Many people won’t believe you can lose 10 pounds in just 7 days, but I’m going to give you a step-by-step guide on how to do exactly that.
While this clearly isn’t a long-term diet, I understand that life often throws you a curveball and requires you to look your absolute best in an extremely short amount of time.
Whether it’s a day out at the pool/beach, a vacation, date or even a wedding, sometimes you are going to have to pull out all the stops to look your best.
Of course, these aren’t sustainable tactics that you should use for months, but they are perfectly fine to use as a one-off to give you a kick-start or get you ready for a last minute event.
In this article, I’ll provide a blueprint to help you lose 10 pounds in 7 days that isn’t based around a stupid juice diet or other fad you may see in the magazines.
How To Lose 10LB In 7 Days: Begin by Reducing Calories
When attempting to lose weight, the number one thing you’ll need to do is begin reducing the amount of calories you are consuming.
That’s not necessarily something that many people want to hear but it is the absolute truth.
The fact is, in order to lose weight, you’ll need to be expending more calories than you consume. You can do this either through exercising more or by reducing the amount of calories you are consuming, but in the case of losing weight rapidly, it has to be both.
Typically when dieting over the long term, the usual suggested reduction in the amount of calories you are consuming is 25% from your normal maintenance calorie intake.
For example, if you were eating 2500 calories per day, you’d need to reduce that number to 2000 per day.
However, since this time frame of weight loss is so short, I would suggest increasing that deficit to around 30-35%. For example, if you regularly consume 2500 calories per day, you’d reduce that amount to 1500-1750.
While doing this long term is not advised, reducing your calories meaningfully for a short duration may well provide you with the stimulus you need to drop weight rapidly.
How To Lose 10LB In 7 Days: Increase Food Quality
Since you’re on such a short time frame, there will be very little room for indulging in anything but healthy, single ingredient foods.
When your are trying to lose a considerable amount of weight in such a short time frame, your goal will be to focus on drastically increasing your lean protein and vegetable intake and eliminating most other high calorie foods.
Studies have shown that protein intake directly increases your metabolic rate. The structure of proteins makes them difficult to breakdown, requiring extra energy (1, 2).
Additionally because of their structure, the slowed process of breaking them down increases your feelings of fullness, which will allow you to eat fewer calories with minimal effort.
Finally, the additional protein and amino acids will help protect you from muscle breakdown, which can occur when you drastically cut diets.
Vegetables are also unique because they provide a large volume of food to their calorie ratio. For example, one bowl of salad may only be 150 calories vs. 700 calories of pasta.
This means that you can consume a large amount of vegetables with little impact, calorically speaking. By eating large amounts of vegetables, and thus fiber, you’ll be able to consume fewer calories while feeling satisfied from your meals (3).
Not to mention, you’ll be consuming large amount of vitamins and essential minerals, which are even more important on a calorie restrictive diet.
How to Lose 10LB in 7 Days: Start To Cut Out Carbs
Restricting carbs is probably the easiest way to drop weight and water quickly.
As mentioned earlier, you’ll need to restrict calories significantly over the course of the diet week. However, chances are the macronutrient you usually consume the most is carbohydrates.
By significantly reducing the macronutrient you consume most, you can effectively reduce the amount of calories you are consuming – makes sense, right?
Additionally, carbohydrate intake can result in retaining excess water. When you consume carbohydrate, the body converts it into a form of blood sugar called glucose. If this glucose is not needed for energy, it will be stored in the muscle in a different form called glycogen.
Interestingly, research has revealed that glycogen is accompanied by water. In fact, one study showed that for every gram of glycogen stored in the muscle, at least 3 grams of water were stored with it (4).
Therefore, if you go low-carb for 3-4 days, you can easily lose 5LB in just water and glycogen alone, plus some extra from fat and digestive waste, of course.
How to Lose 10LB in 7 Days: Try Intermittent Fasting
While intermittent fasting is not for everyone, it can be a very easy and effective approach to rapidly lose weight.
Research shows that intermittent fasting may be an effective way to reduce calories without really trying (5).
By reducing the amount of time you have to eat in the day, you simply end up not being able to consume as many calories as you normally do, resulting in weight loss.
Additionally, studies have shown that fasting for extended periods of time might increase levels of catecholamines, hormones that affect the release of fatty acids in the blood for metabolism (6, 7).
By fasting, and thus increasing levels of catecholamines, you can potentially increase the amount of fatty acids that are released from fat tissue and then metabolized. In effect, you’re ensuring that the weight you lose is from fat tissue.
How to Lose 10LB in 7 Days: Use These 3 Workout Methods
While nutrition changes are essential, using exercise as a tool will be just as important.
Rather than simply jumping on the treadmill, I suggest using a combination of weight lifting, cardio and HIIT training.
Studies have shown that using weight training can allow you to burn a significant amount of calories in and out of the gym. Using exercises that require multiple muscle groups will require a large amount of energy, thus enabling you to lose weight.
Additionally, HIIT is a form of exercise that is touted for its fat loss benefits. Using HIIT burns calories for an extended period of time after the training session, meaning you can lose weight even when you’re not exercising (8).
Steady state cardio, on the other hand allows for a large amount of fat to be metabolized during the training session. At first glance, that may not sound as beneficial as HIIT.
