If you have looked into getting healthier and fitter, you have probably come across the concept of setting realistic weight loss goals. No matter how often people are told to set attainable goals, it seems to land on deaf ears. It is as if it is human nature for most of us to aim at shedding pounds in a jiff. Following this, you might have heard or tried to lose 50 pounds in 5 months. In most cases, the scales do not tip in your favor, and there is a reason for this.
Are you rushing to lose 50 pounds in 5 months following an upcoming event? Hold your horses and read through this piece. In this article, we will explore if it is possible to lose such tremendous pounds in 5 months. We will discuss what healthy, and natural weight loss entails and if such a goal can be considered in this category.
Can You Lose 50 Pounds In 5 months?
I want to lose 50 pounds in 5 months. These are some of the weight goals you will find people setting. At first glance, it may seem possible as the timeline appears to be extended. However, upon evaluating the weight loss basics, you will discover that it is impossible to lose such pounds in such a timeline.
Not only that, but it is also impossible to lose 50 pounds in 5 months despite combining various weight loss practices. If you were to increase your timeline, then this goal would be possible. But if you stick to this timeline, not even constant weight loss efforts will see you successfully and healthily lose 50 pounds.
How long will it take to lose 50 pounds? You may wonder. Before we answer this question, let us remind ourselves of what healthy weight loss entails.
Read More: How To Break A Weight Loss Plateau?
How To Lose 50 Pounds In A Healthy Way
Successfully shedding 50 pounds does not take into account how fast you drop these pounds. Whether or not you have an upcoming event, the goal is to drop these pounds healthily and for the long haul.
As we determined earlier, losing 50 pounds in 5 months is an example of an unrealistic weight loss goal. A more realistic plan that fits the healthy weight loss basics targets reducing 5 to 10% of your body fat within six months (1).
It means that if you weigh 200 pounds, your goal could be losing 10 to 20 pounds within six months (5 or 10% of 200 pounds). Another healthy weight loss goal that you can set is losing 1 or 2 pounds every week. According to the CDC, this healthy goal can help you lose weight healthily, steadily, and gradually (7).
Going by this, it would mean that you would target losing 4 to 8 pounds monthly (1 pound x 4 weeks) or (2 pounds x 4 weeks). A more realistic goal would be shedding 20 or 40 pounds (4 pounds x 5) or (8 pounds x 5) within five months.
To answer how long it would take to lose 50 pounds, it would be more than five months. Perhaps more than even seven months. The benefit of using these realistic weight loss goals is that you get to keep the weight off without various health issues. WebMD acknowledges that rapid weight loss is linked to several health problems, including (9):
- Loss of lean muscle
- Malnutrition, especially if you are using diet plans that do not include enough protein
- Electrolyte imbalances
- Dehydration due to loss of water often confused for fat loss
- Hair loss
- Menstrual irregularities
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Which Is The Best Way To Lose 50 Pounds In 5 Months?
Some people are still adamant that they can shed 50 pounds within five months. Perhaps they have heard of a friend who managed to shed such pounds in the exact timeline. Yes, your scale can show a 50 pounds decline after five months.
However, this decline does not indicate fat loss only. When you lose weight rapidly, a larger portion of the weight lost is water weight and even muscle. It goes into explaining why and how rapid weight loss causes muscle loss and dehydration.
As previously stated, the best way to shed 50 pounds is to focus on getting rid of it slowly and steadily. For a start, it means doing away with the five months timeline. Healthy weight loss is a long-term and steady process that may take longer than this duration.
With the timeline lengthened or removed, then you can focus on the following practices to help you drop 50 pounds:
When it comes to weight loss, one of the phrases you will hear of time and time again is healthy eating. Healthy eating is equated to successful and quick weight loss as it focuses on the right foods.
But, the healthy eating concept goes beyond eating the right foods. It might help in bringing clarity on why you may not see results despite eating these recommended foods. It is because you are missing information on other aspects that are included in healthy eating for weight loss. They are as follows:
Reducing Your Calorie Intake
Whether you want to shed 6 or 50 pounds, you must eat fewer calories than your body burns every day (3). You can use a reputable calorie counting app to help you keep track of the calories you consume.
But before doing that, you have to be familiar with your daily calorie requirements. Several factors will influence the calories you are required to consume to help you lose 50 pounds. These include your age, sex, and activity level (5).
Sit down with a dietitian to get a wealth of information on your daily calorie requirements. They will help you determine your range, how to meet it, and how to maintain a calorie deficit for weight loss.
Drinking Enough Water
Hydrating is essential and is considered among the foundational principles of weight loss. According to Medical News Today, drinking enough water can help you shed pounds in the following ways (2):
- By suppressing your appetite. Water is a natural appetite suppressant that tends to make you feel full, thereby signaling your brain to stop eating. The less eating and snacking you do, the fewer calories you ultimately consume.
- By increasing calorie burning. Drinking cold water has been linked to helping your body burn more calories. It stems from the fact that your body heats it for digestion, thereby burning more calories.
- By removing body waste. When you are dehydrated, your body gets to retain waste such as urine or feces. A buildup of this waste may make you bloated, tired, or swollen. This can make you feel unmotivated or trick you into thinking your efforts aren’t working. Drinking enough water helps in correcting this and further contributing to weight loss.
- By reducing your overall liquid calorie intake. Some people may opt for juices, soda, or other sweetened beverages when they feel thirsty. The effect of taking these liquids is that they add to your daily liquid calorie intake. It is, therefore, necessary to replace these high-calorie drinks with water or no-calorie beverages like herbal tea.
