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Fat (not muscle) loss and weight loss plateaus?

I lost about 20 pounds a year ago via the south beach diet AND exercise (cardio) as well as free weights to go along with the diet component. I am now at 5’5, 125 lbs approx. I am healthy and fit at this weight I realize, but the fat in certain areas has still not gone away, and as I stick to the healthy diet and exercise I still don’t see the fat loss occurring in these areas. I realize there is a genetic component in the way one distributes fat on the body, so it will take time to burn fat in these areas. But I have been told that to get over this weight loss plateau, I have to reduce calorie intake further or exercise more, and I’m already exercising a good amount and continuing with the free weights. Only thing with cutting back in the diet is that I don’t eat any unhealthy foods, so how much is safe to cut back? But I sometimes wind up eating white rice/noodles so I was wondering if I should cut this out of my diet altogether? I don’t want to lose muscle mass, just fat. Thanks
I am college student so a trainer is not an affordable option at this point. And I’m 19 years old, so shouldn’t fat loss be easier at this age?

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6 Responses to “Fat (not muscle) loss and weight loss plateaus?”

  1. star said :

    LOOK weight loss is a life time battle. AND the older you get it seems that those areas have troubles. THE GYM where i lift weights and exercise they have trainers 4 that sort of thing. HELPING your trouble areas, maybe a trainer can help. IT wouldn’t hurt 4 some advice.

  2. crazy_daisy said :

    hey hun….congrads on your success!…well since you said you eat clean then i don’t think you need to cut any thing else out…you may just need to lift some heavier weights if you have been useing the same ones and same routine….and try some protien powders or bars to help you build more lean muscle…the more lean muscle you have the more fat you burn so give that a try if ya like…..e mail me and let me know how it goes….love daisy

  3. Tara Fabulous said :

    My ideas? Try to do 200 minutes of cardio a week. Remember fat does not turn into muscle, so you need to lose your fat while putting on muscle. Work hard, but don’t over 60 minutes at a time. Do planks and other abs exercises on alternate days.

    On training days, do 5-10 minutes of cardio to warm up, then do your weight training. Do 30 to 60 minutes more of cardio, then go home.

    The best time to eat is just after your workout within an hour when your metabolism is raging. For your muscles, incorporate some isolated soy protein or whey protein. Whey is more potent but the soy tastes better!

    Don’t look at your scale as the be all and end all, but get a measuring tape to check your progress, and that will show more tangible results.

    Read magazines like Shape, Womens Fitness, Fitness, etc to get tips and to stay motivated.

    Good luck and stick at it. This plan has lost me 20 lbs in 12 weeks so far, just go for it!

  4. bigstrongbanana said :

    Get over your routine workouts and diet, try something different. Eat more and workout longer or fast for a day and sleep longer. Don’t let your body system Plateau.

  5. tranquil.sojourner said :

    Well, one thing that will surely help is to get your metabolism performing at its peak. To answer your question, rice noodles should definitely be removed from your diet. They do nothing but get deposited as pure fat onto your body. They have no nutrients in them.

    As for increasing your metabolism i.e getting your body to burn more fat when you are at rest This is something that I am working on very seriously.

    What I suggest is to read this book by the editior in chief of Mens Health “The Abs Diet”. No, this is not another diet book. Basically just read the first 4 chapters of this book and it will give you a very good understanding on what foods to eat etc to help your body burn more calories. If you have a BORDERS or BARNES AND NOBLE nearby then go right in and read the chapters. I am sure you will be glad when you are done.

  6. enufwork said :

    Congratulations on your success so far. Here are some thoughts for further gains from my 360 Blog September 10.

    There is no site specific way of losing fat… the old myth about working your abs to burn belly fat isn’t true. To get rid of love handles, you need to lose overall fat. That happens with exercise and watching your diet. More on that below.

    The most effective way to lose fat is aerobic exercise in the “moderate” fat-burning range, ideally first thing in the morning before you eat. When you wake your body is ready to burn fat and your levels of growth hormone are highest at that time. Later in the day it can take up to 30 minutes just to put your body into a fat-burning mode.

    Another overlooked way to burn fat is by lifting weights. Skeletal muscle has very high caloric needs… almost twice that of adipose (fat) tissue. Put on a little muscle and you will burn calories all day even at rest. Be aware that skeletal muscle weighs more, so with this approach you may see your weight increasing while your body fat is melting away. Not realizing this often stresses folks who think they should be losing weight as a measure of fitness. Forget the scale, look in the mirror and you will be happy.

    To lose a pound of fat, you need to eliminate about 3500 calories. You can do this by burning more with exercise or by modifying your diet to reduce intake. If you do a Google search on say, “swimming calories” you will quickly find a website with tables of calories burned for a given exercise. You can use such lists to estimate how many calories you are burning up with your routine.

    For diet, keep a diary for a couple of weeks counting calories, grams of protein, and grams of fat intake. It is easy with online sources of nutritional information (type the name of the food and calories into the Google search engine) and packaging labels. That will let you quickly figure out where the fat is coming from in your diet.

    Fat gives you 9 calories per gram. So take the number of grams of fat, multiply by 9, then calculate what percentage the fat calories are of your total daily calories. Restricting the calories from fat to about 20% of your total intake is ideal for a maintenance diet… that isn’t overly restrictive. Of note, you need some fat in your diet. For instance, the body uses fat to produce hormones. Once you have a picture of how to modify your diet, you can drop the diary and just go back to it occasionally if you are wanting to tweek things further.

    There is a subset of questions that goes further and asks about “How to get a six-pack?” The answer is the same. Six-packs are 20% abdominal exercise and 80% diet. There is one caveat… abdominal muscles will form in the position that you work them, so be certain to pull them tightly toward your spine while doing crunches, etc. Also, during most lifting, the “core is active” which means that you should be stabilizing with contracted abs then too. Fail to do this and the abs will form, but bulging outward and the result is not attractive.

    If you are trying to build muscle as a way to lose fat, then you may need to increase total calories and specifically your protein intake. I target about 0.8 g of protein per pound of body weight each day when actively building. That is far more protein than most people need in their diets.


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