Q & A: Last 5 pounds

29 Jul

The other day I got this question in my Q & A Section:

“Since you’re a personal trainer, any tips or advice on how to try to get rid of the bulge? I have a solid 10-15 lbs I’d like to lose and my body likes to hold most of it in my mid-section unfortunately! Any specific plans for workouts, calorie intake, etc? There’s so many things out there online to read about and half of them contradict each other!”

 

A great question, and one that is really common! I get asked all the time how to lose the last 5-10 pounds. But my question to the person asking always is, why do you need to lose them?

 

If you are already at a healthy body fat % for your age, a healthy BMI and have been eating and exercising right for several weeks and your weight has not budgeted then you probably don’t need to lose another 5 pounds!

 

People get certain numbers stuck in their heads but don’t realize that weighing 130 is probably not going to make you any healthier than weighing 135 if that is what your body is content with.

 

If you absolutely must lose 5-10 more pounds or you are still above that healthy body fat % there are a few things you can try.

 

  • Re-evaluate your diet. When you weighed more you needed more calories than you do now at almost your goal weight. On the other hand if you are eating not enough calories than your body is starving itself.
  • Don’t create too big of a calorie deficit. If your daily caloric need is around 1600 (based on current weight and lifestyle) and you are burning 500 calories a day through exercise and only eating 1000 calories you are creating a 1100 calorie deficit- WAY TO HIGH for someone who only has a few pounds to lose. Healthy, sustainable weight loss for a person with only a few pounds to lose is 0.5-1 lb a week. Create a calorie deficit that will lead to this (250-500 calories/day).
  • Start measuring. You may think because of months of healthy eating you know exactly how many calories are in your go to meals but your portion sizes may have gotten bigger now that you stopped measuring everything. Break out the food scale and make sure you are still only eating one portion at a time.
  • Amp up your workouts. If you have been doing the same thing every day it is time to switch it up. Running 5 miles now is not burning the same amount of calories as when you first started doing it. Go longer, or faster, or do intervals. If you have been slacking on the strength training make sure to add it back in!

I know this didn’t address the question exactly but hopefully if you are struggling with just a few more pounds for weight loss this will help you out.

I know I would love to weigh 115 like I did JR year of college but I weight 120 now. I’ve weighed that for the past 2 years and have run (almost!) two half marathons at this weight. I eat healthy and indulge when I want while maintaining a regular exercise routine. This is my body’s happy weight so I am going to let it stay here! 

Have you ever struggled with the “last 5 pounds” mentality?

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2 Responses to “Q & A: Last 5 pounds”

  1. Becky @cityrunnergirl July 29, 2011 at 10:51 am #

    these are great tips! measuring and not eating out all the time are huge for me when I need to lose a few. You can just never be sure what’s in an entree at a restaurant that you didn’t prepare.

  2. gabriella @ embracement August 3, 2011 at 3:54 pm #

    Great tips! I think a lot of people get attached to the number they want to weigh rather than realizing that their body might be it’s most comfortable a couple of pounds over that. Happy weight to me is something you can maintain easily without having to workout 7 days a week and majorly monitor everything you eat (granted I’m a healthy eater and workout about 6 days a week). Food is so huge when it comes to those last pounds, just being as clean as possible.

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