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Transitioning from weight loss to body recomp?

coffeexxeyescoffeexxeyes Posts: 35Member Member Posts: 35Member Member
How did you know when it was time to refocus your efforts from weight loss to body recomposition (maintaining weight, losing fat, adding muscle)?

Thanks all ❤🏋️‍♀️

Replies

  • lorrpblorrpb Posts: 10,434Member Member Posts: 10,434Member Member
    When I was at the high end of my goal range
  • sijomialsijomial Posts: 15,038Member Member Posts: 15,038Member Member
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)
  • steveko89steveko89 Posts: 1,255Member Member Posts: 1,255Member Member
    For me, I hit the low end of the "ideal weight range" for my height and still didn't like what I saw in the mirror. It was clear that look the way I wanted I needed to add muscle.
  • coffeexxeyescoffeexxeyes Posts: 35Member Member Posts: 35Member Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)

    I'm starting to add spin classes to my routine twice a week. I also run once a week and walk the dog daily, some yoga here and there. I also participate in pilates reformer classes 2-3 times a week, I am wanting to refine my practice with heavier weight, new exercises, and upping my average to 3 to 4 times. Maybe that will do the trick?

    I'm down to a 27" waist at 5'2, so I'm not sure if I should keep going at a deficit for a 26" waist or I'm in a good place for eating maintenance and taking my workouts up a notch.
    edited August 5
  • sijomialsijomial Posts: 15,038Member Member Posts: 15,038Member Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)

    I'm starting to add spin classes to my routine twice a week. I also run once a week and walk the dog daily, some yoga here and there. I also participate in pilates reformer classes 2-3 times a week, I am wanting to refine my practice with heavier weight, new exercises, and upping my average to 3 to 4 times. Maybe that will do the trick?

    I'm down to a 27" waist at 5'2, so I'm not sure if I should keep going at a deficit for a 26" waist or I'm in a good place for eating maintenance and taking my workouts up a notch.

    Unlikely you will add any significant muscle with that routine unless you are coming from a very low start point.
    It's not so much the frequency or volume as the type of exercise. You need to challenge your muscles beyond their current capabilities if you want hypertrophy. Your routine may well improve your CV fitness and flexibility - both worthwhile goals but not really tools for recomp.

    Fat loss from recomp at maintenance comes from gaining muscle.

    As an example I did 36 hrs of cycling in July, I wouldn't expect any muscle growth from that, even if I doubled it I still wouldn't expect growth as I tapped out that potential a long time ago.
    But if I swapped out some of it for weight training I might.
  • coffeexxeyescoffeexxeyes Posts: 35Member Member Posts: 35Member Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)

    I'm starting to add spin classes to my routine twice a week. I also run once a week and walk the dog daily, some yoga here and there. I also participate in pilates reformer classes 2-3 times a week, I am wanting to refine my practice with heavier weight, new exercises, and upping my average to 3 to 4 times. Maybe that will do the trick?

    I'm down to a 27" waist at 5'2, so I'm not sure if I should keep going at a deficit for a 26" waist or I'm in a good place for eating maintenance and taking my workouts up a notch.

    Unlikely you will add any significant muscle with that routine unless you are coming from a very low start point.
    It's not so much the frequency or volume as the type of exercise. You need to challenge your muscles beyond their current capabilities if you want hypertrophy. Your routine may well improve your CV fitness and flexibility - both worthwhile goals but not really tools for recomp.

    Fat loss from recomp at maintenance comes from gaining muscle.

    As an example I did 36 hrs of cycling in July, I wouldn't expect any muscle growth from that, even if I doubled it I still wouldn't expect growth as I tapped out that potential a long time ago.
    But if I swapped out some of it for weight training I might.

    You should look into pilates reformer if you haven't before. It really has little to do with flexibility! The exercises are challenging and also use weights with a total body focus, especially with core strength. It's a mind body exercise, but nothing like yoga.

    I was thinking the cycling may help me lose a bit of fat while upping the weights in my classes would help build muscle. Maybe I just dont understand what to do next. It seems like lifting heavy weights is something I should do. It is just very boring to me!
    edited August 5
  • sijomialsijomial Posts: 15,038Member Member Posts: 15,038Member Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)

    I'm starting to add spin classes to my routine twice a week. I also run once a week and walk the dog daily, some yoga here and there. I also participate in pilates reformer classes 2-3 times a week, I am wanting to refine my practice with heavier weight, new exercises, and upping my average to 3 to 4 times. Maybe that will do the trick?

