Metabolic Crash: Has This Happened To You?
Metabolic crashing is something very common that occurs with anybody trying to lose weight including fitness competitors. It happens so often that it has become the norm and even accepted within the fitness industry. The truth is that it is not acceptable, trainers “gurus” and “experts” are ruining people’s lives and health for a trophy or a competition, or to drop a few pounds. Anybody can lose weight, but are you doing it the healthy way? Are you jeopardizing your health? Find out if this has happened to you or is happening to you, and how you can fix it and reverse the effects of it.
Somewhere along the lines, it has become the norm to diet in a certain manner. Its simple right, eat less calories then you are burning and you will lose weight. This is true, however any good coach will know that there are many other important factors then just the amount of calories in vs. the amount of calories out. Your metabolic health is extremely important, especially for fat loss, I mean why wouldn’t you want to burn more fat without starving yourself and overkilling the cardio? Essentially that is exactly what is happening, people are falling into this vicious cycle of losing a few pounds on a low calorie diet while doing 2 hours of cardio a day.
Now to explain it further. Lets assume these bikini girls are consuming such a low calorie diet (1000 calories or so) and are doing 2 hours of cardio a day and working out. Between the 2 hours of cardio and the workout they surely are burning more then 1000 calories, and at first they may see a drop in bodyweight, and then they will plateau. What is the first thing they would do? Drop more calories and do more cardio, and again now you are eating 800 calories a day and doing 2.5 hours of cardio, then for a week you lose weight then plateau once again. Do you see the trend here; you are driving your metabolism right into the ground. If you are on such a low calorie diet and you are expending that many calories there is no reason why you are not dropping body fat really unless you have messed up your metabolism.
Now on the flip side, why not work your metabolism to your advantage? Why not allow your metabolism to do the fat burning for you. Your BMR determine the amount of calories you burn while resting, the healthier your metabolism, the more calories you will burn while resting. So why not use that to your advantage? Read that sentence a few more times to really let it sink in!
Here is a method to use. First of all, start your diet much sooner, DO NOT crash course diet, like anything else in life if you go too fast you will crash. Much like landing an airplane or driving a car, the slower you go the safer you will be. By adding a few more weeks to your diet, you allow yourself to consume more carbohydrates to begin with and gradually reduce them as needed. I usually recommend reducing your carbs on a weekly basis if needed. If you are burning body fat, you do not need to keep reducing them, or drastically drop them.
Let your metabolism work for you, the more intense your training sessions are, the more intense your cardio is, the greater your BMW will be, which means you will burn more calories at rest. It is such a simple formula, if you have a healthy BMR if 1500 calories a day, and you do a 20-30min intense session of HIIT your caloric output just from rest and one short session of cardio is 2000 calories+. Now if you run your BMR into the ground to 300 calories. You would have to do 3-4x the amount of cardio just to make up the difference in your metabolism. Wow, so did you get that, when you starve yourself and crank up the cardio like crazy, sure you burn more calories in the gym, but outside of the gym you are expending significantly less? Now tell me again why you paid your trainer a large sum of money to waste time in the gym, make you feel like crap, damage your metabolism and health?
The best part is that after a competition or a wedding, you wont gain a crap load of weight back when you start eating normal again if you did it the right way. This is because your metabolism is still revved up that even when you start eating normal, your body is still burning much more calories then the guy or girl with the damaged metabolism, hence no contest blues or rebounding.
If you do feel tired, sluggish, or you are at the point that you are doing 3 hours of cardio a day and literally eating nothing, my advice is to stop! No show, trophy, award or prize is worth your health. If this has happened to you, you can reverse it by gradually adding carbohydrates back in your diet. Do not overload, instead slowly add carbs in on a weekly basis, and so maybe include 10-20g more of carbohydrates every week.
My final advice is to be open-minded and question everything in life. Just because a trainer has a good track record, and his clients win many shows, that does not mean he is a good trainer or even a trainer that you should be working with. Put your health first, that is what a coach does, and that is the difference between a coach and a trainer. A coach cares about you, your health, and your well being, while a trainer just wants you to lose weight or win a show at any expense to your health.