With the warmer weather creeping in ... there's no doubt you're thinking about summertime.
You get to say goodbye to the cold and hello to pool season, barbecues ... and everything else that this time of year brings with it.
This time of year also creates a lot more motivation when it comes to your fitness.
We know what it's like to not want to take your shirt off at the pool, wear those short-shorts, and avoid warm weather events ... all because you don't like the way you look.
We know you'll do anything to make sure that's not the case ... including jumping into a diet and trying to lose weight as fast as you possibly can.
There's no harm in setting summertime fat loss goals. In fact, we encourage it.
But ... problems come about when you try to go after those goals faster than you should.
This article will explain why losing weight fast is never the answer ... and what you should be doing to see long-term, sustainable weight loss results.
Your Metabolism and Weight Loss
To keep it simple … think of your metabolism as all the reactions that occur within your body to turn food into energy.
This makes your metabolism a very important factor when it comes to gaining ... and losing weight.
A common misconception when it comes to weight loss is that by losing weight … you're speeding up your metabolism.
When in fact, it’s the exact opposite.
By eating less, you're actually slowing your metabolism down.
Think about it like this…
Food is energy.
You’re giving your body less energy when you diet.
What happens in this situation is every process in your body will start to slow down. This happens to compensate for the lack of energy.
When feeding your body more food … every process will speed up. This is because your body has the energy to do so.
You can also think of your metabolism like a fire ... and food like the logs you'd throw on the fire. If you add logs, your fire grows. If you take logs away ... that fire will slowly start to go out.
This is a very simplified version of how this works, but an easy way to understand how food plays a role in your metabolism.
What Happens When You Lose Too Fast?
The rate at which you lose weight has a very strong effect on your metabolism.
When you drop calories too quickly, your body adapts ... and it does so by slowing down your metabolism very quickly as well. Much quicker than it should. This is what creates a weight loss plateau.
It's simply a survival instinct used by your body to conserve energy when it isn't getting enough.
What usually happens next is you drop your calories down again ... and you'll lose weight, but your metabolism will continue to slow down. You'll get to a point where you simply aren't eating enough food to function properly and feel good.
It's common to see this cycle continue for years. You'll lose a little, but then gain it right back because you simply can't keep dropping your calories at that rate. The longer this cycle continues ... that harder it can be to fix.
This is what keeps you from getting consistent, long-term weight loss results.
Avoiding a Weight Loss Plateau
Plateaus are part of the weight loss journey … and they will happen regardless of what you do.
What you can do is control the rate at which they occur.
The number 1 best way to do this is to lose weight slowly.
Slow weight loss will ensure your metabolism doesn’t adjust quickly and stall your progress. You'll also feel better, have more energy, and be able to eat more food ... while still losing weight.
It’s that simple.
Make sure you have a plan that is set up for slow and consistent progress.
How Fast Should You Lose Weight?
You now understand that weight loss should be slow and steady. This will help you avoid any issues with your metabolism.
So … you’re probably wondering how fast weight loss should occur?
Always note that everyone is different. If you have a little more to lose … weight loss will tend to start out a little faster for you.
There is no set answer for everyone … but there are some healthy recommendations.
Generally, 1-2 pounds per week on average is considered very healthy weight loss.
If you have a little more to lose, 3-4 pounds per week can be considered healthy weight loss as well.
This will keep your metabolism from adjusting to your diet … and help you avoid plateaus.
This may not sound like much progress each week … but this compounds overtime.
Slowly but surely, you will get to where you want to be…
…and that’s exactly how weight loss should work.
You should also note that in most cases, the slower it comes off ... the more likely it is to stay off.
With warm weather on its way … it can be hard not to dive into a restrictive fitness plan to help you look your best for all your summertime events.
Remember that the slower you take your weight loss journey, the less likely you are to hit roadblocks ... and continue to see results.
Shoot for 1-2 pounds per week on average, and 3-4 pounds if you have a little more to lose.
Slow and steady always wins the weight loss race.
There’s plenty of time until summer … and we’re happy to make sure you have a plan that gets you to where you want to be.
Stop into your nearest Supplement Superstores location ... and we’ll make sure you’re confident in how you look at the pool this year.
*This post was written by Andrew Lynn, who has a Bachelor's of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics. He is also a NASM Certified Personal Trainer and NASM Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist.