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TOPIC: How on earth did I gain 4 pounds in one week?

 
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May 6, 2012 10:47 AM
I'm very upset and confused about this. I've been here for two months now. I've been slowly, but steadily losing weight the whole time, and had lost a total of ten pounds. Last week I weighed in at 155. This past week I have not changed anything, except eating out a little less. I eat the same thing for breakfast, lunch, and snack every day. (I eat two pieces of turkey sausage and two eggs for breakfast, a piece of boneless skinless chicken breast & carrots with yogurt dip for lunch, and antioxidant trail mix or an energy bar for snacks.) I do vary it up for dinner, but I try to stick to relatively healthy foods and eat small amounts. I didn't record everything unfortunately, but I am *certain* that I ate everything the same as I did the week before. I figured I didn't need to write it down because I just eat the same foods over and over again.

As for exercise, I just got back to working out after being unable to for two weeks because of an injury. I reduced the amount of time I jump rope every day (working back up slowly to prevent re-injuring myself), but I've been increasing my crunches and push-ups, and I just got my pool key so I was able to go swimming twice this week.

The result? I measured myself on Friday because I was buying a shirt online, and I had lost 2.5" around the waist. But this morning at my weekly weigh-in, I had gained four pounds! (It is not "that time of month," so that's not what happened.) A friend suggested I could have gained muscle, but is it even possible to build four pounds of muscle in one week? That seems so unlikely to me. :(

I'm feeling so discouraged and miserable. Please help!
  6547793
May 6, 2012 10:47 AM
your body varies up to 5 pounds a day, don't sweat it.
May 6, 2012 10:52 AM
If you increased your strength training exercises, you might be retaining water.
  6461299
May 6, 2012 10:54 AM
This is why I weigh daily so I can watch the fluctuations in weight and know what caused them. I know some people suggest weighing in weekly to avoid the weight fluctuation anxiety but if you weigh in on a day when your weight is fluctuating in the up direction, then it's not going to show a loss. So I would say weigh daily, understand that weight fluctuates and you'll be able to pinpoint why it went up. Possibly you ate a lot of sodium for dinner last night?
  8735779
May 6, 2012 10:56 AM
QUOTE:

your body varies up to 5 pounds a day, don't sweat it.


That's what my husband said, but it doesn't make me feel any better. If my body weight just randomly fluctuates between 160 and 155, then I didn't accomplish anything by getting down to 155 -- I just got lucky by weighing myself on a downturn. :(
  6547793
May 6, 2012 10:57 AM
Could be water retention if you're just getting back into working out and your body's learning to get used to it again. I've had weeks where I've lost nothing or gained a pound or two simply because I upped my workouts that week and didn't have the time to let the water retention run its course.

And like Toddrific said, your weight fluctuates naturally. I know just a few days ago I weighed myself for the week and for fun weighed myself the next day (granted on a different scale) and it said I gained 3lbs.

A lot of people on here will tell you not to stress the number on the scale that much and rely more on measurements since often you'll see the results there before you see them on the scale. Even then, it's been just this once. Monitor what you eat more carefully, make sure you're getting enough water, and give yourself some rest days, maybe the day or two days before you usually weigh yourself in case the issue is water retention. Sometimes we get hiccups, but unless it's every week for 3 or more weeks then there's not much to worry about.
May 6, 2012 10:58 AM
Dont panic- your body can usually flex between 2 & 4 pounds daily.... I usually obsess and weigh myself daily- but dont log my weights until Sunday mornings... You could be gaining muscle, are you drinking at least 6 glasses of water per day? I noticed when I dont I have a harder time losing... Stay strong girl- you'll be alright!
  17946768
May 6, 2012 10:58 AM
Also go by the measuring tape - Muscle weighs more and also as others have said you could be retaining water.
  21495424
May 6, 2012 11:00 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

your body varies up to 5 pounds a day, don't sweat it.


That's what my husband said, but it doesn't make me feel any better. If my body weight just randomly fluctuates between 160 and 155, then I didn't accomplish anything by getting down to 155 -- I just got lucky by weighing myself on a downturn. :(


Your body fluctuates due to many things that have no correlation to your actual weight. It's why a lot of people advocate weighing early in the morning before you eat anything and after your first bathroom visit of the day because you're going to get the most accurate reading then. If you wait until noon or evening, you've picked up some water weight from food and physical activity especially if you've worked out and so it puts a higher number because something's swollen or you just ate a huge meal, etc. It doesn't mean you gained back your body fat and therefore you were just lucky to catch it on the low side.
May 6, 2012 11:02 AM
Unless you overate by 14,000 calories, you didn't. I wouldn't worry about it.
May 6, 2012 11:03 AM
Did you eat a calorie excess of 14,000?

No?

