As a personal trainer in West Los Angeles, I always have to adapt to continue getting my clients results. I not only adapt my training style for each particular client, but also adapt based on how the client is adapting. Change is tough for everyone, and failure to do so can wreck a client’s progress.
If I recommend a nutritional strategy to a client, and it works, I’m damn sure it’s going to be a tough ride getting them to change their diet again. YOU WILL LOSE WEIGHT IF YOU GO INTO A CALORIC DEFICIT, but what happens when you’re down to 800 calories a day and doing cardio 4+ hours a week and still not losing weight? Drop down further? Don’t. They have a name for that disorder. It’s called anorexia athletica. I’ve seen people cut below 1,000 calories a day to lose weight, and once they couldn’t sustain that (no one can for a long period of time) they gained all the weight back and then some. This is especially prevalent in bodybuilders and physique competitors. I’ve also seen people maintain sub 1,000 calorie diets with 6+ hours of exercise a week and could not lose a single pound of weight or % in body fat. We must adapt our diets as our body adapts to them!
Are you married to diet ideas that have gotten you results? And then once you tried to get back on the same diet you didn’t have the same results? I’ve been there as have most people trying to change their body composition or enhance their performance.
Here are 5 reasons it’s CRUCIAL you adapt and change once you hit a plateau in your diet.
1. Your body adapts to your diet, which is why your diet needs to keep adapting to get you continued results. Your body doesn’t want to lose fat. In fact, once you hit a homeostasis your body is pretty comfortable where it is. Hormonal and metabolic shifts occur during long term diets in order to keep you at homestasis.
2. Long term diets can cause serious metabolic damage. Restrictions in macronutrients and/or calories will decrease metabolic processes such as:
- Decreased metabolic rate
- Increased energy efficiency (harder to burn energy)
- Increased hunger
- Decreased oxygen consumption
3. Adaptations in your body will occur during your diet to put you at an increased risk of regaining all the weight, and sometimes even more. These adaptations are:
- Decreased satiety signaling (you have no idea when you’re full)
- Decreased ability to dissipate excess fat
- Increased fat deposition
- Increased production of fat adipocytes (you have a set number of fat cells, but they can increase in size)
4. It’s unrealistic to sustain any type of diet. Don’t be that person on Thanksgiving dinner weighing out their meal portions to make sure they aren’t going over their calories, carbs, protein, and fat allowances for the day. Enjoy life! Enjoy food and family. But do it in a structured way.
5. You will never have the same results the second time you do a particular diet. It’s like getting sick. If you’ve already had the bug and built a resistance to it, it can’t make you sick again. We adapt!
You’re probably asking yourself, why should I diet at all then if I’m just going to regain it?
If you structure your transitions correctly and have periods where you’re trying to stay leaner than others, you can effectively stay in great shape year round. If you have any questions on how you can do this, I’d be more than happy to help you. You can either comment below or email me directly: Dylan@giltdesigngroup.com/dylan-import