Lose 8 Pounds in 5 Days, Yes You Can!

Yes, that’s the result you can get with the 5 Day Fast Forward plan in my new book Cinch! Conquer Cravings, Drop Pounds and Lose Inches. The question is:

Is a strict 5 day “detox” for you?

When I wrote Cinch! I thought about my 15+ years of experience counseling people for weight loss, and here’s what I determined – about half of the people I’ve worked with are completely uninterested in any sort of cleanse, detox or rapid weight loss approach. In fact, even thinking about being restricted can make them crave food more intensely or rebound overeat. If you fall into that group, the 5 Day Detox is NOT for you – and that’s why I made it optional (there’s a quiz in the book to help you sort out your feelings).

But the other half of my clients need to see quick, significant results in order to feel successful, motivated and confident enough to commit to making long-term lifestyle changes (e.g. the Cinch! core plan). Over the years so many of my clients have made pretty major changes only to see the scale drop by two pounds in seven days, an outcome that doesn’t seem worth all the hard work. As a result they’ll often say, “All that for just two pounds? Forget it!” then backtrack right into a pizza pie or a pint of ice cream. If that sounds like you the 5 Day Fast Forward can give you the momentum you need to keep moving forward. One of the women who tested my plan lost 7 pounds in 5 days and it was the turning point she needed. That success flipped a switch and now, 28 pounds later, she’s still losing (recent research shows that losing weight faster may help some people lose more and keep it off – check out my previous blog on the topic here).

So when I thought about the perfect “detox” or “cleanse” I knew it had to meet 8 key criteria:

1) It had to generate quick results. This one does – up to 8 pounds in 5 days.

2) It had to include solid food, not just liquids. In my experience with my clients liquid cleanses are just too strict and not filling enough to keep you energized and prevent extreme hunger.

3) It had to be “clean” – no artificial, processed stuff.

4) It had to be nourishing, including protein, carbohydrate and fat, as well as plenty of nutrients and antioxidants.

5) It had to be vegan and vegetarian friendly.

6) It had to include foods you’d realistically enjoy eating – in other words if you’re going to be limited you have to look enjoy what you do get to eat.

7) It had to be simple and repetitive – in my experience both are keys to rebooting your body quickly.

8) It had to be easy – easy to understand, easy to shop for, and easy to do.

I believe the Cinch! 5 Day Fast Forward delivers on all 8 conditions, and as you can see I followed my own advice from a blog I posted here nearly a year ago: 8 Dos and Don’ts of Detoxing.

So if you’re curious come back tomorrow and I’ll tell you exactly how it works – and how it can help you end eating chaos so you can transform your relationship with food – for life!

How to Lose Eight Pounds This Month

Pictured Recipe: Roasted Salmon with Smoky Chickpeas & Greens

Are you ready to slim down for good? Pair that powerful motivation with our calorie-controlled meal plans and you can lose up to eight pounds this month. High in fiber and packed with protein, the tasty recipes in each meal plan are designed to keep you feeling full and satisfied while you shed pounds. You’ll also be eating more healthy, whole foods while cutting back on refined, processed foods and added sugars. That’s important: when it comes to weight loss, recent research shows food quality is key.

So what are you waiting for? Get started with the weight-loss tips below. In just four weeks, you’ll be a new, lighter you!

1. Set a Daily Calorie Goal

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Pictured Recipe: Citrus-Poached Salmon with Asparagus

Use this simple equation to figure your total daily calories:

  • Multiply your weight (in pounds) by 12. This gives you the number of daily calories you need to maintain your weight.
  • To lose 1 pound a week, subtract 500 calories a day.
  • To lose 2 pounds a week, subtract 1,000 calories a day.

Then pick the meal plan that’s closest to the calorie level you calculated. (Note: If you calculate a number that’s less than 1,200 calories, follow the 1,200-calorie weight-loss plan. Eating less than that makes it hard to meet your daily nutritional requirements.)

