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How long does it take to...get rid of that *stubborn* fat?

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I'm not sure what counts as stubborn fat, but I'm talking about the still visible layers of belly fat, although not as much as before, that you still have even after you've lost a considerable amount of weight. How long does it take and what are the necessary steps to completely get rid of those, and make sure that your chest/abdomen area goes completely flat or toned? Thanks for your feedback and advice. :)
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Replies

  • jdog022
    jdog022 Posts: 693 Member
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    a deficit, patience, time, consistency. Results will vary based on what bf% you started at etc. The last few bf points really go slow. no spot reducing so just keep going till you get there
  • RoxieDawn
    RoxieDawn Posts: 15,488 Member
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    Fat is not stubborn.. you need to refocus your efforts on body composition.
  • jemhh
    jemhh Posts: 14,261 Member
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    AnvilHead wrote: »
    jdog022 wrote: »
    a deficit, patience, time, consistency...

    ^ All those. Doesn't hurt to mix in a good strength training program either.

    For most guys, you won't have a flat stomach until you're somewhere between 10%-15% bodyfat - unfortunately, it's the last place the fat stubbornly clings to for most of us.

    +1 to this. The lower back is also a rough area for a lot of men, and the loose skin at the lower part of the torso can be especially frustrating for men who have lost a lot of weight.

    Using me as an example: I started at 265, and here's me at 166, a few weeks into my current lean bulk.
    9wvp5ea61n7m.jpeg

    As you can tell from the picture, my old eating habits still haunt my lower abdomen a lot, and my back has notable skin and fat pockets at the very bottom. A lot of that goes away if I intentionally dry myself out via dehydration and sodium restriction, but that's obviously not something one can do all of the time, without catching a nasty case of the dead.

    OP, this is a good example. When people say that stomach fat is the last to go, they are being quite literal. It can be the last to go during your big weight loss and then if you do a bulk/cut cycle it can be the first to appear and last to leave again. It takes a lot of patience to see it go.
  • SingingSingleTracker
    SingingSingleTracker Posts: 1,866 Member
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    I'm not sure what counts as stubborn fat, but I'm talking about the still visible layers of belly fat, although not as much as before, that you still have even after you've lost a considerable amount of weight. How long does it take and what are the necessary steps to completely get rid of those, and make sure that your chest/abdomen area goes completely flat or toned? Thanks for your feedback and advice. :)

    I think when you get down to the remaining belly fat, targeting a 1/2 pound to 1 pound loss per week is a very reasonable goal. By doing so, you can figure out the "how long does it take" portion of your question. The typical "spare tire" with the love handles and remaining belly fat is most often about 15-20 pounds. So your target of one pound per week will take 15-20 weeks, and twice as long if you target 1/2 pound per week. Keep lifting to maintain as much muscle mass as you possibly can during the weight loss.

    That accounts for the patience requirement as other posters have pointed out.
  • Cylphin60
    Cylphin60 Posts: 863 Member
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    I'm not sure what counts as stubborn fat, but I'm talking about the still visible layers of belly fat, although not as much as before, that you still have even after you've lost a considerable amount of weight. How long does it take and what are the necessary steps to completely get rid of those, and make sure that your chest/abdomen area goes completely flat or toned? Thanks for your feedback and advice. :)

    I think when you get down to the remaining belly fat, targeting a 1/2 pound to 1 pound loss per week is a very reasonable goal. By doing so, you can figure out the "how long does it take" portion of your question. The typical "spare tire" with the love handles and remaining belly fat is most often about 15-20 pounds. So your target of one pound per week will take 15-20 weeks, and twice as long if you target 1/2 pound per week. Keep lifting to maintain as much muscle mass as you possibly can during the weight loss.

    That accounts for the patience requirement as other posters have pointed out.

    Very much so. I'm set at one lb per week, but really only dropping .5 or so. It gets tough some days due to fluctuations in weight due to water retention and other variables too.

    That said - this isn't a "diet" I'm on with a cut off date, it's how I live and eat now. Do the best you can each day, make the right choices and work towards your goals. You'll get there OP.
  • RoxieDawn
    RoxieDawn Posts: 15,488 Member
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    RoxieDawn wrote: »
    Fat is not stubborn.. you need to refocus your efforts on body composition.

    Unfortunately you are wrong about that. Some fat is stubborn! It's location varies between women and men but it very much is a real thing.

    This. Ask any bodybuilder who's dieted down to contest leanness. For most men, the body can get to the point where it would rather eat the muscle off of your big toe, than to take the last of the fat from the midsection. It gets hard as hell the further down you go.

    15% bf is easy. 10% is challenging. 5% requires more concerted effort in a month than 10% does in six. And sadly, that last few percent is almost always in the "problem areas": abdomen and lower back for men, hips and thighs for women.

    I should have elaborated from a much broader perspective, getting down to low low bf percentages, and from a body building perspective.. but you did not for me..
  • CharlieBeansmomTracey
    CharlieBeansmomTracey Posts: 7,682 Member
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    Im 4 years into my weight loss. having a slow time losing weight,I still have some belly fat,thigh fat,saddle bags,etc. its not as bad as it was when I first started. but its still there. of course Im female. but the weight is slower at coming off than the fat it seems. which I wont complain.Ive been set to lose less than .5 a week for more than a year too.I will keep going no matter how long it takes.right now Im eating in maintenance for the winter and I find Im getting better results now than I was at a deficit.
  • Gallowmere1984
    Gallowmere1984 Posts: 6,626 Member
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    Im 4 years into my weight loss. having a slow time losing weight,I still have some belly fat,thigh fat,saddle bags,etc. its not as bad as it was when I first started. but its still there. of course Im female. but the weight is slower at coming off than the fat it seems. which I wont complain.Ive been set to lose less than .5 a week for more than a year too.I will keep going no matter how long it takes.right now Im eating in maintenance for the winter and I find Im getting better results now than I was at a deficit.

