We get a lot of questions here when it comes to losing weight and cosplay. Unfortunately they usually are the same ones. We really couldn't blame this in the past since we only had one thread at the time. Now that we have our own board for this, we can stop this very common issue with this simple FAQ board as well as cover the bases on some common myths and misinformations.
Common posts we often see:
"I am X feet x inches and x pounds. and I am sick of my weight so i started dieting. cosplay has been such good motivation for my goal. I've been eating only 1000 calories a day and am sooooo hungry how do i fight hunger pangs and overall starvation."
Never eat so little ever! people think for some reason the only diet involves you being hungry all the time. THIS IS NOT THE CASE. while it is true you eat a little less. you also should eat more frequently. Eating six or more small meals will increase your metabolism more then eating the same amount of food in three large meals.
this is because you body maintains a healthy regular flow of digestion instead of large sums of food at once.
"I am X feet x inches and x pounds. how do I know how much I should eat?"
That is a very good question. nutrition is one of the hardest parts of losing weight because its more of a science. This link
provides a free calorie calculator and helps you set up for meals. I will be posting a nutrition thread soon to really get into detail about nutrition soon.
"My body weight is ok but I have big thighs/belly/etc how do I make it go away?"
The sad truth of the matter is there is no such thing as spotted fat loss. you have to work all parts. you can certainly work on that one spot for muscle, but don't expect total control.
"what are some good exercises for my abs, arms, legs, thighs etc?"
working one exercise only will not get you the results you expect unless done properly
. In order to gain muscle, you have to work generally everywhere if you wish to see results. Lets say you want a bigger chest, you find the greatest chest exercises ever and get to working out only those muscles. you work them for hours every day until you are ready to collapse. and over the course of a year... It only slightly changes. WHAT HAPPENED you may ask. There were three things wrong with your workout.
The first is you were only doing one bodypart for your workout. In order to get bigger or more toned depending on preference, you have to work the other areas around the that part of the body in order to create the foundation needed to shape the muscle. The second is you cant do the same workout every day, the body needs to recover in that area. give it rest and workout another area of the body. and finally dont workout for more than an hour a day for weightlifting. You will over-train
and hinder results.
See also my overtraining article.
"I want to lose x pounds. My target weight is X pounds and i have over six months until the next con."
This one really isn't a problem but we cannot stress enough how little the bathroom scale really matters. Your body does not revolve around numbers. Just go by the mirror
. its ok to check the scale once in a blue moon, but looking at the scale once a week can be nerve racking.
"I am over 18. should I use fat burners?'
No! You will waste money, and possibly get hurt in the process. There are only three types of fat burner pills you will ever find; placebos, simple stimulants jacked up in price, and stuff that is NOT safe at all to use. If you want a "fat burner" of your own just try green tea extract or black coffee. it still cant beat healthy dieting and exercise.
Some stupid myths everyone thinks is true, but are not:
1. Dieting is supposed to make me feel hungry, self discipline is always a factor.
NO! never be starving when dieting. Listen to your body's needs just give it something light that's whats important. Remember eat low never no.
2. I'm a girl, if I lift weights, I'll turn into a muscular freak! I don't want that!
Not at all. I can almost guarantee you wont in fact. Here is why:
A. girls eat less then guys.
Food is fuel for the body. less food for muscle growth. moreover weightlifting burns more calories then cardio does.
B. muscle growth takes forever, and will get you toned more then anything.
This means your skin will be tightened and give you a more youthful look. You do want to look young right? :P I have been lifting quite some time and have yet to "grow"
C. To get the amount of growth you are thinking of also requires a lot of testosterone.
3. Fat is my MORTAL ENEMY!!! I fight it by staying away from all fats ever.
Wrong! Life threateningly wrong in fact. your body needs some level of bodyfat to survive. just look for healthy fats. olive oil is a good example. use that instead of butter. just not too much.
4. carbs are my MORTAL ENE-
No it isn't. Carbs are absolutely necessary just like any other food group. taking out any food group is unhealthy. just keep in the low serving department. As your body gets more adjusted to workouts, add more carbs.
5. My great grandpa was big, my dad was big, and I am big too. Gentics clearly are not in my favor!
While I do not ignore genetics in some factors. It doesn't mean that it could be something else. It could be something as simple as eating habits. even if genes are not in your favor, in the long run they can be if you fight the good fight.
6. Healthy foods are expensive!!! I cant go past a fast food budget!
Quite the opposite actually. Your saving your money when you pay for groceries instead of junk. the difference is you pay for the food in one week. you can feed a family on five bucks if you play your cards right. (though I'm not suggesting you should)
7. This takes forever! >:'( These goals and results I expect are unrealistic.
While I will more then agree that for some things are harder then others, It certainly does not mean you will take forever to get there. When I started out, I was having a hard time with ten pound weights. now I'm bench pressing more then my bodyweight. This took me less than a year. Like I said before results always vary, but you really don't know what you can do until you try.
I will add more stuff later. for now I hope this helps filter out repetitive questions.