Top reasons you might be gaining weight while exercising

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You have been killing it at the gym, putting in hours upon hours of rigorous training but the results are nowhere to be seen. In fact, the scale seems to be going up instead of down. Sounds familiar? Then you are only one person out of many who seem to be gaining weight while exercising. It’s completely understandable if this scenario is doing nothing good for your motivation and is making you doubt yourself.

Of course, a lot depends on the type of exercise you are doing. If you are participating in low-intensity cardio for 30 minutes a week, you can’t expect to see amazing results. At least not without a proper diet and a lot of invested time. But if you are doing the best exercise to lose weight (we are talking about high-intensity cardio) and you are still not seeing the results, then the time has come to take a step back and look at what might be causing this unexpected weight gain.

You are consuming a high-calorie diet

As much as you probably don’t like to hear it, one of the main reasons why you are gaining weight even while working out regularly is pretty simple – you are taking in more than you are working off. If you want to lose weight, you must have a caloric deficit. There’s just no way around it. All of the best exercises to lose belly fat won’t be enough if you finish your workout and treat yourself to a piece of cake. Or a whole pizza. Or anything that’s filled with calories but void of other important nutrients.

Candy in a box - the reason why you might be gaining weight while exercising.
Treating yourself every once in a while is perfectly okay.

Have in mind that it’s super easy to eat more calories than planned. That’s why it’s always recommendable to have a food diary and check it once a week. It will show you if you are making any mistakes in this department. If it turns out that a high-calorie diet isn’t the culprit, then you may want to take a look at the other usual suspects.

The fact that you are gaining muscle is one of the main reasons why you are also gaining weight while exercising

This is a typical example that the scale won’t always show a realistic image. Do you feel that your clothes have gotten looser lately? Then you step on the scale and it shows that you have gained a couple of pounds. If you have been a regular at the gym, you probably have nothing to worry about. You are just achieving what every person in the gym hopes for – you are building muscles and becoming leaner. And fit!

All of our Dubai personal trainers will be able to tell you that the volume of muscle is denser than the volume of fat. That’s why muscles end up weighing more than fat. So if you have managed to build muscle, that means your body fat has actually decreased. Even if the scale is suggesting otherwise.

You might be gaining water weight

Have you ever heard someone refer to their extra couple of pounds as water weight? You thought it to be silly and impossible, but such a thing really exists, and it can happen to everyone. The amount of water can have a huge impact on the number you are seeing on a scale. In fact, water can make your weight fluctuate by as much as ten pounds! Knowing that water makes up approximately 65% to 90% of a person’s weight, it’s easy to see how it can have a huge impact on the number on the scale.

Three glasses of water.
Don’t panic if you seem to be gaining pounds even while working out – it could just be water.

So if you are gaining pounds while working out, you might want to look into the prospect of retaining water. And even if you do think that’s the reason why the scale isn’t going down, don’t refrain from drinking water. Dehydration will only exacerbate the problem.

The only reason why you are gaining weight while exercising might be the lack of time

Be honest – how long did it take you to gain those extra 30 pounds? Unless it happened overnight or even a course of a few weeks, you can’t expect to lose it in little time. Our bodies are complex machines, but they still take time to carry out different processes. It’s going to take much more than a couple of weeks at the gym to lose the excess weight. In fact, the less weight you have to burn, the harder it will be to take it off.

Whether you indulge in some no equipment bodyweight exercises or you take spinning classes, make sure you do it consistently and for a long period of time. Couple that with a proper diet and we have no doubt that you will not have the problem of gaining weight while exercising. Even if you do gain a couple of pounds, you will be looking at lean muscles. And that’s definitely something you should strive for!

A white alarm clock.
Have you given yourself enough time to actually lose excess weight?

What to do if you step on a scale and see the number going up?

The last thing you should do is panic. First, ask yourself whether you’ve been working out long enough to actually notice any changes. If it has, then just take a look at your diet. Are you indulging in high-calorie food and doing it frequently? Then you have your answer as to why you are gaining weight while working out. But if you have stayed on track with your diet, just take a look at your physique. If you seem leaner than before, then you have nothing to worry about – you are on the right path. In case you suffer from water retention, it might be a bit harder to fix the problem. In that situation, you can consult a medical professional and ask whether diuretics will solve the problem. All in all, keep being frequent at the gym, lead a healthy lifestyle, and the pounds will start coming right off.


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