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Recomposition: Maintaining weight while losing fat

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  • richardgavelrichardgavel Member Posts: 997 Member Member Posts: 997 Member
    girlgroves wrote: »
    Thank you for all the replies - that's really good to know. Any recommendations on what kind of timescales/increments I should be aiming for when increasing the weight?

    @feistybucket, @sijomial - I think I'd be less terrified trying out the free weights section if I knew what I was doing! It's not the people I find terrifying or even the thought of picking things up - I'm willing to give that a go - it's just that I've no idea how to do it safely without injuring myself! I suspect there's a right and a wrong way to lift free weights and a certain amount of technique and good form required? Having had issues with my back in the past I'd be worried about hurting myself!

    If you look at the Stronglifts 5x5 site, they have incredibly detailed form instructions on their 5 core exercises: hand position, foot position, foot width, etc. I found it very valuable and reread it often.
  • girlgrovesgirlgroves Member Posts: 235 Member Member Posts: 235 Member
  • psuLemonpsuLemon Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,743 MFP Moderator Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,743 MFP Moderator
    griffinca2 wrote: »
    And as a note: most women don't get big--there are a few exceptions. If women do get big they are either eating lots of protein and/or taking something. Benjammmin is correct; weight training will help you reach your strength and aesthetic goals and increase your metabolism.

    Generally if women are getting big, it's not due to protein, but rather anabolic steroids. They just don't have the ability to get big with such low levels of testosterone. Even with men, it would take years of training and bulking to get real big.
  • trigden1991trigden1991 Member Posts: 4,660 Member Member Posts: 4,660 Member
    "psulemon wrote:

    Generally if women are getting big, it's not due to protein, but rather anabolic steroids. They just don't have the ability to get big with such low levels of testosterone. Even with men, it would take years of training and bulking to get real big.

    Exactly this. No women naturally carry around large amounts of muscle mass. It is not biologically possible.
    edited October 2016
  • usmcmpusmcmp Member, Premium Posts: 21,291 Member Member, Premium Posts: 21,291 Member
    psulemon wrote: »
    griffinca2 wrote: »
    And as a note: most women don't get big--there are a few exceptions. If women do get big they are either eating lots of protein and/or taking something. Benjammmin is correct; weight training will help you reach your strength and aesthetic goals and increase your metabolism.

    Generally if women are getting big, it's not due to protein, but rather anabolic steroids. They just don't have the ability to get big with such low levels of testosterone. Even with men, it would take years of training and bulking to get real big.

    This is very true! I compete in women's bodybuilding. I'm even in the heavyweight category and I naturally have higher testosterone than the average woman. I'm still tiny compared to any of the competitors in the federations that are not drug tested. Lots of protein isn't enough to get big. Steroids and years of work are what it takes for a female to get big.

    Some women do have the genetics to gain more muscle in certain areas that can make it seem like they are getting bigger, such as shoulders or biceps. It just means they need less work.
  • robininflrobininfl Member Posts: 1,137 Member Member Posts: 1,137 Member
    njsa95 wrote: »
    robininfl wrote: »
    J72FIT wrote: »
    DebSozo wrote: »
    njsa95 wrote: »
    Where can we learn more about recomposition? I am at a weight im okay with, and have 20 to 23% BF depending on the method of measurement;all i really want right now is to recompose so i have more muscle as opposed to fat. (The jigggly bit between my thighs is still there,for example, whereas everywhere else i have slimmed down).
    I currently do kickboxing 4 times a week, and bodyweight resistance training--not much else.is there a way to recompose with just this or must i lift?

    -- progressive overload. Bodyweight resistance training alone isn't enough to recomp because your goal is to increase muscles. You have to progressively increase your weights to build muscle.


    I would have to disagree. I would say a better way to say this is it is far more difficult do recomp with bodyweight training because to increase load you have to get very creative. Gymnasts generally only do bodyweight training, but they are really built. Weights make it much much easier, and quicker.

