Success with trying to lose 0.5 lbs per week

digidoomed Posts: 151 Member
edited April 2018 in Health and Weight Loss
Hi everyone. So I have my stats in MFP and I have my goals set to lose 1lb per week. Now, I will admit that these past few weeks I have been dealing with some family issues and I haven't been as strict with my workout/food, so I'm not sure if I'm not losing 1lb per week because of this or whatever. It might be due to inaccuracies in my logging, but honestly I don't think I am off that much in my logging as I use a food scale, make sure all my foods are inputted correctly, and I follow the serving size of foods. I do drink on the weekend as I'm in college so it might be that sabotaging my weight loss(is it?), but I was wondering if anyone has ever used MFP with the goal of losing 0.5lb a week and how they like it? Do you find you actually lose the weight since you have a little more room for error with calories? I'm definitely not eating above my maintenance of 1700 calories each day, so I don't know if I'm actually gaining fat or if its a water/muscle mass thing. Forgive me, I am but a novice


  • digidoomed
    digidoomed Posts: 151 Member
    sarahbums wrote: »
    i did- actually i was doing .25 lb per week for the last few lbs. It took forever but was way easier than a more aggressive goal would have been. I didn't binge as often as i did when i tried 1lb/week or even .5lb/week because i didn't feel like i was depriving myself or anything. It made switching over to maintenance really easy since my deficit was so small.

    what are your stats and how much are you looking to lose?
    I like the point you brought up that it made you feel less deprived. Sometimes on 1300 calories (1lb/week), I would feel deprived or stressed over calories and would lead me to binge once in a while
    I'm 5'2, 158lbs currently and I want to get down to 150. Technically I'm "overweight" on my BMI but I definitely have some muscle and my fat is distributed through my body. I also have a heavy chest which might contribute to my weight
  • teranga79
    teranga79 Posts: 202 Member
    Alcohol can be a HUGE calorie impact (or it can the way I drink :)) Definitely worth logging your drinks, at least to get an idea of how many calories you're dealing with.
  • KarenSmith2018
    KarenSmith2018 Posts: 294 Member
    at between 4 and 7 calories per gram (ml) of alcohol it can really soon add up. The average clear spirit (25ml) and mixed (tonic/lemonade) is 100 calories. wine about 150 for a 175ml glass and 200+ for beer. sugary cocktails can be even higher. a few drinks can easily wipe out a 3500 cal deficit (1lb a week weight loss)
  • MeteoraTitanium
    MeteoraTitanium Posts: 102 Member
    Been there. I've been logging diary on mfp for 3 years. Lost 10lbs I've been as accurate as I can with food alcohol and excersise to lose 1lb a week. It worked, recently I stopped drinking at weekends and my body fat has dropped and fitness levels have gone up. Now in maintenance but it took alot if research.
  • LivingtheLeanDream
    LivingtheLeanDream Posts: 13,345 Member
    I only ever aimed for 0.5lb a week - I am too greedy to cut my calories more :smiley: (I did only have 20lbs to lose though and was in no hurry to get to goal)
  • LivingtheLeanDream
    LivingtheLeanDream Posts: 13,345 Member
    digidoomed wrote: »
    Nony_Mouse wrote: »
    Are you logging the weekend drinking? That alone could easily wipe out your deficit.

    0.5 lb per week is definitely doable, and a good idea if you don't have much to lose, but you have less room for inaccuracies, not more. You need to be meticulous about weighing, measuring, and logging everything that goes in your mouth.

    I don't log my weekend drinking because I honestly don't know how to measure how much I'm drinking

    ^^ heck this is an oversight, you could be wiping out most of your weekly deficit right there.
  • digidoomed
    digidoomed Posts: 151 Member
    Thank you everyone. I think I will settle for an in-between number. To lose 1lb a week, MFP gives me 1300 and to lose 0.5 a week, it gives me 1530. I set my calories for 1400 just to help with the feeling of constriction with 1300 calories. I might not actually do 1400 each day, but I feel this allows me to still lose weight without feeling like I don't have any wiggle room which eventually leads to binging. As far as alcohol, I tend to drink my liquor straight so I will try to log that more accurately.
  • steveko89
    steveko89 Posts: 2,183 Member
    I was consistently lost about a total of 10 lbs (mostly vanity weight) dropping from 181 to about 170 August 2017 - January 2018 averaging a 200-250 calorie deficit (requisite for 0.5 lb/week).

    In my experience, if you aren't losing and can't say your logging is 100% locked in, fix your logging and you'll see the difference on the scale. That was very much the case for me in the 6-7 months of last year before I started losing that 10 lbs; I would put my logging at about 85-90% accurate (mostly just skipping little snacks, ballparking servings) and relying on my heart rate monitor to determine exercise calories. I first tightened up the inaccuracies in my logging and discovered my heart rate monitor was putting my TDEE way over most calculators. I found a TDEE tracking spreadsheet on reddit, starting eating less than what it and a TDEE calculator said was my maintenance, and wouldn't you know it, I started losing weight.
  • mbaker566
    mbaker566 Posts: 11,234 Member
    as was mentioned alcohol can disrupt your goals.
    the closer you get to your goal the more important to measure everything you can and definitely log everything.
  • gophermatt
    gophermatt Posts: 129 Member
    When your weekly loss goal is small it can be more difficult to measure progress. It can be hard to notice the progress at that rate in between the water fluctuations and digestion speed variables.

    It’s helped me to weigh daily and take an average for the week rather than a 1x / week weigh in. Find what works for you, but I wish I’d done this earlier.
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 40,993 Member
    edited April 2018
    The difficulty with 1/2 Lb per week is that it can take a month or two to see a trend because of natural body weight fluctuations more easily masking fat loss. 1/2 Lb per week would be 2 Lbs per month...I can easily fluctuate 2-3 Lbs day to day so when I've done it, it usually take me into the 2nd month...or about 6 weeks or so to actually see a true trend.

    I did it the first time I cut my winter weight and it took me all spring. Now I just shoot for about 1 Lb per week or a bit more when I cut my winter weight and I'm pretty much done in 6 weeks rather than wondering if what I'm doing is working.

    My guess would be that alcohol is what is slowing your weight loss down. I'm a daily drinker in maintenance, but I reduce that to Friday and Saturday when I'm cutting...your mileage may vary with that as my maintenance calorie targets are 2800-3000 so I can cut pretty easy on 2300-2500 calories and I'm usually running a bigger deficit during the week and a smaller one or maintenance on weekends.
  • vanmep
    vanmep Posts: 396 Member
    I only ever aimed for 1/2 pound a week of weight loss. I'm not interested in deprivation plus I feel like at that rate, I am learning sustainable habits for the rest of my life. I have lost 37 pounds. I am currently working to lose 1/3 pound per week as I work on the last 8 pounds.
  • Running_and_Coffee
    Running_and_Coffee Posts: 811 Member
    It was too frustrating for me. I did not have much to lose and thought "slowly but surely, with a barely noticable deficit" would be the wisest approach, but between the occasional high-sodium meal and TOM, I could barely tell if it was working, and that frustrated me. So I took a more aggressive approach and am very happy to be at goal weight in 8 weeks. (10 lb loss.) I did not drink more than a glass of wine every few weeks and that is perfectly fine with me...if that's not going to work for you, you probably need to be more restrictive during the week to be able to afford drinking.
  • Maxxitt
    Maxxitt Posts: 1,282 Member
    if you are drinking to the point of not knowing how much you are drinking, you have an issue more pressing than weight loss to solve.