PCOS weight loss.  How calorie control and exercised reversed PCOS symptoms.
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PCOS weight loss. How calorie control and exercised reversed PCOS symptoms.

Most of the time, weight loss is only focussed on the number on the scale. And sometimes, whether it goes up or down, determines how you might be feeling that day. That’s why I love the concept of ‘non-scale-victories’ (NSV). Things like being able to do the button up on your jeans or a colleague noticing that you look smaller. This story is incredible. The NSV for this user is PCOS weight loss. For anyone that has PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome), you know that it can can be difficult to lose weight.

PCOS weight loss

From healthline.com.au: PCOS is a condition characterized by hormonal imbalances, irregular periods, and/or the development of small cysts on one or both ovaries.

The hormonal imbalances, insulin resistance, and inflammation related to this condition make it difficult for women with PCOS to shed weight.Yet, even a small weight loss of approximately 5% can improve insulin resistance, hormone levels, menstrual cycles, fertility, and overall quality of life in women with PCOS.

The stats

Age: 30
Height: 5’0″ / 152cm
Starting weight: 158lb / 72kg
Current weight: 114lb / 52kg
Weight loss: 44lb / 20kg
Time taken: 8 months
Method: CICO

Petite weight loss

This is an article in the “Petite Weight Loss” series.

There are thousands of weight loss success stories that should be shared to a wider audience, to inspire others to take their own weight loss journey; to provide proof that weight loss can be achieved. These stories are all individual experiences, with different approaches to weight loss. My hope is that you will read these stories and, as you learn what worked for them, it may help you to lose your weight. These are real people, with busy lives, who have achieved real success.

girrrrllll ya quads and biceps are amazing!! I love that your body composition has been over a reasonable amount of time. Very encouraging!

Yay!! So glad I could prove it possible! I have PCOS so the progress was slooooow! The mindset is the hardest part. You got this!!

What kind of exercise do you do? Sometimes I worry that certain exercises are not good for PCOS hormones, but idk..

I do EVERYTHING! At first I used to let the PCOS hold me back but I started pushing myself even when I didn’t want to, and I always felt good about it after. Don’t let your fatigue and negative mindset stop you from pushing yourself. I waited 5 years to do something about my weight and how I felt. I work out at home now so I don’t get any looks at the gym which helped a lot because I always felt like I was being judged. I do HIITs, HIRTs, weight lifting, cardio, running, MMA, boxing, Pilates, yoga, plyo, and a lot of functional training (crawling and things in plank). Everyday is something different so my body doesn’t ever get used to any one routine.

Hi! Congrats you look great! Did before too! I also have pcos and working on losing weight. Have you seen any progress in regression of your pcos symptoms?

Thank you!! And YESSSS so much!! I used to be fatigued 24/7, horrible chin acne, hair loss, missed periods, severe depression and/or mood swings. I also used to get yeast infections MONTHLY thanks to the wonderful sugar imbalance.. ugh!

Now, my hair is longer and stronger than ever, my energy is way way higher (like, all of the time), my acne has mostly subsided (I still get stress breakouts on my forehead mainly), my period is totally regular (I’m not on any birth control now for 6 months), and my yeast infections are GONE. I def have my moments where I’m sad and shit but it’s nothing like before (I was taking Zoloft).

I won’t say it’s all from just exercise and diet change, I’ve also changed some things up in general. I use a glycerin-free intimate wash which totally stopped my yeast infections. I also switched up my hair stuff to use more natural shampoo so it’s less chemicals (aka hormone blockers). I read two books about PCOS: In the Flo and Flo Living, TOTALLY recommend btw! And I take cinnamon pills to help manage my blood sugar (New Chapter). All of these changes + working out + eating mindfully + social support + educating myself on symptom management has made me asymptomatic now for about 3 months. THIS is my biggest success!!

How many hours do you work a week? I have a full time job and find it so hard to work out besides that, too. Any suggestions on time management other than quitting the job?

