This article is part two of a two-part series covering weight regain and everything you have ever needed to know about this topic. Part two discusses the psychology behind weight regain and how eating behaviors effect regain post competition. This article is written in the context of a post competition preparation diet for physique competitors but can be applied to anyone who has been on a calorie restricted weight loss, such as a powerlifter making weight for a meet or a non-competitor who has dieted for an event or vacation. Regardless of which group you fall into, the psychological responses to dieting and how eating behaviors are impacted are similar. In this series, I hope to give you all the tools you need to understand what is going on inside of your body after a diet, why it is so difficult to keep off weight lost and practical tips to help your long term weight maintenance!
If you’ve dieted before (or read my first installment of the weight regain article series) you will be familiar with the typical over eating following a strict diet paradigm. Biological adaptations have set you up for weight regain but there is more to add to the puzzle – the psychological consequences from harshly dieting set you for an even tougher time, far past the initial relapse phase.
There is no doubting that eating behaviors and relationships with food will be tested with almost any competition diet – especially those that are longer in length and more severe. But maybe there is a better way? The literature points to a potential way to mediate these disordered relationships and ensure long term success.
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