The TRUTH About Your Weight….
I got an email from Jenn, headline subject “Discouraged” and what she wrote to ask me about echoes what I hear from many people right around the first week or two of following a program.
I’m doing your 30 day challenge and I bought your meal plan as well. I was on a very unhealthy path of eating crap every day and feeling awful, like I was waiting to have a heart attack or something.
I have 2 little ones so I knew I had to snap out of it. I have been doing so awesome sticking to the food and getting in every work out.
I had great results last week. Down 5lbs and 6.4 inches. This week I was a tad discouraged with my results I stuck to the meal plans and work outs….Is it normal for results (weight) to slow down like this right away? Am I eating too little or not enough?
Hopefully chat soon.
First, let’s celebrate how well Jenn is doing.
She made a MAJOR difference during her first week swapping out unhealthy processed foods for healthy, whole foods. She’s stuck to a consistent exercise plan. But she’s now feeling discouraged because she didn’t see an additional 6.4 inch decrease in the next 7 days and another 5lb drop in weight.
So let’s talk about our weight.
“Weight” by itself is a poor indicator of body composition. Your weight is simply a number that tells you how much the combined tissues, fluids, bones, muscle and fat in your body weigh – but it doesn’t tell you the breakdown of these different things.
Muscle and fat are very different in your body. A pound of fat and a pound of muscle weigh exactly the same thing, but they take up very different amounts of space in your body.
Muscle is denser and more compact than fat, and takes up less space. Fat takes up more space and is looser. If you gained a pound of muscle, your body would look different than if you gained a pound of fat.
For instance, check out Sofia’s post about how she looks different (leaner) but weighs more:
This is what a lot of people are after but may not understand that the scale weight isn’t going to show you these body composition details and changes, and that our expectation of how fast this is all going to happen may need a little adjustment.
When you change your eating to one with a greater focus on whole foods, you’ll initially lose some fat your body was holding onto from inflammation created from the junk in you used to eat more regularly, and after that initial drop, you’ll experience a more gradual weight reduction over the coming weeks if you stick to a healthy eating plan.
If you add exercise regularly like Jen did, your results will also include shifts in your body composition to more lean muscle, which means that as you lose body fat and gain muscle your body will reflect that look on the outside – you’ll become more compact.
This doesn’t necessarily translate to “you’ll weigh a lot less all at once” though.
Some common mistakes I see people make are the following:
- Getting discouraged because they feel they aren’t losing enough weight
- Getting discouraged because they are comparing their body and speed of result to other people’s – who they don’t actually know the health history, full story, metabolic health, etc).
- Switching programs after a week or two because they don’t think they’re getting fast enough results which often causes an adverse physiological response and can increase weight gain as there is often a lag period in which the individual gives up before starting over – known as the bottom of the roller coaster.
- Getting stressed about the expected results and how fast they’re going to happen causes stress hormones to rise, which promotes storage of more belly fat, decreases our ability to get good rest (another way to pack on more fat), and decreases quality of life and life enjoyment.
Every choice you make creates a chain reaction that reverberates throughout your cells, organs, tissues and brain.
Remember that you may be dealing with a fatigued system, a system that has been inflamed for a while, a system with some hormone imbalances, a lowered resting metabolic rate or hormone imbalance from too much sugar or other health concerns.
You can’t expect it to bounce back overnight.
That’s why it’s important to pace yourself. Shift your focus to how you can nourish your body and support your energy output, rather than seeing food as something you need to eat less of to be smaller.
No matter what program you follow, there is NO “one size fits all” amount of food. Your needs are going to change daily.
If you’re eating whole foods and following my system for optimizing your intake of the RIGHT nutrients, you absolutely cannot get this wrong.
But you’re not going to drop 20 pounds in a week. You didn’t GAIN 20 pounds in a week, right?
Love your body along the way as it does its thing, and continue to support yourself along the way. To see the best result on the outside, get engaged with what you’re putting INSIDE your body.
To see the best result on the outside, get engaged with what you’re putting INSIDE your body.
You don’t have to become a nutritionist to do this right, either. You also don’t need to try every fad diet out there, count every calorie, track every bite of your food, or eliminate everything you like every day forever and always! Haha.
You can and should start out by understanding:
…..what the best food sources of them are, how to make them into tasty meals and have a strategy to save you money on those foods so you can spend more money and time on the other things you want to do.
For the best results, combine your healthy eating with fitness….and if you don’t see your weight drop rapidly but you’re taking your progress pics you WILL see your body start to change. Look for those signs.
I’ll see you soon…be sure to check out my healthy eating system The Body Fuel System…and get started with one of my amazing fitness programs to put all this great information together as soon as possible!
Have a story to share or a comment to add? I love hearing from you. Join the discussion below!