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Fitness zone

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Good day, everyone!

This is my first time posting anything in a forum, so please bear with me. I'll tell you a little about myself before I ask my query. I'm 21 years old and my name is Ashlyn. About a year ago, I began my weight-loss adventure. I'm 5'6" and started out weighing 194 pounds. Because I didn't know much at the time, I started with intermittent fasting. Every day, consume roughly 1000 calories at a 20:4 ratio. Pretty dumb huh?!

While all of this was going on, I was still working out on a regular basis, combining crossfit and weight training. But, as you might guess, my nutrition was all over the place at the time, so it wasn't fantastic all around. I was stuck at home with no equipment during the calorie shortage, so I performed a lot of cardio.

It wasn't until recently that I acquired a pair of 5s, 10s, and 20s that I began attempting to incorporate more strength training into my routine. So, as of right now (finally), I'm in a deeper calorie deficit, strength training, and eating healthily. In general, I used 40 percent C, 30 percent F, and 30 percent P for macros. I've been experimenting with a low carb diet for the past several days (20 percent C, 40 percent P, 40 percent F). My daily calorie intake has increased to 1548.

Everything is going OK in general, but I am feeling frustrated. I'm now at 140 pounds, and my body fat percentage is at 19 percent. My target weight is 127-130 pounds.
The problem is that I've always been overweight. So now I'm stuck with this lower belly and some loose skin that I'm starting to notice developing.
I now work out 5 times a week at home, with two upper body days, two lower body days, and one complete body day. Circuit training is what I do. Given that I'm at home, this appears to be the most feasible option. I generally try to incorporate some type of cardio in at least one of my circuits and usually do 8 minutes of core at the end of all of my workouts.

I don't have any big weights, so I'm doing the best I can with what I have, such as being in a calorie deficit and gradually increasing the difficulty of my exercises by increasing reps and using bands, etc...
The reason I'm frustrated is that I feel like these last few pounds aren't going to come off, and when they do, my stomach isn't going to leave with them. I see all these transformation photos and people's lower tummies appear to have vanished, and no matter how hard I strive, I feel so far behind everyone. I'm just enraged.


I'm not sure whether this is just word vomit, but I honestly don't expect anyone to read it all. This is my tale, at least for the time being. It's January, and I'm hoping to shed the last 10-15 pounds
by the month of may That makes sense to me based on my experience. Thanks to everyone who read all the way to the end; please let me know if you have any tips or comparable experiences.

I wish you all the best :)
 

Cate

Long-term member.
Hi, Ashlyn & welcome to the forum. You have youth on your side & given time your stomach should shrink.
I see all these transformation photos and people's lower tummies appear to have vanished,
You do realise that most of these "transformation photos" are not actually real?
Congratulations on turning your life around & becoming fit & slim. You are doing very well!
 

Trusylver

Sport and Exercise Coach
Staff member
So your aim is the minimum healthy level of bodyfat% assuming you do not lose any more muscle ?

At this level your nutrition and exercise is a fine balancing act and will be slow.

You look to be under eating protein, percentages are not a good way to calculate macros, calculate based on grams

The faster you lose the more muscle loss and loose skin you will have, however at 21 the chances are good your skin will eventually recover.

There is not enough info to evaluate your workouts

I would suggest you start a diary in the diary section and start logging your food and exercise so members can get a clearer picture to be able to point you in the right direction.
 

Llama

Well-known member
Welcome to the forum, Ashlyn! You are clearly very dedicated and have worked very hard. 19% bodyfat is already low for a woman though. Going even lower, especially for women and more so for people who have always been on the bigger side, is hard (and unnecessary unless you plan to do a bodybuilding show or something very soon).
Lower belly fat is notoriously hard to get rid of for many women; generally the last to go and the first to come back. I agree with Tru that it would make more sense to focus on recomposition right now: eat well, eat as much as you can without regaining weight, and use those extra calories to fuel your workouts and feed your muscles.
 

overlandflyer

Well-known member
I started with intermittent fasting. Every day, consume roughly 1000 calories at a 20:4 ratio. Pretty dumb huh?!
the only thing i would question is "I started with".
it took me about 2 weeks to get to 16/8 intermittent fasting and probably another 2-3 weeks before i tried 20/4... essentially an OMAD (one meal a day). it is fortunate that the first 10 lbs is the easiest to lose. if you look at the calculus of weight loss... every lb you lose becomes a greater % of your total weight. in an oversimplification... my first 10 lb loss was about 4.5% of my total weight, while the last 10 lbs was 6.3%.

The problem is that I've always been overweight. So now I'm stuck with this lower belly and some loose skin that I'm starting to notice developing.
i am in my 60's so it should probably take a shorter time for you, but after i dropped ~55 lbs 3 years ago, i just realized a few days ago that when i crossed my legs, there wasn't that series of wrinkles (sort of looked like a sandbar at low tide for the first year). i have a bit of gut left (even at a BMI of ~23.5) ... my waist measurement is about the only one i can give any stats on... i went from close to 44" down to around 36" now... but the wrinkles in my abs have also become a LOT less noticeable.... and if i'd do some sit-ups once in a while, i'm sure i could bring up the muscle tone quite a bit more.

The reason I'm frustrated is that I feel like these last few pounds aren't going to come off, and when they do, my stomach isn't going to leave with them. I see all these transformation photos and people's lower tummies appear to have vanished, and no matter how hard I strive, I feel so far behind everyone. I'm just enraged.
i should mention, through intermittent fasting... the first 40 lbs i lost took about 4 months... a pretty consistent 10 lbs/ month (222 to 182 lbs)

the next 10-12 lbs took about 2.5 - 3 months.
then over the next few months i lost another ~5 lbs.
i stuck at 163-165 for about 6-8 months, but decided that 168-170 was easier to maintain.

i've been there/ here for about 2 years now.
btw... my original goal was to get down to 190 again.... :)
 
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