2 Lbs A Week?

After having my metabolic testing done and receiving numbers from Mark that would yield me a 1/2 to 3/4 lb loss per week, I began thinking.

I thought 2 lbs a week was healthy.  Why couldn’t he program me out for that?  If all this science stuff is accurate, how come The Biggest Loser seems to defy it all?  How come “they” can lose huge amounts a week, consistently, for a long period of time?

So, what do I do when I have a question?  I ask.

so I asked Mark 2 questions.

1.  Can you program me out to lose a healthy 2 lbs per week?

2.  How come the people on TBL lose so much so quick?

Here is his response.  It is long, but soooo good I had to share it with you all, with his permission of course!


As simple as that question sounds it is actually a complex one.  Consider this, different diets work for different people.  So we must be dealing with one or more variables unknown to science or man.  We will lump this under the simple observation that everyone’s body chemistry is different.  So each person will respond uniquely to a diet.  As a result each diet program will usually only work for a certain percentage of the population that has that body chemistry type.  The closer the person is to the body chemistry type the better the diet works for them.  I am sure you can recall examples of this simple truth form your own experiences with people.

I love that show Biggest Looser.  They are doing wonderful things for those people and for the American Public by motivating us to work hard and never give up.  But, there is something about the show that nobody has seemed to notice.  The show has a single diet approach that works for a percentage of the population.  They start with something like 20 contestants.  Then those for whom this diet approach is not as effective are booted off the show.  Thus the show actually locates the individual that has one of the best chemistry matches for their weight loss diet and also has the most willpower and drive to follow the diet.

This takes nothing away from what those people accomplish, how great the show is or that it is dead right that we need to exercise and eat right to stay healthy.  It is also very accurately portraying the fact that your willpower is greater than your body.  I am merely pointing out the fact I started out with, that if you take a sample of people run them on a diet and then weed out those it doesn’t work for you end up only seeing the success stories.

The shows approach is extreme and will result in weight loss for many people.  Note the similar extreme approach you took (undercutting RMR and working out) to lose the first 60+ pounds in 6 months which was about 2.5 lbs per week.  But you plateaued.  The body can handle an extreme approach for a short time (how long varies by person).  Stick to it for to long and the body adapts to this new stress and will change its metabolism and body chemistry to support being under RMR.  That’s what our bodies do to survive, they adapt.

So if the person’s body can not keep up this extreme or it is not a chemistry match for their body, eventually they will plateau.

So a long-range approach to weight loss is one that does not put the body under extreme stress.  That would be staying above RMR while taking in less calories than are used.  This results in the calories needing to be made up from our calorie stores (fat) and the loss of weight.

So the answer is no.  I do not want to program you out for any more than 1/2 to 3/4 of a pound of weight loss per week because that would drop you under your RMR.

Now you may actually lose weight faster as much of your weight I perceive to be water retention.  Getting above your RMR for a few weeks may relax your body enough that it starts to shed the water weight along with the calorie weight.  We will have to see.

A key thing to focus on is this fact.  You don’t lose weight to become healthy.  You get healthy to lose weight.  Working out makes us more healthy, eating nutritious foods – fruits and vegetables, cutting out fried foods and sugary treats makes us healthy, getting 7.5 to 8 hours of rest per night makes us healthy, reducing stress in life makes us healthy.  Guess what, these are the things we do to lose weight.  So getting healthy loses weight. (I love this paragraph!)

Undercutting your RMR is not healthy.  Lets get your body healthy by following your RMR and see if the weight comes off.  I bet it will.  If it does not then Jessica(now Mama Kelly) has the know how and can take the next steps with you.

Truly Yours

6 thoughts on “2 Lbs A Week?

  1. You know, I have been on those crazy crash diets before and I have felt like garbage. This time, I am losing between 1/2 to 3/4 of a pound a week and truly feel terrific (since April). I never feel starved. I have energy all the time.

    Mark has given you great advice. Slow and steady wins the race!

  2. I think he brings up some good points in this. The one thing I am surprised he doesn’t mention is that contestants on that show are 100% focused to losing weight, meaning they exercise enormous amounts. They eat very little. It is not practical for most of us to do that every day.

    As I said in the past, there is nothing wrong with half a pound a week. In a year you will still be very pleased with another 26 pounds gone, right?

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