I am officially 6 months into my reverse diet under the guidance of Josh Ledbetter.
Starting a reverse diet is scary – the thought of eating more and more calories was daunting because I did not want to lose all the progress I had made so far. I loved my results and was afraid to undo them! But with Josh and Julie’s encouragement, I started a reverse diet at the end of October.
A reverse diet basically just means increasing your carbs and fat gradually (carbs by about 8 g/set and fat by about 2 g/set) so that your body can get used to eating MORE while sustaining minimal fat/weight gain. You can read my intro to reverse diets blog post here for more background.
So what happened over the past 6 months? For starters, I did NOT lose all my progress! In fact, I feel leaner than ever before.
Right before starting the reverse diet, I was eating 120 g carbs, 60 g fat, and 120 g protein (1,500 calories). I won’t lie to you – I was always hungry and never felt satiated. I was using a weekly cheat meal that probably added an additional 3,000 calories to my week and it just wasn’t a lifestyle I was going to be able to sustain long-term (read about why I quick the “cheat meal” here). Deep down I knew the reverse diet was what my body needed.
Today I am eating 207 g carbs, 63 g fat, and 126 g protein (1,900 calories). I never have a problem fitting in foods I love (cookies, ice cream, pizza, etc.) in controlled amounts with these macros. I am MUCH more satisfied and don’t find myself obsessing about food near as much as I did when I was on the body fat loss macros.
I was sitting at about 125 lbs. right before I started the reverse diet and now I’m drifting in the 126-127 lbs. range. That is minimal weight gain and eating 400 calories more/day. I’ll take it!
I will continue adding calories every 3-4 weeks until I get to my maintenance level (about 2,050 calories/day). After that, I might do a mini-cut just to get as lean as possible for summer or I might just use maintenance macros for a while. Either way, I will have repaired my metabolism completely and be set up for an easier time cutting in the future.
If you are thinking about starting a reverse diet but want to know more about my experience, leave a comment below and we can chat!