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Reverse Dieting – Post Weight Loss & Plateau

Reverse Dieting

Reverse Dieting - The Post Weight Loss Diet Pinterest

Reverse Dieting?

Like many people, myself included, you’ve probably been searching for different diet and fitness solutions for a long time – I completely understand. I’ve been there sister, trying to lose the same damn 10 pounds over and over again? Talk about frustrating! Bursts of high-intensity exercise, followed by crazy restricted fad diets, swiftly followed by a “F!#$ this! SOMEONE JUST GIVE ME A DONUT!”

There is only so much self-deprivation one can take, and eventually, you break and end up right back where you began. It’s a perpetual never-ending negative dieting cycle and one I hope to help you break.

The problem with most diet programs (one of the problems) is not the weight loss part. Most programs, when followed diligently, are very successful at the task of weight loss.

The issue is that many programs do not address how to specifically ease off a diet (reverse dieting). Even if they do, they may not have emphasized how vital this important step is.

Quite possibly though, you may have just been anxious to eat normally again and skipped this part of the process. After all, it’s likely that nobody made it clear to you just how important this is.

For others, too afraid of regaining their weight back, they unfortunately never broke free of their diet and are now stuck on a permanent low-calorie diet just to be able to maintain their weight.

Enough. It’s time to end your perpetual diet!!

Are you ready for this never-ending dieting cycle to end? Here is what you need to know.

Diet Mode

Girl Eating and Drinking Supplements - Diet Mode

When you follow a diet – you restrict your caloric intake. The responsible caloric restriction should be no more than a 20% deficit. BUT – since many people want quick results, diet programs will often have people restricting at a 25% to even a 50% deficit.  While this may yield quick results, and you’ll likely praise the success of that program – this is likely going to be devastating to your metabolism.

The way most diet programs work is that you consume fewer calories then you expend. This, therefore, leaves you in a caloric deficit and, TA-DA! BOOM – you lose weight! The thing is, your body is pretty quick to outsmart your deficits. It’s VERY good at self-preservation and it can quickly adapt to your efforts. For many people, despite diligence, weight loss eventually slows down. For some people who have been dieting for too long, weight loss can stop entirely – The weight loss plateau.

What’s happening is that your body is starting to adapt to your new lower caloric intake. Day to day tasks such as watching tv, driving, blinking, and doing the dishes, now use less energy (calories) to perform those tasks. This means that your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) is lowering. You are essentially slowing down your metabolism. Whether you know the specifics about metabolism or not, you know that a faster metabolism is better than a slower one.

Once you go off your diet, you are in RED ALERT when it comes to weight gain due to your slowed-down metabolism. This crossroad may be the most crucial part of your diet as this is what will make or break your long-term success. If you simply just go back to “normal” eating without structure, you will likely gain back what you lost and then some. The thing is – you’re not done dieting yet. What you now need now is the structure of  “Reverse Dieting” to help you get back to a normal and sustainable healthy daily amount of calories.

Be sure to use our calorie calculator to figure out how many calories you need to maintain your weight.

My Diet Plan - Reverse Diet

Reverse Dieting Schedule

Q: How did you get to be eating just 1500 calories per day in your diet?

A: By subtracting calories out of your diet.


So, reverse dieting (like the name implies) is simply adding those calories back in – BUT, you need to do so gradually so that your body has time to adapt. As we said before– your body is pretty smart at adapting, but if you quickly jump from 1500 to 2000 calories, you’ll be at a higher risk to regain those lost pounds. Your metabolism is a bit slow from the perpetual dieting, so you need to take your time adding these calories back in.

Yes,  this will be an exercise of PATIENCE, and there is still work to be had, but it’s a worthwhile step to get your metabolism back up to speed.

Let’s use the example if you were dieting at 1500 calories per day.

Now that you’ve reached your goal, you want to ease your way back up to a speedy metabolism of 2000 Calories per day. This should take you an additional 4-6 weeks to get there.

Reverse Dieting Schedule Example

Week by Week Examples

Week 1

  • Continue to exercise 3-5x a week. Exercise should never be a “temporary” aspect of your life.
  • Add in 150 Calories per day = 1650 calories per day.
  • Continue to exercise portion control and track caloric intake.

Week 2

  • Continue to exercise 3-5x a week. Remember that lean muscle mass makes for a faster metabolism so don’t skip out on the weights.
  • Add in another 150 Calories per day = 1800 calories per day.
  • Continue to exercise portion control and track caloric intake.

Week 3

Option to just chill out at 1800 calories this week, or if you’re comfortable and your weight is steady, keep climbing

  • Continue to exercise 3-5x a week.
  • Add in another 150 Calories per day = 1950 calories per day.
  • Continue to exercise portion control and track caloric intake.

Week 4

Option to just chill out at 1950 calories this week, or if you’re comfortable and your weight is steady, keep climbing

  • Continue to exercise 3-5x a week.
  • Add in another 50 Calories per day = 2000 calories per day.
  • Continue to exercise portion control and track caloric intake.

Week 5

  • Continue to exercise 3-5x a week.
  • Continue to eat 2000 calories per day.
  • Spend time learning your new portion sizes
  • Continue to track caloric intake
  • Don’t forget everything that you learned

Week 6 +

  • Continue to exercise 3-5x a week.
  • Continue to eat 2000 calories per day.
  • Don’t forget everything that you learned
  • Ease off tracking and try to eyeball things
  • Indulgence responsibly
  • If you see your weight go up by 3-5 pounds. Repeat a dieting cycle. This should only take a few weeks of “dieting” and then once again be patient and finish with a Reverse diet.

It’s not often in life that you don’t have regular weight fluctuations. It’s completely normal and it’s important not to be hard on yourself when it does happen. Be patient and don’t be quick to jump on board with anything promising of quick results as you now know that the results will be fleeting. Don’t be AFRAID of food. You CAN eat more again and not regain all the lost weight.

Exercise some trust with this process but remember you can take as much time as you need to feel comfortable easing off. You could even just add in 50 calories extra each week – while it may take you 10 weeks to get up to another 500 calories per day, you may feel more comfortable reversing this way. There is no one set way to reverse diet. The key point though is to gradually ease off of a diet, remembering that it may be the most crucial step towards long-lasting weight loss results.

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