    I'm down to a 27" waist at 5'2, so I'm not sure if I should keep going at a deficit for a 26" waist or I'm in a good place for eating maintenance and taking my workouts up a notch.

    Unlikely you will add any significant muscle with that routine unless you are coming from a very low start point.
    It's not so much the frequency or volume as the type of exercise. You need to challenge your muscles beyond their current capabilities if you want hypertrophy. Your routine may well improve your CV fitness and flexibility - both worthwhile goals but not really tools for recomp.

    Fat loss from recomp at maintenance comes from gaining muscle.

    As an example I did 36 hrs of cycling in July, I wouldn't expect any muscle growth from that, even if I doubled it I still wouldn't expect growth as I tapped out that potential a long time ago.
    But if I swapped out some of it for weight training I might.

    You should look into pilates reformer if you haven't before. It really has little to do with flexibility! The exercises are challenging and also use weights with a total body focus, especially with core strength. It's a mind body exercise, but nothing like yoga.

    I was thinking the cycling may help me lose a bit of fat while upping the weights in my classes would help build muscle. Maybe I just dont understand what to do next.

    No thanks - not my cup of tea at all. If it's truly challenging to you and can provide long term progressive overload (which I have my doubts) then go for it. You might get some growth - if again you are coming from a low start point.

    How exactly does cycling make you lose fat if you are eating at maintenance calories?
    I had a great cycling month in April and really boosted my speed and endurance with 625 miles - didn't lose any weight as I was eating at maintenance, if my goal was recomp it would have done nothing towards that goal.


    Have a good read of this thread and all should become clearer...…
    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10177803/recomposition-maintaining-weight-while-losing-fat/p1
  • coffeexxeyescoffeexxeyes Posts: 35Member Member Posts: 35Member Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)

    I'm starting to add spin classes to my routine twice a week. I also run once a week and walk the dog daily, some yoga here and there. I also participate in pilates reformer classes 2-3 times a week, I am wanting to refine my practice with heavier weight, new exercises, and upping my average to 3 to 4 times. Maybe that will do the trick?

    I'm down to a 27" waist at 5'2, so I'm not sure if I should keep going at a deficit for a 26" waist or I'm in a good place for eating maintenance and taking my workouts up a notch.

    Unlikely you will add any significant muscle with that routine unless you are coming from a very low start point.
    It's not so much the frequency or volume as the type of exercise. You need to challenge your muscles beyond their current capabilities if you want hypertrophy. Your routine may well improve your CV fitness and flexibility - both worthwhile goals but not really tools for recomp.

    Fat loss from recomp at maintenance comes from gaining muscle.

    As an example I did 36 hrs of cycling in July, I wouldn't expect any muscle growth from that, even if I doubled it I still wouldn't expect growth as I tapped out that potential a long time ago.
    But if I swapped out some of it for weight training I might.

    You should look into pilates reformer if you haven't before. It really has little to do with flexibility! The exercises are challenging and also use weights with a total body focus, especially with core strength. It's a mind body exercise, but nothing like yoga.

    I was thinking the cycling may help me lose a bit of fat while upping the weights in my classes would help build muscle. Maybe I just dont understand what to do next.

    No thanks - not my cup of tea at all. If it's truly challenging to you and can provide long term progressive overload (which I have my doubts) then go for it. You might get some growth - if again you are coming from a low start point.

    How exactly does cycling make you lose fat if you are eating at maintenance calories?
    I had a great cycling month in April and really boosted my speed and endurance with 625 miles - didn't lose any weight as I was eating at maintenance, if my goal was recomp it would have done nothing towards that goal.


    Have a good read of this thread and all should become clearer...…
    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10177803/recomposition-maintaining-weight-while-losing-fat/p1

    I didn't say to look into it as in you should try it, but look into it so you can educate yourself on what it actually is. Thanks anyway
  • sijomialsijomial Posts: 15,038Member Member Posts: 15,038Member Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)

    I'm starting to add spin classes to my routine twice a week. I also run once a week and walk the dog daily, some yoga here and there. I also participate in pilates reformer classes 2-3 times a week, I am wanting to refine my practice with heavier weight, new exercises, and upping my average to 3 to 4 times. Maybe that will do the trick?

