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  • Writer's pictureMarc Ouellette

Why You Are Gaining Weight Even Though You Exercise

It is frustrating when you are trying so hard to lose weight, but no loss is reflected on your scale; in fact, it shows you have gained a pound or two.

Why does that happen?

Believe it or not, this is usually a good weight gain. Of course, if you are eating more then this could be the cause. But if not, you can expect the weight to come off over time, so be patient and stay the course.

When first starting an exercise program, your body goes through many changes. One of them is called adaptation. If you have gone from a sedentary lifestyle to an active one now that you are exercising, your body might be storing more glycogen which it uses as energy to fuel your cells.

Glycogen is made up of glucose and water. In fact, one-part glucose and three parts water. So what effect can this have on your weight?

The average person carries about 15 grams of glycogen per kg of body weight. If we do the math, we see that a 200-pound person would carry about three pounds of glycogen.

However, when you bring exercising into the mix, the actual amount of glycogen stored can increase by quite a bit, meaning carrying more weight. As your body adjusts to its new lifestyle, this excess weight will come off.

Another part of adaptation that can cause weight gain are the small tears which occur in muscle fibers as a result of exercising.

These small tears are called micro-trauma and while small, cause inflammation in the body.

As part of the healing process, blood vessels to open up and white blood cells are directed to the affected area. This can cause swelling until the tears are healed. These small tears are what cause you to be sore after your first few exercise sessions.

Another reason is you are gaining muscle. Because muscle weighs more than fat, as you lose fat and gain muscle, your weight might actually show more on the scale, but inches are coming off and in reality you are getting much stronger and healthier.

Remember many of my top clients drop several sizes before ever losing much weight. That's why we take before and after pictures.

The number on the scale is only one indicator you should watch.

You should actually be looking at your body fat percentage and making sure that is going down. That’s a sure indicator you are losing fat and adding lean muscle to your body and speeding up your metabolism.

Most people put way too much faith in that scale number. It can fluctuate a lot on a daily basis depending on what is going on inside your body.

Marc Ouellette is a Certified In-Home Personal Trainer, Certified Specialist in Fitness Nutrition and Owner of Personal Training Alliance.

I help busy men and women with weight loss, fat loss, muscle toning, speeding up your metabolism and getting you to become more energetic and confident.

I’m offering you a Free In-Home Fitness and Nutrition Consultation to see if we can work together so I can help you reach all your health and fitness goals.

Serving Fairfield County and New Haven County and I Bring The Workout Right To You!"

Contact me here at, for more information about my services.

To your health, Marc

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