However, if you complete the low intensity cardio after your HIIT session, you’ll be able to metabolize even more body fat.
Interestingly, HIIT cardio also increases levels of catecholamines in the blood. By completing a HIIT session before your normal cardio, the increase in catecholamines will increase the amount of fatty acids available to be metabolized during the low intensity cardio (9).
In effect, this combination will allow you to rapidly burn fat both during exercise and for hours afterwards.
Here is a great way to incorporate these methods into your exercise program:
- Complete a full body workout, using weights and compound (multi-joint) exercises such as squats and deadlifts.
- HIIT session comprised of 5 x 30 second sprints with 120 seconds rest.
- Low intensity bike or walk on treadmill for 30 minutes.
Using compound movements in addition to cardio of varying intensities will allow you to expend an immense amount of calories, causing rapid weight loss.
(Related: You can download my research proven advanced HIIT and Metabolic Resistance Training workouts here.)
How to Lose 10LB in 7 Days: Extra Techniques & Tricks
Along with these fundamentals discussed above, here are a few other tricks I want to share with you:
- Take 200mg of caffeine twice per day; this will help with energy, fat loss and help reduce water retention.
- Take dandelion supplement, which will also help drop water and reduce bloating.
- Slowly reduce water intake (keep it at a safe level, of course), helping you also drop fluid and appear leaner.
- Reduce high fiber foods that are hard to digest, such as beans/legumes and whole grains. These can take a long time to digest and increase short-term weight as they transported through the digestive tract. They can also cause bloating.
- Follow a FODMAP food list, which eliminates foods that may cause bloating and intolerances. The last thing you want is a bad stomach, water retention or bloating 2 days before your big day, right? Play it safe and keep to the foods you know are easily digested.
- Drink diet soda and chew sugar-free gum. This will help reduce hunger, which is probably going to be pretty strong if you are quickly cutting calories.
- Take a digestive / colon cleansing aid such as this supplement, which will help reduce digestive bulk and quickly reduce unwanted waste.
So, There’s How You Can Lose 10LB in 7 Days
While difficult, it’s not impossible; losing 10 pounds in just 7 days can be accomplished if you follow a solid protocol that focuses on fat loss, removing glycogen, excess water and digestive bulk.
In order to effectively drop weight in such a short amount of time, it is advisable to adhere to the following steps:
- Reduce calories meaningfully, up to 30% less than maintenance calories.
- Increase protein and vegetable intake to increase calories and feel full from meals.
- Reduce carbohydrate and excess fiber as an effective means of restricting calories while avoiding water retention.
- Try intermittent fasting as an easy way to decrease calories.
- Use full body, weighted exercises in addition to HIIT and low intensity cardio.
- Try the other advanced tips such as using supplements to drop water, as mentioned above.
Using this blueprint can put you in a prime position to rapidly drop weight in an extremely short amount of time. Remember, this is not a long-term fix or an excuse to yo-yo diet.
It’s a tool for special occasions. Do I recommend it long term? Definitely not, which we clarified at the start. Is this method still focusing on the key nutritional principles, yes and it’s far better than letting you go on a crazy fad diet or rapid juice diet!
Be sensible and remember, always build a sustainable long-term plan, like we do in the 90 Day Bikini plan.
- Westerterp, K. R. (2004). Diet induced thermogenesis. Nutrition & metabolism, 1(1), 5.
- Veldhorst, M., Smeets, A. J. P. G., Soenen, S., Hochstenbach-Waelen, A., Hursel, R., Diepvens, K., … & Westerterp-Plantenga, M. (2008). Protein-induced satiety: effects and mechanisms of different proteins. Physiology & behavior, 94(2), 300-307.
- Lefranc-Millot, C., Macioce, V., Guérin-Deremaux, L., Lee, A. W., & Cho, S. S. (2012). Fiber and Satiety. Dietary Fiber and Health, 83.
- Fernández-Elías, V. E., Ortega, J. F., Nelson, R. K., & Mora-Rodriguez, R. (2015). Relationship between muscle water and glycogen recovery after prolonged exercise in the heat in humans. European journal of applied physiology, 115(9), 1919-1926.
- Heilbronn, L. K., Smith, S. R., Martin, C. K., Anton, S. D., & Ravussin, E. (2005). Alternate-day fasting in nonobese subjects: effects on body weight, body composition, and energy metabolism. The American Jjournal of Clinical Nutrition, 81(1), 69-73.
- Chan, J. L., Mietus, J. E., Raciti, P. M., Goldberger, A. L., & Mantzoros, C. S. (2007). Short‐term fasting‐induced autonomic activation and changes in catecholamine levels are not mediated by changes in leptin levels in healthy humans. Clinical endocrinology, 66(1), 49-57.
- Leiter, L. A., Grose, M. A. R. K., Yale, J. F., & Marliss, E. B. (1984). Catecholamine responses to hypocaloric diets and fasting in obese human subjects. American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism, 247(2), E190-E197.
- Tremblay, A., Simoneau, J. A., & Bouchard, C. (1994). Impact of exercise intensity on body fatness and skeletal muscle metabolism. Metabolism, 43(7), 814-818.
- Bracken RM, Linnane DM, Brooks S (2009)Plasma catecholamine and epinephrine responses to brief intermittent maximal intensity exercise. Amino Acids. 36: 209-217.