Fat Loss Timelines



  • NovusDies
    NovusDies Posts: 8,940 Member
    Thank you for the feedback everyone! Very helpful. It seems that all of us are different when it comes to this.
    It hurts me. I can’t really control exactly how fast I lose. I can do the work-and provided I’m doing the work, it will all balance out eventually.

    But What happens if end up taking an unexpected trip, or need to up my calories to keep up with a training schedule, or I get sick/injured/need surgery and can’t stick to the targets necessary to meet the time goal? Did I fail? Do I regroup?

    I choose to set my goals to be to do the things I can control-which means sticking to my calorie goal (whatever it happens to be at that time) and my training plan.

    The rest will fall into place. I’ll get there when I get there.

    This is what I most resonate with I think. I struggle with consistency with these vanity pounds, some days I don't have a good enough reason not to eat more and I am working through that. I thought a timeline or deadline might help but I don't know if it is. Lately it has been one step forward one step back, I know it is only up to me to commit to my deficit and do it. By the end of December I planned to be at 132.5 average pounds (I use Happy Scale) but am averaging 136, I'm not sure it's possible to get to 132.5 losing half a pound a week and with the holidays and my birthday coming up, and that disappoints me.

    I have heard that it is better to focus on what you can directly control, not your weight, but your daily habits that support your weight, such as getting 8 hours sleep, working out, hitting calorie goals. I may start to focus on that!

    This is absolutely my way of thinking. My goal is to end the day inside my calorie goal, hitting my steps, doing my exercise and be at least in the ballpark of happy doing it. I ignore weight loss as much as possible. I prefer to just allow it to happen instead of trying to force it.

    A big goal is to set a course but it doesn't drive us to the location. Our daily processes and habits do that. Little by little they accumulate.
  • fitoverfortymom
    fitoverfortymom Posts: 3,453 Member
    I'm fine with ballparking it, but there are so many variables, I am for consistency and personal growth.
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 24,860 Member
    For me, it works better to focus on the process, as you say you're shifting toward, OP.

    Simplistically, if I focus on "X weight by Y date", what happens when I get there?

    What I really want is to stay at a healthy weight, plus active, for the rest of my life. The best route to that IMO is to put habits and practices into place that interlink to achieve that: Process. It's never "over"; I'm not "done".

    I thought Kimny's thread on this subject was really good, and useful, plus there are good comments from others:


    I've been in maintenance at a healthy weight for more than 4 years now, after 3 decades plus of obesity (and most of a year losing from obese to a healthy weight). There's still a process to work . . . .

  • Fiorefleur
    Fiorefleur Posts: 15 Member
    Hurts my goals. My body does its own thing and could care less about time lines . 😑 I do better when I don’t set goals for weight loss/smaller clothing .

    It usually goes better when I don’t focus on those , just work on the day to day and small victories -such as being consistent and intentional .

    For me ..I have never once finished a program ! Three inconsistent weeks was the most . I can’t even do those , right I’m on a 3 weeks kick and scared I’m going to fall off the band wagon. But seeing the minutes of fat burn zone and calories burned from fitbit has helped motivate me . Working out 5 days a week is huge ! Now it’s a game almost to beat my own records . 😂

    If I see I’m 195 calories burned at the end of the work out -I’m going to keep going until I hit 200. 😆 The little things like that !

  • vanityy99
    vanityy99 Posts: 2,575 Member
    LynnJ9 wrote: »
    I must be the only one. I like the challenge, it motivates me, because I am a competitive person, even with myself.
    I get frustrated if I don't make my deadline, but it is a superficial frustration, I know I lost more than if I hadn't challenged myself with a goal.
    Then I make a new goal and start the new challenge, determined to beat it this time!

