Small Unexpected Weight Gain Not Necessarily Bad In Maintenance Mode

Day 345

Today is yet another instance where I don’t feel a break is in order even though it would be nice to take one soon. I unexpectedly gained .2 kg yesterday despite doing a pretty job on my diet. I rose 2.7 kg at the max during daytime hours, with 2.5 to 3.0 being a pretty normal. Of course, the more you gain, the bigger the risk of gaining weight by the end of a 24-hour period. 3.0 kg is pushing the brink for me, and even 2.5 is not going to work unless I have a decent exercise workout. Maintaining my weight without exercise has not worked out for me yet in testing. I won’t go into that in this blog post. But my Pentamize book shows how that even low-intensity exercise for 30 minutes ended up being a bad plan for me.

At 5 in the afternoon, I had risen from 77.1 to 78.9 kg. That is 1.7 kg, so I can eat a little more and still be below the 2.5 kg mark. If possible, I’d like to keep myself below that mark to give myself a better chance of losing weight by the end of tomorrow morning’s run. At 6, I had had another meal and was at 79.2 kg. Things are getting pretty close now. That is an increase of 2.1 kg. I’ll try to have just one more really small snack and call it a night on the eating.

At 7:30 in the evening, I finished up at 79.5 kg. So that is a max increase of about 2.4 kg. This is .3 kg better than yesterday in terms of the weight added during the day. And while it is only .1 kg less than the max weight of 79.6 yesterday, the key here is that my diet is better today, at least in terms of weight increase. Now, I can only hope that things will work out overnight and with my exercise session tomorrow morning. A repeat of only a .9 kg loss during exercise would not be good. But we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.

Let me briefly explain why you may have more days with weight gain in maintenance mode than in full weight loss mode. To illustrate this, I’ll just give you some ballpark figures on my full mode. When running 90 minutes, I lost weight about 70 to 80 percent of the time in full mode. However, in maintenance mode, you may experience far more days with weight gain even when doing the same amount of exercise. I don’t have specific figures for this in my maintenance mode, but I can assure you it’s far more than the 20 to 30 percent of days with weight gain when in full mode. I lose weight more like 50 to 60 percent of days. So the numbers are way down in terms of consistent weight loss in maintenance mode.

Now, let me explain one reason this happens and why it isn’t such a bad thing. First, look at Scenarios 1 and 2, keep these numbers in mind, and continue reading.

Scenario 1
Current Weight: 230 pounds
Target Weight: 175 pounds

Scenario 2
Current Weight: 178 pounds
Target Weight: 175 pounds

Now, under which example do you think you will have more weight-loss days? It’s natural for that to be Scenario 1 since your body already has a bunch of excess weight to lose. So while results do fluctuate when you are significantly overweight, your excess body weight that you are working hard to shed allows for more “opportunity” to lose weight.

Now, look at Scenario 2. You are 3 pounds over your target weight, which we will say is a pretty difficult weight for you to maintain. This is because you no longer have a lot of excess weight to lose (if any). In this case, any natural factors that tend to result in a daily weight gain are not as likely to be counteracted by the burning away of excess fat since such fat is not even there. Think about it. Everyone reaches a certain point where you just aren’t going to lose any more weight. It would actually be unhealthy at some point. So your body may actually need to retain more over short periods than when you are still obese or at least significantly overweight. I am not trying to prove anything scientifically here. It’s just important to keep in mind that you may have more days with weight gain in maintenance mode than in full mode. And this is normal in my experience.

Don’t confuse this to mean that it’s normal to gain weight 7 days in a row or something like that. I am simply saying you may experience more single 24-hour periods with weight gain on average. If you are suddenly gaining 5 pounds by gaining half a pound on average for a week and a half, you may have a problem with your diet and exercise plan. But if you gain on 40% of days and are still losing some the other 60% of the time, then you are probably okay even if you gained only on 30% of days in full mode.

Despite understand how this all works in maintenance mode, I can’t help but feel somewhat disappointed about my weight loss overnight. I went to bed at 79.4 and woke up at 78.9. That is only .5 again. I am making the decision right now to run only 50 minutes on Saturday (this means a run this morning, which is Friday, of 90 minutes, followed by the 50-minute run on Saturday morning). So I will need to consciously try to eat a little less throughout the day on Friday in anticipation of a shorter workout.

I had a nominal improvement over the next 4 hours or so, dropping to 78.5 kg. It is probable that I will gain a little weight today even after running. I just hope it isn’t like that dreadful result yesterday, where I lost less than a full kilogram from the entire jogging session.

Today, I lost 1.2 kg during the run. Adding that to bathroom time, I finished at 77.2 kg, which is the minimum weight gain of .1 kg. It was going to be hard to recover from losing only .5 kg overnight. So this result is not bad when you consider that. It was just a little too much to overcome absent a brutal run that would have been too intense for my fitness level.

As I stated earlier, I am committed to running only 50 minutes tomorrow morning. This is the plan even though I gained a little today. I can’t take a complete break, but a shorter run has become necessary.

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