You've been working really hard the past week, walking every day, doing your workouts, watching what you eat and making sure you're in a deficit. You feel good and confident.
Friday rolls around and you've designated it as your weigh in day. You take everything off and hop on the scale to see where you're at and the fruits of your labor.
The number rolls and bumps around, until it stops. 2 pound loss. You think, OUCH what the heck! I thought I would AT LEAST be down 5 pounds and ugh!!! It just didn't happen. You immediately start to think back through your week, did I forget to track something? Did I have too many green beans the other day? Why isn't this happening?
I've got to stop you right there! I hear and see things just like this every day from new clients in prespective clients in the NWE facebook group and in other social media channels.
Weight loss is supposed to be slow. Think about it: our bodies DON'T like to be in a deficit. They don't like having to make changes and dig into stored energy. We can definitely survive in a slight deficit, 300-400 calories, BUT, if we are in MAJOR deficits, that causes big things to change in the body. Suddenly, it's got to free up every carb store in your muscles along with the water with it to use that for energy. It makes it look like there's a huge loss when those stores are being used, but as soon as you start eating more, the weight will come right back on because water will be stored again with the carbs you eat.
A slow, weight loss makes your body adjust less to the changes than if you suddenly cut out 800 calories. It's like your body has mission control all of the sudden, power is cut off and every worker has it figure out how to keep going without some of the power it's used to getting. They'll work in a deficit for a little bit, BUT, those little workers (your body and the cells) will figure out how to get back into homeostasis as fast as it can.
Losing more than 1-2 pounds a week may also mean that you're losing muscle and not fat. Muscle, or stored protein, is a lot easier for the body to breakdown and use for energy than fat is as fat requires more energy to use. When you're in a smaller deficit, it's easier for your body to dig in and use fat stores because there's not as much chaos feeling happening in your body.
If we want our weight loss to be sustainable, we have to be okay with it being slow. It's not glamorous nor do you hear many people bragging that they last 4 pounds one month compared to the people believing they just lost 16 pounds from keto. However, your 4 pound loss in 1 month is a hell of a lot more sustainable and less likely to come back than the people who cut everything out and realize they are starving or can't sustain their diets.
What are your thoughts?