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Gain 6 pounds in one week??

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So I have been doing a pretty consistent workout routine for a few months now but haven't been seeing the results to the extent that I wanted. I talked to one of the people who work at my gym back at home (I'm at college) and they told me to actually lower the intensity of my workout. They said that because I have a low resting heart rate, 57, that when I workout as hard as I do I am actually going beyond my target heart rate which could be why I'm not seeing a huge change in body fat percentage. So I did what the trainer told me and I've lightened my workout making sure I stay in the right range, and although my diet this week has been far from perfect, it's not like I threw myself into 10 gallons worth of icecream. Well in the past week I have gained 6.5 pounds. So needless to say I am freaking out and do not know what to do. Which is causing me to lose some motivation as well since now I'm back to where I was a month ago. Any suggestions??

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I'd guess just about all of that is water weight.  To gain 6.5 real pounds in a week you'd have to eat an extra 22750 calories in that week, or 3250 extra a day.  That's like 5 cheeseburgers above your caloric needs every single day for a week.  Or about 2 and half pints of Haagen Daz Rocky Road ice cream (again, every day) if you'd rather have the number in ice-cream units than cheeseburgers. Smile

Yea I figured that had to be some of it because there's no way I even got close to that.  But I can tell that I've gained some weight in my thighs, it's visible.  I just can't believe there has been that drastic of a change in one week.  And it's not like I quit working out, I still did it everyday, just at a lower intensity.

6.5 pounds of water would be more than 3/4 gallon of water.  Your body has to store that somewhere, and maybe it's chosen your thighs.  When I pack on the water weight, say after an MSG-packed meal of Chinese takeout, I can tell it's going to my waist because my belt gets tighter.

The trick to taking it off is, ironically, to drink more water.  Your body retains water sometimes for mysterious female reasons (which I don't pretend to understand, being a guy) and sometimes because your sodium intake has been higher and it needs more water to dilute that enough for your cells to do their thing.  Drinking more water flushes out the excess sodium faster.  I can gain 3 pounds in one day  doing the MSG/Chinese-takeout thing, drinking extra water gets rid of it in a couple days.  It sure freaked me out the first couple times before I figured out what was happening, though!

Oh ok, I never thought about the fact that the water has to be stored somewhere.  I've been drinking as much water as possible today to flush out my system.  Thank you so much for your insight!

Yeah, I wouldn't worry about it *too* much (other than the aforementioned... looking at your sodium intake).. I've seen days where I fluctuated as much as 5 pounds. DAYS.. nevermind weeks!  But a couple days later I was back to where I was.  That rapid of a gain would definitely be a lot of ice cream ^.~  Also take into account the time that you're weighing yourself (did you just have a big meal?  Is it the end of the day? Of which, you'll weight more due to food, water, etc).

Water weight gain aside, something doesn't sound right in the story. You are exercising every day you say? Are you cc'ing too? What are your stats? Current and target weight? If you share those, I think the forum posters will be able to help you better.

It's important to have a look at these because over-exercising, underestimating burn, underestimating intake and a whole bunch of other things could be causing you to not see the results you want.

I don't know if you're male or female, but if the latter you could be about to start your period? I have and gained 3lbs-OVERNIGHT. :-(

My weight had been maintaining around the 182-183 range, but I actually got down to 177 over my Thanksgiving break from college.  I figured that was due to the high sodium in the foods at my dining hall (they load everything with salt and butter, even the healthy foods and vegetables).  When I came back to school last week I stopped going to the dining hall because I was happy that I had dropped a few pounds and fixed food in my apartment.  This past week I ate well all during the day, but I did badly at night due to holiday parties and such that occurred because of the end of the semester.  After the week my weight had gone up to 186.5 as of yesterday.  I ate really healthy all day yesterday and drank a lot of water and I weighed 185.0 this morning.  (And yes, this is with me weighing at the same time everyday-first thing in the morning.)  

My target weight is around 150.  According to, I need about 2600 calories to maintain and 2200 to lose at a steady pace.  When I'm cooking myself I don't even usually come close to the losing weight.  For example, yesterday I felt like I was eating all day long and only consumed 1,450 calories.  But this past week I probably ate at the maintenance range due to the dinners and holiday parties, maybe even a couple hundred calories above on a couple days.  But that should mean at most I would gain 0.5 to 1 pound from the week, not 6.5.  

And yes I exercise every day.  Cardio every day and weight training 3 days a week.  Every once in a while I'll take a Sunday off.

On this webpage go to Tools > Burn Meter

Fill in the form. Once you know how much you should be burning, start logging everything you're eating.

Aim for a calorie deficit of 500-700 cals. More info in the CC FAQ.

It has to be precise. 'Eating healthy' doesn't guarantee that  you are at a deficit. Counting calories does.

9 Replies