Is it possible to lose 10 pounds in 2 weeks?

by Holly Klamer on February 21, 2014 · 1 comment

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The short answer to this question is yes; it is possible to lose 10 pounds in 2 weeks.  However, there are many factors that go into weight loss.  If you want to lose 10 pounds in 2 weeks, there are 2 main areas to hit: food intake and exercise.  Other factors that affect weight are hormone levels, sleep and metabolic rate.

To lose this amount of weight in a short time takes hard work and dedication.  It may not be feasible for everyone, but it could be possible.

There are many gimmicks and quick fix fad diets that promise drastic weight loss results in short time frame.  While you may experience weight loss of 10 pounds in 2 weeks, more than likely the weight will come back.

Here are some tips for losing weight quick that may be more likely to keep the weight off than taking a weight loss supplements. (See also: How to speed up weight loss)

The number basics

A pound of fat contains approximately 3,500 calories.  If you want to lose 10 pounds, that is 35,000 calories to lose from your body in 2 weeks.

In order to lose 5 pounds in 1 week, you need to be in a calorie deficit every week of 17,500 calories (5 pounds: 3,500 x 5 = 17,500 calories).  That turns into a deficit of 2,500 calories per day (17,500 calories / 7).

In order to be in that much of a calorie deficit, you can cut your calorie intake and/or increase your calorie expenditure.  Cutting 2,500 calories every day would basically mean starving yourself, which is not the healthiest, most sustainable approach.

Increasing your expenditure by 2,500 calories could be feasible, like what you would see on the television show The Biggest Loser.  However, for most people this is also unrealistic.  So, what may be the most reasonable approach is to balance cutting back calorie intake and increase calorie expenditure.

What do you eat when trying to lose 10 pounds in 2 weeks?

It’s important to eat high nutrient foods anytime, but also when trying to lose weight.  Focus on filling up with fruits vegetables, lean proteins and some whole grains.  These foods are high in fiber and protein which helps leave you full longer and can help lower calorie intake throughout the day.

Fuel up with these foods when losing weight instead of relying on supplements or pre-packaged diet food.  Your body needs antioxidants, B vitamins and minerals, and real food will best supply these to your body.  Cut out processed foods and sugary drinks when wanting to lose weight.

It’s also important to stay hydrated when losing weight.  Drink enough water so that your urine is clear to pale yellow.

Avoid the temptation to starve yourself for 2 weeks.  Lowering your calorie intake too far (like below 1,200-1,000 calories) will drastically lower your metabolism.  This could lower the rate of calorie burn and fat loss. (View our 1200 calorie diet)

Exercise

Besides food intake, the other most important aspect for losing 10 pounds in 2 weeks is exercise.  Your calorie burn has to dramatically increase to drop fat mass.  There are many ways to exercise, but optimal calorie burn and fat loss combination of cardio plus interval training may be best.

Focus on incorporating cardiovascular exercise like running, biking, swimming, etc. plus some resistance training 2-3 times per week.  Aim for a moderate intensity for cardiovascular exercise; you should be able to carry on a conversation while exercising.  Add in higher intensity exercise a few times per week if desired.

Resistance training will keep your muscle mass up while cutting back food intake plus increase calorie burn.  Cardio exercise will give you a high calorie burn and increase fat burn.

Remember, you need to be roughly in a 2,500 calorie deficit every day.  Exercise length will vary individually, but a good place to start is 1-2 hours of exercise per day. See also: How much exercise is enough to lose weight.

Caution

Before taking any weight loss supplements, talk to a physician.  A healthier, more sustainable way for weight loss is through diet and exercise.  It may be possible to lose 10 pounds in 2 weeks, but it will take a lot of hard work and dedication.

You should talk to a doctor before increasing exercise if you have a history of heart disease, on medication for heart issues, joint problems, have chest pain or have had dizzy spells.

Following a healthy diet is important when trying to lose weight; focus on eating vegetables, fruits, lean proteins and some whole grains.  In order to lose 10 pounds in 2 weeks, you need to be in a calorie deficit of about 2,500 calories per day.  That should come from a combination of exercise and cutting excess calories.

Avoid taking weight loss supplements, following an unbalanced fad diet or starving yourself to lose weight.  These all may lead to temporary weight loss that won’t last, and may have harmful health effects.

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Holly Klamer
About the author

Holly is a registered dietitian with a MS degree in nutrition and exercise science. She teaches nutrition at 2 colleges in Denver and has her own nutrition consulting business, Step Ahead Nutrition. She has been contributing articles to caloriesecrets.net since 2013. You can connect with Holly on her page.

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