I was wondering if you had some advice on a possible workout schedule that you would recommend.  I currently started reading your blog and was wondering if it was possible that I am over working out.

Monday –  6 mile run and 45 minutes lifting
Tuesday – 45 minutes cardio and 45 minutes lifting
Wednesday – 4 mile run and 45 minutes lifting
Thursday – Rest or Yoga
Friday – 45 minutes cardio and 45 minutes lifting
Saturday – 8 mile run
Sunday – Rest or Yoga

I am 5’5” and currently weigh 137 but would like to drop my weight to 125.  I eat extremely healthy and currently take in around 1500 calories but I am having trouble dropping the weight.  I have tried to eat more but more food doesn’t agree with my body. I prefer to eat several smaller meals thoughout the day and I eat when I am hungry so I dont feel as if I am starving myself.  Do you have any suggestions as how I can drop this last 12 pounds?  -Kelly B.

Here’s the thing:  every body is different and there is no one classic exercise routine that is going to get you the exact goals you are looking for.

Overtraining is a word that gets thrown around a lot to explain away lack of weight loss, but even it isn’t so clear.  Over training usually results in injuries and illness, and a disrupted heart rate (too high at rest, and not being able to reach your target heart rate during exercise.)  Your exercise schedule is pretty intense, so if you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you need to build in some more rest days, or cut back on the duration of your workouts.

If you are using your lack of weight loss as a guide that you think you have hit a plateau, I would be more likely to point the finger at your low calorie intake.  I’m not sure what “doesn’t agree with my body” means, but you need to be eating more, period. For someone of your size, and your workout intensity/frequency, you need to be consuming far more calories to keep your metabolism going (too find out exactly how many, figure out your BMR, then mulitply by your activity level and then subtract 500 calories from that number to lose a pound a week) and to keep your body from shutting down on you which may explain your inability to drop the weight.

But what I am most inclined to tell you is that perhaps your body wants to be at your current weight.  Many women would kill to be that size, and you should appreciate all your body, and it’s current weight, can do for you: like carry you through your intense workout schedule.  Weight isn’t everything, and if you can sustain your workout schedule at your current weight, you are in pretty fantastic shape already, and a few pounds less won’t change that.

Up your calories with healthy foods, and perhaps try cutting back the intensity to break through the plateau, and see what happens.  Some pounds may fall off naturally, but most importantly, don’t judge your success and progress soley by your weight.

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