Here's the deal, I'm going to give you a method to lose 25lbs by New Years Eve.
In the next 60 days you'll have a new body for the new year. Just in time to rock that little black dress at that New Years Eve party. Your friends will be amazed. Instead of packing on the holiday weight, you'll have dropped a few pants sizes! Of course, losing 25 pounds is never easy. But when you see the QUICK results, it'll be worth it.
So here's the jest on how you're gonna do it.
There are 3500 hundred calories in one pound. With the goal to lose 25lbs in 60 days, that would be about a pound every two days. So if we do the math and divide 3500/2 we are looking at a deficit of around 1700 calories per day. So now your question probably is how am I going to subtract 1700 calories from my diet each day?
It's simple. If you run a mile, the average person burns approximately 100 calories. So in order to burn 1700 calories, all you have to do is run 17 miles a day. Of course, this is assuming you don't negate the calories burned by eating more. To keep this in check, you will not want to eat above the amount of calories our bodies need to function. This number is called the basal metabolic rate. For most people, this number is between 1200-1500 calories. Eating more than this baseline will replace the calories running, therefore making running pointless.
To make is simple, all you have to do is eat about 1300 calories/ day and run 17 miles everyday. If you do this the pounds will drop off!
If you're an ultramarathoner eating just chia seeds and carrots everyday. then your answer was probably yes. If that's not you than I'm going to go out on a limb and assume your answer is a firm no.
Running 17 miles everyday would not only be awful, but with the amount of calories you are allowed to consume you'd be starving. Any method that severely depletes you via either exercise or diet is miserable on both our body and mind.
Which brings me to the point of the article. Excessive restricting, cleanses, and fad dieting doesn't make sense. Even if our bodies worked perfectly for the calories in/ calories out equation to work, then you would have to both exercise and restrict very excessively to lose a substantial amount of weight.
Many of us want to believe in the authenticity of such extreme diets. We get distracted from reliable methods and fall for the "bright, shiny object syndrome". Seeing social icons on magazines proclaim they had FAST results and models posing off their new bodies on on Instagram, makes us curious. We know we have to eat right and exercise to get a fitter body..but what if the quicker method actually works? We live in an era of instant gratification. Most things we want we get instantly. Why can't it be the same with our bodies?
There is some truth to ads that promise quick weight loss. Most fad diets do work initially. By that I mean you will drop weight and probably even fit in a smaller pant size. But we have to look at where that weight is coming from before we get too excited. The math I did above assumes our body is linear in how it reacts to stress. The idea is if you put an excessive amount of physical stress and/or caloric deficit on yourself then your body will respond. It will drop weight because it doesn't have energy coming in so it must steal it from stored fat.
Unfortunately, this is not quite the case. There is a bit more going on when we lose weight during a fad diet. Almost all FAD diets are in some form cutting carbs. The Aktins, Keto, HCG,.. the run 17 miles everyday diet.. all of those will be depleting your carb stores. When you lose carbs, water follows, One gram of carb holds 2.7 grams of water. Cutting carbs and depleting our glycogen stores will help you lose a lot of water weight but not necessarily fat weight.
Metabolism is complex, and it doesn't function well when overly stressed. Our bodies will not lose 25lbs of fat so easily. It prefers to be tricked into losing fat. This does not happen through large drastic changes, but through small changes over time. Our bodies may lose some fat along with with the large amounts of stored carbs and water, but it does it grudgingly.
Our body is fond of homeostasis. Large changes in calories and physical exertion directly disrupt this. Hormones start going on overdrive to keep the body functioning since available energy is low. Our metabolism doesn't like to work that hard, all it wants is equilibrium and it will fight even harder in the future to maintain balance after a FAD diet. In essence, our metabolism likes to hold a grudge for the stress you caused it. So it will adapt to the lower level of calories by slowing down. What this means for you is it'll become even harder to lose weight. When you start giving your body more food (or stop running 17 miles everyday) , your body will store the excess food as fat because it has adapted to the starvation diet.
But it is possible to get your metabolism running in your favor again. You will have to be patient. It takes time to convince your metabolism to work with you again. You'll have to accept the notion that extremes in your diet and activity don't align with a healthy metabolism.. It takes small changes, whether you are adding calories back immediately after a fad diet, or you are later decreasing calories to once again lose weight.
So how do you do it the right way? The way that keeps your metabolism happy and your weight decreasing?
First. avoid fad diets.
Below are 5 things to look out for because they scream a diet is not healthy!
1. The diet requires you to eliminate certain food groups. Unless it is medically necessarily, cutting our entire food groups like carbs are fat will only deplete proper nutrients and vitamins that our body needs to function.
2. The diet is drastically different than how you normally eat. When you have to completely overhaul your natural diet, you are much more likely to get frustrated and cheat.
3. The diet promises fast and east weight loss. Losing weight takes time, if the basis of an ad is to sell you on the quick and easy results then it is not reliable. Instead, focusing on losing .5% of your body fat each week, this will much more reliable and way healthier.
4. The diet requires you to buy specific pills and powders. Any diet that doesn't emphasize whole foods doesn't make sense physiologically. Our bodies should only be taking in pills prescribed by doctors, we shouldn't be living off diet products made in a lab.
5. The diet's only source of credibility comes from big names on social media. Just because a diet is advertised by Hollywood stars on Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, etc..doesn't mean it's scientifically sound. Do your research by checking if the diet has multiple scientific studies to back up its claim.
If you're avoiding all diets that align with the 5 above statements than you're already off to a great start on your weight loss plan. Here are some more tips to lose the weight in a healthy way:
-Eat a balanced diet. Rather than worrying about a food being good or bad, make sure you are getting micronutrients and macronutrients through a whole foods such as fruits, veggies, lean meat, whole grains, and healthy fats.
-Restrict calories safely. In order to lose fat, you have to cut calories. The key is to restrict just enough so you lose the weight but don't stress out your metabolism. Usually 300-500 calories per day is ideal.
-Get moderate exercise. Exercise is a great not only for burning extra calories but it also helps build/maintain lean muscle mass. A combination of strength training and cardio usually is ideal. Make sure to start off on a exercise routine that fits your current fitness level.
-Reduce stress. Too much stress in any form tells our body to release the hormone cortisol which in turn stores fat. Try to minimize unnecessary stress in your life and find ways to relax everyday. This could mean listening to your favorite music, going for a walk with a friend, taking a lavender-infused epsom salt bath, or even just spending 10 minutes everyday to pray/meditate.
While I can't promise you that you'll lose 25lbs by New Years with the above strategies, I can say that losing weight the healthy way will set your up for success the rest of your life. The best thing you can do for yourself is strive for a healthy lifestyle rather than a quick fix. Not only will it help you keep the weight off for good, but it will also help you enjoy your life.. No more worrying about what you just ate or how much you did or didn't exercise. It's time to stop falling for the fad diets. Instead, fall for the boring method that has been proven to work time and time again.