Back at it again with discussing reverse dieting! I receive DMs on Instagram quite often about exactly how to pursue reverse dieting, the quantity of calories one should eat, and exact weight gain, both in my case and on a general basis. As you most certainly know, this post will center around how much weight you will gain when reverse dieting!
- Please see Part 1 for my full experience on reverse dieting!
- Here is Part 2, which centers around my how-to’s and main tips!
- I also have a blog post comparing three different “food restoration” and “anti-diet” oriented ways of eating–specifically reverse dieting, intuitive eating, and all-in!
The truth is, and you won’t necessarily like this answer because it is broad, but you will gain as much weight as you please. The amount of pounds you will gain depends on multiple variables: how many calories you consume, how many calories you burn, and the variations in muscle mass and/or fat you gain. The weight you desire to gain depends on how much food you aim to consume comfortably without feeling restricted or deprived, how confident you feel in your appearance, how healthy you are (and feel), and how efficient your workouts are. This will vary on an individual level.
Some people need to reach a certain range where they can essentially never track calories and macros again. They can wake up every single day and go with the flow depending on what they feel like eating and what’s available. Even if they eat less on heavy exercise days and consume double the amount of food on rest days, it’s absolutely cool with them. Others just feel more confident if their body fat percentage remains a little lower and their muscle mass is higher, but this may entail a slightly more limited diet. They are okay with going to bed a little bit hungry or waking up in the morning with eating a lighter breakfast, or nothing at all. The physical and visual experience of being in a larger body derails them more heavily than passing on dessert. To them, it’s not worth it.
What a more flexible, lax array of food would look like!
Here’s a more health-conscious collection of food!
Like how I explained in my second reverse dieting post, take it slow. Be very transparent with yourself in how much weight you WANT to gain versus how much you may need to reach a certain body fat percentage that is healthy for you. Do you have lingering attachments of self-assurance to your body image? Are you okay with being a little bit more disciplined every day or would you rather be able to consume whatever you want unconditionally on a daily basis? Are there any mental barriers that you need to overcome that may mandate you reaching a weight that makes you feel uncomfortable? How is your relationship with food now and why do you consider reverse dieting in the first place? Worst comes to worst, you lose some of the weight you gain and take it slower.
I won’t disclose any numbers on this post pertaining to myself because it can be triggering and doing so will give a false ballpark of what may be taken as a standard when it isn’t, but I will say, I did gain a certain amount of weight that I thought wouldn’t flatter me at ALL and couldn’t bear to live with, but this is one of the only times I am grateful to have been proven wrong! Personally, I think I look pretty decent. If you believe otherwise, then, good for you, I guess?
Hope this helps with more information on reverse dieting!