Why Should I Reverse Diet?
There are many reasons and benefits from taking the time to reverse diet, but today I want to use a specific example that might resonate with a lot of you.
The client shown here came to me at a loss.
She ate healthy, clean, watched her portion control, and worked out regularly.
She obviously wasn’t in a bad position to start, but she felt that for as much effort and work she put into her fitness lifestyle, she should look more fit than what she did.
To put it simply, here’s what was going on:
She was consuming a very low calorie diet of around 1,200 calories a day for a very long period of time. Her metabolism had adapted to that low amount of calories + high amount of energy exertion through multiple workouts per week – so much that her current routine was only allowing her to maintain. Since her metabolic rate was maintaining at these levels, any time she let loose on the reins a bit or took a break while on vacation or just a short weekend get away, she witnessed unwanted weight gain.
She had reached a point where the only way she would have been able to lower her body fat percent at the point above (left) was if she lowered calories even more and increased activity even more, in which her schedule would not allow, and at that point it just didn’t seem worth it.
By going through the reverse dieting process, we were able to slowly raise her calories over time. She was one of the rare cases where she actually lost a bit of weight the first couple of months (roughly 10 lbs) and then maintained and fluctuated within 3lbs or so from there. *Note: everyone responds differently, however I have noticed a correlation with similar cases starting at a very low calorie amount. My hypothesis is when their calories are raised, their sleep quality improves, stress decreases, and their energy increases which allows them to have great energy expenditure both through normal daily tasks as well as workouts).
We did this process for 7 straight months. Though physical changes were minimal through that amount of time, there’s no denying her body composition improved PLUS her entire mindset and relationship with food changed for the better.
She no longer felt restricted or feared going out and indulging in moderation. Her daily energy and strength in the gym improved drastically, and she had an entirely new outlook on her new fitness lifestyle.
One of the biggest points I can’t leave out here is we took things slow and diligently enough that we were able to get her body to adapt to over 2,300 calories a day and minimal cardio. What’s so great about this is her body was at a point where it now actually had enough room to create a deficit and lose more body fat from. The higher your metabolic rate is (AKA the more calories your body can consume and maintain weight), the easier it will be to diet and actually see true progress.
Here’s her personal testimony:
“I started working with Dani over a year and a half ago. I had been doing another workout consistently for 5 years, was eating“clean” and while it worked for me for a while I had hit a plateau and started slowly gaining weight. I added more workouts in to try and counter it, and while it would work momentarily, if I would deviate from my diet any bit, I’d balloon out and immediately gain 5 lbs. It was a constant roller coaster. I started working with Dani averaging about 1,200 calories a day doing mostly cardio 3-4 x’s a week. Dani slowly started adding carbs and fat into my daily diet and before long I was up to over 2,000 calories a day, down 10 lbs and looking at food in a completely different way. I do minimal cardio and mostly weights now. I am stronger today than I have ever been, eating more than I ever thought was possible in order to be“lean” but most of all, my relationship with food is completely different. I don’t look at specific foods as“good” or“bad” but as options. I know that I need carbs and fat in order to grow muscle and be healthy. My nutrition is like a check book, I know what I need and if there are things I“want” I make sure it all balances out. I honestly couldn’t be happier with how much my life has changed with the help of Dani!”
Macros: 125p/85c/40f = 1,200 calories
End of Reverse Diet Stats (roughly 7 months long):
If you’d like more info on how to become a client and reverse diet with me, click here.