You often hear this advice. More is counterproductive, or even unhealthy.
But is it really true?
Or maybe with a healthy diet and lots of exercise you can do more? Above all, without putting muscles or health at risk?
After all, the contestants on "The Biggest Loser" manage to do at least twice as much. Can the rigorous diet promises of the glossy magazines be true at all?
These are all good questions. And they deserve honest answers.
In this article you will learn:
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Why "only" lose 1 kilo per week??
Let’s dispel a myth right at the beginning.
You can very well lose more than 1 kilo per week.
You can do it without putting your health at risk.
Because the "1 kilo rule" is not an upper limit, but simply a general recommendation.
However, the "rule" is well suited as a benchmark when losing weight.
For most people it is a reasonable and achievable goal.
How much body fat you actually lose, however, depends on many factors.
For example, your starting point logically plays a crucial role:
The more body fat someone (still) has, the more healthy fat loss is in it.
In many cases this can be more than one kilo per week.
So let’s make the rule of thumb more precise:
A reasonable weekly goal is 0.5-1 kg fat loss or 1% of your total weight.
That is, who currently still 150 kilos on the scale, for the 1.5 kg weight loss per week is a realistic benchmark.
So how much can you lose per week? In principle, up to 5 kilos in a week are possible, whereby this is then not only fat, but also a lot of water.
But is it worthwhile to lose so much weight in a short time??
One important point is often overlooked when it comes to losing weight ..
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Why you should not worry about your weight, but about your physique
It’s pretty pointless to talk about losing weight and leave your physique out of it:
Body weight is not equal to body fat.
To determine your physique, you want to know one thing above all:
What is the ratio between body fat and lean mass??
The weight of water you still have or no longer have in your body also plays a role.
I remember my fellow student Jan well: small stature, well-trained, black belt in judo. So the type of person you better not mess with.
Jan is a real pro when it comes to losing weight in record time. "Making weight" is what he calls it:
"I lose 5 kilos overnight, then I compete in a lower weight class. It’s easy: I just sweat the kilos off."
Of course, if you drink a few liters of water, you will gain weight again just as quickly.
You may know someone who has lost a tremendous amount of weight in one week through juice fasting, metabolic diets, or other extreme measures.
Again, you can bet that much of the weight loss is water and lean mass. But that also means
Most of the time, they soon return to their old weight.
Extreme low carb diets, such as the ketogenic diet that is just coming back into fashion, can cause you to lose several kilos in a matter of days. Most of this is released water that was previously bound to carbohydrates in the body.
If rapid weight loss has one advantage, it is that it gives many people an extra boost of motivation – even if it is just water.
Now what is the reason that many nutritionists and doctors recommend that you lose a maximum of 1 kilo per week? Why of all things this number?
It is simple mathematics.
Mathematics based on values that are easy to put into practice. There are two main things that play a role in this:
- What is the Daily calorie requirement typically?
- How much more can you consume Eat, so that you feel good AND consume more calories than you consume?
The rest is a simple calculation:
Who would like to lose thus 1 kilo body fat per week, must altogether 7000 kcal per week or 1000 kcal per day save and/or. more per day.
Maybe you already have an idea of what the answer to the next question is ..
How can you lose more than 1 kilo per week??
Is it possible to lose more than 1 kilo of pure body fat per week?
Yes, it is. However, not "open-ended":
You will make faster progress in the beginning. And the leaner you get, the more patient you can be.
Now how can you lose more than 1 kilo per week?
Here’s a simple rule:
Exceptional results require exceptional effort.
Who wants to lose weight faster, may also invest more energy. For example, you need:
- A particularly accurate diet beyond the 90-10 rule: that is, an almost perfect diet with significantly less than 10% exceptions.
- A particularly high calorie consumption through more training and more movement in everyday life.
In principle, it all boils down to the same thing:
If you want to lose weight faster, you need a larger calorie deficit.
Let’s put this into an example:
Assuming you would lose 2.consume 500 calories a day and want to lose 1.5 kilos of fat per week. Then you need a pretty big deficit: 1.500 calories.
To lose 1.5 kilos a week, you need a daily deficit of 1.500 calories.
To achieve this through diet alone, you would need to eat just 1.Eat 000 calories. Then you would lose weight quickly – at least as long as you manage to maintain this deficit.
