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Joined gym but put on weight
17

rosea19 · 09/08/2017 20:58

So I was getting a bit podgy and my clothes were getting tight, so I joined a gym one month ago but have put on 4ibs since joining. I'm eating the same (I probably eat too many carbs) and do 1x spin , 1x legs bums and tums and 1x normal gym session each week. Is this not enough to lose weight, should I up it a bit? I also go for an hour long walk 3 times a week.

I have an office job and a young child who I run round after all the time. So I just thought the weight will fall off after joining the gym, so not sure where I'm going wrong?! Still I feel a lot better in myself...

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KentMum2008 · 09/08/2017 21:00

Muscle weighs more than fat, could be that you're losing weight but gaining muscle. Try taking measurements instead of weighing yourself, it's a better indication of fat loss. You should be able to book a review with your PT and they can help you. My PT uses calipers which really highlight how much fat I have

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rosea19 · 09/08/2017 21:06

Thanks Mangomay, I'll measure myself with a tape measure and see if my measurements have changed. Praying it's muscle rather than pure fat Smile. Callipers sound horrific but I'll see what my gym has!

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MaidOfStars · 10/08/2017 08:50

I think you need to reduce your food intake a little. You were putting on weight so have excess calories floating around. Your exercise routine might not be enough to wipe out your calorie excess.

I also think a month is too early to see the effect of increased muscle mass. It's more likely retained water as your muscles are adjusting to exercise.

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givemushypeasachance · 10/08/2017 13:23

There used to be a saying that 3,500 calories = one pound, so if you eat an extra 3,500 calories beyond the energy you use you'd put on a pound, and if you ate 3,500 less then you'd lose a pound. But studies have shown that over time it works out to more like 7,000 calories. When you look at how much exercise that works out at, it shows just how much diet plays a part in weight loss versus a slight increase in activity levels!

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Cantseethewoods · 11/08/2017 11:09

Interesting- does it work the other way round? I.e. You need to eat 7000 cals to gain a pound? Just asking....

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Oogle · 11/08/2017 12:27

Muscle doesn't weigh more than fat. 1lb is 1lb, whether it's muscle, fat, feathers or a brick.

Muscle is denser though so it takes up less room, therefore you can lose fat, increase the muscle, look and feel slimmer but the scales will say different.

First thing my personal trainer told me was to ditch the scales.

I've been going to the gym for a month, 3-4 times a week and measurements haven't changed which I'm putting down to my diet being a bit crap over the last few weeks. Diet plays a huge part in it.

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KatharinaRosalie · 11/08/2017 16:44

It is highly unlikely you have put on 4 pounds of muscle by going to spin classes.

Exercise is great, but as people have said, you need to have a calorie deficit of thousands of calories to lose a pound. I would guess that the legs-tums class might burn a couple of hundred. It is also quite likely that your appetite increases, and it's very easy to eat those extra few hundred.

If you want to lose weight, you need to concentrate on eating (not eating, to be precise). Gym just helps it along, and of course has other benefits.

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BLUEsNewSpringWatch · 11/08/2017 17:22

Muscle doesn't weigh more than fat. 1lb is 1lb, whether it's muscle, fat, feathers or a brick.

Whilst I agree with the rest of your post, this is a sentence I see on here a lot and it drives me nuts. By that logic paving slabs weigh the same as feathers since 10kg of paving slabs is the same weight as 10kg of feathers. When we compare weights of something in general we generally mean in weight for an equal size thus muscle weighs more than fat, since 1cm3 of muscle is heavier than 1cm3 of fat.

I agree measurements mean more than scales though - I lost a lot in cm before the scales changed.

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Holidayhooray · 11/08/2017 17:47

3 hours a week at the gym.
I can promise you that is not contributing to any muscle weight gain!

Perhaps your appetite has increased with the gym going?

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Oogle · 11/08/2017 18:40

But Blues that's true. 10kg is 10kg, regardless. It's the density which matters, as I explained "muscle takes up less room than fat" which is why the "muscle weighs more than fat" drives me up the wall as it's always without the added explanation of 1cm3.

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Passthecake30 · 11/08/2017 20:32

Personal trainers always say "weight loss starts in the kitchen not in the gym"

As you admit to having too many carbs, I'd start there, try not to have them at each meal and cut out cake/crisps/sweets.

3hours of exercise per week isn't going to make much difference on its own.... and are you eating more as you "deserve it for exercising?"

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Wingbing · 12/08/2017 20:59

80% in the kitchen, 20% in the gym.

