Metabolism Reset - eat more (for a while)

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rjenkins27

Joined: Jan 10
Posts: 830

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 09:14
I've been researching the effects of calorie restrictions on the efficiency metabolic processes.

We have all heard that if you don't eat enough, the body will go into "starvation mode" and it is detrimental to long-term weight loss and overall health.

Here is a good link that references several studies on this subject:

http://www.burnthefatblog.com/archives/2007/11/is_starvation_mode_a_myth_no_i.php

I wish I would have known this when I first started a concerted effort to lose weight. Rather than continuing to reduce calories to get the desired weight loss, I think I would have focused more on keeping my metabolism in top form while also losing weight.

I would have done this by exercising - both cardio and strength training (which I did - goal of a measly 4 hours per week with 80% success), and I would have reset my metabolism periodically.

By reset, I would have done the following:

1. Get 1000 calorie deficit per day to lose 2 pounds of fat per week.

2. After losing 5% of starting weight, increase calories to have no deficit for 2 weeks (modify calories as need to not increase weight by any more than 1%)

3. Go back to 1000 calorie deficit until 5% is lost again.

4. Wash, Rinse, Repeat.

If this worked, not only would it keep the metabolism in better shape as we lost weight, but it would also serve to provide several opportunities to practice maintenance.

This is akin to russellb97's Spike Diet, but rather than one day of caloric spike, it would be a planned 2 week maintenance level based on achieving a significant loss (5% of total body weight). Once goal is achieved, maintenance should be an easy transition.

Any thoughts on this? If anyone tries this, please know that while I've played doctor in my youth, I am certainly not a health professional and this is all theoretical.

*note - one of the studies in the link above reported the following:

“Resting metabolic rate of our obese subjects remained depressed after massive weight loss despite increased caloric consumption to a level that allowed body weight stabilization.”

Depending on the study variables, this could make my theory invalid.

I work for the Department of Redundancy Department
Naiomy

Joined: May 10
Posts: 244

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 09:38
rjenkins27 wrote:
If anyone tries this, please know that while I've played doctor in my youth, I am certainly not a health professional and this is all theoretical.


hilarious..lol... sounds like a really good idea... and keeping ur metabolism strong makes so much sense. I hear a lot about "spiking" that i feel there has to be a lot of truth to this.. as long as you are moderating yourself.
enu021000

Joined: Apr 10
Posts: 162

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 09:51
You know this also work with exercise.
- Elizabeth
"Living a healthy lifestyle will only deprive you of poor health, lethargy, and fat." -Jill Johnson
k8yk

Joined: Jan 09
Posts: 4,546

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 10:49
Can you 'feel' your metabolism speeding up? Because since I got to my goal weight a few weeks ago, I upped my calories from an average of 1500 to an average of 1900. My weight has stayed the same, but I feel FULL of energy! I feel like I can give it a lot more effort at the gym and I feel TWICE as strong when lifting! It's really kind of crazy! Nothing else has changed except the added calories. I think my diet was quite moderate, but I averaged 1200-1500 calories a day for about a year. I wonder what that did to my metabolism? Either way, if I had thought raising my calories for a few weeks would give me all this energy, I would have done it for sure! I do still want to lose maybe 5-10 more pounds of fat, but I think I'll stick with this level of calories for awhile at this point. I think it will help me build muscle.

It's all very vague though, just trial and error!
My blog, This is not a Diet:
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melmi20

Joined: Sep 08
Posts: 149

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 11:00
I've kinda inadvertently placed myself in this type of "metabolism reset" experiment. I've been eating way off what I should've been for the past two months (as I said, it wasn't planned)...it's just that I wasn't focused. As a result, I gained about 24lbs (up to 313 from 289)...awful I know.

But, now that I am back to being focused and making better decisions (as of Mon), I've set a goal to lose 4lbs this week and I've already achieved it through eating below 1600 and exercising. Now, I'm sure most of it is water, but I'm curious to see how this next month of weight loss will go with my "no-focus break." Will my average weight loss per month increase because according to my body, I'm "starting over?" It will be interesting to see. Either way, getting back to being focused is a good thing and I'd be happy about any loss.
Melissa <><
"...He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."
Philippians 1:6
"You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world."
1 John 4:4
russellb97

Joined: Mar 10
Posts: 524

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 12:55
The "Biology of Human Starvation" is what I read after I had 2 successful weeks of spiking and losing weight. This was after I had about a 3 week plateau.