    I'm down to a 27" waist at 5'2, so I'm not sure if I should keep going at a deficit for a 26" waist or I'm in a good place for eating maintenance and taking my workouts up a notch.

    Unlikely you will add any significant muscle with that routine unless you are coming from a very low start point.
    It's not so much the frequency or volume as the type of exercise. You need to challenge your muscles beyond their current capabilities if you want hypertrophy. Your routine may well improve your CV fitness and flexibility - both worthwhile goals but not really tools for recomp.

    Fat loss from recomp at maintenance comes from gaining muscle.

    As an example I did 36 hrs of cycling in July, I wouldn't expect any muscle growth from that, even if I doubled it I still wouldn't expect growth as I tapped out that potential a long time ago.
    But if I swapped out some of it for weight training I might.

    You should look into pilates reformer if you haven't before. It really has little to do with flexibility! The exercises are challenging and also use weights with a total body focus, especially with core strength. It's a mind body exercise, but nothing like yoga.

    I was thinking the cycling may help me lose a bit of fat while upping the weights in my classes would help build muscle. Maybe I just dont understand what to do next.

    No thanks - not my cup of tea at all. If it's truly challenging to you and can provide long term progressive overload (which I have my doubts) then go for it. You might get some growth - if again you are coming from a low start point.

    How exactly does cycling make you lose fat if you are eating at maintenance calories?
    I had a great cycling month in April and really boosted my speed and endurance with 625 miles - didn't lose any weight as I was eating at maintenance, if my goal was recomp it would have done nothing towards that goal.


    Have a good read of this thread and all should become clearer...…
    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10177803/recomposition-maintaining-weight-while-losing-fat/p1

    I didn't say to look into it as in you should try it, but look into it so you can educate yourself on what it actually is. Thanks anyway

    I have "looked into it" - my comments are based on looking into it.

    Seriously read the thread, it's your training that drives the process - don't get that right and your chances of success plummet.
  • coffeexxeyescoffeexxeyes Posts: 35Member Member Posts: 35Member Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)

    I'm starting to add spin classes to my routine twice a week. I also run once a week and walk the dog daily, some yoga here and there. I also participate in pilates reformer classes 2-3 times a week, I am wanting to refine my practice with heavier weight, new exercises, and upping my average to 3 to 4 times. Maybe that will do the trick?

    I'm down to a 27" waist at 5'2, so I'm not sure if I should keep going at a deficit for a 26" waist or I'm in a good place for eating maintenance and taking my workouts up a notch.

    Unlikely you will add any significant muscle with that routine unless you are coming from a very low start point.
    It's not so much the frequency or volume as the type of exercise. You need to challenge your muscles beyond their current capabilities if you want hypertrophy. Your routine may well improve your CV fitness and flexibility - both worthwhile goals but not really tools for recomp.

    Fat loss from recomp at maintenance comes from gaining muscle.

    As an example I did 36 hrs of cycling in July, I wouldn't expect any muscle growth from that, even if I doubled it I still wouldn't expect growth as I tapped out that potential a long time ago.
    But if I swapped out some of it for weight training I might.

    You should look into pilates reformer if you haven't before. It really has little to do with flexibility! The exercises are challenging and also use weights with a total body focus, especially with core strength. It's a mind body exercise, but nothing like yoga.

    I was thinking the cycling may help me lose a bit of fat while upping the weights in my classes would help build muscle. Maybe I just dont understand what to do next.

    No thanks - not my cup of tea at all. If it's truly challenging to you and can provide long term progressive overload (which I have my doubts) then go for it. You might get some growth - if again you are coming from a low start point.

    How exactly does cycling make you lose fat if you are eating at maintenance calories?
    I had a great cycling month in April and really boosted my speed and endurance with 625 miles - didn't lose any weight as I was eating at maintenance, if my goal was recomp it would have done nothing towards that goal.


    Have a good read of this thread and all should become clearer...…
    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10177803/recomposition-maintaining-weight-while-losing-fat/p1

    I didn't say to look into it as in you should try it, but look into it so you can educate yourself on what it actually is. Thanks anyway

    I have "looked into it" - my comments are based on looking into it.