Related: 1,200-Calorie Weight-Loss Meal Plan

2. Write What You Eat

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Pictured Recipe: Wild Mushroom Pizza with Arugula & Pecorino

Research shows that keeping a food diary can help you reach your weight-loss goals. In one large study, participants who tracked their food lost up to twice as much weight as those who didn’t bother. Whether you’re someone who follows a meal plan to a T or you use it more as inspiration, it’s a good idea to write down everything you eat. Use a food journal or an app like MyFitnessPal or Lose It. Get tracking using this 7-day meal plan to lose weight as a guide.

3. Fill Up on Fiber

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Pictured Recipe: West Coast Avocado Toast

Eating lots of fruits and vegetables, beans and whole grains (think: oats, barley and quinoa) can help jump-start weight loss. Why? They deliver fiber, which helps you feel full on fewer calories. In a two-year study in the Journal of Nutrition, boosting fiber by 8 grams for every 1,000 calories resulted in losing about 4 1/2 pounds. In another study, people lost weight simply by eating more fiber, even without changing anything else in their diets. Get the benefits by eating more of these fiber-rich foods that do the weight-loss work for you.

4. Include Lean Protein in Every Snack and Meal

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Pictured Recipe: Chipotle Chicken Quinoa Burrito Bowl

Research suggests that, gram for gram, protein tends to be more satisfying than carbs or fat. Including a little in every meal or snack will help you feel full longer. If you’re having just a salad for lunch, top it off with a protein-rich food-try grilled chicken or salmon, baked tofu or beans. Stack your snacks with protein, too. Have some peanut butter on your apple or a little cottage cheese with your fruit. Scoop up some yummy hummus with your crudités, or go for a low-fat yogurt or skinny latte: dairy is a magically satisfying combo of carbs and protein.

Related: High-Protein Snack Ideas for Work

5. Enjoy Daily Snacks and Treats

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Pictured Recipe: Lemon-Parm Popcorn

No one wants to feel deprived, much less hungry, while trying to lose weight. It’s smart to spread your calories throughout the day to stave off hunger. Including a healthy snack or two will keep you satisfied between meals. For ideas, check out these satisfying 100-calorie snack recipes. If you’re into sweets, go ahead and have a small treat-just make sure it fits with your overall calorie count.

Related: Instant 100-Calorie Chocolate Desserts

Weight loss is a simple math equation; calories taken in versus calories burned. Get these numbers in the right ratio and you can easily lose 8 pounds in one month.
We all know that dieting can be challenging; “I’ll start tomorrow” is an excuse often muttered by many people trying to lose weight. The problem is that most people find themselves muttering the same phrase on the following day, and the day after that, and the day after that…
The truth is that weight loss and maintenance of a healthy body weight is a simple equation of calories eaten versus calories burned. This simple equation often has other variables like what you eat, when you eat it and how your body responds to it, but in the long run these things have only a small effect and can easily be overcome by just pushing more towards a calorie deficit each day by adding more physical activity.
The biggest and most important variable in this equation is level of commitment and determination.
Here is an equation to simplify the challenge and help you to lose 8 pounds in one month.
1 Pound= 3,500 calories
• Each day, eat 500 less calories (500 x 7 = a deficit totaling 3,500 calories a week)
-this can be a simple as cutting out sodas, coffee drinks, chips and crackers, dessert and/or reducing the size of your meals.
• Each day, burn 500 calories through exercise (500 x 7= a deficit totaling an additional 3,500 calories a week)
-this sounds like a lot but simple things like parking further away from the office, or store, taking the stairs, doing a few rounds of push ups or lunges throughout the day all add up quickly. Add in a lot of little things and they will add up to one big calorie deficit.
Following this equation leaves you with a total caloric deficit of 7,000 calories a week, or, a loss of 2 pounds.
One month of following this diet plan would allow you to lose 8 pounds in 30 days. This is a healthy rate to lose weight, a rate that leads to sustainable weight loss without causing your body to destroy muscle tissue for calories, something that happens when you lose weight to quickly leaving most yo-yo dieters worse off when they finish their diet than when they started it.
When working to create these food and exercise induced caloric deficits, focus on making the routine modifications a part of an enduring healthy lifestyle, rather than just temporary adjustments with the lone goal of dropping weight.
The only way you can achieve a healthy body weight and maintain it is to make changes that you can realistically live with for the rest of your life.

