Like many things, there are some misconceptions around what can be expected when completing a reverse diet that we find are important to touch on.
Misconception 1: it's a weight loss diet
Many people think they will lose weight and get leaner on a reverse diet, which is often not true and in line with what a reverse diet is. This can be common towards the start, but this period should be short-lived if you are reverse dieting properly.
There are a few reasons why someone may experience weight loss.
The person is more consistent with their diet and eats fewer calories than before.
They are more accurate and diligent with tracking their diet.
They are more active due to having more energy and end up burning more calories.
They are starting the reverse diet too low and are still in a calorie deficit.
Their metabolism is speeding up faster than the pace their calories are increasing. If you outpace the increases, you should be increasing calories more quickly because your body is telling you that you can. Don't worry, the coach handles all of this for you!
To set proper expectations for your reverse diet, you can and will likely gain weight during the process. Think of this time as a short-term investment you are making for your long-term success.
Misconception 2: it will be quick
Patience and trust in the coach are among the most challenging aspects of a reverse diet. It's hard to stay patient when you just want to lose weight, but it's essential for your long-term success.
You can't just increase your calories a bunch overnight and not expect to gain weight. Reverse dieting keeps the calorie increases small enough to where your body can adapt by increasing its metabolism and avoiding unnecessary weight gain.
All this to say that you should trust the coach and the process of reverse dieting. Be prepared to invest a reasonable amount of time in doing this right.
Misconception 3: everyone should reverse diet
If you have a normal metabolism, you don't need to reverse diet. Someone should consider reverse dieting if they have a suppressed metabolism and want to improve it. A suppressed metabolism can happen from restricting calories or yo-yo dieting. The longer those two things are happening, the more your body adapts by slowing down its metabolism.
Misconception 4: it will always increase maintenance calories
Someone with a normal metabolism isn't going to increase maintenance as much as someone with a suppressed one. Having realistic expectations given your starting place is really important.
You can't just increase your maintenance calories indefinitely. How your body responds is out of your control. All you can do is be patient, follow the recommendations, and trust the process. Your body will show you how the process is going, and the coach will let you know when your maintenance calories are good.