    Yes I think anyone involved in gymnastic strength training would agree that body weight training is enough to recoup. To a point of course...

    Agreed have you seen how shredded the U.S. Women's olympic gymnasts are? I mean I know they're olympic gymnasts and probably incorporate strength training, but their eight pack abs seriously give bodybuilders a run for their money. Body weight exercise can recomp the body, it will just be slower than a traditional strength training program.

    They have to worry about strength to weight ratio - simply adding mass to be stronger doesn't help you in acrobatics, because then you are heavier. They need to have lotsa fast twitch muscle fibers and lots of strength but not more muscle than they need, because at some point those lines cross, and the extra weight works against you.

    I think like this too - my athletic goals are based more on my body than an absolute weight. I want things like stand on my hands, do ten pull ups easily, pike up to headstand, or to run faster or farther. As long as I can carry the 50lb bag of dog food when it's on sale with "15% MORE!" then I feel strong enough in an absolute sense.

    Those are my goals too.i think it would be accurate to say that i want the strength and body of a gymnast--bodyweight strong without having too much mass --as i am naturally small anyway.
    I dont think you can use weights for that correct?

    Depends on your body type I guess. I could lift all day every day and not bulk up much, it seems. Just not built that way. I do lift but once a week, for a few months now, and I can tell that I get stronger but cannot tell if it helps with the other stuff. At other times I've lifted more religiously though, and never did get big, just good definition on thin frame.

    On tricks, I think mostly just practice is what gets you there. Practice the things you want to be able to do! Pole dancing and acrobatics and aerial silks and yoga and, well, jumping a lot would probably be the way to go.

    As far as getting bulky, if you are a female and especially if built thin, I really do not think you need to worry about it. It's very hard to achieve even for women who are trying to do it. The chances of accidentally getting overbuilt is pretty remote.
  • tigerbluetigerblue Member Posts: 1,623 Member Member Posts: 1,623 Member
    psulemon wrote: »
    griffinca2 wrote: »
    And as a note: most women don't get big--there are a few exceptions. If women do get big they are either eating lots of protein and/or taking something. Benjammmin is correct; weight training will help you reach your strength and aesthetic goals and increase your metabolism.

    Generally if women are getting big, it's not due to protein, but rather anabolic steroids. They just don't have the ability to get big with such low levels of testosterone. Even with men, it would take years of training and bulking to get real big.

    I have always wondered--what about women with PCOS? I believe they have higher than normal testosterone. Would lifting perhaps cause someone who is struggling with PCOS to get big?
  • psuLemonpsuLemon Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,743 MFP Moderator Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,743 MFP Moderator
    tigerblue wrote: »
    psulemon wrote: »
    griffinca2 wrote: »
    And as a note: most women don't get big--there are a few exceptions. If women do get big they are either eating lots of protein and/or taking something. Benjammmin is correct; weight training will help you reach your strength and aesthetic goals and increase your metabolism.

    Generally if women are getting big, it's not due to protein, but rather anabolic steroids. They just don't have the ability to get big with such low levels of testosterone. Even with men, it would take years of training and bulking to get real big.

    I have always wondered--what about women with PCOS? I believe they have higher than normal testosterone. Would lifting perhaps cause someone who is struggling with PCOS to get big?
    There is a physiological range with testosterone. Even if they are at the higher end, they wouldn't be able to exponentially gain more muscle. Would it be possible that there could be an advantage... possible but i haven't seen many studies.


    Also take into consideration that there is more than one hormone that effects muscle growth and other physiological processes that are required.
    edited October 2016
  • Wheelhouse15Wheelhouse15 Member Posts: 5,589 Member Member Posts: 5,589 Member
    tigerblue wrote: »
    psulemon wrote: »
    griffinca2 wrote: »
    And as a note: most women don't get big--there are a few exceptions. If women do get big they are either eating lots of protein and/or taking something. Benjammmin is correct; weight training will help you reach your strength and aesthetic goals and increase your metabolism.