How to lose weight in 5 days?

Want to lose some weight for the upcoming family function or anniversary? Though it is not recommended to go for intense diet regimes as they can be pretty bad for your body in the long run, these diets can be practiced once in a while. When it is important for you to shed those extra pounds, you can implement certain strategies to lose weight in 5 days. These strategies can help you in losing that unwanted weight quickly and kick start a new nutritious diet regime with a bang. It requires a certain determination to follow it in order to allow your body to burn the extra fat in this short period of time.
It is cautioned that you should not practice such diets all the time. Also, if you have certain health issues that will be impacted as a result of a strict limitation in the consumption of calories and nutrients, then you should first consult your doctor before starting any diet. It does not harm to mould it according to your needs or seek further guidance based on personal needs from a dietitian or nutritionist.

Here are the steps that you can implement for your 5-days weight loss plan, as a foolproof way for losing weight. Remember that they should all be implemented for the best results:
Consistent exercise routine
In your bid to lose weight, there is perhaps nothing more important than regular exercising for shedding those extra kilos. It is the fastest way to burn calories and lose fat. Studies suggest that you should exercise 55 minutes, 5 days a week for fitness and health. To lose weight in 5 days, you would have to exercise every single day consistently. Strenuous exercises like running and vigorous biking are two great options available to you.
Eat a big breakfast
For your plan to lose weight in 5 days, there is no meal as significant as breakfast. Do not skip it at all. A big breakfast in the morning would jump-start your metabolism which is significant for burning calories throughout the day. Apart from your choice of healthy breakfast cereal and juices, egg whites would be an excellent option as it is loaded with proteins. These proteins are going to give you the energy you need to workout.
Count your calories
Calories are one of the most important determinants for short-term weight loss plans. Reduce your calories in such a manner that you get the necessary nutrition from your meals with as low a calorie count as possible. If you consume 3500 calories in a day, even reducing your daily calorie count by 700 would help you lose almost half kilogram of weight every day. A little cutback in your food consumption would go a long way in losing weight in 5 days.
Drink water religiously
Water provides the key for the perfect execution of your plan to lose weight in 5 days. Not only does water help in boosting your metabolism, it also clears your system of all the toxins. Water would keep you hydrated and energetic in order to complete your workouts. You should at least drink 8 glasses of water every day.

Avoid carbs and eat your fruits
Carbohydrates are essential for your body. But once you consume extra carbs, they are not used right away by the body but they are rather stored as fat for long term storage of energy. For your plan to lose weight in 5 days, avoid carbs as much as possible. The less carbs you eat, the less fat would be stored after all. Also, eat a piece of fruit before every meal as that would fill up your stomach and help you curb the size of your meal.

How To Lose 20–30 Pounds In 5 Days: The Extreme Weight Cutting and Rehydration Secrets of UFC Fighters

Tim FerrissFollow Apr 17, 2018 · 14 min read

The following is a guest post by Nate Green, who worked with Dr. John Berardi, nutritional advisor to athletes like former UFC champion Georges St. Pierre (GSP).

This is the first of two blog posts entailing extreme physical experiments. Absolutely no performance enhancing drugs of any kind were used.

