your calorie intake and you’ll begin to lose again.

Way to go on the loss, though! It sounds like you did a fantastic job!

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Are you having restless sleep, stressed or anxious about something in particular lately. Stress makes the body want to protect, strengthen and prepare = stop everything and hold what you’ve got mode.

likipie's avatar

You’ve probably plateaued. When you’re trying to lose weight, you can only stick with the same thing for a limited amount of time before your body gets used to it and you stop losing weight. Let’s say you run 2 miles every morning after breakfast and you’re on a strict 1000 calorie diet. If you want to continue losing weight you can either up the exercise (instead of 2 miles, go 3 miles) and keep your calories the same. Or you can take a break from your workout/food schedule for a week (risking gaining a few pounds back) and start up again after the weeks over and that should help your weight loss continue. But if you’re just going on BMI, you probably don’t need to lose another 10 pounds. BMI is only accurate when used along with other things like measuring (waist, thighs, arms, etc.) and weighing yourself, but by itself, it’s not a good way to judge how much weight you need to lose in order to be at a healthy weight. I hope this helped a little!

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