Then don't worry, it's just normal fluctuations. :) It's why you need to look at the long term picture. If you're still that weight after a month or two of doing it, then you need to look at things.
  6857672
May 6, 2012 11:05 AM
It takes 3500 extra calories to gain a pound of fat. If your measurements are down, don't stress yourself about the scale. You will learn with time that the scale is never to be trusted. Definitely keep measuring! If those numbers continue to decrease, then who cares what the scale says, clearly it means you're getting smaller :)
May 6, 2012 11:05 AM
No need to panic! Like other posters mentioned our body weight is fluctuating all the time. Another thing people mentioned is possible water retention in your muscles from starting to work out again.Did your muscles feel sore after your workouts this past week? I
I don't care so much about the scale, check the inches lost instead, that's what you'll see in the mirror and when you try clothes on!
  14069058
May 6, 2012 11:06 AM
its probably just water weight if you were following your calorie budget, just keep going :)
May 6, 2012 11:06 AM
You really can't gain 4 pounds in one week, so it's just water from returning to exercise and possibly sodium/time of day you weighed. If your measurements have gone down, you are definitely losing. You are accomplishing what you are working for. You can do this!
  7795021
May 6, 2012 11:09 AM
QUOTE:

Did you eat a calorie excess of 14,000?

No?

Then don't worry, it's just normal fluctuations. :) It's why you need to look at the long term picture. If you're still that weight after a month or two of doing it, then you need to look at things.


^^ yep. It's normal some of us to have our weight bounce up & down a little bit as we lose weight. Look for a overall downward trend over time. Heck, even b4 I had the weight issue, my weight would fluctuate a bit from one week to another depending on so many factors: activity, sodium, holidays, etc.
May 6, 2012 11:10 AM
Take a look at these topics from the Unofficial MFP FAQ which was built by seasoned MFP members.

http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/390212-weight-fluctuations-why-do-they-happen
http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/390244-how-does-my-period-affect-my-weight
http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/390246-what-should-i-expect-during-my-period
May 6, 2012 11:12 AM
Ok, ok, I'll try to stop freaking out. I'm going to hope that it's water retention from exercising more, and tell myself that it's about the long-term, not the short term, so it's ok if my weight goes up and down a little. The important thing is that eventually it will be fluctuating between 130 and 135, right? It just feels so frustrating, and there's that little voice in my head that keeps saying, "You still haven't accomplished anything, yet. You thought you did, but really it was just a normal fluctuation." :(

And, yes, I have been drinking a ton of water. I have a 22 ounce water bottle that I keep with me at all times, and it's all I drink. I usually fill it up two or three times a day.
  6547793
May 6, 2012 11:16 AM
QUOTE:

Your body fluctuates due to many things that have no correlation to your actual weight. It's why a lot of people advocate weighing early in the morning before you eat anything and after your first bathroom visit of the day because you're going to get the most accurate reading then. If you wait until noon or evening, you've picked up some water weight from food and physical activity especially if you've worked out and so it puts a higher number because something's swollen or you just ate a huge meal, etc. It doesn't mean you gained back your body fat and therefore you were just lucky to catch it on the low side.


I do weigh myself first thing in the morning, before eating or drinking and after going to the bathroom. I also weigh myself naked so that my clothes won't affect it.

Is it the same for measuring? Do I need to measure first thing in the morning, etc.?
Edited by michelleepotter On May 6, 2012 11:16 AM
  6547793
May 6, 2012 11:44 AM
No, it is hard enough to hope for a 1/2 pound of muscle built in a week. That being said, you also did not gain 4 pounds in one week. There are so many factors that have to be considered. Weight fluctuates everyday and can go up and down several pounds any given day. Most of it is water weight so stop stressing about it. Unless you consumed close to 14,000 calories ABOVE what you would maintain on during the week (which I'm pretty sure did not happen) then you did not put on 4 solid pounds of fat. Just stop stressing and keep moving forward.
I've stepped on the scale and went up and down between 5 pounds in just a few days before. Even if you weighed yourself first thing in the morning, the day before can still have that affect on your body.
May 6, 2012 11:51 AM
Whoa. It must have been water. I just stepped on the scale, just to torture myself I suppose, and it said 154.2! (I was 155.0 last week.) So I guess I freaked out for nothing. :)
  6547793
May 6, 2012 11:54 AM
QUOTE:

Whoa. It must have been water. I just stepped on the scale, just to torture myself I suppose, and it said 154.2! (I was 155.0 last week.) So I guess I freaked out for nothing. :)


HAH! Great job!
May 6, 2012 11:58 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Your body fluctuates due to many things that have no correlation to your actual weight. It's why a lot of people advocate weighing early in the morning before you eat anything and after your first bathroom visit of the day because you're going to get the most accurate reading then. If you wait until noon or evening, you've picked up some water weight from food and physical activity especially if you've worked out and so it puts a higher number because something's swollen or you just ate a huge meal, etc. It doesn't mean you gained back your body fat and therefore you were just lucky to catch it on the low side.


I do weigh myself first thing in the morning, before eating or drinking and after going to the bathroom. I also weigh myself naked so that my clothes won't affect it.

Is it the same for measuring? Do I need to measure first thing in the morning, etc.?


Was this the day after you worked out or did any strenuous activity for a long period of time? Because if you're retaining water from exercise, then that whole time of the day thing isn't going to matter since, no matter what, your body is still retaining fluid to repair your muscles and will make you heavier than you actually are.

As far as measurements I don't think it matters unless you're bloated or visibly swollen. The water is in your muscles, not just sitting below your skin, and most times you can be unaware of the retention because you can't see it hence you wouldn't see it in your measurements.

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