    Generally if women are getting big, it's not due to protein, but rather anabolic steroids. They just don't have the ability to get big with such low levels of testosterone. Even with men, it would take years of training and bulking to get real big.

    I have always wondered--what about women with PCOS? I believe they have higher than normal testosterone. Would lifting perhaps cause someone who is struggling with PCOS to get big?

    There are women here with PCOS and those I lift with in the gym and no they don't get any bigger any faster or any more than any other women. The increased amounts just aren't enough to see a real difference AFAIK.
  • AlexAlex Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 10,148 MFP Staff Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 10,148 MFP Staff
    We split off parts of this discussion; to talk about supplementation go here.

    Otherwise, carry on.
  • lacaro1lacaro1 Member Posts: 82 Member Member Posts: 82 Member
    Excellent thread to follow! Currently eating at maintenance and starting lifting again after a three month break due to an injury. Was kind of worried to start all over, but you get back to where you used to be surprisingly fast if you lifted before:) Goal is to lower my bf to under 20% again!
  • FitnessGirl11mfpFitnessGirl11mfp Member Posts: 235 Member Member Posts: 235 Member
  • k80fleck80flec Member Posts: 1,587 Member Member Posts: 1,587 Member
    .... And bump
  • jdhcm2006jdhcm2006 Member Posts: 2,293 Member Member Posts: 2,293 Member
    I have a few questions, and so sorry for the length. I am ready to move into maintenance. I just hit the high end of my goal weight range yesterday (and the scale still says I'm there today). I'm 5'1 and my goal range is 125-128, I'm set at sedentary and I told MFP that I would be working out 4 x 60 minute sessions each week.

    To lose weight I set myself at 1450, and I ate back half of my exercise calories, so I was really eating between 1550-1650 calories on my exercise days, which depending on the week was 4-6 days a week. That got me an average of .5lb lost a week which is what I've been shooting for for the past few months.

    I have myself set at sedentary b/c I work a desk job and I end up getting 5k-8k steps a day, on days that I get 10k steps are the days that I would take a 5-10 minute break and go for a walk around the building, but that's not always feasible.

    MFP says my maintenance calories at sedentary is 1560. Should I have that set as my base and continue to eat half of my exercise calories back? Or should I set it at the TDEE that Scooby gave me since I want to do recomp (I plan on doing the Strong Curves program). Scooby says that I should eat 2109 calories to maintain my weight if I'm doing 3-5 hours of moderate exercise.

    I think I'm going to set my macros at 50% carbs, 30% fat, & 20% protein, does that seem right? Scooby says to eat .8g of protein per pound. That doesn't seem like a terrible number, and if I can eat more calories, I'll have an easier time of getting in more protein. Scooby originally set me at 60% carbs, 20% fat & protein.

    A rough draft of my workout schedule is:

    Monday - lift
    Tuesday - lift
    Wednesday- pole
    Thursday - pole
    Friday - lift or pole
    Saturday - lift or pole
    Sunday - rest

    This schedule is completely dependent on my work schedule b/c our busy season has started, so I can't always claim my evenings for a workout (but I always make sure that I workout 4 times a week). I also don't want to lie to myself and say I'll get up early to make it to the gym to lift.

    I also don't know what I'm doing in the weight room, so I'm planning to start sessions with a PT next week. She says that she was trained by an Olympic lifter, and she came highly recommended by a friend, so I do trust that she'll be able to help me with doing the Strong Curves program.

    Does the Scooby calories seem okay? Should I just up my calories by 100 or so each week until I find my sweet spot? I know that when doing a new workout that the scale reading can increase due to water weight from DOMS. So I know that that could make finding my maintenance number a little more difficult, add in ovulation and PMS water weight gain, and I'm nervous about whether I will ever find my maintenance number which will make recomping even more difficult.

    latest?cb=20150714005346
  • psuLemonpsuLemon Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,743 MFP Moderator Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,743 MFP Moderator
    jdhcm2006 wrote: »
    I have a few questions, and so sorry for the length. I am ready to move into maintenance. I just hit the high end of my goal weight range yesterday (and the scale still says I'm there today). I'm 5'1 and my goal range is 125-128, I'm set at sedentary and I told MFP that I would be working out 4 x 60 minute sessions each week.