Part 1 — this post — details exactly how top UFC fighters rapidly lose 20–30 pounds for “weigh-ins.” To refine the method, Nate performed this on himself, losing 20 pounds in 5 days. The unique part: Dr. Berardi and team measured key variables throughout the entire process, including the last “rehydration” phase. As Berardi put it:

“We used GSP’s exact protocol with him . The idea was that by doing this with a guy who didn’t actually have to compete the next day, we could measure all sorts of performance variables that you’d never get with an athlete about to fight.”

Part 2 — the next post — will share how Nate used intermittent fasting and strategically planned eating to gain 20 pounds in 28 days, emulating a fighter who wants (or needs) to move up a weight class in competition.

Cautionary Note on Part 1

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighters put it all out in the open for the world to see: they kick, punch, laugh, cry, and bleed in front of thousands of arena fans and millions more watching at home.

But even if you’re a hardcore fan who knows all the stats, there’s something behind the scenes that you’ve probably never seen in full: world-class weight manipulation…

Done right, it can significantly increase a fighter’s chances of winning. An athlete will artificially lower his weight for pre-fight weigh-ins, then show up to the actual fight 10, 20, or even 30 pounds heavier than his opponent. It’s a game changer.

Done wrong, it can make even the toughest guy lose his edge… and probably the fight. There’s serious risk of organ failure if done haphazardly.

Even though boxers and wrestlers have been manipulating weight in this fashion for decades, it has the air of illicit activity. And though it’s legal in MMA competition, you should never try this at home or without medical supervision. Excessive dehydration can kill you. “Cutting weight” has no place in real-world dieting or behavior.

This is NOT an article on sustainable weight loss or healthy living. Rather, it’s a fascinating look at how far athletes and scientists will go to manipulate the human body for competitive advantage.

Here’s how it works…

Enter Nate

Imagine this: It’s Saturday night and you’re a top-ranked MMA fighter who just stepped into the cage to fight for the 170-pound Welterweight Championship.

Question: How much do you weigh?

The answer may seem obvious: 170 pounds, right? But if you followed the steps of extreme weight manipulation, the real answer is that you weigh somewhere between 185 and 190 pounds. That’s 15–20 pounds more than the “cutoff” weight of 170.

24 hours before you stepped into the cage, however, you did in fact weigh 170 pounds. You had to. Friday night was the official weigh-in where you and your opponent both stripped down to your skivvies, stepped on the scale in front of the judge, and prayed that the number on the scale hit 170 or lower.

But once you stepped off that scale it was a race to gain weight.

I find this kind of physiological puppetry very interesting. Most of us regular guys have a hard time gaining or losing just 5 pounds at a time.

But the top combat athletes can lose up to 30 pounds in just 5 days leading up to the fight. Then they can gain nearly all of it back in the 24 hours between weighing in and going toe-to-toe.

They do this to gain a massive competitive advantage. In other words, the bigger guy who retains more of his strength, agility, and endurance will likely win. The guy who weighs in at 170 — and then fights at 170 — often has a world of hurt coming his way.

That’s why Anderson Silva — one of the UFC’s most accomplished fighters — normally fights in the 185-pound class even though he actually weighs 215 pounds. A few days before he fights, Anderson “cuts” 30 pounds to make weight…then gains most of his weight back in 24 hours in time for his fight.

Georges St Pierre — another of the sport’s top fighters — normally walks around at 195 pounds. He ends up cutting 25 pounds to make his 170 pound weight class, and then gains 20 of it back before his fight.

Sneaky, huh?

Just how do these guys do it? And what does this rapid weight loss and weight gain do to their performance?

My Extreme Weight Manipulation Experiment

I’m lucky enough to be friends with Dr. John Berardi and Martin Rooney, two guys who regularly work with UFC athletes.

Recently, I told them I wanted to see what cutting weight was like. Is it really possible for a regular guy like me to drop 20 pounds in a few days then gain all of it back in 24 hours?

And if it was possible, what would it feel like? I heard cutting weight was one of the hardest things fighters do throughout their career. Was I man enough to handle it? Or would I give up when things got tough?

