Weight loss is not something you stop. You can’t just lose a certain number of pounds then go back to scarfing down cheeseburgers. Weight loss is a complete paradigm shift to how you live your life. It’s a fundamental change to your diet, exercise, and general lifestyle that you need to keep up if you want to stay healthy.
Now, with that said, there should of course be a point where you ease up on the intensity. If you’re obese, then you need to hit the gym and hit it hard, but if you’ve reached a good body weight goal, then it’s alright for you to relax just a little, maybe even add a few more cheat days to your schedule. Having a set goal for your body weight is important, as losing too much weight can be its own slew of problems. So, if you’re a man over 25 who wants to know when a good time is to ease up on the weight loss programs, here are the signs that you’ve hit a good body weight.
Your waist circumference is healthy
When people want to lose weight, their first priority is getting rid of all the excess fat on their waist and stomach, because it’s the most obvious fat on their body. For men, the ideal waist circumference is around 40 inches. This is why you need to buy a measuring tape as soon as possible when you decide to lose weight, so you can measure your waist circumference monthly to check your progress. If you don’t feel like going for the ideal weight, don’t worry. Just as long as your waist circumference is at least in the same ballpark as the ideal, you can use that as a good point to ease up on the weight loss.
Your resting heart rate is normal
What this means is a sign of a healthy heart is that it beats somewhere between 60 and 100 beats per minute (BPM) when you’re in a state of rest, not doing anything strenuous. More body fat means that the heart has to pump more blood, because it has a much wider area to cover, which causes it to beat faster.
A high resting heart rate is your first clue that some severe heart problems may be well on their way. Losing weight, therefore, isn’t just about fitting into a size 6 or 4, it’s about maintaining a healthy heart and avoiding things like heart diseases or strokes. Thus, if your resting heart rate BPM is in that 60-100 comfort zone, then you don’t need to worry too much about losing those extra pounds. By all means, if you want to, but you don’t need to actually worry about your life being in danger.
Your body is sufficiently lean
As strange as it sounds, a normal looking person can be considered over-fat, while a heavyset man can actually be in perfectly good health. This is because the two have wildly different body fat percentages. The percentage of body fat you have indicates how fit you actually are vs. how you look. This is the type of things that, unfortunately, the usual means of measuring body fat just don’t cut it. So, rather than turning to a scale, BMI, or weight chart, you’ll have to look for a company that offers an annual biometric body test. If you have this test performed on you, and the test reads that you have a body fat percentage somewhere between 6-24%, then your body fat is healthy for a 25 year old man, and you have nothing to worry about in terms of being overweight.
Losing more weight would be emotionally damaging
Nothing knows your body better than your body. Your body knows how much body fat it needs to continue surviving, and so there comes a point where losing any more would be actively damaging, both physically and emotionally. It’s been shown that certain dietary restrictions can double the risk of depression in some people.
If you’re working at your body, and the scale isn’t budging, then it’s likely a sign that your body needs the fat it has to continue functioning, and that you’ve reached a point where you need to slow down. It’s also likely a sign that your body is gaining muscle as it’s losing fat, which can confuse some scales. It’s okay to not want to give up your favorite food, or to not want to spend a large chunk of your day at the gym. If your body is telling you that the point it’s reached is a healthy one, losing more weight is probably more trouble than it’s worth.
Your body is stable and you’re close to your goal
It’s not hard to understand. If your body is stable, your weight is just fine, and close enough to your goal, there’s probably nothing that needs to be improved. The fact is, unless you have a specific physical condition, your body shouldn’t be constantly gaining or losing weight. If you’re obese, then it’s going to take months or even years of work to get yourself to a stable condition. But once you reach it, then it’s okay to accept it. Your ideal weight should be a body weight that you can reach and then maintain without having to restrict yourself from life’s pleasures too much. As long as you don’t let yourself fall into the same habits that got you into obesity to begin with, then you shouldn’t feel pressured to maintain your weight, because a healthy body weight isn’t hard to maintain.
You’re happy with your weight
If you feel legitimately confident about the way you look now, then you’ve probably lost enough weight. Especially if you have a personal trainer, and they agree with you. If you are personally satisfied with how far you’ve come, and you don’t feel like there’s any more you need to lose, then you’re probably right. Losing weight is 50% overall health and 50% self-confidence, and if you have both, then you’re all good.