Gaining weight and still eating properly? Maybe it's the Whoosh Effect!
Burning fat and losing weight doesn’t happen simultaneously!
Burning fat is all about creating a caloric deficit. (You eat less food than your body requires, thus forcing your body to make up the difference by getting energy from fat reserves).
However, as many diligent dieters have personally learned, the amount of weight that you lose each day, or each week, is rarely consistent.
Some weeks will show that you may not lose any weight at all regardless of how hard you worked out or stuck to your protocol. Other weeks you will discover that you have lost much more weight than the numbers actually show you.
If the laws of calorie-in / calorie-out are real, why would a person lose such dramatically different amounts of weight from week to week, despite following an identical routine?
Enter… “The Whoosh Effect”
As you burn fat, you’ll sometimes notice that the area where the fat used to be tends to take on a sort of “squishy” consistency. “Squishy” fat forms because, as fat cells are extracted and mobilised, the space where they once existed gets filled with water, making the area feel “softer” than normal. Sometimes “squishy fat” forms in places we can see it, and sometimes it forms more internally where we can’t. Sometimes it’s in huge pockets, and sometimes it forms at a microscopic level where you can’t see it or feel it. But the areas that were once filled with fat sit there, filled with water!
The squishy-fat areas can last for a few days to as much as a few weeks. Then, one day, inexplicably and out of nowhere, all that squishy fat suddenly tightens up! In some cases, you’ll even (suddenly) look leaner! And at the same time, the scale suddenly drops — and you cheer because you feel like whatever you did the day before caused you to lose a ton of weight!
It will probably surprise you to learn that almost ALL scale movements are the result of fat burn that happened days, or even weeks ago! (Sudden scale movement at the very beginning of a diet is usually the result of water-weight being dropped due to a decrease in carb intake, however).
When the scale goes down while dieting, it’s usually because of fat that you lost several days (or even weeks) ago, and your body is finally expelling the water that took its place.
Put another way, even though you may be in a state where you are constantly burning fat, the results of that effort may not show up on the scale immediately. And more likely, they’ll show all at once, one day, where you’ll have a sudden “whoosh” of weight-loss!
How can you avoid the “Whoosh effect”?
You can’t… Or more accurately put, you don’t really need to. It’s your body’s natural method of coping with fat-loss. Just let it do its thing.
It’s important to reiterate that you don’t NEED to do anything to trigger the whoosh effect. It’ll happen when it happens.
A weight-loss plateau doesn’t necessarily equate to a fat-loss plateau!! Just because the scale isn’t moving, doesn’t mean you’re not burning fat, and it doesn’t mean you’re doing anything wrong.
Second, and probably more importantly, don’t expect results every single morning when you weigh-in. While it CAN work this way (and often does early on), it’s not typical. You might find that weighing-in once a week is a better strategy if you find yourself dealing with this problem more than you like.