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Ask a Trainer About Losing Weight [Video]

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Why am I not losing weight? Are free weights or machines better? How do I stay healthy while traveling? What in the heck is a macro?

We asked you to share the questions you always wanted to ask a personal trainer, nutritionist or running coach, and after more than 1,000 comments on Facebook, we realized something we’ve always known deep down: Fitness is still a great mystery. We know we’re in an era where you can “just Google it,” but sometimes you want to hear from an expert, a friend, a person.

Throughout 2017, our network of trainers and nutritionists will answer your questions in this video series called “Ask a Trainer.” We’ll cover diet, exercise, wellness, fitness myths, jiggly machines, red wine and more, all in the hope of providing you with even more of the tools you need to meet — and exceed — your own goals.

This is not — we repeat — not a high school health lecture or a doctor’s appointment. This is running into your trainer at a bar, having a glass of wine and asking him/her that endless stream of questions you never have the time (or maybe courage) to ask at the gym. We’re here with you on this journey — and our trainers are, too.

In the first installment, our trainers addressed your questions on losing weight — a topic so commonly mentioned, we had to make two videos about it. You can catch part two in the coming weeks.

For every question, we’ve got someone who can answer it, so share your questions in the comments below to inspire our next check-in with our trainers.


Read More:
The Science Behind Why Water Is Good for Weight Loss
9 Signs of Progress That Aren’t a Number on the Scale
5 Reasons Why You Should Allow Yourself to Eat All Foods
How Stress Can Affect Your Weight (It’s Worse than We Thought)


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  • estycki

    Not getting enough sleep was hard to believe, but I’ve experienced it myself… the scale will not budge! Trouble sleeping is another issue; sometimes dieting can cause insomnia, make sure you’re not STARVING before bed!

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  • Milena

    I have to ask about post weight loss body issues. I’ve lost 25kg 7 years ago, since then I’ve kept my weight and I’ve been doing sports regularly for the past 2.5 years. I rollerskate or bicycle for an hour a day, minimum 3 times a week (if it’s possible I will do it 7 days a week).

    I am 31 at the moment and I’m still struggling with loose skin on my stomach and thighs. Is there a magic way of targeting them without losing more weight?

  • nsu17

    I am a recently retired collegiate athlete. I am 5’8″, 168. I exercise 6 days a week (mainly long distance running) and I eat maximum 1200 calories a day. I have kept this up for over a month now, and I haven’t lost any weight. I don’t understand how this is possible, and I’m getting fed up. I’m trying to lose 20 pounds, and after the diet I’ve been on, For the scale to not even move a pound is very disappointing. Help!

    • Eric Ove

      Are you getting enough to eat throughout the day? If you go long periods without food, you’ll wind up keeping weight on as a defense mechanism.

  • Heidi

    I eliminated gluten and sugar from my diet 4 months ago. Not eating gluten free subs either and limiting my fruit and have only lost 8lbs. Lots of veggies, greens, very little dairy. What’s up with not losing any more than that?

    • Carlos Silveira

      Get a scale. Weigh and measure everything you eat for a few weeks. Maybe you’ve been under estimating your calories. If that isn’t the problem. You might just need to adjust your daily calories.

    • Erica Schuckies

      Hi Heidi,

      There’s no evidence or reason to support the notion that giving up gluten will help with your weight loss efforts. While going both gluten- and sugar-free does require you to plan ahead and read labels, not everything in the “gluten-free” or “sugar-free” category are necessarily healthy. Foods that contain gluten (like whole grains) boost good-for-the gut bacteria and are usually high in fiber and better able to keep you full.

      Giving up sugar entirely depends on the type of sugar you’re avoiding. While added sugars (those found in cakes, cookies, jams, candies, sweets and many processed foods) are a likely contributor to weight gain, naturally occurring sugars — like those found in dairy, fruits and vegetables — come packaged with fiber, protein and loads of vitamins and minerals. There’s no reason to dismiss them all!

      Keep up the good work on getting in lots of greens and veggies, and make sure you’re balancing them with lean protein, seafood, nuts, beans and whole grains. And congrats on losing those 8 pounds! Weight loss isn’t always instant, so patience is the key!

  • Melinda

    I have recently started portion control and counting my calories. My only problem I’m having is I can’t seem to eat more that 1,000 calories. I literally can’t hold anymore food in my stomach. Is this going to cause me problems and is it healthy?

    • Carlos Silveira

      I guess it depends on how much you currently weigh. I’m 180 and 1000 calories would not be healthy for me. But if you weigh like 100 lbs it could be ok.

    • Erica Schuckies

      Hi Melinda,

      Cutting back on calories is an approach many people take to meet their weight-loss goals. But every once in a while, people take calorie restriction too far, ultimately making weight loss slower and more difficult by slowing their metabolism. When your body senses that you’re not getting enough nutrients from food, it may slow down your metabolism as protection against the possibility of starvation.

      As a general rule, most people need at least 1,200 calories to feed their everyday activities, metabolism and bodily mechanisms. People who are more active and exercise regularly usually need more than that, however. A diet of 1,000 calories may not only hinder weight loss efforts, but could also make it difficult to meet daily vitamin and mineral needs, plus it could have an overall negative impact on your overall health.

  • Hayley

    What is the best macronutrient ratio for fat loss?

    • Carlos Silveira

      The macro isn’t as important as total calories. But you should set minimums for protein and fats. For women, try to get at least .9 grams of protein per lb of Lean Body Mass .45 grams of fat per lb of LBM and fill the rest of your calories with what ever you want.

    • Erica Schuckies

      Hi Haley,

      Unfortunately, the answer is not a simple one. You can read more about macros and find out the right approach for your personal goals in this article: http://blog.myfitnesspal.com/ask-the-dietitian-whats-the-best-carb-protein-and-fat-breakdown-for-weight-loss/.

      Hope this helps!

  • Michael Goggin

    Okay, so since starting MyFitnessPal I’ve lost about 7 pounds or so which is great for just a month and a half for me. However what I’ve noticed is that since my exercise levels have gone up I’ve started getting colds and coughs a lot more frequently. I noticed the same last year when I increased my activity levels. Why does doing exercise seem to have this effect on me? Is it anything to do with my immune system? Or diet?

    • Nicola

      Im the same. Cold sores full of cold sniffles. Thought id feel better but im wrecked

    • Eric Ove

      That’s kind of a complex issue, and I doubt anyone can actually diagnose it properly with so little info. But one of the actions of beginning exercise is a sort of “cleansing” of your body. If you have not been living with a clean diet, or have been living/working in a toxic environment, or have not been getting any exercise at all, or all of the above, it is possible for your body to react somewhat violently to these things suddenly. Usually it doesn’t last more than a month or so (but it can last up to a year if you’re really special), but if you are continuously reintroducing something that you are allergic to or that disturbs your immune system, you’ll probably continue to see that kind of reaction every few weeks. I just wanted to help if I could because I’m not sure this is the sort of question they’d pick to answer, since it could just be as simple as you’re incidentally around people with colds a lot lately, or as extreme as an auto-immune disorder, or cancer. Ya know? Also, if you quit smoking, the same sort of thing occurs pretty commonly for the first several months (something like 1-12 months). Hope this helps!

  • Tee

    I have a substantial amount of weight to lose, at least 100 lbs. What is the best way to prevent as much lose skin as possible. Should I do more weight training than cardio?