Big OverFeed Ruins Everything? Nope.

13

Replies

  • jlklem
    jlklem Posts: 259 Member
    Great thread, really great

    So here is a question I thought yesterday after eating 2000+ over maintenance calories yesterday. How much CAN you gain in one day? It know all about water and glycogen storage but I am wondering how many grams or muscle or fat can be gained in one day.

    We all know 1 pound = 3500 calories...so let’s say we over eat by that number, how much actually becomes stored in our cells?

    I assuming there is some research on this.

    John
  • cmriverside
    cmriverside Posts: 32,498 Member
    jlklem wrote: »
    Great thread, really great

    So here is a question I thought yesterday after eating 2000+ over maintenance calories yesterday. How much CAN you gain in one day? It know all about water and glycogen storage but I am wondering how many grams or muscle or fat can be gained in one day.

    We all know 1 pound = 3500 calories...so let’s say we over eat by that number, how much actually becomes stored in our cells?

    I assuming there is some research on this.

    John

    I don't think there really is.

    I mean, sure it's said 3500 = a pound, but even that is subject for debate.


    Don't sweat the small stuff. Log food, take a walk. Step on the body weight scale regularly (I suggest daily) so you become comfortable with the weight swings. I've been in maintenance for over a decade and I still do that.
  • NovusDies
    NovusDies Posts: 8,940 Member
    edited May 2019
    jlklem wrote: »
    Great thread, really great

    So here is a question I thought yesterday after eating 2000+ over maintenance calories yesterday. How much CAN you gain in one day? It know all about water and glycogen storage but I am wondering how many grams or muscle or fat can be gained in one day.

    We all know 1 pound = 3500 calories...so let’s say we over eat by that number, how much actually becomes stored in our cells?

    I assuming there is some research on this.

    John

    I don't know this for certain because I am not an expert but it is probably contained to the amount of fat you have eaten. So if in your single 3500 calorie over maintenance day you eat 120 grams of fat the most you would gain is about .25 pound but it is probably even a little less than that.

    The results of my own overfeed was a little surprising to me. I did expect to gain more than .5 pound of the 2.22 I projected to gain by calorie. I knew I would not gain 2.22 but I figured half of that was possible since I ate so heavily not just for one day but for five.

    My own theory is that the body doesn't shift gears that fast. I have been in a calorie deficit for a very long time with minimal breaks and I have had overfeed days on occasion but they have been regulated to normally no more than 1500 calories over maintenance.

    For people losing I don't think the gain is the issue as much as the lack of loss. I erased a lot of deficit days in what I did. I was prepared for that to happen but it is not something I would do again anytime soon because it results in wasted effort. A little wasted effort is okay but that was quite a bit.
  • jlklem
    jlklem Posts: 259 Member
    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    jlklem wrote: »
    Great thread, really great

    So here is a question I thought yesterday after eating 2000+ over maintenance calories yesterday. How much CAN you gain in one day? It know all about water and glycogen storage but I am wondering how many grams or muscle or fat can be gained in one day.

    We all know 1 pound = 3500 calories...so let’s say we over eat by that number, how much actually becomes stored in our cells?

    I assuming there is some research on this.

    John

    Maybe it's just my reading comprehension, but I'm not sure I'm understanding what you're asking.

    When we over-eat, we don't necessarily store as many calories as one would think (the video posted up-thread, top of page 2, about the massive over-eating by a fit woman, goes into some of the details). Part of this is that some of us (don't know if all) unconsciously/unintentionally get more active/twitchy/hotter and burn a bit more than normal. I suspect this might be somewhat individual (probably there's a bell curve/normal distribution?). (I think that because some people seem to report significant TDEE increases as they go to maintenance calories, and others seem not to see much effect - but this could be about their attentiveness and logging accuracy, even if my perception of their self-reports is correct.)

    There's an open question in my mind about whether it may be possible to eat in a quantity very much beyond what our individual body is accustomed to and have that result in our bodies passing more through than one might expect because of limitations in ability to absorb it fast enough. I don't recall the video talking about that, and I haven't seen any relevant research that I can recall. It's idle speculation on my part. I'm not talking about eating a few hundred over maintenance: I'm talking about thousands over maintenance. Maybe it would even make a difference what was over-eaten, dunno.

    I'd also make a distinction involving weight on the scale. The weight gain I see unavoidably includes water and disgestive contents. So, I've seen a "gain" of at least 4-5 pounds on the scale from one day to the next, even at my relatively moderate size (5'5", weight mid-130s pounds). On the flip side, I specifically recall "losing" 6 pounds from one morning weigh in to the next. Very nearly all of that is water & digestive contents.

