As you keep raising your level of carbohydrate intake (and even if you don't), you'll notice a slowdown in the rate at which you lose weight. How soon you notice those changes is another major tipoff as to how great your metabolic resistance to weight loss is. During Induction (20 grams of carbohydrate), you may have been losing 5 pounds a week. In the first week to ten days some of that loss was water weight, since the program has a strong diuretic effect. If you continued doing Induction for a few more weeks, your weekly weight loss probably slowed down, as you were losing primarily fat, perhaps up to 3 pounds a week.
A couple of weeks later you begin OWL, and the first week you start eating an additional 5 grams a day, taking you to 25 grams. You are now losing 21/2 pounds a week. Within a couple of weeks, during which you add another 10 grams daily of carbohydrate, you might drop down to a weekly loss of just under 2 pounds. And so on.
You may find that you can go up to 40 or 45 grams of carbohydrate a day-or even more if you are young, male and active-and still lose 1 pound a week. This would put you at an average level of metabolic resistance.
On the other hand, if you chose to leave Induction with 30 or more pounds still to lose, you may not be happy with a major slowdown. In this case, I would urge adding carbohydrate very slowly, staying for two or more weeks at each 5gram incremental level. In either case, whether you are adding 5 grams each week or every other week or even less often, you'll increase your carbohydrate consumption steadily. When your weight loss begins to become imperceptible, you'll back down from that level.
The rate at which you want to lose is up to you. As long as the pounds are disappearing, and you're heading steadily toward your goal, why worry? Let's suppose, though, that you are rapidly coming to the conclusion that the extra 10 grams of carbohydrate don't mean as much to you as the extra pound per week of weight loss does. You may opt to stay at a lower level of carbohydrate and be satisfied with that knowledge. An additional fact-true of any weight loss program-is that the rate of loss will also slow down as you get closer to your goal weight.
That's why it's very important to plan to take two or more months to shed the last 5 to 10 pounds in the third phase-Pre-Maintenance. Pre-Maintenance is the last lap before the finish line of reaching your goal weight. It is mandatory if permanent weight loss is to be achieved, which I will explain to you in Chapter 16.
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