    To lose weight I set myself at 1450, and I ate back half of my exercise calories, so I was really eating between 1550-1650 calories on my exercise days, which depending on the week was 4-6 days a week. That got me an average of .5lb lost a week which is what I've been shooting for for the past few months.

    I have myself set at sedentary b/c I work a desk job and I end up getting 5k-8k steps a day, on days that I get 10k steps are the days that I would take a 5-10 minute break and go for a walk around the building, but that's not always feasible.

    MFP says my maintenance calories at sedentary is 1560. Should I have that set as my base and continue to eat half of my exercise calories back? Or should I set it at the TDEE that Scooby gave me since I want to do recomp (I plan on doing the Strong Curves program). Scooby says that I should eat 2109 calories to maintain my weight if I'm doing 3-5 hours of moderate exercise.

    I think I'm going to set my macros at 50% carbs, 30% fat, & 20% protein, does that seem right? Scooby says to eat .8g of protein per pound. That doesn't seem like a terrible number, and if I can eat more calories, I'll have an easier time of getting in more protein. Scooby originally set me at 60% carbs, 20% fat & protein.

    A rough draft of my workout schedule is:

    Monday - lift
    Tuesday - lift
    Wednesday- pole
    Thursday - pole
    Friday - lift or pole
    Saturday - lift or pole
    Sunday - rest

    This schedule is completely dependent on my work schedule b/c our busy season has started, so I can't always claim my evenings for a workout (but I always make sure that I workout 4 times a week). I also don't want to lie to myself and say I'll get up early to make it to the gym to lift.

    I also don't know what I'm doing in the weight room, so I'm planning to start sessions with a PT next week. She says that she was trained by an Olympic lifter, and she came highly recommended by a friend, so I do trust that she'll be able to help me with doing the Strong Curves program.

    Does the Scooby calories seem okay? Should I just up my calories by 100 or so each week until I find my sweet spot? I know that when doing a new workout that the scale reading can increase due to water weight from DOMS. So I know that that could make finding my maintenance number a little more difficult, add in ovulation and PMS water weight gain, and I'm nervous about whether I will ever find my maintenance number which will make recomping even more difficult.

    latest?cb=20150714005346

    So with an average of 1600 calories, how much weight were you losing per week?
  • jdhcm2006jdhcm2006 Member Posts: 2,293 Member Member Posts: 2,293 Member
    psulemon wrote: »
    jdhcm2006 wrote: »
    I have a few questions, and so sorry for the length. I am ready to move into maintenance. I just hit the high end of my goal weight range yesterday (and the scale still says I'm there today). I'm 5'1 and my goal range is 125-128, I'm set at sedentary and I told MFP that I would be working out 4 x 60 minute sessions each week.

    To lose weight I set myself at 1450, and I ate back half of my exercise calories, so I was really eating between 1550-1650 calories on my exercise days, which depending on the week was 4-6 days a week. That got me an average of .5lb lost a week which is what I've been shooting for for the past few months.

    I have myself set at sedentary b/c I work a desk job and I end up getting 5k-8k steps a day, on days that I get 10k steps are the days that I would take a 5-10 minute break and go for a walk around the building, but that's not always feasible.

    MFP says my maintenance calories at sedentary is 1560. Should I have that set as my base and continue to eat half of my exercise calories back? Or should I set it at the TDEE that Scooby gave me since I want to do recomp (I plan on doing the Strong Curves program). Scooby says that I should eat 2109 calories to maintain my weight if I'm doing 3-5 hours of moderate exercise.

