Getting disheartened by lack of weight loss

Hi everyone,

a bit of background about me:- I'm female, age 39 (the scared big 4 0 is just round the corner image) 5 foot 8, 9 stone 12 (think that's about 60 kg ish). Have always been quite sporty, but apart from twice yearly ski trips have never really stuck at any one sport for long. I decided to make a concerted effort to get as fit as I could for my 40th birthday so in FebruaryI started running and gradually built up to doing a 10k race. I now run between 5 and 10k most days of the week along with lots of abs work. i have quit smoking the 3 ish cigarettes I've been having since my 20s. In general I feel lighter, more energetic and alert and havre a healthy glow.

hieever, a very nice effect would have been to lose half a stone and tone up.  I haven't however changed my eating habits and therefore my weight has remained almost exactly the same! I'm not perfect with food, but I certainly dont think I'm eating back all the 750+ calories I burn on a run.  I've been reading other forums and they all say that you don't see any physical changes in your body from running unless you strip off the fat.

so does that mean that my body looks exactly the same now as in February before I started running most days? If so, what's the point? Im thrilled I've given up smoking and feel healthier through running, but it would be great to think that my body is getting leaner and more toned as well. I didn't take any before and after photos or measurements so it's hard to tell and I'm used to my reflection in the mirror so that doesn't help!

i guess I'm looking for a little motivation to carry on. 

Thank you x


  • I would take some photos, wearing little or nothing, then put them up here image No, seriously though, take them and compare yourself every month or two.  Sometimes small changes creep up on you and you can only see them by comparing.

    Perhaps also look to something else to create the body you desire.  Perhaps look at Crossfit, or weight training.

    Well done on giving up the fags.  You'll see that benefit one day, when you're not tied to an oxygen chamber and you are able to play with your grandchildren.

    FWIW, 60 Kilos at 172 seems ok to me.  Whatever you do, make sure you enjoy it.  There's no motivation as strong as enjoying what you do.  

  • Norty Faithsdaddy!! image

    I've not seen a lot of weightloss for the last several months despite 45 miles of walking/running a week. But I do eat and drink what I want without gaining, which is a good side-effect of all the effort.

    After anything over an hour's run I tend to retain fluid. It can be up to 7lbs gain for several days, so could that be the problem? Maybe don't weigh, but just use a tape measure?

  • Are your clothes looser? That might be a better measure of progress  

    I'm 5'8" and just under 10 1/2 stone, size 10 (sometimes 8). If I lost a stone to get to your your goal weight, I'd be way too skinny. Horses for courses, but I think you may need to just try looking at your body in a more positive light, and stay away from the scales

  • I'm with Nurse Ratched. According to the scales I've gained weight but my dress size has dropped. It can be hard to see the changes yourself but others do. Your body won't look the same but it may be your perception of your body is the same. 

  • literatinliteratin ✭✭✭

    If you are under 10 stone and running 'between 5 and 10k' on each run, you are probably not burning 750+ calories on each run. More like 300-600.

  • booktrunkbooktrunk ✭✭✭

    Your BMI is 20 or maybe a whole 20.1.... Seriously, read your post.... 

    Your weight is just about perfect, if you want to tone your body, then go to a gym and pay for a personal trainer to give you a perfect body plan image 

    what you are doing is going to over time slowly help to tone your body, but not have the same impact. You say in general you feel brilliant... If that isn't enough reason to continue I'm not sure what is image 

    if you want to make a difference running stop only doing 5 to 10k on a treadmill get outside and run further over time building up a weekly long run to 20 miles or so image then you might start to notice a very small difference your body is just about perfect image the toning you want I'm not sure can be achieved by pure running alone. But, if it can then you need to be running for longer in the fat burning zone by doing a long weekly run, but I think a gym might be better suited to the toning you want. Along with continuing running NOT instead of running. 

  • I've trained for a few endurance events and have had to be really alert to diet in order to maintain or lose a little (about 2lbs) weight. After 40 I noticed that drop in metabolic rate that comes with aging and have found that endurance training really pushes your appetite up and before you know it you've replaced all those calories you've burnt off! According to Fitness Pal I need only 1500 A DAY to stay at normal weight. That's bugger all when you like to kick off with a croissant, have a Sunday roast and dessert, but the running does at least allow me to enjoy these without putting on weight!

  • tricialitttricialitt ✭✭✭

    Well done. Just because your weight hasn't dropped  I'm sure you shouldn't feel it is a waste of time! I weigh nearly same as you, but am only 5'3". Your weight is well in the ideal range, and if you feel good with the running, it sounds like it is helping your fitness. It is much more difficult for someone who is not overweight to lose a few pounds- but who cares what the number on the scales says- surely it's about how you feel.

    You will almost certainly find that you've toned up a bit- increased lean body mass/ reduced waist size- and if you keep going ( especially if you do some gym- based trainig as well), I'm sure this will continue. Approaching the big 40 is an importatn time to keep running- it will improve your bone quality, and go a long way to prevent the onset of middle age spread!

    I think it is a very important habit to keep going, as it will be much more difficult to start from scratch in a few years.


  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭

    And don't forget, as you exercise and are burning fat, you are also building muscle mass, which will initially off-set some weight loss. It is surely better to be stronger fitter and have more energy and be the same weight than lose weight on some fad diet and have none of the other benefits?

    If a key goal is weight loss though, as booktrunk says, longer runs where you are shifting the balance from burning carbs to burning fat are the way forward, but given your stats, you shouldn't really worry!


  • You guys are so helpful and supportive, thank you xx image

  • I agree with the above,and having started running and I go to the gym as well.  It is best to do seme cardio and some core training.  Do a food diary, and check how much alcohol you drink too. Check you are not overtraining as well.

  • Bella, to lose weight, you would need to burn off more calories than you are consuming, it is highly likely you are not doing that hence why there is no weight loss.

    9 stone 12lbs is a lovely weight for 5'8" tall, I strongly suspect that although you may not have had any reduction in weight, your shape has changed.

    You probably haven't noticed any shape change though as it would have been very gradual.  See if you can find a photo of yourself from Christmas last year and compare it to one taken now, I reckon you will be very pleasantly surprised.

  • hi

    I would kill to be 9st 12 and I'm 4 inches shorter than you.  Are you maybe not losing weight as your body is perfect just the way it is?

    Hope everything sorts itself out, if you want to add anything I would do some weights - good for changing body shape.


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