But very few people keep it up for long to eat so much less. Often the shot even backfires in the medium term and their body tries to protect itself through ravenous hunger and bingeing attacks.
An ultra-strict restriction on eating is rarely practical. And it is almost never fun.
If this results in a shortage of vital nutrients, it is even unhealthy.
The alternative way is training. Then you would work out literally hours upon hours every day.
Get me right: I love exercise and sports. But if I felt like I HAD to do it, and then for HOURS at a time, the fun would quickly be over.
And that brings us to the next question ..
How do the "Biggest Losers" lose 50+ kilos in 6 months?
In many cases, contestants on "The Biggest Loser" lose 2 kg or more per week.
How do they do it?
A show like "The Biggest Loser" only works if it can show off the most blatant results possible.
So all the stops are pulled out to get the contestants to the weight loss limit:
- Clever metrics: Success is measured NOT by body fat, but by TOTAL weight. Muscle loss, water loss and (missing) stomach contents are thus part of the process.
- A lot of potential: Candidates are severely overweight to begin with. How to lose more weight in less time.
- fluid loss: Especially in the beginning they lose a lot of water.
- Lose weight as a full-time job: They train every single day for many hours – like a high-performance athlete.
- Maximum support: They are individually and continuously coached and pushed by a team of trainers and nutritionists.
- Maximum pressure: They get a huge TV audience, they contractually commit to participate, and they find themselves competing with others.
And so they manage to maintain a huge caloric deficit:
With tremendous effort and under tremendous pressure.
When I watched one of the shows, the same questions always came to mind: would they, left to their own devices, achieve the same results? Would they be just as "successful" if they had to work and provide for a family?
I think this is very unlikely.
The tragedy is that they "learn" invisible scripts that they later use to get in their own way. They combine fitness, sports and healthy eating with renunciation, pressure and struggles.
They achieve their goals with maximum toughness against themselves and their bodies.
Think about it for a moment.
The way that’s fun, feels easy and right, and isn’t a full-time job probably wouldn’t lure anyone in front of the TV screen.
Yet it’s absolutely unrealistic to maintain such a training workload over the long term.
And for most of the contestants, it would be just as unrealistic to lose weight at 2.500 calories consumption less than 1.Eating 000 calories a day – and feeling good about it.
In reality, such extreme diets sooner or later become a boomerang.
Most "Biggest Loser" contestants return to their old weight after a while.1
Not only physiological, but also psychological reasons play a role here.
Diet or exercise – which is more effective for losing weight?
More and more gyms now offer HIIT workout classes. So crisp interval training that burns a lot of energy in a short time.
High-intensity interval training can be a good fat loss booster. Especially when time is short.
You should be careful not to overstretch the arc:
The more and more intensively you train, the more you should watch out for signals of overtraining and overload.
That’s why diet remains a big influencing factor:
If you want to lose weight as quickly as possible, you should also pay attention to your calorie intake.
At the same time, it’s a good idea not to go overboard with the calorie deficit either – at least not if it feels "hard".
Extreme diets work in theory and on TV for a while. In practice, however, the risks of losing weight increase with the calorie deficit, such as:
- Muscle loss,
- thereby decreasing basal metabolic rate,
- Cravings, and last but not least
- negative mental programming.
Even if I repeat myself, the last point is perhaps the most important:
Healthy eating and fat loss can be fun.
Because if you like doing something, you’ll almost automatically stick with it. Who can say that about a sucky lifestyle?
I have found that a moderate approach usually works best in the long run:
You want to feel good AND make progress.
This is exactly what I achieve when I firstly lose weight slowly and patiently. And secondly, following a balanced diet plan in which no food is off-limits. And that gives me protein foods, healthy fats, lots of vegetables and some fruit.
You can get fat loss going by maintaining a moderate calorie deficit.
I usually take two approaches to this:
- Increase calorie consumption. I achieve this primarily through more cardio training and more movement in everyday life (z.B. bike instead of car).
- Lower calorie intake. For me, this doesn’t mean eating LESS, but MORE foods with low caloriesdense. So I eat just as full as before, but leave z.B. Omit the oatmeal in the cottage cheese, eat more lean sources of protein, and reduce high calorie sources of carbohydrates. A good guide is the food database that you can find in the free online toolbox at Looking Good Naked find.
