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Q and A: No Weight Loss

Posted Nov 20 2009 10:00pm

Hi Kelly-
I have a question for you. I do Zumba and kickboxing 3-5 times per week and strength train twice weekly (with a trainer) and have been on this schedule since May 2009. I was eating 1300-1500 calories daily but switched to 1500 daily the beginning of October. I’m 5′2 and 176. The thing is this: I have not lost any weight. From May until now, I’ve only lost 6 pounds. My body fat percentage has gone down 8% during this time as well, but I’m really discouraged. I’ve been honest with myself and I know I’m right on with my eating and workouts. I’m just confused as to what is going on. I’m working out and eating right to be healthy, but at the same time I would like to lose some weight as I know that’s part of being healthy. I’ve talked to my trainer and she seems to be just as unsure about what is going on as I am. Any thoughts?

Thanks so much! By the way, I love your blog!

Yeah, this is a hard one, because obviously your trainer has a better idea of what you are doin than I do, and if she’s stumped, Im probably not going to be much help.

To have your body fat go down 8% (which is huge- congrats!) and there be little weight loss is odd, but not unheard of (and definitly frustrating.) 6 pounds is still a loss, though. I’m not going to be able to give you definite answer, but your weight for your height is quite high, and being at that weight, for what I assume is an extended period of time cause do some damage to your body and your metabolism. It might just take a while for your body to adapt to the changes, or there might be something going on.

The only things I can think of are:

- Are you weighing at the same time everyday- on an empty stomach?

- The calories (as long as they are within reason) aren’t as important as what you are eating. If you are eating a lot of starchy carbs- those stick with you for a while, or salt, which can cause water retention (which is usually in processed foods as opposed to the salt you are putting on top of you food- but that has a big effect, too)

- If you have any medical conditions, those may be a factor

- If you are on any medications, those may be a factor

Like I said, 6 pounds is still a loss. Its only been since October that you have upped your calories to 1500 (good job, 1300 is pretty low) so perhaps the switch will kick up your weight loss a bit. It takes a while for your body to adjust to a calorie change, but I would expect you should see some results soon.

If you trust your trainer, (that’s not a dig at her, some people really don’t think their trainers know what they are talking about, but stay with them anyway) I would go see a doctor just to make sure their aren’t any problems, but if you think your routine might not be intense enough, or the focus you are looking for, then see a different trainer to look over your routine and diet to make sure that its the right program for you.

Don’t beat yourself up,- you are probably doing most everything right, and by picking up an exercises habit, you are already way ahead of the game. Be happy you are making improvements on your body and try and focus on the other positive things that are changing, even if it might not be the fast weight loss you are looking for. Sometimes it takes a while for your body to respond.

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