I’m 4 1/2 pounds away from my goal weight…am currently in the middle of week 5 of the fast 800 diet. Although I’m not at my target yet, I’m starting to think about life after the 800cal restriction and I’m actually terrified. Is that normal? I’m scared because it’s been hard work to get to this point, and I don’t want to go back to how I was. What strategies should I use to try and increase the amount I eat without putting the weight back on? What has everybody else done? Is there a certain way of gradually increasing calories? Any advice would be appreciated…I get pretty hungry in the evenings on 800 calories so I’m looking forward to shedding that last few pounds and then getting to a maintenance phase…
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Hi, Mrs T! Maintenance is a bit unnerving for us all….In a broader sense, it’s a process of trial and
error for us all. Many of us believe in the process of “reverse dieting”, which consists of increasing
BSD friendly calories to 850 the first week, 900 the second week, and so on until you approach
your TDEE. There are plenty of online calculators to determine this, and are based on age, ht, wt.,
gender and daily energy expenditure. My experience was that I continued to lose another 8lbs ’til
I reached 1500 calories a day. This surprised me, because I thought I had long since damaged my
metabolism by years of yo-yo dieting. I increased carbs above 20g/day very slowly, and eventually
learned what my personal threshold was. We call this the “sweetspot” around here! There are plenty
of maintainers here to share our stories. You WILL find your way 🙂
Thanks Allie, the reverse dieting makes sense…and just gradually increasing by 50 calories sounds like a good way to do it. Better lose these final few pounds!
I too am convinced I’ve screwed my metabolism up with years of yo yo dieting, plus I’m very short as well and have never had much muscle at all…so I’m very nervous that I won’t be able to increase by much before putting on…but I guess we’ll see. Increasing carbs seems very scary too as being around the 20g per day seems to work well for me…if you find you’re starting to put on do you just try doing 5:2 to get back in control?
The 5:2 seems to be a strategy that some use, Mrs T. I’ve never tried it myself though. I can be so
easily pulled off track, and don’t really comprehend what “normal” eating would look like! I’ve just
found it easier over 14 months of maintenance to continue with the same basic plan. My body
recognizes 35g of carbs as my trigger point, and when I get careless, the scales let me know in no
uncertain terms, that that is the case! We all have the tools to bring it all back into alignment though,
so don’t worry 🙂
Thanks Allie xx
Hi, I understand how you feel about your fears for keeping the weight off long term, given the statistics on the number of people on a diet at any one time there must be lots of people who have gone through the yo yo dieting experiences in the past.
I think the best way forward to calm your fears is to gather more research into why this WoE works. Follow a number of links on the take a look at this thread into different sources of the latest research into how insulin controls fat stores.
Knowledge is power 🙂
Thanks JGwen! I’ll need to sit down properly one evening and go through some of the links on here xx
Thank you for this post, MrsT. What you say resonates with my own fears and feelings. And thank you for the replies Allie and JGwen. Gradually increasing by 50 cals seems a sensible way forward.
Hi Elle and Mrs T
It’s still early days for me in maintenance which is why I’m wary of offering any advice.
I did the 50 cals reverse dieting that Allie mentions and I’ve increased my carbs so I’m currently on 25g-27g carbs which seems to be OK for my bgls and weight seems OK (apart from my recent 4lbs holiday gain – but that’s already coming off).
I’ve done years of yo-yo dieting so like you I’ve been worried about this bit. Putting aside my diabetes, I think the key for me is in finding what cals/carbs levels work for me (still experimenting with that) and realising that this way of eating is for life – sounds so obvious but in the past I’d lose weight and think that was it – job done and take my eye off the ball. Now I’ve realised that’s just not how it works. How’s it taken me years to recognise that?
So, currently, I’m spending a lot of time putting effort into embedding those things that I’ve started on BSD e.g. walking, learning to cook a wider range of BSD-friendly foods etc that’ll help me stay with this new lifestyle and woe – and keep the weight off!
The 50 calories reverse dieting does seem sensible and I think that’s what I’ll do when I get there. Elle I’m glad it’s not just me that feels nervous! Marie thanks for the advice…that was exactly my mindset with previous diets – I’d finish them and then give into temptation because I didn’t have to be so strict and it was a slippery slope which each time has led to me putting on even more weight than before. Which is why I’m so nervous! I have to remember that this is for life now…each day has to follow the BSD principles..,there’s no “end” with this diet, it’s a new way of life and approaching food. Really do not want to screw this up!
I agree with the advice to gradually increase what you eat – and that it’s trial and error.
As you say, this is for life. You have to find what works for you, but you’ve got lots of time to do that. If you do have a bit of a wobble, don’t just give up – learn from it and adapt when/how/what you eat so the same thing doesn’t happen again.
Just remember that if you monitor your weight and size, you now have the tools to correct any gain.
That’s so interesting to read that people continue to lose weight once they add in more calories. How does that work? at the weekend I am doing the 800 a day, at the end of week three, at the weekend I had a piece of cheesecake, a little chocolate and a glass of wine. I put on .4kg! Went back to 800 a day, and after day two lost .7kg. I actually really enjoy the diet but would love a little more of chocolate, wine and the occasional pudding but without reversing all the good work and also getting my blood sugars and cholesterol to a good level and keeping them there. I only want to lose about a stone in total, so it’s slow but consistent loss for me.
Hmmmm, that’s the problem Chrissie, the choc, cheesecake and wine all over just a couple of days, added in lots of carbs as well as extra cals in a short period. In maintenance, the increase in carbs needs to be less than the increase in calories, so that the pounds don’t creep back.
However, it will be possible to have the occasional pud or glass of wine etc, as long as it doesn’t become the norm and if you do gain a few pounds, that you attend to them promptly with a couple of stringent days.
Most of the weight you gained at the weekend, will have been water, as the carbs will have hung on to it. Great that you have already resolved that and are back on track. Keep going, that last stone will soon be history!
It’s all very technical isn’t it… I didn’t realise that carbs need to be less than increase in calories, did I miss that in the book?
Nope don’t think so, but keeping control on the carbs is key. Unfortunately we can’t expect to just return to the carbie foods we used to eat and not see the same results. A case of ‘watch the carbs and the pounds will take care of themselves’ …. if you’ll excuse me twisting of an old saying!
Eat rye bread instead of other kinds of bread.
All grain are carb heavy, so best avoided.