Update - January 22, 2005
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Tried Everything and I Can't Lose Weight
I know you say anyone can get fit, but I've tried everything.
I've tried Weight Watchers, both the old and new, Jenny Craig,
Atkins, South Beach, and Fit For Life. They all work to some
degree, but I'm never able to keep the weight off. I've even
tried walking, Nordic Track, and a short bout with Spinning
(which I hated). I've tried Trim Spa, Xenadrine, Hydroxycut,
and even Phentermine and no matter what I do I just can't
lose weight. 10 years ago I would have said I need to lose
15 pounds, but now it's more like 40 pounds. I don't know
if you can help, but I thought I'd see if you have any answers
that I'm missing.
ANSWER: Allow me to first
make two adjustments in the language of your question.
When you say "you can't,"
you really mean you haven't yet found the solution yet, and
when you say you've "tried everything," you really
mean you've tried many things and don't know where else to
turn. That puts you in the same boat as near 2/3 of our population.
They attempt to change, but they typically employ flawed approaches,
and if you try to get to the moon by digging a hole, no matter
how hard you try you're going to strike out.
Now let's understand what's really
going on. 10 years ago you began a cycle of dieting, which
really translates to "taking in fewer calories than you
body needs to sustain metabolism." When you reduce calories
below the level your body requires to maintain lean body mass
and meet metabolic demand, you do lose weight, but a portion
of that weight is muscle tissue. The scale tells you things
are going just wonderfully, but the scale neglects to point
out that if you lose muscle you slow metabolism. Research
shows that metabolism declines near 2% every decade, and follow-up
research indicates an indisputable connection between age-related
metabolic slowdown and a gradual loss of muscle tissue. Muscle
tissue is calorically active tissue. Muscle burns calories.
Fat is simply stored fuel. Remember, the scale cannot tell
you the difference. Muscle is also the physical location where
fat is burned, so if you lose weight and any portion of that
weight is muscle, you've crippled your body's fat burning
It's also valuable to note that
when you are in caloric deprivation your endocrine system
(the glandular system) attempt to protect you from starvation.
Repeated bouts of caloric deprivation can coax the thyroid
gland to make metabolic shifts so the body can survive and
maintain on fewer calories. Together with muscle loss, this
guarantees fat loss will be a greater challenge in the future.
I know Weight Watchers is "sensible,"
and Jenny Craig is "balanced," and they all play
up the idea of a lifestyle change. The point they miss is
in recognizing that if you want to boost metabolism you don't
want to starve away metabolically active tissue, but you want
to in fact protect or add muscle and stimulate increases in
metabolism that make the body more efficient at burning through
If all of your attempts included
a form of caloric deprivation, you should celebrate, because
the reality boils down to misinformation. You were misinformed.
Nobody gave you the human body user's manual. You never really
failed, the diets failed you. If you recognize that with each
perceived failure you returned to the same technology that
failed you, perhaps with a different twist or a different
name, but the same "cut calories" approach, you'll
also recognize that you need, not a repackaging of the same
approach, but a new approach, one that absolutely works!
I use the word Synergy a lot. I
use it specifically to define and summarize the vital relationship
between Supportive Eating (not starving . . . eating in a
manner that boosts metabolism), Moderate Aerobic Exercise,
and a Concern For Muscle. All three elements must be in place
at the same time if you want to ensure a positive physical
The supplements that you've tried
are various types of stimulants, and the drug you tried was
one of the Phen-Fen drugs with significant risk of side effects.
You can use the links below to understand the supplements
including ephedrine, synephrine (the ephedrine-free formulas),
and other purported fat loss compounds. Regardless of the
product names, the supplement business is driven by marketing,
and no supplement is a fat loss solution. Not a one.
Your exercise attempts have all
revolved around aerobic exercise, and although aerobic exercise
is a piece of the puzzle, without the resistance training
it can actually amplify muscle loss. Think about it. If you're
not taking in enough calories to sustain lean body mass, and
at the same time you're putting your body in a state where
it wants to protect you by slowing metabolism down, and you
compound the challenge by adding an aerobic exercise demand
increasing caloric need, you're further coaxing the body to
sacrifice muscle. Resistance exercise, some aerobic movement,
and ample calories in frequent "thermic" meals (thermic
refers to "heat" and a calorie is actually a unit
of heat), allows you to add muscle, increase the rate of oxidation
of food, maintain consistent energy stores, and burn fat as
fuel. If you haven't tried that . . . I mean all three components
simultaneously, the good news is, you haven't tried "everything,"
and the thing you missed is the thing that works!
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The following articles might
[ Ephedrine ] [ Ephedrine-Free
Formulas ] [ Trim Spa ]
[ Atkins Diet ] [ South
Beach Diet ]
[ Phentermine ]
Exercise and Fat Loss ]
[ The 8 Basic Resistance Training
[ The 8 Pitfalls of Exercising and
Eating Right ]
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