    I think I'm going to set my macros at 50% carbs, 30% fat, & 20% protein, does that seem right? Scooby says to eat .8g of protein per pound. That doesn't seem like a terrible number, and if I can eat more calories, I'll have an easier time of getting in more protein. Scooby originally set me at 60% carbs, 20% fat & protein.

    A rough draft of my workout schedule is:

    Monday - lift
    Tuesday - lift
    Wednesday- pole
    Thursday - pole
    Friday - lift or pole
    Saturday - lift or pole
    Sunday - rest

    This schedule is completely dependent on my work schedule b/c our busy season has started, so I can't always claim my evenings for a workout (but I always make sure that I workout 4 times a week). I also don't want to lie to myself and say I'll get up early to make it to the gym to lift.

    I also don't know what I'm doing in the weight room, so I'm planning to start sessions with a PT next week. She says that she was trained by an Olympic lifter, and she came highly recommended by a friend, so I do trust that she'll be able to help me with doing the Strong Curves program.

    Does the Scooby calories seem okay? Should I just up my calories by 100 or so each week until I find my sweet spot? I know that when doing a new workout that the scale reading can increase due to water weight from DOMS. So I know that that could make finding my maintenance number a little more difficult, add in ovulation and PMS water weight gain, and I'm nervous about whether I will ever find my maintenance number which will make recomping even more difficult.

    latest?cb=20150714005346

    So with an average of 1600 calories, how much weight were you losing per week?

    .5lbs.
  • bioklutzbioklutz Member Posts: 1,365 Member Member Posts: 1,365 Member
    jdhcm2006 wrote: »
    psulemon wrote: »
    jdhcm2006 wrote: »
    I have a few questions, and so sorry for the length. I am ready to move into maintenance. I just hit the high end of my goal weight range yesterday (and the scale still says I'm there today). I'm 5'1 and my goal range is 125-128, I'm set at sedentary and I told MFP that I would be working out 4 x 60 minute sessions each week.

    To lose weight I set myself at 1450, and I ate back half of my exercise calories, so I was really eating between 1550-1650 calories on my exercise days, which depending on the week was 4-6 days a week. That got me an average of .5lb lost a week which is what I've been shooting for for the past few months.

    I have myself set at sedentary b/c I work a desk job and I end up getting 5k-8k steps a day, on days that I get 10k steps are the days that I would take a 5-10 minute break and go for a walk around the building, but that's not always feasible.

    MFP says my maintenance calories at sedentary is 1560. Should I have that set as my base and continue to eat half of my exercise calories back? Or should I set it at the TDEE that Scooby gave me since I want to do recomp (I plan on doing the Strong Curves program). Scooby says that I should eat 2109 calories to maintain my weight if I'm doing 3-5 hours of moderate exercise.

    I think I'm going to set my macros at 50% carbs, 30% fat, & 20% protein, does that seem right? Scooby says to eat .8g of protein per pound. That doesn't seem like a terrible number, and if I can eat more calories, I'll have an easier time of getting in more protein. Scooby originally set me at 60% carbs, 20% fat & protein.

    A rough draft of my workout schedule is:

    Monday - lift
    Tuesday - lift
    Wednesday- pole
    Thursday - pole
    Friday - lift or pole
    Saturday - lift or pole
    Sunday - rest

    This schedule is completely dependent on my work schedule b/c our busy season has started, so I can't always claim my evenings for a workout (but I always make sure that I workout 4 times a week). I also don't want to lie to myself and say I'll get up early to make it to the gym to lift.

    I also don't know what I'm doing in the weight room, so I'm planning to start sessions with a PT next week. She says that she was trained by an Olympic lifter, and she came highly recommended by a friend, so I do trust that she'll be able to help me with doing the Strong Curves program.