They agreed to help me cut 20 pounds in one week, and then put it all back on again in 24 hours.

Nervous doesn’t even begin to explain how I felt.

The Smart Way To Cut Weight Fast

Before pics. Full of water and feeling happy.

Extreme weight manipulation can go horribly, horribly wrong. Even a lot of UFC guys don’t know how to do it the smart way. Instead, they put their bodies in real harm by doing stupid things like taking a lot of diuretics, not drinking any water, skipping meals, wearing trash bags while exercising (sometimes in the sauna) and generally being idiotic.

They lose weight, of course. But they also lose energy and power and develop one bad temper. None of which helps during fight time.

With the help of Dr. Berardi and Rooney, I decided to take a smarter route, instead of putting my health in serious jeopardy.

I started at 190.2 pounds and had 5 days to lose 20 pounds.

Here’s a breakdown of the nutritional strategies we used — the same one Georges St Pierre and other elite MMA fighters used before a big fight. (Remember: we know this because Dr. Berardi was Georges’ nutrition coach).

STRATEGICALLY DECREASE WATER CONSUMPTION

Dropping weight fast is all about manipulating your water and sodium levels.

For a fighter who wants to cut weight quickly and safely, here’s how much water he would consume in the 5 days leading up to his weigh-in:

Sunday — 2 gallons

Monday — 1 gallon

Tuesday — 1 gallon

Wednesday — .5 gallons

Thursday — .25 gallons

Friday — No water till after weigh-in at 5PM.

As you can see, the amount of water starts high with two gallons and decreases with each day till he’s drinking hardly any water on Thursday and Friday.

This is to ensure their body gets into “flushing mode.”

By drinking lots of water early on, the fighter’s body will down-regulate aldosterone, a hormone that acts to conserve sodium and secrete potassium.

And when he suddenly reduces the amount of water he drinks in the middle and end of the week, his body will still be in flushing mode, meaning he’ll hit the bathroom to pee a lot even though he’s hardly drinking any water.

What happens when you excrete more fluid than you take in? Bingo! Rapid weight loss.

DON’T EAT MORE THAN 50 GRAMS OF CARBS PER DAY

Since one gram of carbohydrate pulls 2.7 grams of water into the body, it’s important for fighters to keep their carb intake low.

By doing this, they also deplete muscle glycogen (a source of energy) and keep their body in “flush mode”.

DON’T EAT FRUIT, SUGAR, OR STARCHES

These are carbs that should be avoided entirely while cutting.

EAT MEALS THAT CONTAIN A LOT OF PROTEIN AND FAT

Fighters have to eat something. Since they’re avoiding carbs, Dr. Berardi advises them to load up on high-quality protein like meats, eggs or a vegetarian sources of protein. It’s also the perfect opportunity to eat lots of leafy vegetables (like spinach) and cruciferous vegetables (like broccoli and cauliflower).

Georges St Pierre normally has his meals prepared by a private chef so he doesn’t even have to think about this stuff or make decisions. Recommended reading: here’s an entire article detailing GSP’s training diet.

DON’T EAT SALT

Since the body likes to hold on to sodium (which will hold on to water), dropping salt helps the fighter’s body flush water out.

CONSIDER A NATURAL DIURETIC

This step isn’t always necessary, but it can help when you’re getting down to the wire and still need to lose water. Opt for a natural diuretic like dandelion root, but wait until the last 2 days to use it.

TAKE HOT BATHS

We sweat a lot in hot environments. However, we sweat the most in hot, humid environments. Since hot water offers both heat and 100% humidity, fighters lose water quickly by taking hot baths and fully submerging everything but their nose for 10 minutes at a time.

SIT IN THE SAUNA

This is the “finishing touch” to flush the last few pounds of water and is only used on the last few days leading up to the weigh-in.