    Clearly, you're not going to gain more fat than the number of calories over (true, not estimated) maintenance calories, because you can't make something out of nothing.

    So, I think the number of calories over (true) maintenance would be an upper limit on fat gain, but I don't know what the lower bound might be, or what mechanisms might shape it. It would be fun to know, but my interest in all of this is primarily practical, so knowing how my behavior affects my weight, short and long term, is the key thing, and n=1 experiments are helpful.

    And I'll go back to the point of the thread: People on MFP regularly freak out over a day when they eat a few hundred or a thousand over their goal calories (without even giving thought to whether it's over their maintenance calories!). They shouldn't, as long as it's an isolated/rare thing (beyond figuring out why it happened, and adjusting plans going forward, if it wasn't a positive choice once they think it over). It's really no big deal, even it over maintenance calories . . . as long as it isn't a frequently recurring thing.

    I can't think of any mechanism that would lead to a home-scaled-noticeable amount of muscle gain over a 24 hour period, nor any mechanism that would lose much muscle that fast (without surgery or some kind of horrifying medical condition). Consequently, I don't think it's even realistic/interesting to talk about muscle changes in terms of anything shorter than weeks. JMO.

    Fun question you're asking, though.

    To honest in all my research I have never seen anything that stated weight gain per day. Muscle and fat is gained through eating, I really wonder how much per day can really be made part of our body (not water). People always talk over a few weeks they notice a gain, what would that equate to per day? I would assume a good chuck of over eating is expelled as waste but I bet that depends on the type of food you eat. For example red meat can sit in your digestive track for days....does mean it leads to more weight gain?

    It’s like fitness. I train a ton, but even after 100 mile solo hard bike rides then next morning I am not sure if I have made even one real positive adaptation at a cellular level...
  • smoofinator
    smoofinator Posts: 635 Member
    Bump
  • bjdavidson964
    bjdavidson964 Posts: 266 Member
    whmscll wrote: »
    I needed to see this post today, thank you! I have been over my calories most days for the past week (yesterday by 500+) and while I KNOW to get back on track and not beat myself up about it, sometimes easier said than done. Off to the gym!

    I'm there with you! I just got over one setback (took me almost 2 weeks). This weekend I'm going to New Orleans, and want to enjoy all the things ... the sights, the sounds, the food, the drinks! Really don't want to derail again though ...ugh! Gonna just do the best I can, and get back in the saddle upon my return. Hoping for the best! Hugs to you!
  • NovusDies
    NovusDies Posts: 8,940 Member
    whmscll wrote: »
    I needed to see this post today, thank you! I have been over my calories most days for the past week (yesterday by 500+) and while I KNOW to get back on track and not beat myself up about it, sometimes easier said than done. Off to the gym!

    I'm there with you! I just got over one setback (took me almost 2 weeks). This weekend I'm going to New Orleans, and want to enjoy all the things ... the sights, the sounds, the food, the drinks! Really don't want to derail again though ...ugh! Gonna just do the best I can, and get back in the saddle upon my return. Hoping for the best! Hugs to you!

    Try to think of it as never leaving the saddle in the first place. Tell yourself that enjoying a trip like the one you are about to take is part of your plan.
  • bjdavidson964
    bjdavidson964 Posts: 266 Member
    Love it! Going to enjoy all the things ... in moderation! Gonna focus on 'maintaining' this weekend and get back to 'weight loss' mode afterwards.
  • smoofinator
    smoofinator Posts: 635 Member
    BUMPITY bump bump
  • LivingtheLeanDream
    LivingtheLeanDream Posts: 13,345 Member
    edited November 2019
    Happy Thanksgiving to our US friends :smile:

    Unfortunately the refeed thing does have an impact on me. I'm not a binge eater, or do much over eating in general but if I have a few days of eating 500-600 calories over my TDEE I can expect to see that have an impact on the scales for up to 10 days and even then I will have some true fat gain (tiny gain but still a gain). I'm petite 5ft 2/50yrs and peri menopausal (that might be part of the issue). So I go back to deficit until the gain is gone, except it can take a month to lose. A few years ago I could go on a two week cruise, eat slightly above my TDEE every day for those 2 weeks, gain around 2lbs in fat and when I was back to normal eating for a few weeks my weight would be back to normal. Whatever is going on with my body now means this is no longer happening :/ and it seems twice the effort is necessary.