Diet ups and downs - why you could be gaining weight
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 25 January, 2018 - With the popularity of WSL Live Webcasts, there's never been more pressure to surf at a high level. Whether we place that pressure on ourselves to do our personal best or simply don't want to kook it, body weight can do a lot to keep us from surfing to our full potential. Simply put, you can't surf well when you're fat. Well, you can, but unless your talents are up there with Mark Occhilupo, Shawn Briley or Jimbo Pellegrine you'll be challenged to make any session satisfying. On the heels of new year's resolutions season we'd thought we'd take a look at why you might not be losing the Holidays weight as fast as you'd like.
Diet Ups and Downs - Why You Could Be Gaining Weight
Losing weight isn't always the exact science a lot of articles and diet advice sites tend to suggest it is. While anyone who has researched how weight loss works will know that you should lose 1lb for every 3500 calorie deficit, sometimes the numbers just don't seem to add up. Sometimes, you can be certain you are burning far more calories than you are eating, and the scale just doesn't budge. Other times, it may even go up!
Here are some of the things that could be going on here, and how to troubleshoot them.
Are you getting your calorie burn information from online calculators, or the machines at the gym? Often estimates of how many calories someone of your height, weight and gender burns can be out by hundreds per day, and while things that measure your heart rate during exercise as well as knowing your stats – like gym machines and things like Fitbits are better, their estimates should still be taken with a grain of salt. You should be aiming to be in a calorie deficit with a margin of error.
You should also check that you are measuring food properly and aren't eating more calories than you think. If you don't really have time to check labels and measure out quantities, a weight loss food delivery service like Jenny Craig’s can be a good way to ensure you know your calorie intake without having to do that.
If you know for sure you are in a calorie deficit but are seeing weight gains on the scales, one reason could be your muscles. Some people say that weight gain from exercise or stalls in weight loss are because you are gaining muscle. Actually, this usually isn't the case. You may see some muscle gain when you first start working out as your muscle tissue 'buffs up', but once you are in a routine of exercise, women gain only a small amount of muscle mass over time – a pound or so in a year would be normal. However, when you work out hard, muscle fatigue can cause inflammation, and this can lead to retained water and a gain in weight.
This is perfectly normal and healthy and doesn't mean you have gained fat, but may mask actual fat loss and make you think you've stalled or even gained. This is a good reason not to weigh every day if you are exercising hard.
Retaining water for other reasons, such as for hormonal reasons at times in your cycle is also normal. Some people can retain as much as ten pounds in water. Drinking plenty of water helps retain a good water balance, or you can try a low carb diet which actively flushes out a lot of the water retained in your body.
These are all reasons why you may not always see losses on the scales. The first two require checking your habits, but the latter two won't stop you losing fat. It is best, therefore, to use other methods than just the scales, like progress photos or measurements, to judge how your progress is going.