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Teatowelfairy · 12/08/2017 21:16

I've also joined the gym recently. I've been either gym, various classes, swimming, toning tables, every day for the last 3 weeks. According to the scales I haven't lost any weight, I haven't gained either but I feel fitter, slimmer and definitely have less wobble! So I'm hoping at my next official weigh in I will have lost inches.
In fact I was chatting to 2 women who I regularly see at the gym and they both said that this month they haven't lost any weight, however one had lost 6 inches overall and the other had lost 17 inches! So there's hope for me yet.

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theptidad · 18/08/2017 18:19

Hi,

Army Reservist / Personal Trainer/ Dad. Hopefully the username gets that across? Anyway..

TL,DR; What is your gym routine? Move about in the office more. Don't reward yourself after the gym, stick to a good balanced diet (but you can have small treats). Drink more water less alcohol/tea/coffee. Muscle is denser than fat and reacts quicker to exercise which could explain the weight gain if you are doing resistance training (lifting weights). Keep up the classes - your overall time spent exercising is bob on. THROW AWAY THE SCALES AND TAPE MEASURES - recognise how you feel and look and go by that. Scales and tape measures are the devil.

Lots of people put weight on immediately after starting an exercise programme. As others have pointed out this is most likely down to muscle growth. Especially if you haven't done much serious exercise beforehand.

Your body is a fantastic and mostly quickly adapting mystery. It's probably gone 'oh ''expletive''' and put your muscle growth into overdrive to cope with the sudden change in routine.

Now whilst this statement - Muscle doesn't weigh more than fat. 1lb is 1lb, whether it's muscle, fat, feathers or a brick. from BLUEsNewSpringWatch - is pretty true, obviously weight is weight. However muscle is more dense than fat and reacts quicker.

When people say 'muscle weighs more than fat' what they mean is proportionally. 1lb of muscle will have less mass than 1lb of fat. The same way that (for arguments sake, these aren't accurate!) 100 bricks might weigh 1 tonne but it would take 10,000 feathers to get the same weight.

The other possible explanation again as others have pointed out is diet. You say you work in an office which are notorious for unconscious snacking. Going to the gym can sometimes trigger what I call the reward switch. And I'm very guilty of this myself. You go to the gym you sweat your butt off and you think yes, I've worked heard I deserve a doughnut. Well maybe two.

The problem is you have to work hard to burn over 500 calories (for example a 5 mile run in under 50 minutes generally burns that much). How many calories in a doughnut? How easy is it to eat more than one?

So it's either one of those. Also be aware parts of you can start to look bigger, especially your belly as your muscles increase but the fat burns off slower. Your core muscles are quite reactive and can grow quite fast if you're giving them a regular beasting. However fat is tough to cut down and it can give the appearance of an even larger belly (older male body builders get this quite a lot).

My advice would be to through away the scales (actually throw them away they cause nothing but drama) and the tape measures. Just go on how you look and feel. You've already identified you feel much better physically. That is what you want to build off of. Focus on getting yourself fitter and your body will change and will adapt.

That said it will all be for naught (unless you're burning thousands of calories a day like we do in the military) if you don't eat right. You can enjoy a treat, in fact I encourage it to maintain basic sanity. But choose smaller options like the ironically named 'fun sized' chocolate bars rather than full sized ones.

Nutrition is not as complicated as nutritionists would have us believe. Just cook as much as possible, use natural ingredients (not necessarily organic - I mean chop and onion rather than buying pre-chopped convenience food) and you'll eliminate a lot of the secret sugar that food processors put in (always check the packaging, low fat brands are actually particularly bad for sneaking in sugar).

Also drink loads of water (your pee should be light in colour) and reduce your alcohol, tea and coffee intake (because it dehydrates you) and approach them as a treat.

Lastly I can give you more information if you provide a bit more detail on the gym routine you are doing? The overall time spent exercising is actually better than average and the classes should be great for you.

I would suggest trying to keep as active in the office as possible. Do squats by the printer/kettle. Take phone calls standing up. Get up and walk about, stretch, shake your arms. Sitting down for 8 hours a day is incredibly damaging to your fitness levels.

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Dina1234 · 18/08/2017 18:51

If you were already gaining weight when you joined then you would probably have to do more than the occasional gym trip to loose weight.

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Loopytiles · 18/08/2017 18:54

80% is diet.

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RallyRoundTheFlagBoys · 18/08/2017 18:58

You won't be gaining muscle, let alone 4lbs of it because it's very difficult to do..and not without extremely targetted exercise and nutrition, which you aren't doing. However it is possible that water retention (you actually injure your muscles when you exercise) is masking any weight loss. If you really want to lose you will have to eat less though, as you never use as many calories exercising as you think you do.

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