Ever wonder why it can be SO dang hard to lose those last few pounds?
You’re NOT alone and you’re not in a “plateau”. It’s NORMAL!!!!
We all know fat loss is a matter of CICO: Calories in vs. calories out. However this “calories out” component is ever changing.
There are 4 key parts to this “energy out” system:
1️⃣ RMR (Resting Metabolic Rate) - the # of cals you burn each day just to live/breathe. This takes up roughly 60% of your caloric expenditure and it varies based on body weight, sex, she, genetics, and even gut bacteria. A bigger body = bigger BMR.
2️⃣ TEE (Thermic Effect of Eating) - the # of cals you burn by eating, digesting, and processing your food. This is roughly 5-10% of your “energy out”. Fun fact: You burn most calories from digesting protein, then carbs, then fats.
3️⃣ PA (physical activity) - the # of cals you burn from purposeful exercise; running, lifting, biking, etc. Your caloric expenditure from PA will of course change based on your activity levels.
4️⃣ NEAT (Non Exercise Activity Thermogenesis) - the # of cals you burn from movement & daily activity that is NOT necessarily exercise (fidgeting, cleaning, laundry, etc)
So, to review: Energy OUT = RMR + TEE + PA + NEAT.
How is this relevant to those “last few pounds”? Well, when “ENERGY IN” goes down (the food you consume, absorb, and store), “ENERGY OUT” goes down to match it. For example: you’re now burning fewer calories in response to eating less (dieting). The body always fights to maintain homeostasis - it wants to avoid unwanted weight loss and starvation.
So, when you’re struggling to lose those last few lbs, it’s not because you’re broken, it’s because your body is trying to keep your weight steady when you start to take in less energy or burn more energy.
• TEE ⬇️ bc you’re eating less
• RMR ⬇️ bc you weight less
• Cals burned through PA ⬇️ bc you weigh less
• NEAT ⬇️ as you eat less
• Cals not absorbed ⬇️ and you absorb more of what you eat.
This bodily response is pretty minimal when you first start your fat loss journey. But the more you lose weight OR the leaner you get, the more this adaptation revs itself up!