    Seriously read the thread, it's your training that drives the process - don't get that right and your chances of success plummet.

    Well, it didnt seem like they were since you mentioned that pilates improves flexibility, which the practice really doesn't focus on at all beside a brief 10 second stretch in between work.
  • kimny72kimny72 Posts: 13,309Member Member Posts: 13,309Member Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)

    I'm starting to add spin classes to my routine twice a week. I also run once a week and walk the dog daily, some yoga here and there. I also participate in pilates reformer classes 2-3 times a week, I am wanting to refine my practice with heavier weight, new exercises, and upping my average to 3 to 4 times. Maybe that will do the trick?

    I'm down to a 27" waist at 5'2, so I'm not sure if I should keep going at a deficit for a 26" waist or I'm in a good place for eating maintenance and taking my workouts up a notch.

    Unlikely you will add any significant muscle with that routine unless you are coming from a very low start point.
    It's not so much the frequency or volume as the type of exercise. You need to challenge your muscles beyond their current capabilities if you want hypertrophy. Your routine may well improve your CV fitness and flexibility - both worthwhile goals but not really tools for recomp.

    Fat loss from recomp at maintenance comes from gaining muscle.

    As an example I did 36 hrs of cycling in July, I wouldn't expect any muscle growth from that, even if I doubled it I still wouldn't expect growth as I tapped out that potential a long time ago.
    But if I swapped out some of it for weight training I might.

    You should look into pilates reformer if you haven't before. It really has little to do with flexibility! The exercises are challenging and also use weights with a total body focus, especially with core strength. It's a mind body exercise, but nothing like yoga.

    I was thinking the cycling may help me lose a bit of fat while upping the weights in my classes would help build muscle. Maybe I just dont understand what to do next. It seems like lifting heavy weights is something I should do. It is just very boring to me!

    Building muscle is actually quite difficult for women, even a woman lifting heavy weights with a pro trainer and her nutrition on point will only gain a lb or two of muscle per month. If your Pilates is challenging your muscles and getting progressively harder and harder, I suppose it could help you build muscle. Keep in mind your muscles can get stronger without getting bigger - lots of physical activities can make you stronger without actually increasing muscle mass.

    Check out these threads, both might give you some ideas.

    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10177803/recomposition-maintaining-weight-while-losing-fat/p1

    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10332083/which-lifting-program-is-the-best-for-you/p1

    Otherwise, lots of people do focus on maintaining their weight and getting more fit, and end up liking how they look more after months/years of doing that. Just understand that whether you incorporate some straight up weight lifting or just focus on activities you love and see what happens, progress will be super slow. Once you're around maintenance, visible progress takes months and years! It's not like losing weight where you step on the scale each week and see something happening :smile:

    If you aren't in your maintenance range yet, I would stick to a 0.5lbs (250 cal) deficit but start to switch your focus from watching the scale to solidifying the healthy habits that will keep you there for the rest of your life.

    I started focusing on lifting heavy things when I got to what I thought would be my goal weight and still wasn't happy with how I looked. I wish I had started sooner - it's never to early to start thinking about building and strengthening your muscle, in addition to just making you functionally healthier, it really can make you look better. Good luck!
  • sijomialsijomial Posts: 15,038Member Member Posts: 15,038Member Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)

    I'm starting to add spin classes to my routine twice a week. I also run once a week and walk the dog daily, some yoga here and there. I also participate in pilates reformer classes 2-3 times a week, I am wanting to refine my practice with heavier weight, new exercises, and upping my average to 3 to 4 times. Maybe that will do the trick?

    I'm down to a 27" waist at 5'2, so I'm not sure if I should keep going at a deficit for a 26" waist or I'm in a good place for eating maintenance and taking my workouts up a notch.

    Unlikely you will add any significant muscle with that routine unless you are coming from a very low start point.
    It's not so much the frequency or volume as the type of exercise. You need to challenge your muscles beyond their current capabilities if you want hypertrophy. Your routine may well improve your CV fitness and flexibility - both worthwhile goals but not really tools for recomp.

    Fat loss from recomp at maintenance comes from gaining muscle.

