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TOPIC: Gaining weight back after losing it

 
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August 8, 2012 11:05 AM
So I keep hearing the statistic that 80% of dieters gain back all (or more) of the weight that they lost after 2 years. I know I'm a little scared that I will steadily pudge back up once I go onto maintenance mode. Do you think this is true? Do most of us give up our battle with calorie counting, restriction and sensible eating in general after a certain point? I know I want to be the one who keeps it off.
August 8, 2012 11:07 AM
I'm not looking at this as a diet but as a change in my lifetyle. I pay more attention to serving sizes and if I really am hunger or just bored so I don't think it'll happen to me and if it does, then I've stopped paying as much attention as I should and at least I know where to turn.

I imagine it'll be different for everyone here and if you want it (like I do) it won't happen
  25692978
August 8, 2012 11:08 AM
It seems to pop up regularly as a statistic.

One of the problems is that the ex-dieter has a lower calorie requirement than before they lost the weight, so it isn't enough to just go back and eat like they used to - they have to find a new exercise / diet regime to match their new self.
  18022302
August 8, 2012 11:10 AM
I haven't got there yet but will real soon. Not sure how I will handle it either. I know now that I love riding my bike, love the gym and just love to be busy doing things, I like to eat healthier too. So all I have learned will help out later. Good luck, I'm sure we'll be ok with our new self's. I look at my before pic and there's no way back for me!
August 8, 2012 11:10 AM
Aye, the issue is normally when people try to lose weight, they drop calories super low, go "on a diet" and exercise a lot.

Once they are lower weight, they stop or greatly reduce exercise, and go off "the diet" they were "on".

They made few to no life changes to their diet (using the term as it is properly used). So, they get fat again.

Any changes you make to lose weight, keep them forever.
  26097696
August 8, 2012 11:17 AM
Thanks for all the sage advice :) I guess in my heart of hearts I always secretly wanted to go back to eating like I want to (Bread. Lots of it.) once I got svelte but I see now any changes must be viewed as permanent. At least I know to look for any signs of slippage and get my ass back in the game.
August 8, 2012 11:21 AM
It's a statistic with a margin of error, but yeah, it's true. There are many reasons. The most often sited is restrictive diets. Unless it's something you need to restrict for health or it's very hard to restrict foods you like for a lifetime. And restricting to very low calorie to lose quickly often leaves people not knowing how to eat at maintenance.

And others of us (guilty!) let life get in the way of regular exercise but continue to eat as if we are burning those calories.
August 8, 2012 11:22 AM
I'm one of those people. Though I'm glad to say that I caught myself before gaining back ALL of the weight (plus some, according to most statistics).

The reasons for me is that I grew bored of tracking and convinced myself that I didn't need to worry about calories anymore, especially since my exercise routine remained consistent.

Slowly but surely, twenty or so of the 75 pounds I had worked hard to lose crept back on. Then a personal tragedy occurred (mother loss) and I quickly gave up entirely and turned to food for comfort and gained 30 pounds in a month...

But I'm back, and determined to have a more realistic goal for maintenance this time. I do still plan to some day be an intuitive eater who does not need to track, but that will be a long ways away.
August 8, 2012 11:25 AM
That's about the same statistic and drug addicts going back to using after rehab.
  25631519
August 8, 2012 11:26 AM
QUOTE:

Aye, the issue is normally when people try to lose weight, they drop calories super low, go "on a diet" and exercise a lot.

Once they are lower weight, they stop or greatly reduce exercise, and go off "the diet" they were "on".

They made few to no life changes to their diet (using the term as it is properly used). So, they get fat again.

Any changes you make to lose weight, keep them forever.


What he said.
August 8, 2012 11:28 AM
A friend of mine is a researcher who did one of the big longitudinal studies showing that.

First, 80% is 80%. We can be part of that 20!

Second, most people who lose even in a healthy way regain because they go back to their old habits and eat too much or eat badly. You just can't.
Edited by nxd10 On August 8, 2012 11:30 AM
  22310201
August 8, 2012 11:28 AM
This is a huge concern for me. After my 8 year old daughter was born, I lost all 50 pounds of pregnancy weight using Weight Watchers. My weight slowly crept up over the years (I think it took me a little longer than 2 years to gain it back!). So, for the longest time I kept telling myself "why go through all the trouble of losing it again, you're just going to gain it back." Finally, when it got too much for me, I decided to get my weight back down. But, yes, I am VERY concerned about the maintenance aspect of it. I think a few things will help me:
(1) I must weigh myself every week (it is easy to be in denial when you never weigh yourself
(2) I am probably going to have to track my eating for a long time after I finish losing the weight
(3) I can't let minor (or major ones) setbacks get out of hand. I've had stressful times in the last 8 years and led to a lot of the weight gain
(4) I can't lapse back into my old habits and will have to continue moderation for the rest of my life.
  23905730
August 8, 2012 11:32 AM
QUOTE:

I'm not looking at this as a diet but as a change in my lifetyle. I pay more attention to serving sizes and if I really am hunger or just bored so I don't think it'll happen to me and if it does, then I've stopped paying as much attention as I should and at least I know where to turn.