    I really do feel for the women who are trying to get themselves lean. You guys have to put in twice the effort, for half of the return, and are constantly being gut punched by the worst waves of hormones that human biology has to offer.

    I used to get frustrated with my ex-wife's eating problems, until I started to understand the endocrine system a bit better. Luckily, once a woman gets low enough in bodyfat to shut down her reproductive system, it seems to get a lot easier to stay that way, than it was to get there.
  • CharlieBeansmomTracey
    CharlieBeansmomTracey Posts: 7,682 Member
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    Im 4 years into my weight loss. having a slow time losing weight,I still have some belly fat,thigh fat,saddle bags,etc. its not as bad as it was when I first started. but its still there. of course Im female. but the weight is slower at coming off than the fat it seems. which I wont complain.Ive been set to lose less than .5 a week for more than a year too.I will keep going no matter how long it takes.right now Im eating in maintenance for the winter and I find Im getting better results now than I was at a deficit.

    I really do feel for the women who are trying to get themselves lean. You guys have to put in twice the effort, for half of the return, and are constantly being gut punched by the worst waves of hormones that human biology has to offer.

    I used to get frustrated with my ex-wife's eating problems, until I started to understand the endocrine system a bit better. Luckily, once a woman gets low enough in bodyfat to shut down her reproductive system, it seems to get a lot easier to stay that way, than it was to get there.

    yeah,Im just trying to get it low enough to where I feel better. 20% would be fine for me .Im probably somewhere around 25/26?. I dont want to be too lean,I can see some abs now but If I never see a six pack I will be fine with that too. just hoping some of my trouble areas get a little better. I know for me I will never look like a SI model, or win a bikini contest and for me thats ok. just as long as I feel comfortable in my own skin is what counts.
  • MelanieCN77
    MelanieCN77 Posts: 4,047 Member
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    Everyone's body has its own order for dumping the fat it's losing. Mine goes off waist and torso first, arms, and like most women, hips and belly last. You can't choose where it goes from, but you can work out along the way and have the area ready for when things do start to happen :wink:
  • deluxmary2000
    deluxmary2000 Posts: 981 Member
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    Im 4 years into my weight loss. having a slow time losing weight,I still have some belly fat,thigh fat,saddle bags,etc. its not as bad as it was when I first started. but its still there. of course Im female. but the weight is slower at coming off than the fat it seems. which I wont complain.Ive been set to lose less than .5 a week for more than a year too.I will keep going no matter how long it takes.right now Im eating in maintenance for the winter and I find Im getting better results now than I was at a deficit.

    I really do feel for the women who are trying to get themselves lean. You guys have to put in twice the effort, for half of the return, and are constantly being gut punched by the worst waves of hormones that human biology has to offer.

    I used to get frustrated with my ex-wife's eating problems, until I started to understand the endocrine system a bit better. Luckily, once a woman gets low enough in bodyfat to shut down her reproductive system, it seems to get a lot easier to stay that way, than it was to get there.

    yeah,Im just trying to get it low enough to where I feel better. 20% would be fine for me .Im probably somewhere around 25/26?. I dont want to be too lean,I can see some abs now but If I never see a six pack I will be fine with that too. just hoping some of my trouble areas get a little better. I know for me I will never look like a SI model, or win a bikini contest and for me thats ok. just as long as I feel comfortable in my own skin is what counts.

    Same here. No matter what kind of shape I get in, I'll never be IFBB material. I refuse to have the excess skin or stretch marks removed. I wrecked my body early in life with obesity, and I need to keep those reminders around. They'll always be there to punch me in the throat, should I decide to start letting myself slip again.

    They're a testament to a total lack of discipline, and a monument to what happens when I fail and betray myself.

    FWIW, you don't look like you "wrecked" your body at all. But I am also my own worst critic, so I can relate to this mindset.
  • ummijaaz560
    ummijaaz560 Posts: 228 Member
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    I have about 10 more pounds of fat to lose. Nearly all of it is belly fat.

    Its been 9.5 months of dieting and 43 pounds down.

    I have only since started to visualize what many say about problem areas literally being the last to go.

    These folks aren't lying.

    There's seriously nothing but belly fat left on me to lose.

    I hope to like what I see come march, a year of losing weight, and my discovery of lifting.

    Looking foward to maintaining soon.

    Like others I have no choice but to continue, quitting is not an option.
  • Fatvaporizer
    Fatvaporizer Posts: 139 Member
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    Bump.
  • All_Exits_Lead_Within
    All_Exits_Lead_Within Posts: 47 Member
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    Perhaps you could try just maintaining your weight for a month or two - no hardcore working out, just daily physical activity. Then when the month or two is over and you begin cutting calories and working out again, your body won't be as prepared and you should be able to drop the weight. I haven't tried this, but it seems like it might work.
  • sardelsa
    sardelsa Posts: 9,812 Member
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    I am currently dealing with this. Seeing visual progress everywhere else, but those stubborn areas aren't moving at all and while I've seen some progress in the past when I got pretty lean, I think I will always be stuck with them to some degree. My hope was building muscle in the area would help, so we will see.

    Right now just weight lifting, small deficit and tons of patience.