    As an example I did 36 hrs of cycling in July, I wouldn't expect any muscle growth from that, even if I doubled it I still wouldn't expect growth as I tapped out that potential a long time ago.
    But if I swapped out some of it for weight training I might.

    You should look into pilates reformer if you haven't before. It really has little to do with flexibility! The exercises are challenging and also use weights with a total body focus, especially with core strength. It's a mind body exercise, but nothing like yoga.

    I was thinking the cycling may help me lose a bit of fat while upping the weights in my classes would help build muscle. Maybe I just dont understand what to do next.

    No thanks - not my cup of tea at all. If it's truly challenging to you and can provide long term progressive overload (which I have my doubts) then go for it. You might get some growth - if again you are coming from a low start point.

    How exactly does cycling make you lose fat if you are eating at maintenance calories?
    I had a great cycling month in April and really boosted my speed and endurance with 625 miles - didn't lose any weight as I was eating at maintenance, if my goal was recomp it would have done nothing towards that goal.


    Have a good read of this thread and all should become clearer...…
    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10177803/recomposition-maintaining-weight-while-losing-fat/p1

    I didn't say to look into it as in you should try it, but look into it so you can educate yourself on what it actually is. Thanks anyway

    I have "looked into it" - my comments are based on looking into it.

    Seriously read the thread, it's your training that drives the process - don't get that right and your chances of success plummet.

    Well, it didnt seem like they were since you mentioned that pilates improves flexibility, which the practice really doesn't focus on at all beside a brief 10 second stretch in between work.

    Well, maybe read the whole entirety of my replies rather than focus on one word?
    If you think the pulley and springs are sufficient to progressively overload your muscles for months and months then go for it.
  • coffeexxeyescoffeexxeyes Posts: 35Member Member Posts: 35Member Member
    kimny72 wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)

    I'm starting to add spin classes to my routine twice a week. I also run once a week and walk the dog daily, some yoga here and there. I also participate in pilates reformer classes 2-3 times a week, I am wanting to refine my practice with heavier weight, new exercises, and upping my average to 3 to 4 times. Maybe that will do the trick?

    I'm down to a 27" waist at 5'2, so I'm not sure if I should keep going at a deficit for a 26" waist or I'm in a good place for eating maintenance and taking my workouts up a notch.

    Unlikely you will add any significant muscle with that routine unless you are coming from a very low start point.
    It's not so much the frequency or volume as the type of exercise. You need to challenge your muscles beyond their current capabilities if you want hypertrophy. Your routine may well improve your CV fitness and flexibility - both worthwhile goals but not really tools for recomp.

    Fat loss from recomp at maintenance comes from gaining muscle.

    As an example I did 36 hrs of cycling in July, I wouldn't expect any muscle growth from that, even if I doubled it I still wouldn't expect growth as I tapped out that potential a long time ago.
    But if I swapped out some of it for weight training I might.

    You should look into pilates reformer if you haven't before. It really has little to do with flexibility! The exercises are challenging and also use weights with a total body focus, especially with core strength. It's a mind body exercise, but nothing like yoga.

    I was thinking the cycling may help me lose a bit of fat while upping the weights in my classes would help build muscle. Maybe I just dont understand what to do next. It seems like lifting heavy weights is something I should do. It is just very boring to me!

    Building muscle is actually quite difficult for women, even a woman lifting heavy weights with a pro trainer and her nutrition on point will only gain a lb or two of muscle per month. If your Pilates is challenging your muscles and getting progressively harder and harder, I suppose it could help you build muscle. Keep in mind your muscles can get stronger without getting bigger - lots of physical activities can make you stronger without actually increasing muscle mass.

    Check out these threads, both might give you some ideas.

    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10177803/recomposition-maintaining-weight-while-losing-fat/p1

    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10332083/which-lifting-program-is-the-best-for-you/p1

    Otherwise, lots of people do focus on maintaining their weight and getting more fit, and end up liking how they look more after months/years of doing that. Just understand that whether you incorporate some straight up weight lifting or just focus on activities you love and see what happens, progress will be super slow. Once you're around maintenance, visible progress takes months and years! It's not like losing weight where you step on the scale each week and see something happening :smile:

    If you aren't in your maintenance range yet, I would stick to a 0.5lbs (250 cal) deficit but start to switch your focus from watching the scale to solidifying the healthy habits that will keep you there for the rest of your life.