I imagine it'll be different for everyone here and if you want it (like I do) it won't happen


DITTO - total lifestyle change, not just a diet, it's food, calories, exercise, quantity, etc etc
  26150621
August 8, 2012 11:38 AM
I think you need to talk to SPNLuver83. She's really popular on this site because of her marvelous success story and her growing fame on youtube and facebook. She has some really great advice for people who are struggling with weight and eating. Just share her on facebook if you do talk to her. She'll appreciate that. smile
  21139394
August 8, 2012 11:38 AM
That is interesting because I fit the description exactly. I had lost 30 lbs and kept it off for 2 years (not at my goal weight but still happy). I then graduated college, moved to a new city, started a new job, and it through me off completely. I started binge eating my way through the stress and put on 25 lbs very quickly.

It is so frustrating to lose a lot to just gain it back again. I felt like the biggest failure. It took me so long to commit again and thanks to this site I have found my way and am back at it again. Hopefully gaining it back will be a blessing in disguise. The emotions involved, I hope, will teach me to not get out of control again.

I will say that this time around feels more like a lifestyle change. Before it was either all or nothing. If i messed up then I would go on a major binge. It was a viscous cycle.

This time if I don't have a perfect day or weekend, I start fresh again and try not to lose much sleep over it.
  23785520
August 8, 2012 12:10 PM
To be honest, this is one of my biggest fears. I still have huge issues with food and just moving out caused me to lose control for a month :/

I hope that once I get to goal, it won't matter so much and I can relax a little, but still stay in moderation. The thought of having to lose all the weight I lost again (and possibly more) makes me want to cry. It's bloody difficult.
  3123985
August 8, 2012 12:23 PM
Sadly my experience is that I have gained it back full force every time. The last time I actually maintained it for about a year and gained it all back after about 2 years or so.

With that being said though, I take full responsibility for gaining it back. I agree with everyone's points about diets and why they are bad for you-they're restrictive and once you go back to "regular" eating your bound to gain it back. Though I lost it in a healthy way-I went back to my old habits of fast food, large portions, losts of desserts, MARGARITAS, and little exercise.

It's honestly true that the new walk has to become a life-long habit, which is what I'm working on now.

The HBO special Weight of the Nation mentioned an interesting fact. Though two individuals may weigh the same and their caloric intake is roughly the same (we're assuming they have similar body dispositions) the person who's weight has fluctuated can never eat the same amount of calories as the person that has always maintained that amount. The "fluctuator" has developled more fat cells that are simply waiting for their deposits.

I never realized my weight fluctuation would make it harder to maintain the weight loss...
August 8, 2012 12:25 PM
QUOTE:

Sadly my experience is that I have gained it back full force every time. The last time I actually maintained it for about a year and gained it all back after about 2 years or so.

With that being said though, I take full responsibility for gaining it back. I agree with everyone's points about diets and why they are bad for you-they're restrictive and once you go back to "regular" eating your bound to gain it back. Though I lost it in a healthy way-I went back to my old habits of fast food, large portions, losts of desserts, MARGARITAS, and little exercise.

It's honestly true that the new walk has to become a life-long habit, which is what I'm working on now.

The HBO special Weight of the Nation mentioned an interesting fact. Though two individuals may weigh the same and their caloric intake is roughly the same (we're assuming they have similar body dispositions) the person who's weight has fluctuated can never eat the same amount of calories as the person that has always maintained that amount. The "fluctuator" has developled more fat cells that are simply waiting for their deposits.

I never realized my weight fluctuation would make it harder to maintain the weight loss...


Whoa. Excellently put :)
August 8, 2012 12:26 PM
Thank you for all the replies. It's given me stuff to ponder as I exercise and it helps to know I am not the only one worried about this :)
August 8, 2012 12:29 PM
I wouldn't doubt that statistic. I lost 50 lbs. in the past on a very low calorie diet over a few months; my old eating habits started to creep in and I gained it all back over about a year. Then I kept losing and gaining, losing and gaining. I realized that I'd never successfully get to my goal if I continued to go on diets, rather than change my lifestyle. Who knows, maybe I'll still fail, but I feel much more confident about it this time.
  27019456

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