How Fast Should I Lose Weight?
Everyday, people ask, “Am I losing weight too fast?” or “Am I losing weight too slow?” We compare ourselves to others to validate our efforts and to make sure we’re doing the right thing.
Unfortunately, there is no one answer to that question because everyone is a little different. Even sequestered research subjects following identical diets lose weight at different rates. And so when you’re looking for results, remember that the rate of weight loss is affected by many factors. For instance, a person’s starting weight for height, body composition (fat to muscle ratio), gender, age, calorie intake and output, composition of the diet, hydration status, disease and medications - and how hard they try to keep logs - all count. (FYI: the Clinical Guidelines recommends a loss of 0.5 to 2 pounds a week.)
But, yada yada yada, you ask, “What about ME?”
The best I can do is to share the insight gleaned from Calorie Count’s Successful Loser's answers to the question:
How long did it take you to see results?
Of 40 successful losers,
- 30% said “immediately or “one week”
- 60% said either “2, 3, 4, or 6 weeks, 2 months, 6 months, or more”
But, still, they hung in.
- People lose weight at different rates and in different patterns.
“I lost 10 pounds in the first week and stayed there for a month.”
“I lost exactly one pound a week for months.”
“Some weeks, I can lose 3 pounds; other weeks, it’s none.”
- And weight loss rates and patterns change over time.
“The last 5 pounds took longer than the first 50.”
“The first 15 pounds came off in several months, but once I started to exercise, 30 pounds flew off in 3 months.”
“I plateaued only twice for 2 weeks each. I feel blessed.”
- Some people noticed results in terms of “pounds lost" instead of “weeks past".
“I started to notice after I lost ___ (Choose one: 10, 15, 25, 50 to 70) pounds.”
- Some people first noticed physical changes to their bodies.
“Three weeks into the program, I lost 6 inches from my waist, hips, and chest.”
"I first noticed a change in the fat around my neck and face.”
“Within a month, I could walk around the block without feeling out of breath."
“My endurance and fitness improved immediately.”
- Some people first noticed a change in their clothes size.
“At 6 weeks, I had to buy new clothes.”
- Some people noticed results only when others commented.
“Others noticed in 2 months, but I noticed in 4.”
- Two people did not own a scale and so relied on the doctor’s weigh-in.
“I found out I lost 6 pounds at my doctor’s visit in 3 weeks.“
- Some people just don’t see the change.
“Looking in the mirror, I never saw results.”
“It took me a year to see a difference.”
“My body image is just catching up to reality.”
“It took me 60 pounds before I looked in the mirror and thought, “Wow, that’s me!”
- Most people make peace with the "How Fast Should I to Lose Weight" question.
“I know the slower-the better for me.”
“It was discouraging, but I tried to keep my eye on the goal.”
“I’ve been on this journey for 8 years.”
“My journey is no longer about weight loss but about fitness.”
Are you seeing results?