Weight Loss NHS
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The last 20 pounds

So.. I'm down 51.6 pounds... which I'm very pleased about. I started on January 6th, 2016. The first several weeks I averaged 2-3 pounds a week... But since July, my average is .6 a week. Don't get me wrong, it's coming off... but it's just Sooooooooo Slow.

I've kicked up my running and joined a gym, but this week, my first week going. I lost 0. Nothing, Zero, Nada, Zip. Now, while I'm happy I didn't get a gain, the only thing slower than .6 (besides .4 and .2) is a big ol' goose egg.

My question to ya'll... WHY is the last 20 pounds SO HARD? What can I do to speed this up? CAN it be sped up? Do I stop looking at the number and focus on the exercise at this point?

Guess I'm just looking for words of encouragement...

Thanks friends...

6 Replies

Hi Potterbook,

I think the last few pounds are challenging to lose, as your body probably wants to preserve the remaining weight, but keep focused and hopefully your hard work will be rewarded.

Keep the faith, and I wish you success.

Lowcal :-)

1 like

Yes, I can agree with you, it does get difficult as we get near to goal 😕 You have my sympathy .

There are a few tricks people have tried. Eating more for a week to prevent "starvation" mode, changing carb/protein/fat ratios, increasing exercise etc have all worked for some people. Although this often helps tone and slim inches off rather than weight at the scales. 😕

I find if I'm 100% strict I can lose but ANY deviation and I gain 😕

Good luck 😊


Hello PotterBook, I saw your post yesterday evening, but the hour was too late to provide the response it deserves.

As such, I hope you find the following helpful:

Regardless of where everyone may be in their weight loss journey, achieving the correct energy balance remains paramount, allowing calories (stored in fat) to be burned as fuel.

However, as you grow nearer towards goal weight, since the body no longer possesses the levels of excess fat (stored calories) it once did, calories consumed from food will need to gradually increase closer towards the amount needed to satisfy TDEE, whilst still ensuring that a daily deficit continues to be maintained, allowing those final few pounds to be lost.

Moreover, the calories needed to satisfy BMR will have reduced considerably since the start of your weight loss journey, so if you’ve not re-assessed BMR and TDEE in a while, I’d recommend that you re-evaluate both.

Equally, since you’re running and attending the gym, your level of activity may have increased from sedentary to lightly active, for example, so this should be taken into account when attempting to ascertain TDEE (multiply BMR by 1.375).

If activity levels have increased, since your body doesn’t possess the same levels of fat that it once did, you’ll need to increase calorie consumption so that it falls in the upper range between BMR and TDEE.

In doing so you’ll be eating more calories than BMR (to provide energy) but fewer than TDEE (allowing weight to be lost), thus, reducing the risk of calories expended through exercise taking you below BMR.

However, you have to bear in mind that in the latter stages of your journey, the calorie margins within which you’re working (between BMR and TDEE) aren’t nearly as great, so your rate of loss will be slower, taking into consideration that a lb of fat contains roughly 3500Kcal.

Nonetheless, through reducing daily calorie consumption by 200Kcal (from TDEE), for example, you could still lose 0.5lb each week, even without exercise.

As for exercise itself, improved levels of weight loss will have no doubt allowed for a gradual increase in the intensity/duration of your chosen activities.

That resulting increase will have also led to improved strength of the muscles and density of bones (particularly in the legs).

Consequently, increased levels of both will present a confusing picture when stepping upon the scales, so don’t read too much into the figure presented.

Instead, as quite rightly stated by Anna61, since you’re in the latter stages of your journey, allow improving/developing muscle tone and definition to be the greatest indictors of success, particularly if you’ve begun to notice such in the arms, shoulders, legs and stomach, for example.

The removal of fat (covering muscles) is what allows their shape and definition to take prominence.

As you near your intended goal, allow focus to rest upon the improvement in composition and reduction of inches rather than that of body weight.


The first thing we have to do following a workout is recover, which if we haven't over-trained takes a minimum of 24.2 hours AFTER the session finishes, so those people training at the same time most days just aren't recovering fully. I'm pointing this out to demonstrate that more isn't better where activity is concerned.

Do you stop looking at the number? Sort of; if you know roughly the portion sizes you need, that should be adequate. As many above ground vegetables as you are comfortable with, along with low Gi carbs that add up to no more than 40g carbs per meal. About 2/3 of your palm-size of protein food at most meals, with sufficient natural fat to suit your weight loss/maintenance needs.

Practice maintaining for one or two weeks each month.

Instead of trying to speed things up, look to make this enjoyable so that it's the way you want to continue for the rest of your life.

You've come this far, now plan to keep the weight off beyond your goal weight to prevent lapses. It may not be quick, but you can make it easier for yourself, and fun.

All the best!


Agree totally about the importance of enjoying the process :-)


No matter what kind of weight loss journey you’re on, you’re bound to hit at least one plateau. Hitting a plateau doesn’t mean your weight loss will remain stalled forever. While frustrating, a plateau can be an opportunity to jump start your weight-loss program. By changing up your workouts, diet and outlook you can get the scale moving in the right direction again. Also, you could go for 3D lipo fat freezing which people I know have tried and done very well. You can target belly, thighs...etc. This salon in Peterborough does fat freezing very successfully. beautiful-truth.co.uk/


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