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  1. #1
    Registered User johnsc10's Avatar
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    Change in weight but no change in waistline

    I have only just started cutting. Immediate water weight, glycogen loss, etc. was worth circa 5lbs. Adjusted post-start weight was 181.1 lbs, and I am now down to 178.9 lbs. Neck size is basically the same, which is good. Waistline however is the same at about 34 inches. I am not measuring other body parts because I don't want to be too obsessive, but is it normal for me to lose fat on other areas of my body, and the waistline perhaps only drops after longer-term adjustments?

    Two possible reasons (and a bonus third, which is the bad possibility):

    1) Fat loss is not normally distributed across the body, and fat around the waist is perhaps the last to go (maybe even especially in men).

    2) Theory: body tries to maintain homeostasis, even perhaps by upregulating water retention during fat/weight loss on a pound-for-pound basis, hence composition has changed and waistline measure remains the same, but not necessarily without fat loss (initial water weight loss notwithstanding).

    3) Muscle loss is occurring, with minimal fat loss (but I would think this is unlikely). I am doing more calisthenics and fewer weights, but I do plan on keeping up my weight training too.

    Any other suggestions to help my progress?

    My simple approach:

    1. Eat less
    2. Exercise daily (walking, weights, calisthenics)
    3. Eating less sugar/processed food (ideally none) and eating a reasonable amount of protein
    4. Trying to not eat too many carbs
    5. Occasionally fasting (IF)
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    Registered User JSim83's Avatar
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    Have a little patience. After that initial water weight drop, you have lost only a couple of pounds. With that, you are not going to see any drastic change in your waistline. Measure again after you have dropped another 5 lbs or so and you'll likely see some change already.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173521121
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  3. #3
    Registered User johnsc10's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by JSim83 View Post
    Have a little patience. After that initial water weight drop, you have lost only a couple of pounds. With that, you are not going to see any drastic change in your waistline. Measure again after you have dropped another 5 lbs or so and you'll likely see some change already.
    Thanks, OK. I guess I was thinking about seeing a linear reduction in BF% if I was consistent, but the body doesn't work like that.
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    Originally Posted by johnsc10 View Post
    1. Eat less
    2. Exercise daily (walking, weights, calisthenics)
    3. Eating less sugar/processed food (ideally none) and eating a reasonable amount of protein
    4. Trying to not eat too many carbs
    5. Occasionally fasting (IF)
    1. Yup
    2. Yup - weights are particularly important, not because of calories burned but to prevent muscle loss
    3. Can be useful to avoid stimulating your appetite and replacing those with bulky low calorie foods. Also avoiding nutrient deficiencies BUT remember weight loss is still 100% about calories in vs. calorie out
    4. Not necessarily. See (3)
    5. No. See (3) and also, IF only has any tangible benefits if meals are positioned at regular times (ghrelin entrainment). IF has significant downsides too - distribution of protein matters intraday.
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    Registered User wilkinkc's Avatar
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    No knock to the OP or anyone else that does IF, but why does everyone think IF is the road to weight loss? I mean I am sure it can be helpful and a tool for overall calorie control if just eating between certain times of the day, but its still only successful WITH calorie control/deficit. I have lost 72 lbs since May now, and I ran into a guy I haven't seen since before then. His first question he asked me was "are you doing intermittent fasting"? I let him know that no I have never done that, and that I eat about 6 times a day but limit my total calories for the day.
    Last edited by wilkinkc; 10-28-2020 at 05:30 AM.
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    Registered User Ghawk21's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by wilkinkc View Post
    No knock to the OP or anyone else that does IF, but why does everyone think IF is the road to weight loss? I mean I am sure it can be helpful and a tool for overall calorie control if just eating between certain times of the day, but its still only successful WITH calorie control/deficit. I have lost 72 lbs since May now, and I ran into a guy I haven't seen since before then. His first question he asked me was "are you doing intermittent fasting"? I let him know that no I have never done that, and that I eat about 6 times a day but limit my total calories for the day.
    Its marketed by many as a solution and the average person won't read into it. It helps many reduce calories without really noticing by just eliminating some of their meals and snacks and they attribute it to IF rather than the calorie reduction. For some people it also helps with appetite which further reduces snacking and again they think its IF not the calorie reduction. Combine that with some of the ridiculous claims by "gurus" and you get a very popular trend. This is why IF is one of the most posted about topics on these boards.
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    Registered User johnsc10's Avatar
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    I don't follow IF because I think it is intrinsically useful, I do it mainly for psychological reasons. It's basically skipping breakfast.
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    You lost basically three pounds of water due to changes in carbs and sodium in your diet.

    Your waistline will probably drop 1" per every 5-7 pounds of actual fat that you lose however if you aren't counting calories then there is no way to determine if you are actually in a deficit from one day to another.

    Your "simple approach" may turn out to be too simple.
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    Registered User johnsc10's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Luclin999 View Post
    You lost basically three pounds of water due to changes in carbs and sodium in your diet.

    Your waistline will probably drop 1" per every 5-7 pounds of actual fat that you lose however if you aren't counting calories then there is no way to determine if you are actually in a deficit from one day to another.

    Your "simple approach" may turn out to be too simple.
    Points taken, but it's not just carbs and sodium... I have lost real weight. I haven't dropped carbs too much if I'm honest. I did track calories for a few days at 1500 kcal intake, while I was doing exercise. Less of a deficit recently though. The last couple of pounds coincided with calorie tracking at circa 1500 kcal intake with daily exercise worth at least 300 kcal above my RMR of circa 1800 kcal.
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    Your waistline should be measured at the point where most fat is stored. For most people this is at the navel. It's super important to measure IN THE EXACT SAME PLACE every time as a little bit higher, especially, will sometimes yield a smaller number. That said, a 1" change in that measurement is generally 5-7 lbs of fatloss. Until you've been cutting long enough to experience that amount of pure fat loss don't expect much of a change in your waist dimension.
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