    Does the Scooby calories seem okay? Should I just up my calories by 100 or so each week until I find my sweet spot? I know that when doing a new workout that the scale reading can increase due to water weight from DOMS. So I know that that could make finding my maintenance number a little more difficult, add in ovulation and PMS water weight gain, and I'm nervous about whether I will ever find my maintenance number which will make recomping even more difficult.

    latest?cb=20150714005346

    So with an average of 1600 calories, how much weight were you losing per week?

    .5lbs.

    That means an average of 250 extra calories a day.
  • heybalesheybales Member Posts: 19,285 Member Member Posts: 19,285 Member
    jdhcm2006 wrote: »
    I have a few questions, and so sorry for the length. I am ready to move into maintenance. I just hit the high end of my goal weight range yesterday (and the scale still says I'm there today). I'm 5'1 and my goal range is 125-128, I'm set at sedentary and I told MFP that I would be working out 4 x 60 minute sessions each week.

    Just to clear up any misconception since it still floats around sometimes.

    Those exercise goal values have no bearing on eating values at all. No math done with them.

    Tell MFP you plan on 0 workouts and 0 minutes, or 10 workouts and 420 minutes weekly - and your eating goal will remain the same.
  • psuLemonpsuLemon Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,743 MFP Moderator Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,743 MFP Moderator
    jdhcm2006 wrote: »
    psulemon wrote: »
    jdhcm2006 wrote: »
    I have a few questions, and so sorry for the length. I am ready to move into maintenance. I just hit the high end of my goal weight range yesterday (and the scale still says I'm there today). I'm 5'1 and my goal range is 125-128, I'm set at sedentary and I told MFP that I would be working out 4 x 60 minute sessions each week.

    To lose weight I set myself at 1450, and I ate back half of my exercise calories, so I was really eating between 1550-1650 calories on my exercise days, which depending on the week was 4-6 days a week. That got me an average of .5lb lost a week which is what I've been shooting for for the past few months.

    I have myself set at sedentary b/c I work a desk job and I end up getting 5k-8k steps a day, on days that I get 10k steps are the days that I would take a 5-10 minute break and go for a walk around the building, but that's not always feasible.

    MFP says my maintenance calories at sedentary is 1560. Should I have that set as my base and continue to eat half of my exercise calories back? Or should I set it at the TDEE that Scooby gave me since I want to do recomp (I plan on doing the Strong Curves program). Scooby says that I should eat 2109 calories to maintain my weight if I'm doing 3-5 hours of moderate exercise.

    I think I'm going to set my macros at 50% carbs, 30% fat, & 20% protein, does that seem right? Scooby says to eat .8g of protein per pound. That doesn't seem like a terrible number, and if I can eat more calories, I'll have an easier time of getting in more protein. Scooby originally set me at 60% carbs, 20% fat & protein.

    A rough draft of my workout schedule is:

    Monday - lift
    Tuesday - lift
    Wednesday- pole
    Thursday - pole
    Friday - lift or pole
    Saturday - lift or pole
    Sunday - rest

    This schedule is completely dependent on my work schedule b/c our busy season has started, so I can't always claim my evenings for a workout (but I always make sure that I workout 4 times a week). I also don't want to lie to myself and say I'll get up early to make it to the gym to lift.

    I also don't know what I'm doing in the weight room, so I'm planning to start sessions with a PT next week. She says that she was trained by an Olympic lifter, and she came highly recommended by a friend, so I do trust that she'll be able to help me with doing the Strong Curves program.

    Does the Scooby calories seem okay? Should I just up my calories by 100 or so each week until I find my sweet spot? I know that when doing a new workout that the scale reading can increase due to water weight from DOMS. So I know that that could make finding my maintenance number a little more difficult, add in ovulation and PMS water weight gain, and I'm nervous about whether I will ever find my maintenance number which will make recomping even more difficult.

    latest?cb=20150714005346

    So with an average of 1600 calories, how much weight were you losing per week?

    .5lbs.

    Your maintain is about 1850. Ignore online calculators when you have actual data. If you at 2109 calories, you would gain about .4lb per week.
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