You’ve got 4 months before that wedding, vacation or other important event, so how much weight loss can you expect by then? It’s a common type of question. However, as with every answer to complex questions, it’s not something that comes with a single answer.
Why Isn’t There a Set Weight Loss Target for 4 Months?
Doctors and weight loss experts simply can’t tell you how much weight loss you can achieve in 4 months. There are far too many factors to take into account that will change the answer for you. After all, the number on your scale is affected by many things, including your diet, exercise, stress control and sleep habits. It also includes your gender, age, and factors that belong to your unique body.
It’s true that the average person who follows a calorie-deficit plan, who is moderately physically active, doesn’t suffer from higher than average stress levels and who gets a typical night of sleep most nights will lose somewhere between 17 and 35 pounds over a four month span. However, it’s important to note that this is a huge range and is essentially based on ideal circumstances. Your reality will decide what your number will be.
What Goal Should You Set?
If you want to know how much weight loss you should expect in 4 months so you can set solid goals, then there are a few things you can do. The first thing you should know is that a goal doesn’t necessarily set in stone the amount of weight you’re going to lose. It’s a target.
Therefore, as you set your weight loss goal for 4 months, be open to learning your body’s response to your strategy. Be willing to learn as time progresses. Make short-term goals along the way and adjust your long-term goal (up or down) as you get to know your body’s response to your strategies. That said, you can also adjust your strategies as you start to learn what is and is not working for you.
You can use a weight loss calculator to help you to create the right calorie deficit (along with your doctor’s advice, of course). This will help you to find where you should be for healthy weight loss in 4 months without reducing by too little or too much.
It can be tempting to try to lose as much weight as possible in 4 months. Remind yourself to err to the side of safety. Caution is far better for you over both the short- and long-term because it is less likely to harm your metabolism, which would only make it easier to gain weight and harder to lose it in the future.