It just makes so much sense when you realize why we store fat in the first place and know that the main purpose of our brain and any animal brain is survival.
I am 100% sure that plan would work, I know from my personal experience that one day of a small surplus (2X BMR)gets you out of starvation mode, which literally can kick in within a few days. It's a gradual decline my guess after 24-48 hours. It's not really serious until you hit 3-4 weeks. I base this off of personal experience when I used to start hitting the weight loss plateau.

To answer Kate's question, I absolutely have more energy the day after my spike and I feel it slow down over the week that typically coincides with my cravings coming back. The reason why is the hormone leptin.

When I have clients who are obviously in a bad state of "starvation" I tell them to take a full week off from cardio and eat at least their maintenance amount or whenever they are hungry. This seems to get them back to square one with their metabolism.

Right now I am having 2 spike days a week and I am still burning fat and losing an average of a pound a week.

Metabolism is the real key to losing weight because metabolism is really what will burn the fat, exercise burns calories and helps create the deficit but fat is mainly used while we are resting.
The Spike Diet is available on Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Spike-Diet-Russell-Branjord/dp/0615328768

Free Weight Loss Guide on Spiking Metabolism:
http://www.spike84.com/

"I Spike!"

Naiomy

Joined: May 10
Posts: 244

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 13:32
the theory makes sense.. i just wish i knew how to attempt it. how many would i jump up to.. how many times a week? currently i'm at around 1300 a day.. and on weekends i allow for more lax eating, while still generally making better choices. or better known as "cheat" days. i'd like it to be better controlled.. ?
russellb97

Joined: Mar 10
Posts: 524

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 13:55
Hey Naiomy,

Doubling your RMR or BMR for one day would pretty much guarantee a surplus as long as you don't spend the day exercising. It doesn't have to be junk food, it's just easier to eat more calories and also more fun with foods like pizza and ice cream.

I know from trials my metabolism is the same now at 208lbs as it was at 330lbs. I have never dropped my calories goals from when I started. To me this proof that one surplus keeps you out of starvation mode and also makes it easier to build and retain lean body mass while losing weight.
The Spike Diet is available on Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Spike-Diet-Russell-Branjord/dp/0615328768

Free Weight Loss Guide on Spiking Metabolism:
http://www.spike84.com/

"I Spike!"

Naiomy

Joined: May 10
Posts: 244

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 14:01
Hey Russell, thanks for taking a few to give me some pointers... so based on ur BMR calculator (haha).. i have a bmr of about 1524 i think?... so what if instead of one day doing like 3K, i go from my 1400 to like 2200 in two days then back to normal.. would that NOT work? or is that not how it should work?
rjenkins27

Joined: Jan 10
Posts: 830

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 14:02
If a once-a-week spike works, it stands to reason that a 2 week non-deficit would work as well. The added benefit is the preparation for maintenance.

I work for the Department of Redundancy Department
carolynkatey...

Joined: Feb 10
Posts: 8

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 14:07
Hi russellb97, so i want to make sure i'm getting this correctly. You would surplus 1 or 2 days out of the week, every week? That sounds awesome.
russellb97

Joined: Mar 10
Posts: 524

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 14:19
Naiomy wrote:
Hey Russell, thanks for taking a few to give me some pointers... so based on ur BMR calculator (haha).. i have a bmr of about 1524 i think?... so what if instead of one day doing like 3K, i go from my 1400 to like 2200 in two days then back to normal.. would that NOT work? or is that not how it should work?


Possibly, as long as through activities & exercise you don't burn more than 2,200 calories. The hormone leptin is in our fat cells so it stands to reason it's the use of fat as energy that signals the brain that we are starving and having a day where fat isn't used let's it know we are not starving and go back to normal.

I like the one day spike because that allows 6 other days where we will burn fat for energy.

As rjenkins said I do think a 2 week maintenance would work too. Having one every week makes it easier for me to stick to the diet for the other 6 days and personally I think it would be difficult to go from having 2 weeks of higher calories back down to the lower amount. For others they may not have that issue. The fact that it stops our metabolism from declining is the most important part.
The Spike Diet is available on Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Spike-Diet-Russell-Branjord/dp/0615328768

Free Weight Loss Guide on Spiking Metabolism:
http://www.spike84.com/

"I Spike!"

russellb97

Joined: Mar 10
Posts: 524

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 14:22
As to above, I'd rather you just go for one day of 3,000 calories, you will have a surplus, you will re-store glycogen and ready to rock it for the next week.