    I started focusing on lifting heavy things when I got to what I thought would be my goal weight and still wasn't happy with how I looked. I wish I had started sooner - it's never to early to start thinking about building and strengthening your muscle, in addition to just making you functionally healthier, it really can make you look better. Good luck!

    Thank you for the thoughtful reply. I would like to incorporate more strength training into my routine, but I also want it to be something I enjoy doing. Any suggestions for weight lifting vs the monotony of the gym?
  • Pipsqueak1965Pipsqueak1965 Posts: 168Member Member Posts: 168Member Member
    If you like classes you could always start out with something like body pump or cross fit, I guess. But the easiest and quickest way to actually gain some muscle is to start using heavy weights.
  • kimny72kimny72 Posts: 13,309Member Member Posts: 13,309Member Member
    kimny72 wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    Apart from increasing your calories to maintain what else do you have to change OP?

    (I didn't change my training or training goals and recomp is more a by-product than a standalone goal - my goals are performance related rather than composition.)

    I'm starting to add spin classes to my routine twice a week. I also run once a week and walk the dog daily, some yoga here and there. I also participate in pilates reformer classes 2-3 times a week, I am wanting to refine my practice with heavier weight, new exercises, and upping my average to 3 to 4 times. Maybe that will do the trick?

    I'm down to a 27" waist at 5'2, so I'm not sure if I should keep going at a deficit for a 26" waist or I'm in a good place for eating maintenance and taking my workouts up a notch.

    Unlikely you will add any significant muscle with that routine unless you are coming from a very low start point.
    It's not so much the frequency or volume as the type of exercise. You need to challenge your muscles beyond their current capabilities if you want hypertrophy. Your routine may well improve your CV fitness and flexibility - both worthwhile goals but not really tools for recomp.

    Fat loss from recomp at maintenance comes from gaining muscle.

    As an example I did 36 hrs of cycling in July, I wouldn't expect any muscle growth from that, even if I doubled it I still wouldn't expect growth as I tapped out that potential a long time ago.
    But if I swapped out some of it for weight training I might.

    You should look into pilates reformer if you haven't before. It really has little to do with flexibility! The exercises are challenging and also use weights with a total body focus, especially with core strength. It's a mind body exercise, but nothing like yoga.

    I was thinking the cycling may help me lose a bit of fat while upping the weights in my classes would help build muscle. Maybe I just dont understand what to do next. It seems like lifting heavy weights is something I should do. It is just very boring to me!

    Building muscle is actually quite difficult for women, even a woman lifting heavy weights with a pro trainer and her nutrition on point will only gain a lb or two of muscle per month. If your Pilates is challenging your muscles and getting progressively harder and harder, I suppose it could help you build muscle. Keep in mind your muscles can get stronger without getting bigger - lots of physical activities can make you stronger without actually increasing muscle mass.

    Check out these threads, both might give you some ideas.

    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10177803/recomposition-maintaining-weight-while-losing-fat/p1

    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10332083/which-lifting-program-is-the-best-for-you/p1

    Otherwise, lots of people do focus on maintaining their weight and getting more fit, and end up liking how they look more after months/years of doing that. Just understand that whether you incorporate some straight up weight lifting or just focus on activities you love and see what happens, progress will be super slow. Once you're around maintenance, visible progress takes months and years! It's not like losing weight where you step on the scale each week and see something happening :smile:

    If you aren't in your maintenance range yet, I would stick to a 0.5lbs (250 cal) deficit but start to switch your focus from watching the scale to solidifying the healthy habits that will keep you there for the rest of your life.

    I started focusing on lifting heavy things when I got to what I thought would be my goal weight and still wasn't happy with how I looked. I wish I had started sooner - it's never to early to start thinking about building and strengthening your muscle, in addition to just making you functionally healthier, it really can make you look better. Good luck!

    Thank you for the thoughtful reply. I would like to incorporate more strength training into my routine, but I also want it to be something I enjoy doing. Any suggestions for weight lifting vs the monotony of the gym?

    The "Which Lifting Program" thread I linked includes some bodyweight and dumbbell programs you can do at home. I'm sure you can also find recorded classes you can stream, through places like Beachbody or Fitness Blender or something like that.
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