When I first started my lifestyle change, notice I didn't say DIET, I was so ready to see some good numbers on the scale, but it didn't really happen for me. I couldn't figure out why. I was eating right, logging my food into SPARK, working out like a dog, and I would lose maybe 1 lb in a week. My muscles hurt so bad I wanted to curl up on the bed with a heating pad and cry. Then I started researching it. I found what I was looking for on www.SPARKPEOPLE.com.
(taken directly from the site)
I just started exercising to lose weight, but I've gained weight. Why did this happen?
It's true that many people either gain a little weight or don't see any change on the scale for as long as 4-6 weeks after making a significant change in their level of exercise. This is often explained as "gaining muscle while losing fat" but that isn't quite accurate. This extra weight is usually water.
When you start doing more exercise, your body begins storing more fuel in your muscle cells, where it can be used easily and quickly to fuel your workouts. The process of converting glucose (carbohydrates) into fuel that your muscles actually store and use (glycogen) requires three molecules of water for every molecule of glucose. As your muscles are building up glycogen stores, your body has to retain extra water for this purpose. That's what causes most of the initial weight gain or lack of weight loss. This is a good thing—not something to worry about.
However, despite what the scale says, you are actually losing fat during this time. The extra water retention will stop once your body has adjusted to its new activity level. At that point, the scale should start moving down. You'll end up with less fat, and muscles that can handle a larger amount of work.
Written by Dean Anderson, Certified Personal Trainer
So there's the answer! I was doing a good job. My muscles were holding that extra water. After I realized this a couple weeks ago, I did some measurements of myself. I've recently blogged about the inches lost in my waist, but I have more to tell now. I have lost a total of 6 inches (SO FAR) in my waist and 4 inches off my thighs. Isn't that amazing! Also, my body finally let go of all that extra water and I lost an incredible 4.8 lbs this week which puts me at a total loss of 16 lbs. I still have 24 lbs to go til I reach my goal, but I know I can do it. My muscles aren't near as sore anymore and I can still walk when it's time for bed, haha! I couldn't have done this without my support system or without all the knowledge SPARK has given me. It sure does feel good to have come this far and there's no way I'm stopping now!
So for those of you out there, and I know there are some, who haven't seen that number they were looking for on the scale, please get out the tape measure and take some measurements of yourself. Drink lots of water, your muscles need it! Listen to your clothes. It's not all about the scale!