Weight Loss & Yo-Yo Effect

Have you ever tried to lose weight or seen others do so? How many of you succeeded or had seen others shrinking in half? Everyone knows an example or few. In the way it’s quite easy – eat less, move more, shrink down… There’s another question, how many success stories do you know when people have stayed slim after losing the nastier half of themselves? Probably the number of examples known go down to a minimum, most likely to a total ZERO. Why is it so?

Weight loss results maintenance issues

Can you maintain the results that you’ve achieved during your weight loss regime? Sure! However, certain things have to be taken to consideration and can not be ignored. Let’s see why yo-yo effect exists in weight loss and what needs to be done to prevent it.

Wrong but popular weight loss

London Weight Loss

The classical situation when someone decides to lose weight – buying a pair of trainers, throwing all sweets and junk food away from a fridge (or eating them for “the last” time) and with a ton of dedication starting the weight loss, which essentially consists of jogging few times a week and severely restricted eating (not sure how strict the diet should be or if the cucumber/apple menu is ok but the massive desire to lose weight forces the action). At first everything works. Weight goes down like crazy – 5 or more kg a week and clothes are becoming loser! It’s quite hard to bear the constant hunger but the weight loss is well worth it. Another 5kg, 10kg, 15kg, 20kg down… The person starts to look really skinny but at the same time still flabby and fat around the waist… The hunger is unbearable, cravings for sweets, chocolate and fatty foods are killing you slowly… Sounds familiar..? What’s next? The iron will snaps – green light switches on for all the junk food that was dreamed about for the last couple months… The weight balloons back up in no time with an extra as a prize for the sacrifices made… It’s totally demoralizing, all the will is gone, body is fat and misery takes over – typical scenario of a drastic, wrong weight loss

What triggers yo-yo effect in weight loss?

After weight loss people gain all the weight back and even more because mistakes are being made:

  • Wrong eating.

Although junk food is skipped from the menu and there’s much less food eaten, there’s no accurate amount of daily calories established (as less as possible is NOT the correct amount). Just the fact that obviously “bad” food is avoided doesn’t mean the diet is correct (there can be too much of a “good” food too). Also, what is a “good” and “bad” food? None of food is a poison, it’s the matter of how much, when and at what circumstances you eat it. Ultimately, wrong timing of meals and too low calories let the cravings to sneak in and that kills any long term results.

  • Too much muscle wasted.

The last thing people care about when trying to lose weight is muscle. Especially women get extra reckless with their weight loss. Why would they need muscle – the skinnier the better… This is a critical mistake. It’s very simple – muscles use energy a.k.a. burn calories. Following the logic it appears that the more muscle you waste while losing weight the less calories your body burns. If you lose 40kg and half or more of it is muscle you’re in deep, deep, very deep trouble. Your metabolism drops significantly. Staying on crash diet doesn’t make you lose any more weight, if you eat just a little more the weight (fat) starts going back up… Will you know how to gain the muscle back (the whole wasted 20kg without gaining fat back) to recover your metabolism?

  • Wrong training or no training at all.

While losing weight your body is very willing to use muscle for energy due to a deficit of calories. Therefore, resistance training is essential to stimulate muscles. The typical mistake made – solely running or other cardio done but no weight/resistance training – NO muscle stimulation to maintain it.

The correct and lasting weight loss

Let’s correct the mistakes above:

  • Correct eating for weight loss.

You will still need to eat way less than back in the day when your weight has been constantly going up. But here’s the major difference – daily calorific intake will have to be calculated specifically to your lean body mass, genetic type, age and lifestyle. The calculated amount of food will have to consist of the correct food choices and be distributed at the right portion sizes and time intervals. Cravings can not be ignored (although, there’s significantly less chance for them to creep in when the diet is correct) – controlled amount of sweets, chocolate, junk food etc. can be a rare exception of the regular menu.

  • Correct weight loss training.

For many people it comes as a surprise that the training to do for weight loss is resistance/weight training (cardio should just accompany weight training). A simple comparison of resistance/weight training vs cardio training effects when training for weight loss –

Cardio training:

Cardio training uses energy (burns calories) during a training session and shortly afterwards (oxygen compensation).

That’s it.

Weight training:

Lactic acid resistance training (minimal rest, long sets and big volume) can burn up to 1000+ calories per 45 minutes workout (even more if you mix it with high intensity cardio training) .

Heavy weights resistance training does muscle damage which takes 2-3 possibly 4 days to recover. Here’s what muscle recovery does to your metabolic rate. 1 kg of muscle at rest uses 12 calories a day, while muscle affected by heavy resistance training consumes up to 20 calories per 1 kg each day. This means that 10 kg of muscle lost, equals to your metabolism using up to  200 calories less daily (maintain the muscle and you keep it). Add an intensive lactic acid resistance training and you burn another 400 calories (estimating on a safe side). For example, if one day you do heavy weights training then the next day – intensive lactic acid resistance training (or mix them on the same workout) and maintain those 10 kg of muscle instead of losing them, you can eat 2 big sandwiches extra (worth 600 calories) and still get the same calorific deficit in comparison to someone who neglects weight training. It takes around 90 minutes of cardio training to match the use of 600 calories with no effect for the next day.

Also, lactic acid resistance training triggers growth hormone production (due to lactic acid accumulation and catabolic state supplemented with amino acids) resulting in muscle stimulation and fatty acids (fat) release from fat cells, which makes fat burn much even more effective. It takes 40 minutes to achieve such fat burn efficiency if cardio is done on its own with no resistance lactic acid training.

Online weight loss expert personal trainer Rolandas has 12 years of personal training experience in east London behind him. He insures the correct weight loss process and further healthy weight maintenance, contact Rolandas’PT4U to book your free weight loss consultation.


Rolandas Malinauskas is online personal trainer with 12 years personal training experience in east London and decorated natural bodybuilder – Natural Physique Association (NPA) Mike Williams Classic 2011 Men’s Lightweight Champion, NPA Mike Williams Classic 2011 Men's Overall Vice-champion and NPA British Championship 2011 Men’s Lightweight Vice-champion. Rolandas has been dedicated to natural bodybuilding for over 18 years now. 3 out of 12 years of personal training career Rolandas has been consulting on one of the biggest schemes of Exercise on GP Referral in London (Islington), allowing him to treat lower back, knee pain, cardiovascular problems, arthritis etc.