The Weight Cut Schedule

So if we take all of that and break it into a weekly plan, it looks like this:

SUNDAY

Carbs: Less than 50 grams per day. No fruit, starches, or sugars.

Protein and Fat: As much as you want in 3 meals

Water: 2 gallons

Salt: None

MONDAY

Carbs: Less than 50 grams per day. No fruit, starches, or sugars.

Protein and Fat: As much as you want in 3 meals

Water: 1 gallon

Salt: None

TUESDAY

Carbs: Less than 50 grams per day. No fruit, starches, or sugars.

Protein and Fat: As much as you want in 3 meals

Water: 1 gallon

Salt: None

WEDNESDAY

Carbs: Less than 50 grams per day. No fruit, starches, or sugars.

Protein and Fat: As much as you want in 3 meals

Water: 0.5 gallon

Salt: None

Sauna in afternoon

THURSDAY

Carbs: Less than 50 grams per day. No fruit, starches, or sugars.

Protein and Fat: As much as you want in 3 meals

Water: 0.25 gallon

Salt: None

Sauna in afternoon for 30 minutes, hot water bath at night

FRIDAY (WEIGH IN AT 6PM)

Carbs: Less than 50 grams per day. No fruit, starches, or sugars.

Protein and Fat: Eat 2 very small meals until weigh in

Water: None till weigh-in

Salt: None

Sauna until weight is met

(Note from Tim: You can download the entire weight-manipulation plan that Nate used here: Weight Loss and Rehydration Protocol.)

What It Feels Like To Cut Weight

Dry as a bone and none to happy about it.

So that all looks fine on paper. But what does it actually feel like to go through it?

One word: Hell.

I started my cut on Sunday at 190 pounds. Here’s a quick rundown of what it looked like.

SUNDAY — 190 POUNDS

I carry a gallon water jug with me wherever I go, which makes me feel ridiculous. But I have to make sure I get my two gallons of water in. Overall, though, I feel fine. It actually doesn’t seem that difficult. I’m not sure what the big deal is.

MONDAY — 187 POUNDS

I’m starting to miss the taste of salt. All of my food is bland. Now I’m drinking one gallon of water instead of two. Still not that bad.

TUESDAY — 182 POUNDS

I go to the bathroom 13 times in one day. A new record, I believe. And I’m still drinking a gallon of water.

WEDNESDAY — 179 POUNDS

Now I’m down to half gallon of water per day, which means I have to ration it out, which feels weird. I have a little with breakfast, a little with lunch, and a little with dinner. It’s definitely not enough water.

My mouth is dry. I feel dehydrated. I’m drinking straight espresso instead of drip coffee because it contains too much water.

In the evening, I try my first hot water bath. I generally enjoy baths, but this one’s different. My apartment’s water doesn’t get as hot as Dr. Berardi wants it to be — “hot enough to cause moderate pain but not burn your hand” — so I fill two pots and a kettle with water, put them on the stovetop until they boil, and pour them into the bath tub.

I get into the bath and immediately regret the decision.

10 minutes later, I’m lying naked in the middle of my living room trying to catch my breath. My eyes are rolled back into my head. My entire body feels like a giant heartbeat. I want to drink some water, but can’t.

This is starting to be less fun.

THURSDAY — 175 POUNDS

I am a zombie. A zombie who sits. Mostly in the sauna or on the couch.

In the sauna I watch beads of sweat collect on my skin. I see my precious water run down my arms and chest and legs and know that I won’t be able to replenish any of it when I get out.

I only have .25 gallons of water to last me the entire day. I’m ready for this to be over.

FRIDAY — 169.7 POUNDS AT 5PM

I look sick, very sick.

I spend the last 30 minutes before the weigh-in in the sauna and drink four sips of water throughout the entire day…

What Cutting Weight Does To Performance

OK, I’ll save you the rest of the journal entries and share some performance data.

