I am always hungry, should I be eating more calories? I have been helping one my friends with her goals to lean out and this is one of the questions we have had to tackle. It is also one of the questions that I have had to tackle as I try to fix my metabolism, through very slow reverse dieting.
I had another friend ask me why I decided to create a healthier lifestyle and help someone else do it while I was also trying to get through law school, which is arguably the hardest time to start any type of healthy habit.
I decided to write a post about both of these questions because I genuinely think that law school is the best time to build healthy habits. In law school, you actually have so much time to research and build these healthy habits because the truth is that it requires a lot of trial and error, research, and time (for the first few months). Having this time for research and trial and error brings me to the next point, which is should I be eating more calories? That question is more complex than it seems and why I wanted to do a longer, more in-depth post about this issue. I am going to set this up in a question format you should ask yourself.
Am I actually eating as many calories as I am tracking?
Be honest with yourself! If you are telling yourself, I am eating 1200 calories, but I am not losing any weight, what is going on? It probably means your not actually eating 1200 calories. Chances are that you don’t count some of those snacks that you eat between meals or you eat well all week and then on the weekends eat so much that your calories for the week are not actually less than your energy expenditure. SO track what you are actually eating and make sure you are burning more calories than you are eating. I can guarantee that if you do this, you will lose weight. It is not magic, it is science. We wannabe lawyers are all perfectionists and want to be in control. Well, tracking macros will give you control of your health and weight in a healthy and manageable way.
Also! If you can and it doesn’t make you crazy! Buy a scale and weigh your food. You do not have to do this for the rest of your life, but you should do it for a bit so you can understand how much a portion actually is. I can promise you that your idea of a single portion size is pretty skewed and may be hampering you weight loss goals.
“But I am eating that many calories and still not losing weight?”
Alright, so you tracked your calories for a week and you are actually eating as many calories as you say you are, but your weight loss process is still slow, especially for how much you are eating. In that case, I recommend you start eating more! I know, crazy right!
I will use myself as an example: When I started my weight loss journey, I ate 1700 calories per day and in six months lost 15 pounds and completely reshaped my body. Eventually, I started to realize that I was super hungry all the time and that my weight loss had stagnated. At that point, I decided to start increasing my calories. Now, I am eating 2200 calories and my body is building a ton of muscle that I did not even know I could ever gain. Now, I am gaining weight! And yes, sometimes it really sucks seeing the scale move up, but my body is also changing and I have fixed my metabolism. This means that when I do decide to lose the extra fat that I gained, I will only have to drop my calories a bit and my body will start burning the extra fat. AND I won’t starve.
So, a reverse diet might be your answer. It may be a bit uncomfortable, but trust me it is so worth it.
Another thing to remember is that you can always increase your calorie expenditure by adding in some more cardio. This will allow you to eat