Job Weight Loss Requirement


I have been over weight for the past 10 years, and now it is stopping me from getting a job that I really want.

I'm 25 years old, and 240 pounds. The last three weeks I have been eating clean, and jogging 4-5 days a week, between 2-5 miles at a time.

I need to be about 24% body fat and the charts show me at 32%, most of the fat I have is in the belly area.   I am 6 foot tall and my belly measures at 42 3/4 inches.

I have also been doing some pushups (60) and sit-ups (80)  Please help?

Answered By:

Mike Behnken, MS, CSCS ANswers the Fitness Question

Qualifications of Mike Behnken


If you have been overweight or have gained weight over the past few years you cannot expect it all to come off in a month. If you systematically take a scientific approach to weight loss you can expect to lose at most about 2 pounds a week.

First, use your body fat percentage and body weight to determine your lean body mass and your fat mass. In your case your lean body mass is 163 pounds and your fat mass is 77 pounds. You can use this data to critique and fine tune your diet and exercise program each time you reassess your body composition.

Your goal should be to maintain or increase your lean body mass (163 pounds) while you lose your fat mass (77 pounds). If you reassess and you are losing more fat mass than lean body mass, your exercise program and diet is probably off.

With a perfect exercise and diet program you could lower your body composition the required 8% by losing around 20 pounds of fat mass, while maintaining your 163 pounds of muscle. Your body weight would be 220 with 24% body fat.

A perfect exercise and diet regimen is very unlikely unless you are working directly with a personal trainer and dietician with extreme discipline.

With a decent exercise and diet program you should expect to lose about 25-30 pounds before your body fat percentage is the required 24%


Weight loss is x% diet is a common saying. Some say 75%, some say 90%, let's just say your diet is "very significant" when it comes to weight loss.

You must have a diet which is low in calories. The best way to achieve this is to eat "clean" like you are doing. For a good base of nutrient rich foods to include in your diet check out the Top 5 Every Day Foods

Avoid ALL beverages that aren't water, milk or protein drinks. Eat high fiber, whole grain carbohydrate sources. Eat ONLY lean proteins. Be careful with your consumption of "healthy" high calorie foods such as avocados, coconut products, nuts, and seeds.

Make sure you drink a ton of water and get at least 6-8 hours of sleep a night.


Your cardio sounds good as a start but you need to continue to modify it to challenge your body to lose weight. Instead of jogging 5 days a week, jog 2 days a week and do an alternate activity for the other 3 days.

High intensity interval cardio is most effective for burning fat and increasing metabolism. A good idea for this is to go to your local park, and simply run around. You can do this on concrete too, but it will be rough on your joints.

Sprint for 30 seconds, walk it off, then sprint again. You will find that this cardio will not break you down like long jogs, but invigorate you and make you feel more energetic.

Even though your body fat has accumulated primarily in your abdominal area, resistance training exercises which work as much muscle mass as possible are best for weight loss.

If your job requires a sit-up test keep them up, but you're better off exercising your large muscle groups, preferably more than one at a time. You can examples of these exercises at Combination Exercises Videos

Whatever you do, keep it up, be positive and you will get results and lose the weight you need to get the job you want.

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