I asked a client the other day how she thought her workouts were going.
She said things were going great — she feels stronger, moving better, balance much improved — but she hasn’t lost any weight.
She doesn’t need to lose much, maybe 20 pounds,
I said, “Remember, you’re building muscle. You can stay right around the same weight, and your body composition can be completely different.”
Which is true.
Muscle tissue is denser than fat tissue. So a pound of muscle is more compact than a pound of fat. A pound of fat takes up a lot more room on the body that a pound of muscle.
Picture this: a pound of fat is about the size of a small grapefruit; a pound of muscle is about size of a tangerine.
We’ve been working together for a few months now, and this 65-year-old former nurse has faithfully done strength training with me twice a week, and also started doing water aerobics and does occasional walking and hiking.
She is a strict vegetarian and so knows quite a bit about nutrition, although she doesn’t drink enough water — “I’m trying” — and I suspect could use some more protein in her daily diet.
But she’s doing really well. She works hard, and her strength has probably doubled overall.
She’ll get there.
These things take time.
Water and protein.
A nutritionist friend told me a long time ago that if a person drinks one gallon to one-and-a-half gallons of water a day, they’ll lose two pounds of bodyfat per week, without doing anything else.
I followed a plan he customized for me back in the day and cut my bodyfat percentage nearly in half, in fairly short order.
Now, I know that sounds like a heckuva lot of water, but it really is not that bad.
Think about it this way:
A gallon is 128 ounces. The average bottle of water is 16.8 ounces.
That’s eight bottles.
Drink one bottle as soon as you get up in the morning. Just suck it down. If you can drink two bottles right away, only six to go.
Let’s say you get up at 7 o’clock.
Two bottles right away, then sip on another bottle beginning at 8, another at 9, another at 10, another at 11, and another at noon.
There’s seven bottles and it’s only noon.
Yes, you’ll be peeing like crazy all morning, but believe it or not, your body will adjust to this new intake.
It’s your friend.