Sometimes Weight Loss Doesn’t Make Sense

I hope those of you who had a long weekend enjoyed it. We certainly enjoyed ours. It was nice and relaxing, and even though our viewing of The Time Traveler’s Wife was interrupted by technical difficulties that resulted in us missing the last 25 or so minutes of the movie (!), that was only a slight setback. I will blog more on Wednesday about the delicious concoction Hubby and I made on Saturday. You will either judge me or be incredibly jealous. Maybe both. 🙂

But now, a weight loss update. After a summer of little weight loss (aside from 4 pounds lost in June), I finally saw the scale move! I went from 189.8 to 187.4–down 2.4 pounds! That’s a HUGE loss for me, and I have to say that I really don’t get it. Last week was far from a perfect healthy week, so why did I lose? After thinking about it, here is how last week was different from previous weeks:

1. I drank only water.
2. I did yoga.
3. I tried to go hungry more. I don’t mean I starved myself; I just didn’t immediately reach for food the minute I thought I was hungry. I drank water, and if I was still hungry, I would eat fruit or something equally as innocuous. Every night when I went to bed, I was slightly hungry, and I think that really helped.
4. I tracked all of my food. There were some things I wasn’t able to record the nutritional information for, but I still recorded the food and when I ate it so as to keep myself accountable.
5. I only ran twice.

From this list, I can then conclude the following:

1. Drinking only water, while challenging, is good for me.
2. Yoga isn’t completely evil.
3. Being hungry isn’t always bad. (And I’m not the only one who thinks so. See this post from Diane at Fit to the Finish.)
4. Tracking all of my food is beneficial.
5. Running keeps me from losing weight.

Okay, okay, I know #5 is ridiculous, but honestly, I can’t help but think it! Is it a coincidence that my weight loss started slowing down around the same time I started running regularly? This past week was the first week I hadn’t run three times or more, and I lost weight for the first time in a long time. It could very well be that I lost muscle this past week, or perhaps it’s just a combination of all the factors I’ve mentioned, but I can’t help but wonder if my running is preventing me from losing weight. So many people have told me that running is great for weight loss and yet I have not seen that to be true for ME. What does that mean? I have no idea. I’m just throwing it out there. I’m not going to give up running, but I do think I would benefit from varied exercise, since I have done walking and running almost exclusively all summer long. So I’m going to try and add in a Pilates session once a week, as well as do more with my stability ball, and we’ll see what happens!

11 thoughts on “Sometimes Weight Loss Doesn’t Make Sense

  1. You know, someone once told me that by allowing ourselves to feel a little hungry sometimes, it means that we aren't stuffing ourselves silly so we should appreciate the feeling of hungery, feed ourselves till it goes away and then stop. Great advice – the trick now is to follow it!

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  2. My first thought was that maybe because you didn't run as much as you have in previous weeks you weren't as “hungry” as you usually are…because of the running…and maybe you ate less…maybe the trick is running but still not eating as much…maybe? Way to go on the weight loss!! I'm excited to see what you think of pilates…

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  3. I've also heard that running can keep one from losing weight. But I think the previous commenter has it right–when you don't run, you aren't as hungry, so you eat less. The key is to run without overcompensating by eating more.

    I should probably work pilates back into my routine. I just feel that if I'm not doing cardio, I'm not doing anything? Why do I feel that way?? I know it isn't true.

    Congrats on the weightloss!!! I know that is a big encourager to keep going.

    I feel like I'm truly “suffering” if I go to bed slightly hungry, and yet…when I've done that, I see weightloss. Nighttime snacking is my downfall. You've encouraged me to not be a slave to the first hunger pang that can often be solved by hydration.

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  4. I kind of agree with the running thing and I have a few possible reasons.

    I actually GAINED 10 pounds training for my first marathon, you know why? Because I justified eating more since I was running more. For example, if I had a 15 mile run on Saturday, I not only ate whatever I wanted that day, but also the days that followed! Bad idea!

    I think if you run and keep track of what you eat, you will still lose pounds. Don't justify running more with being able to eat more. And, like you said, if you switch it up with other stuff it will probably still be ok!

    Congrats on the weight loss though, that's awesome!

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  5. I agree with the other commenters about the running. I think that because running is so strenous, and we burn so many calories while running, that we unconsciously add in more calories to compensate for added exercise.

    I think running is great for weight loss, but as you've found, only if you don't eat those extra calories!!

    Thanks for the shout-out! I appreciate it very much!

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  6. Nice work!

    You know, your comment about running and weight loss got me thinking about that Time article a fews weeks back. It stated that working out is not necessary for weight loss. It's main reasoning was that people who work out then end up eating more food because their bodies are craving it. I wonder if that has something to do with your lack of loss….maybe you were eating a little more because your body was hungry from running!?! I have no idea…but it's an interesting idea.

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  7. Congrats on the weight loss Erin – way to go!

    Your comment about slow weightloss after starting to run is something that has been on my mind as well. I lost most of my weight between October 08 and March 09 – at which time I started my running program. I had thought I would lose weight by the lbs and quickly once I started running but that was not the case. I suspect what everyone else is saying – my food intake was higher when I was running.

    Right now my poor excuse for the slow loss is summer and camping and the poor choices I have made (and the lack of exercising lately).

    I bought some Beginners Pilates the other day (yes more) – one of them just shows the correct posture, footing etc. I'm looking forward to getting into it once my hip is in less pain and I can actually stretch a little bit.

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