The majority of the people who are able to lose weight can’t seem to keep it off for a variety of different reasons. This all starts because of the way you’re trying to lose weight in the first place. Way too many people have a ”lose weight fast and live with the consequences later ” attitude. I always tell my nutrition clients this: ”I can make anyone lose a lot of weight quickly, but you will neither enjoy it nor be able to sustain it. The sustainability factor is so important, because why do it otherwise? Would you go through all the ”dieting” and calorie counting if you knew you would not be able to hold on to it anyways?
Losing weight is easy, losing weight and sustaining it is much harder to do. This is caused by the way you decide to lose weight. If you decide to cut your calories in half, yes you will lose your first 5-10 kilos quite fast, but what happens afterwards? First of all your body won’t function and respond properly. Your body has been used to the number of calories you have given it for so long, therefore, it will act slower and less powerfully if you give it less. More importantly, there will come a point in time when you reach your goal and you start eating normally again. What do you think will happen then? Let me paint the picture for you:
Let’s say you weigh 80 kilos and eat 2100 calories a day, that means your bodyweight of 80 kilos is linked to that number of calories in relation to your activity level. Your goal is to weigh 65 kilos instead, so you decide to cut your calories in half. Great, the first 10 kilos come off in the first 6 weeks. The last 5 kilos are a struggle, so you decide to cut off another 200 calories, which means you’re eating about 800 calories at this point. After another 4 weeks (so 10 weeks later) you ”finally” get to your goal of 65 kilos. Awesome, what happens now? This is the point where 99% of the people who lose weight quickly go wrong. What happens afterwards? Your body has been running on your 800 calories for weeks now so it adjusted itself to that number, your body doesn’t burn any more than that. What do you do? Do you keep eating 800 calories for the rest of your life? No of course not, there’s no way your body sustains that over time, because you need more energy to be productive throughout the day. So, we start eating more calories. Let’s say we start eating 1500 calories, what happens with the 700 calories your body is not used to using anymore? It will store it as body fat.
We have come full circle here, so let me summarize this quickly. You’re trying to lose weight fast by cutting your calories to an unsustainable number. Your body adjusts quickly (because that is what the body does) and the weight drops off like water. When you reach your goal, you start eating more food again, your body doesn’t know what to do with the excess calories, so it stores it as fat, which means short/long-term weight gain (depending on how much you eat). This is how you end up back where you started in the first place.
Check back next Saturday to find out how to break this cycle, do better and how to sustain weight loss long-term.
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