Whether you maintain a calorie deficit every single day or choose a zig-zag diet, alternating some higher deficit days with surplus days, is a matter of taste.
I get along best with the latter variant and live also with defining usually every week one to two days in the calorie surplus, but still drive a moderate deficit in the weekly average.
Some of my clients feel better with the straight model. So there are plenty of choices.
One way that feels good to you also relies on muscle maintenance:
A high-protein diet not only protects against hunger, but also against muscle loss.
It also increases the thermal effect from food, because up to 30% of protein calories are lost in the digestive process in the form of heat.
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Lots of greens, high-fiber vegetables, and low-sugar fruits help you create an energy deficit.
Because you can continue to eat lots of healthy, delicious food while taking your foot off the calorie gas pedal.
You can supplement healthy fats quite consciously and with moderation.
Omega-3 fish oil capsules help you to accurately dose vital DHA and EPA fats, some olive oil goes well with salad and macadamia nut oil is perfect for sauteing.
You should reduce simple sugars and starchy carbohydrates to a minimum.
The best time for carbohydrates is the meal after training, when the carbohydrate sensitivity of your muscle glycogen stores is at its highest.
The basics of losing weight – how to double your fat loss
In my experience, the following approach is extremely effective in maximizing fat loss:
- a high protein diet with reduced carbohydrate intake,
- enough sleep and micronutrients, and cardio training.
And both in terms of weight loss tempo, as well as in the reduction of the "stubborn" last fat pads.
Plus, this approach helps suppress hunger pangs.
You should keep in mind:
Fat loss is based on a calorie deficit.
And the best way to achieve this is to eat MORE vegetables and less sugary and starchy foods.
A low-carb diet is not a miracle cure. If you eat a high carb diet and maintain the same calorie deficit, you will lose weight just as quickly.
But most people find it easier to stick to a low carb diet because they can continue to eat their fill and feel less hungry.
I see more and more ads for weight loss programs that promise fat loss in record time.
And not only that:
This gives you the impression that if you can "only" lose 1 kilo a week, you’re doing something wrong.
"Why would you settle for just one kilo a week when more is possible??", they say.
As you know now, more than 1 kilo per week is possible. But the most important matter is swept under the table, just like in TV weight loss shows:
There’s a world of difference between FAST and SUSTAINABLE fat loss.
Also, there is nothing "magical" about losing weight faster. As we can see, it’s just math.
In the end, it all boils down to the first law of thermodynamics:
The calorie balance decides.
By the way, this is also true if fat loss is linked to other things and calories are not mentioned at all.
You can accelerate your fat loss and the "lose 1 kilo per week" rule is not a law set in stone.
But before you change your life overnight, you should ask yourself one important question:
Do you enjoy going full throttle to lose weight?
Are you willing to invest the time in extra training, tolerate the hunger pangs and keep the exceptions to a minimum?
Or have you experienced food cravings and bingeing in the past when you wanted too much too fast?
Losing weight is allowed to be fun and feel good.
For most people – myself included – that means taking a moderate approach.
Then you can still lose 500 grams to 1 kilo per week.
Then the fat melts away while you keep your hard-earned muscle mass.
Also, you should keep one thing in mind:
Small successes add up.
They can turn your entire life around faster than you might think: 500 grams per week, 26 kilos per year. In other words:
Imagine melting two packets of butter from your body per week. In the year that would be 104 packets.
Perhaps you throw with the next trip to the supermarket simply times a view of the refrigerator shelf, there where the butter lies.
And then you decide if 2-4 packs per week, 8-16 packs per month, or 104-208 packs per year is really too slow for you.
If you ask me, the search for the magical "I want results right now" is a long shot!"-Shortcut one of the biggest impediments to success in our generation.
The decision is yours. It’s always good to gain your own experience and try something new.
Maybe you’ll think about this article the next time you take the time to set your goals.
And if you hear about a weight loss program that advertises "unbelievable progress in record time", then you now know what is behind such "success".
Question: What is the best way for you to achieve long-term success?? Which way do you choose if you want to lose weight – and with which weekly goals?? Write a comment.