What Is the Last Place You Lose Weight?

Closeup girl in unederwear pich her belly
A woman is pinching her stomach. (Image: ipag/iStock/Getty Images)

When you start seeing progress in your weight loss regimen, it can sometimes seem like the fat is falling off everywhere except where you most want it to. What's really happening is that your body is losing weight all over at the same time, but the areas that have more fat to begin with take longer to have all of that fat siphoned off.

Problem Areas

Everyone has a problem area. Whether you have a protruding tummy, a big butt, bat wings or thunder thighs, everyone's body tends to store fat in certain areas more than others. This area is often what inspires you to lose weight in the first place, and some people even hope to lose weight only in that area without affecting the rest of their bodies. Unfortunately, this isn't possible because of how weight loss works.

Dieting -- The Numbers

To lose weight, you have to deprive yourself in some way. Some people cut calories, some people work out, but the ones who are most successful do both. You have to burn off more calories than you consume. To lose 1 lb. per week, you have to create a deficit of 500 calories per day — over the course of seven days, that adds up to 3,500 calories, the equivalent of 1 lb. If you keep it up, good things start to happen.

Fat Loss

Calories are simply a unit of measure that applies to energy. To your body, food is nothing more than fuel to power your muscle movements and organ systems. When you give your body too much fuel, it stores the extra away for a rainy day, in the form of fat. When that rainy day comes — because you're depriving yourself — your body returns to these fuel stores and begins to siphon the triglycerides from the fat cells. The triglycerides get processed until they're in a form that your body can use for energy, and they become fuel for your body. This happens throughout your body — once it happens enough, those fat cells shrink, and so do you.

Body Shape and In-Shape

When you look at your body, you may tend to focus on your problem areas, and they may seem like they're not getting smaller. Think about it — your stomach may have an extra four inches of fat, while your wrist has barely a quarter-inch. If your body is using fat from all over at the same rate, of course it's going to take longer to get rid of that four inches than the quarter-inch. Even once those four inches begin to move, your body will likely remain in the same proportions until your weight loss reaches an advanced stage where you begin to see muscle definition. So don't get discouraged because you've been dieting but your thighs aren't thin yet — they'll get there, if you stick with it.

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