While the fighters are tested in competition, no one has ever really documented how much strength or power they lose by dehydrating. (Or how much strength and power they regain after they get all their weight back.)

So we decided to check.

And it turns out, losing 20 pounds in 5 days is not conducive to being strong, powerful, or agile. (Surprise!) I couldn’t jump as high, lift as much weight, or run as fast or as long as I had just a week before during our baseline testing.

POWER TEST: VERTICAL JUMP

Baseline: 31.7 inches

After Dehydration: 27.6 inches

STRENGTH ENDURANCE TEST: 225-POUND BENCH PRESS

Baseline: 15 reps

After Dehydration: 5 reps

ENDURANCE TEST: MAX TIME ON TREADMILL

Baseline: 3 minutes and 14 seconds of sprinting at 8mph with 6% incline

After Dehydration: 1 minute and 28 seconds of sprinting at 8mph with 3% incline

It’s no wonder these guys try to gain all their weight back immediately after weighing in. They’d be screwed if they didn’t.

Speaking of which…

The Smart Way To Gain Weight Fast

Once UFC athletes cut weight and weigh-in, they’d never be able to perform at a top level. (Which is obvious from my less-than-stellar performance in the gym).

So what do they do next? They gain as much weight as humanly possible in 24 hours.

Here’s how they do it. (And how I did it, too.)

DRAMATICALLY INCREASE WATER INTAKE.

According to Dr. Berardi, the body can absorb only about 1 liter (2.2 pounds) of fluid — at maximum — in an hour. So he advises the fighters he works with to not to drink any more than that. Instead, he tells them to sip 1 liter (2.2 pounds) of water per hour.

However, the fighters won’t retain all that fluid. In fact, probably about 25% of it will be lost as urine.

So, here’s the math for someone like Georges St Pierre:

  • 9 liters (20 pounds) of water to get back.
  • 11 liters (25 pounds) of fluid between Friday weigh-in and Saturday weigh-in to get it all back.
  • 24 hours in which to do it. 8 of which he’ll be sleeping and 3 of which will be leading up to Saturday weigh-in.

This leaves 13 total hours for rehydration.

So as soon as Georges steps off the scale, he literally slams a liter of water and carries the bottle around with him, refilling it and draining it every hour until 3 hours before his fight. (There isn’t a bathroom in the cage.)

EAT AS MUCH CARBOHYDRATE (AND PROTEIN AND FAT) AS YOU WANT

Now’s also the time for fighters to load up on carbs and pull all the water they’re drinking back into their muscles. It also helps them feel more human and look less sickly. (Something I definitely experienced during my super-hydration phase.)

Dr. Berardi has his fighters eat a big meal directly after they weigh in. He doesn’t restrict calories — his athletes can eat as much as they want in that meal as long as it’s healthy food like lean meats, sweet potatoes, rice, and vegetables. (Gorging on junk food is a bad idea.)

Then on Saturday (fight day), Dr. Berardi has his fighters eat a satisfying amount of healthy food in a few small meals leading up to the fight.

ADD SALT TO EVERYTHING

Since sodium helps the body retain water, fighters are encouraged to add extra salt to their meals.

Here’s what my super rehydration schedule looked like:

The Weight-Gain Schedule

FRIDAY AFTER WEIGH-IN

Carbs: Eat as much as you want in one meal after weigh-in and testing

Protein and Fat: Eat as much as you want in one meal after weigh-in and testing

Rehydration Beverage: Drink 1 liter of water mixed with 1/2 scoop of carbohydrate/protein drink for every hour you’re awake. (We used Surge Workout Fuel.)

Salt: Salt food

SATURDAY

Carbs: Eat satisfying amount in four meals before weigh-in

Protein: Eat satisfying amount in four meals before weigh-in

Rehydration Beverage: Drink 1 liter of water mixed with 1/2 scoop of carbohydrate/protein drink for every hour you’re awake but stop 3 hours before testing.

