The faster you lose weight and the more extreme the methods used to do so, the more likely you are to gain the weight back, and then some.
By the time most people decide to lose weight, they want it off, like, now.
That’s understandable. When we are uncomfortable in our bodies and no longer want to be overweight or unhealthy, we don’t want to wait for change.
But the truth is, you didn’t gain weight overnight and you can’t lose it overnight, either.
There are a multitude of reasons to lose the weight slowly. The first is that any means used that can’t be kept up over a long period of time won’t be effective.
For example, if you start working out twice a day and starving yourself, you will lose weight pretty fast.
But you probably can’t keep up that routine for very long. A few weeks, even maybe a few months, but certainly not years.
Once you burn out, you’re likely to swing hard in the other direction. You probably stop working out and start eating normally, or even more than you have before.
The weight comes back on, fast.
The other thing that happens when you diet really hard and work out a ton besides losing weight, is your body’s basal metabolic rate (BMR) changes. Think of your BMR like the amount of gas your car needs to get from one place to the other.
When your BMR slows, your body conserves energy, and expends less, even for things like exercise. So an activity that once caused you to burn, say, 500 calories, now only burns 250.
Yes, that’s for real.
What you now have is a body which burns fewer calories, during exercise and even at rest. That “car,” that used to need a gallon of gas to get somewhere is now more energy efficient, and uses only a half gallon to get to that same place.
Even though you might regain weight after an extreme diet, research shows your metabolic rate does not increase. You are now stuck with your lower calorie burn, but you weigh more and you’re eating more.
That’s why you gain weight back so quickly.
Now, in order to lose weight again, you have to work even harder, because your body won’t give it up that easily.
This is why the more extreme, yo-yo diets a person has done in their lifetime, the harder it is for that person to successfully lose weight.
If you have done an extreme starvation diet, lost weight and then regained it, you are going to have to go to even higher extremes to lose that same amount of weight the next time.
As tough as it can be to take things slow and be patient, it is worth it if that means the weight comes off once and stays off, don’t you think?
Would you rather lose 30 pounds in 30 days, but put 40 back on and struggle to lose it again or lose 30 pounds in 30 weeks and keep it off?
That seems like a no brainer, to me.
If you’re thinking about a diet and exercise program, ask yourself: “can I realistically see myself doing this consistently a year from now?”
If the answer is a resounding “no” then the method is too extreme.
Slow and steady truly wins the race when it comes to weight loss.