Hey Guys! With my latest monthly recap highlighting my current reverse diet I figured I would share my Top 10 Tips for Reverse Dieting.
#1: Trust the Process. I think everyone has the fear of “weight gain” when it comes to adding in more calories to your diet. In truth you may gain weight but most likely if you go slow and stick the plan it will be minimal and your health and happiness will thank you for not staying at low calories forever.
#2. The purpose of reverse dieting is NOT weight loss. Yes I have lost weight reversing and many people do but that is not the goal. The goal of reverse dieting is to restore your body to a healthy and sustainable maintenance calorie range with minimal fat gain so you can live a happy and healthy life.
#3. Listen to Your Body. I am on reverse diet #3 and each time I have approached it different. Reverse #1 I followed a strict 5gC/1gF addition per week, Reverse #2 I followed a strict 10gC/2gF addition per week, and Reverse #3 I varied it based on my hunger signals, weight gain/loss, training, work, etc. I have had the most success this last reverse diet and I think the majority of it is listening to what my body needs and giving it the fuel it needs for the workouts and not putting it into a severe caloric deficit.
#4. Add your Increases Pre and Post Workout. You body won’t notice those extra 30-100+ calories a lot of times if you use them for fuel and recovery. Additionally, it helps give you a better workout resulting in a better caloric burn and muscle, endurance, and strength growth.
#5. Eat more High Calories/Low Volume Foods. Sometimes when people are increasing they can get the bloated feeling from the extra carbs/calories. A good way to fix this is to start incorporating the high calorie/low volume treat foods i.e. bagels, english muffins, donuts, cereals, ice cream etc.
#6. Hire a Coach. If you don’t trust yourself to make objective decision regarding your progress, caloric needs, and training then hire a coach to help you through the process until you feel ready to take over on your own. I am currently coaching and of course I recommend KatiesFitScript as she is the one who introduced me to Flexible dieting and reversing 1.5 years ago.
#7. Comparison it the thief of Joy. Don’t compare your progress to someone else’s. Your goals, metabolism, training, daily activities, genetics are all DIFFERENT than the next person so focus on your own journey and becoming your best self. Just because one girl can eat 300gC and you can only eat 200gC and not gain weight does mean you are a failure it just means you are two different people.
#8. Practice Patience. Metabolism growth is not a linear process and it is also not a quick fix. It will most likely take multiple cut/reverse cycles to get you to your desired physique and/or caloric intake. This is ok and also fun to see you body adapt and change over time – it is what makes us humans. We are not meant to stay static but to grow in life and change. For example my first reverse I was 108 lbs at the end 200gC/145gP/50gF, second reverse I was 106 lbs at the end 275gC/145gP/65gF, and this time 8 weeks into my third reverse I am 102 lbs 320gC/145gP/68gF. As you can see my metabolism has changed over the past year and half through numerous cut/reverse cycles as well as changes in my training.
#9. Accept Change. Your caloric needs will change depending on your athletic goals and daily activities. For example right now I am training for an ironman that requires a lot of nutrition and calories which attests for good portion of my success of my third reverse diet. When ironman training comes to an end and I am recovering with way less training volume I will most likely have to cut calories/macros to adjust for my changes in training. This is ok. It is meant to change as I said before, we are constantly evolving and changing and accepting that is the first step in building the best you.
#10. Make it Fun. Who the heck doesn’t LOVE more food. Enjoy all the stuff you don’t have when dieting for an event/season. Enjoy the cakes, icecreams, alcoholic beverages, nights out with your friends/significant other, weddings, vacations, etc. Enjoy all the extra macros and calories and don’t still view it like you are on a diet. Reverse Dieting is the time to enjoy your macros and not be 100% exact all the time – you have more wiggle room as you are trying to make metabolism gains so use it to your advantage and enjoy life!
Here is a look at my current reverse diet (if you missed my last post)….
With Love and Reverse Dieting,
❤ Kindal (RunningWithStrength)