What Gaining Weight Does To Performance

Back to normal-ish.

First things first: Personally, I ended up gaining 16.9 pounds back in 24 hours. Not bad.

But the real question: How much strength and power do you really gain when you super-hydrate?

Answer: A lot.

While I didn’t perform as well as my baseline (when I did all the performance tests before I started the experiment), I got really close. Which means that even though I put my body through a week of torture, it was almost 100%.

And I totally annihilated my performance numbers from just 24 hours before when I was sickly and dehydrated.

I ran faster and longer, jumped higher, and lifted more weight for more reps.

POWER TEST: VERTICAL JUMP

Baseline: 31.7 inches

After Dehydration: 27.6 inches

Re-hydrated: 29 inches

STRENGTH ENDURANCE TEST: 225-POUND BENCH PRESS

Baseline: 15 reps

After Dehydration: 5 reps

Rehydrated: 12 reps

ENDURANCE TEXT: MAX TIME ON TREADMILL

Baseline: 3 minutes and 14 seconds of sprinting at 8mph with 6% incline

After Dehydration: 1 minute and 28 seconds of sprinting at 8mph with 3% incline

Rehydrated: 3 minutes and 25 seconds of sprinting at 8mph with 6% incline

Lose Weight. Gain Weight. Fight.

For an MMA fighter, this is about the time when he’d be getting ready to step in the cage and fight, which means it’s about the same time you’d turn on the TV and see him in his corner, jumping up and down, getting psyched and ready for battle.

How much does he weigh?

It’s safe to say at least 10–30 pounds more than the weight class he’s fighting in.

And now you know the “secret” to extreme weight manipulation, something 99.9% of guys who watch MMA will never know.

Pretty cool, right?

This was a guest post by Nate Green that originally appeared on my site. For more about Nate and his writing, check out his blog.

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What Dr. Melinda Ratini Says:

Does It Work?

You will likely lose weight on any diet if you eat less than 910 calories a day. But losing 10 pounds in 3 days is both unlikely and unhealthy. To lose just 1 pound of body fat, you need to reduce your daily calories by about 500 a day for a whole week. That’s giving up 3,500 calories over the course of 7 days. To lose 10 pounds in 3 days would mean decreasing your calorie intake by 35,000 calories in just 3 days! The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends a slow and steady weight loss of no more than 1/2 to 1 pound a week. Otherwise you are losing muscle and water, as well as weakening your bones. You also are much more likely to gain it all back.

Is It Good for Certain Conditions?

The 3 Day Diet is low calorie, but it certainly is not low-fat, low-salt, or low cholesterol, so it is not a healthy option for most people with certain medical conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and high cholesterol. If you are overweight, weight loss is key to managing these conditions. But it should be a healthy and sustainable weight loss that includes healthy nutrition and exercise.

The Final Word

The 3 Day Diet is a very low-calorie diet that uses simple foods that are low cost and easy to find and prepare. A short-term weight loss is likely. But that is where the good news ends.

During the 3 days of the diet, balanced nutrition is lacking. Some of the foods that are recommended are high in salt and fat and would not be appropriate for people with certain medical problems like heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, or high cholesterol. You may not be getting enough vitamins, minerals, and fiber while you are on the diet. If you are taking medicine for your diabetes and want to try the 3-day diet, it’s important to talk with your doctor first about how to adjust your medicine.

Physical activity is an important part of a healthy lifestyle and helps prevent and treat heart disease and diabetes. But the 3 Day Diet does not address this at all. Nor does it teach you how to make changes in your diet that will allow for a lifetime of healthy eating.

Finally, such a restrictive diet takes the enjoyment out of eating. During the 3 days a week that you are following the plan, eating out or with others could be very tough. Also, boring diets are very hard to maintain. The temptation to overeat on the other 4 days of the week when you are not dieting will likely be high.

Remember, when it comes to weight loss, slow and steady really does win the race.

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