I work 40 hours a week and I actually just started another part time job LOL. I workout at 5:30am everyday for about 30-60 min, depending on my program. I go into work at 8:30am M-F. I used to make excuses about time management as well (for YEARS) but I realized that if I wanted to change how I looked, I had to change my habits, too. I go to sleep at around 9-9:30 every night. I hope this helps!

You look amazing! What did you do in terms of reps and weights to get your arms so defined? (Low reps, high weights vs high reps and low weights, hypertrophy, etc.)

Thank you so much!! I do some weights but not everyday. I do flys, front raises, rows, chest openers, all with 10lb weights. Usually about 12 reps each, 2-3x each. I use 15s for snatches (same set length) and TONS of push up varieties (superman, spider, stationary burpees), bear crawls, jnchworms, and plank moves like mountain climbers. I also do a million and one burpees haha! I hope this helps 🙂

With what weight did you start and how often did you do progress overload? You look so beautiful btw

Thank you! Not sure what you mean by progress overload but I started out using 3lb weights LOL. I now use 15lb weights for most arm and back exercises and 10lbs for flys and front raises. I think I was able to move up in weights every 2.5 months or so. Sometimes I had to go back because I injured myself or it was too much, so it honestly varies lol. I hope that helped!

What weight do you use for leg exercises? 

Patience is key for sure! I honestly don’t use weights much for leg exercises.. I use a 35lb kettlebell for hip thrusters and everything else is just plyo plyo plyo. Do some jumping and watch your quads and calves thank you!!

So inspiring! What exercise do you do?

Thank you! I do a mixture of all kinds of exercises. I use an app called Centr and it caters a program to your goals. I do HIITs, HIRTs, Pilates, plyo, weight training, yoga, mixed cardio, running, boxing, mma, functional training (crawling and exercises in plank pose). Every day is something different. For example, today I did a 50m HIIT that targeted full body. Hope this helps!

Your progress is amazing! Do the recipes on the app include calorie counts? And do you need any specific equipment at home?

Thank you! I use the Centr app. It has daily workouts catered to your goals, and it includes meals daily (even taking into account leftovers) and does include calorie and macro counts. They have workouts that are specifically no equipment necessary and if you ever get a workout one day that requires some, you can easily swap it out for another one. They even tell you to use water gallons or other objects you probably have at home that are similar in weight to a dumbbell so you can substitute equipment that way. If you’re going to switch to a home program, I would recommend investing in some dumbbells anyway 🙂

What were your calories per day and did you do anything special like fasting or anything?

Thank you!! I’m eating between 1200-1500 calories a day, depending on my activity level. No fasting or anything special! I even indulge in pizza and cookies and chocolate all of the time. I just make sure it all falls under my calorie goals 🙂

This is fantastic progress!! CONGRATS! Did you set specific macro goals?

Only protein! At least 60g/day

Tell me about your veg protein intake – I mostly eat vegetarian during the week and sometimes struggle to get enough protein to build muscle.

Thank you! Protein shakes are a God-send. Orgain sport has 30g per 2 scoops as is low in carbs & sugar (also tastes great IMO). I also eat tofu, tempeh, seitan, legumes (mostly chickpeas), nuts & seeds, and LOTS of veggies (broccoli has a great protein content).

I’m 5’0″ with PCOS too! How was the loss of the remaining 15lbs? Will you still strive to lose more weight? Did you fast during this process? 

Ugh.. the last 15lbs took me the last 3 months ALONE! I almost gave up a couple of times but I was so far deep into my routine that I couldn’t imagine breaking up with it lol.. I did not fast and I don’t think I want to lose anymore weight (I just want to tone and be strong/full of energy), but it was really hard. The plateaus were killer. I had one that lasted almost 8 weeks. But I didn’t stop, and it made a big difference. Don’t give up, no matter what 🙂


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