Looking at water contributions to weight loss, it is evident that we need to hydrate frequently. However, one question that plagues most people is; how much water should I drink to shed 50 pounds?
There is no standard recommendation of the amount of water you ought to drink. Instead, your water limit depends on factors such as your age, body size, activity level, health status, sun exposure, and temperature (2).
Watching Your Portion Size
The other culprit for contradictory weight loss results is portion control. Just because you are eating the right foods to burn calories does not mean you exceed their intake. Remember that each serving contains calories. The more servings you have, the more calories you attain, leading to a calorie surplus.
So, while you are at reducing your calorie intake, also remember to watch your food portions. Learn to “eyeball” your meals to determine what portions are right and those that are exaggerated (10). It comes in handy in helping you watch your food portions, even when you are dining out.
Crafting A Meal Plan To Help You Lose 50 Pounds
Besides adopting these healthy eating practices, you also have to work with a feasible weight loss diet plan. Most weight watchers find it easy to work with weight loss meal plans. You might have seen several lose 50 pounds in 5 months meal plan ideas online. They are pretty common.
The problem is that most of these meal plans are not personalized to meet your needs and goals. Consequently, they might lack to accommodate one or two vital things. For example, if you have a health condition, these general meal plans may not accommodate such health conditions’ dietary requirements.
It is the reason why you are advised to seek expert help before making any dietary changes. Talk to your nutritionist if you want to create or go through various lose 50 pounds in 5 months diet plans. They will recommend or help you create a better meal plan that contains the following (8):
- Lean proteins. These tend to be lower in calories and saturated fat. Excellent lean protein sources include lean pork cuts, white meat turkey, buffalo meat, and lean beef.
- Fat-free or low-fat dairy products. These contain less added sugars, saturated fat, and calories.
- Whole grains, legumes, and cereals. These include foods such as oatmeal, barley, millet, brown rice, wheat, and bulgur.
- Fruits and vegetables. These are pretty nutritious and tend to give your body the required nutrients.
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How To Lose 50 Pounds With Exercise?
Most people believe the best weight loss plan to lose 50 pounds in 5 months is an exercise routine. As such, you will find most people breaking their backs in the gym trying to sweat these pounds off.
As mentioned earlier, healthy weight loss cannot see you drop 50 pounds in 5 months. If it does happen, it is not your body fat but instead water weight and muscle loss. Exercise is indeed a great weight loss plan.
There is no specific best exercise per se to help promote weight loss. Different routines will work better for different people. Nonetheless, fitness gurus do acknowledge that the following are some of the best workouts to help you burn calories (12):
- Resistance training. Trying a resistance training activity such as weight training can help you burn more calories. It is because these activities work in increasing your muscle size and density. Improved muscle mass increases your resting metabolic rate, helping you burn more calories (12).
- Running. Running is considered to have an edge in calorie-burning compared to other activities such as walking. According to Medical News Today, an individual weighing 160 pounds can burn 15.1 calories per minute while running. However, the same individual will only burn 8.7 calories per minute while walking (11).
- Biking. Biking is also an effective weight loss aerobic activity to consider. An individual weighing 125 pounds and biking for half an hour can burn between 210 and 240 calories (6). If you weigh 155 pounds and bike for at least 30 minutes, you will burn between 260 and 298 calories. If you increase your pace, you tend to burn more calories. For example, if you weigh 125 pounds and bike vigorously for 30 minutes, you may burn between 300 and 495 calories (6).
How Much Exercise Do I Need To Lose 50 Pounds?
One pound of fat contains approximately 3,500 calories (4). So, let us do the math. If you burn 300 calories in one workout, you will need nearly 584 workouts to lose 50 pounds (3, 500 calories x 50 / 300).
If you implement other practices such as maintaining a calorie deficit, it may take you a shorter duration. Remember that, like weight loss, exercise too requires patience and consistency. You will need to be patient and keep putting in the work, regardless of whether your scale tips or not. Remember that exercise has many additional health benefits outside of weight loss and can help you live a longer, healthier, better quality life.
Apart from following a proper diet, physical exercise is also essential for your body and health. Take up a challenge and try this 20-min Full Body Workout At Home to get a snatched body.
The Bottom Line
Healthy weight loss does not encourage you to try and lose 50 pounds in 5 months. Instead, this concept asks you to set an achievable timeline. It will save you the disappointments, health issues, and frustrations that come with such an unrealistic weight loss target. Find some patience and aim at losing the 50 pounds steadily and healthily. To help you achieve this, it will only entail eating healthy and exercising regularly. Eventually, these pounds will go away.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on for decision-making. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!
- 10 tips for successful weight loss (2019, medicalnewstoday.com)
- Can water help you lose weight? (2018, medicalnewstoday.com)
- Counting calories for weight loss (2017, medicalnewstoday.com)
- Exercise to Lose Weight (2008, webmd.com)
- How can I lose weight? (2018, medicalnewstoday.com)
- How many calories does biking burn? (2020, medicalnewstoday.com)
- Losing Weight (2020, cdc.gov)
- Managing your weight with healthy eating (2020, medlineplus.gov)
- Rapid Weight Loss (2019, webmd.com)
- Secrets of Healthy Eating and Portion Control (2019, webmd.com)
- Walking vs. running: Weight loss, heart health, and more (2020, medicalnewstoday.com)
- What are the best exercise for weight loss? (2020, medicalnewstoday.com)