Why am I exercising, but not losing weight?
Whether you are doing P90x, Insanity, Chalean Extreme, or any other workout program, and you find yourself with the same dilemma in the beginning; wondering when you are going to start seeing some visible results! It’s common to not see results visually, and not see any movement on the scale until a little later into the program, and here is an explanation of a few reasons why:
- Most BeachBody programs work in a similar way.
They are centered around proper nutrition, and plenty of intense exercise. Exercise is major stress to the body. But a good kind of stress! Our bodies are amazing machines, and when they are stressed, they ADAPT. When doing an intense program like this, you have to understand that your body isn’t just going to lose fat, it’s going to adapt itself to be better suited to do the things you are telling it to do. So what does this mean? The biggest thing is your body wants to be come more efficient at moving, and this is achieved by increasing the strength to weight ratio. More muscle = more strength, less fat = less weight. The body goes into a bit of a state of shock when introduced to a grueling new regiment, and will react by quickly synthesizing more muscle(in the bodybuilding world, this is often referred to as ‘newbie gains’). To deal with the increased energy expenditure, it’s going to also tap your fat reserves. Because of the trade off, your overall weight may not change a bit at first! Fat is going, muscle is coming. Some peoples weight hardly changes at all over the entire course of these programs! But they sure do look a lot better by the end.
So yeah, that explains why my weight isn’t moving, but why do I feel like I don’t really look all that different, even after doing this for 4 weeks?
- Fat storage exists in many places in your body.
You have fat storage under your skin, which is the fat that YOU want to see go away. However, you also have fat under your muscle and in-between organs. The order in which your body reduces the fat reserves is entirely unique to your body, which tends to have a mind of it’s own, and most likely will not be in the order you want it to be. Your body may be accessing fat reserves from places you can’t see! So be patient! It’s going to happen in due time, there is no doubt about that. You just have to stay consistent, and be persistent.
- Now for some people, you may experience weight GAIN at first… which is probably not what you want, but don’t fret, it’s probably temporary.
When you begin working your muscles with resistance training, you create tiny micro tears in the tissue; this is how we ‘gain’ muscle. The body gets busy repairing those tears, and to prevent them from happening again, increases the amount of material in it’s place. During this process, the body has a tendency to retain water as a part of the healing process. THIS is most likely where your initial weight gain(and maybe some bloating) comes from, but again, don’t fret, it will subside.
The overall point here is that if you are following the program as it is intended, eating the right foods, in the right amounts, and working out with the right intensity, your body is going to CHANGE in a good way. The front 3rd of a program such as p90x is very grueling and taxing on the body. You will be more sore than you may have ever known, and your body is going through a state of conditioning and shock to compensate for the new demands you are putting it under. The best advice I can give you is to put away the scale for the first few weeks. It is just going to lie, lie, lie… and then lie some more. You’re going to get stressed out, think something is wrong, think you are eating too much, stop eating enough, and eventually crash and burn and be left right back where you started. You don’t want that, right? So just ignore the scale. It is a poor tool to measure progress at first. If you are getting stronger, feel energized, and clothes are feeling looser, you are moving in the right direction REGARDLESS of what the scale or mirror says.
Keep up the good work, you’ll get there!
If you would like some reassurance that you are on the right track with your fitness plan, I’d love to help you with your goals specifically, and it’s completely FREE. Please sign up for me to be your Beachbody Coach, and lets get you in the best shape of your life!