    Nope your not the only one. There’s a whole section on these forums dedicated to this type of challenge. I need the challenge or else I get too laid back with a ah don’t worry I’ll start tomorrow but never really start ever mentally. I always reach my challenge goal. I need that pressure.
  • grinning_chick
    grinning_chick Posts: 765 Member
    edited November 2019
    Yeah...I need goals. Without them I am an unmoored ship at sea per experience concerning all aspects of life, not just this one. :)

    Aiming to drop 80 lbs. in 12 months is perfectly reasonable when I started out just a few pounds shy of morbid obesity. The key difference this time around is I don't "flip out" if I don't hit any benchmarks set along the way, as long as I am still somewhere on the track. For me, it has kilt the whole self-sabotage of "well I effed up, so mind as well go big or go home" mentality that results in full blown derailments. *knock on wood*

    But I need some target to aim for or I have no reason to *not* eat that entire bag of crunchy cheesy poofs in one sitting that a well-meaning family member buys for me (albeit namely so I don't Bogart any from their bag once they open it, lol).

  • sijomial
    sijomial Posts: 19,643 Member
    There isn't only one right way to do it - you have to know yourself and play to your strengths and mitigate your weaknesses.

    Personally I'm very goal oriented and approached my weight loss like a project with SMART objectives which included a goal weight deadline. Lost at 1lb a week and hit my goal with only days to spare.

    But that played to my strengths of short term determination/motivation and mitigated my weakness of procrastination when I don't have a hard deadline (why put off until tomorrow what you can put off until next week? :smiley: ). I would guess that's probably a minority strategy but as I'm part of that minority it worked for me.

    In long term maintenance mostly I'm happy just to manage any weight drift by making small corrections but for big cycling events I go back to effectively project managing my training and diet to achieve a certain weight by a certain date.
  • nighthawk584
    nighthawk584 Posts: 1,979 Member
    I like goals and have met many of them this year. The most important was reversing all my horrible lab numbers in 6 months and I accomplished that in Oct. My weight loss goal posts have moved several times. At first, I just wanted to lose 50 lbs. Now I am down 83 and on my way to 100 lb goal with increased weight lifting. It would be nice to hit the 100 lbs at my year anniversary in April, but this last 17lbs I am losing a lot slower and adjusting for maintenance.
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 7,891 Member
    I'm in maintenance, so my goals are time-bound only by "forever." When I was losing, I was aiming for an end result and a rate of loss, so in a sense I had a time-line. The tough part was accepting the little setbacks that were bound to happen and that almost all of us certainly suffer.

    I wonder if I would have had an easier time setting SMART or SMARTER goals. Both of those goal setting techniques use time-bound goals, but they also have some other aspects. SMART goals are:
    1. Specific
    2. Meaningful
    3. Achievable
    4. Realistic
    5. Time-Bound

    So yes, you set an end date when you expect to achieve your goals. Of course then you get to set new ones. But you have to put a lot of thought into your goal. Yes, you have a deadline, and in the case of losing weight, that means a time line. But you also need your goal to be achievable and realistic. That is perhaps really difficult for someone starting out. Who hasn't wanted their weight loss to be faster? Who hasn't set an unrealistic goal at some point? So if you are careful with your goal, you CAN put a timeline on it. For losing weight, that goal doesn't even have to be your final goal, and you can have more than one goal. You can achieve the smaller goals on the way to the bigger one. You get to be successful more often!

    Then there's the rest of the story that's probably really important with a goal like attaining a healthy weight. A SMARTER goal is:
    1. Specific
    2. Meaningful
    3. Achievable
    4. Realistic
    5. Time-Bound
    6. Evaluated
    7. Revised/Readjusted

    Even while you are working toward your goal, you have the ability to see how you are moving towards success. If you notice that maybe your goal was a little too aggressive, you can CHANGE THE GOAL. Make it more realistic. Change ALL the goals you set, and then keep working towards them.

    Or just focus on the end state and do what you can every day, no matter how long it takes. Having a deeper look at a desired end date makes you a little more accountable every day, but you also have to be kind to yourself because you WILL have days that you don't do things the way you want, and you will likely want to take a maintenance break along the way. As you do these, you will get better at setting your next goals.

    Then, some day, you get to set your maintenance goal. That's not static either because you may end up revising your goal weight and your goal weight range up or down based on evaluating how it's working for you.

    You can do this!