I have 2 days a week because I hit my goal and I'm experimenting, once you hit your goal weight you should be able to make it a lifestyle where you eat lower and cleaner during the week and then take the weekends off and maintain your weight-loss.
The Spike Diet is available on Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Spike-Diet-Russell-Branjord/dp/0615328768

Free Weight Loss Guide on Spiking Metabolism:
http://www.spike84.com/

"I Spike!"

Naiomy

Joined: May 10
Posts: 244

      quote  
Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 14:36
ahhhhh.. i see... and yeah even though sat and sun are usually my "relaxed" days.. saturdays usually consist of me walking a TON and exercise.. so i guess i could pick one day out of the two and instead of being more relaxed, really allow for a full day of rest .. hmm.. thank you so much!
russellb97

Joined: Mar 10
Posts: 524

      quote  
Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 14:39
Naiomy wrote:
ahhhhh.. i see... and yeah even though sat and sun are usually my "relaxed" days.. saturdays usually consist of me walking a TON and exercise.. so i guess i could pick one day out of the two and instead of being more relaxed, really allow for a full day of rest .. hmm.. thank you so much!


Anytime Naiomy Very Happy
The Spike Diet is available on Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Spike-Diet-Russell-Branjord/dp/0615328768

Free Weight Loss Guide on Spiking Metabolism:
http://www.spike84.com/

"I Spike!"

kstubblefiel...

Joined: May 10
Posts: 1,400

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 15:22
Great topic rjenkins, & thanks russellb for sharing your experience! I've been curious about spike days/refeeds so it's really good info. Personally I can't imagine doing it for 2 whole weeks because I would have a hard time going back to lower calories. But it's great to know that 1 spike day is effective. I have not yet hit the dreaded plateau, but if I do I will definitely use this technique.

Kat | NO EXCUSES, JUST RESULTS | Next milestone - 256: 60 lbs lost
2013: still up from 1/1, but coming back down...
2010: 50.4 lbs lost | 2011:17 lbs lost | 2012: 1 lb gained
How I did it: http://stubbysticks.wordpress.com/weight-loss-summary-by-month/
russellb97

Joined: Mar 10
Posts: 524

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 15:31
We are creatures of habit, and personally I find it very easy to "diet" during the week because I am so used to it. If I had 2 weeks off and would be far out of my habit.

With my one day off, I am out of habit for that spike day and this may be one reason why it is so easy to go back to my "normal diet" after my spike day even though it was so much fun Smile
The Spike Diet is available on Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Spike-Diet-Russell-Branjord/dp/0615328768

Free Weight Loss Guide on Spiking Metabolism:
http://www.spike84.com/

"I Spike!"

tgilland

Joined: Apr 10
Posts: 3

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 15:32
There used to be a sort of unauthorized variant of Weight Watchers called "The Wendie Plan" that pretty much had us eating at the low end of the recommended range five or six days of the week and then at the high end the other one or two days. I knew people who swore by it. I pretty much do one or two high days naturally just because it's harder for me to stick to my calorie goals on the weekend. This past weekend I went WAY over on Sunday and unless something goes horribly awry I'll have a three pound loss come Friday's weigh in. I certainly don't think I can go as over as I did this week once every week but I woudln't be surprised if that kick started my metaboloism a bit.
rjenkins27

Joined: Jan 10
Posts: 830

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 15:47
Matt55 wrote:
I had thought this also. It would have been tough for me to return after even a week of "more" calories.


I would have found it easy to go from a deficit to level calories if I had gone into my weight loss plan with this in mind.

The biggest benefit would be the ease of going into maintenance mode and being able to eat more calories because of the higher metabolism.

I work for the Department of Redundancy Department
TheChunkyOne

Joined: Apr 10
Posts: 247

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Posted: 25 Aug 2010, 16:34
So just to get this straight, you have to eat double your BMR for this to work?
Weekends for me usually end up right at maintenance or a tad above, but i always have a defecit during the week and i've been stalled out for almost 2 months now. I'd really like to test this theory out, but i wanna make sure i have it right before i go scarfing down a large pizza LOL



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