Transform App FAQ: HELP!!! I’ve been working my butt off, following my meal plan, and the scale’s not moving! What do I do?

If you ever step on the scale for your weekly weigh in and your weight has plateaued or gone up, please don’t freak out! This can be very common, so you’re not alone!

If you’ve been following your TRANSFORM program closely, chances are it is NOT fat gain! Simply identify one of the 4 physiological reasons why this is happening, then implement the solution immediately!

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REASON 1: Muscle swelling

Muscle swelling occurs after each and every resistance training workout as the body’s response to trauma to the muscle tissue. The amount of swelling depends upon the intensity of the workout and can be from 1 to 5 pounds of water. The higher the intensity, the more the swelling! This lasts for several days after the workout, then subsides.

If your muscles are chronically sore and your jeans are tighter, your muscles may be swollen with water!

This is the NUMBER ONE reason why most people see a slight gain on the scale the first week they begin resistance training. This is also the reason why many people who over-exercise tend to plateau in weight too. The constant stress releases cortisol, which also leads to more swelling and water retention.

SOLUTION:

  • Reduce the intensity of your training and give your body several days to adjust.
  • Drink an extra quart of water every day.
  • Get a light massage to assist the lymphatic system with drainage.
  • Get more sleep. Sleep allows your body to rest, relax, and RELEASE!

In the meantime, keep your nutrition, hydration, and cardio Accelerators dialed in, and you will see your body start dropping nicely within several days.

REASON 2: Sodium

Sodium is a necessary electrolyte to keep us hydrated. However, sodium is also a magnet for water, and consuming too much of it can lead to excess water retention. Since a gallon of water weighs eight pounds, the excess sodium holds the water in your body for up to 3 days, easily increasing your bodyweight from 1 to 15 pounds!!

If you have recently consumed high sodium foods (like fast food or restaurant food) in the last day or two, you may be retaining several pounds of water!

SOLUTION:

  • Reduce sodium intake by avoiding most fast food and restaurant prepared meals and sauces.
  • Consume low sodium foods for several days and see how fast the numbers drop on the scale. It’s all water retention!
  • Drink an extra quart of water every day.

REASON 3: Hormonal fluctuations

Women can retain fluid during their monthly cycles, and this should last no longer than a week. The fluctuations in hormones can cause unwanted bloating that can significantly affect bodyweight. Other hormonal issues, such as ADH (Vasopressin) or Aldosterone fluctuations from alcohol intake or a day of dehydration can throw off your body’s water balance, causing a massive “water wave” of retention for up to 3 days AFTERWARD. Thyroid issues and certain medications can also play a role in the way your body reacts to your transformation program.

SOLUTION:

  • PLEASE consult your physician before and during your transformation. Get regular check ups and blood work from a doctor. Not only is this wonderful prevention for detecting health issues early on, but your doctor can also determine if hormones are an issue. You may require medication.

REASON 4: Consuming too many calories

Finally, if you are consuming as many calories as you are burning or more, your body is going to maintain its current bodyweight or even slowly gain weight. Ask yourself these 3 questions:

  1. Am I following my nutrition plan portions?
  2. Have I been emotionally eating?
  3. Am I doing my full duration of Accelerators?

If you have been following the program closely, then let us automatically adjust your program for results!

SOLUTION:

  • When the troubleshooting page appears at your official weekly Progress Check, select for us to adjust your current plan. We will automatically shift your calories down and switch your carb cycle to get you faster weight loss results!!
  • Our logic is designed to start your program at the highest possible calorie intake possible to still get you results. THEN, every time your progress slows, we can step your calories down and alter cycles to increase the rate of your weight loss results.
  • This process prevents severe metabolic slow down and feelings of deprivation and restriction, allowing you to eat MORE of the food you enjoy and still achieve the results you want. This is the FUTURE of weight loss!

There’s no need to beat yourself up about that number on the scale. If you’re following your program, you WILL achieve your goals!

Xoxo,

Heidi

Related reading:

A Weight Loss Win: It’s More Than That Number on the Scale
It Really Is All About the Promise
Reignite Your Fire to Achieve Your Goals!
6 Secrets to Success: How to Reach Your Goals This Year
Our Transformation Mantras + Top Tips for Success
What’s Your Excuse?


42 Comments

  1. Kara - July 25, 2018

    HEllo. I’ve recently downloaded the app as a last ditch effort. I’ve live my entire adult life wanting to be skinny. I achieved that. I ate low fat low carb and low calorie. It’s only been this past year that I have put on weight and can’t lose it at 45. I’m about 15 pounds heavier than usual. I have been doing HIIT training the last 3 months 5 days a week and I eat 100% clean. No sugar, processed food or sodas. I follow macros on my fitness pal. I haven’t lost a pound and have not built ANY muscle. No change in clothes or body composition. I hired a trainer who had my macros super high. I trusted the process and gained fat fast!!! I was irritable, wry tired all the time and bloated. I could barely get up energy to workout. I was out of breath during workouts. I stopped that. I feel better but still can’t lose. I’m not sure if it’s because my body isn’t use to the amount of food, the carbs or what. Help!!! I’ve looked at carb cycling thinking maybe after years of restricting that would be a better option. However the transformation app has my macros just as high as the trainer. Should I be slowly k creasing my carbs and macros so my body can adjust?? I need guidance. Every person and body is different so any help would be appreciated

    • Team Powell - July 26, 2018

      Hi Kara: Welcome to the app! It is VERY common to be surprised at the amount of food you should be eating to reach your goals! Most people have the misconception (and “old school” mentality) that you have to starve yourself to reach your goals—this is not the case at all. And if you have been following a calorie-restricted plan, it will cause your weight loss to stall/plateau, and it can make it difficult for you to add muscle also. For our approach, we start you at the highest calorie intake possible to boost your metabolism and prime your body, then if you EVER plateau, the program will adjust your portions in a “step-down” manner to maximize your results and keep you losing. This is transformation the way it SHOULD be done! Your meal plan is totally customized to you and your goals, and so you can feel confident that if you eat all of that delicious food, you will achieve your goals! We just ask you to trust in the process for 8-12 weeks, when asked to take an adjustment to make sure you’re following all of the troubleshooting steps that will pop up with that adjustment option (and if you are, then take the adjustment, which will decrease your macros), and stick to the plan the best you can. You can totally do this!

  2. Michell - July 24, 2018

    HELP! I keep gaining weight. I have been on the plan for 30 days and have gained 5-7lbs since starting and I’m 100% sure it’s not muscle by my BF and the way my clothes fit. I have followed the macros VERY carefully and logged every drop and morsel that have crossed my lips. What I haven’t been able to do it the 30 minutes workout with the 30-40min accelerators each day. I’m able most days to get the weight training workouts in with an additional 10 minute Tabata on the bike afterward.

    I love the app and the idea of all my nutrition and workout in one place, so I wanted to give it the full 84 days but I don’t know if this is because my setting of being “experienced” that the accelerators are so long? I haven’t found if theres a place to adjust my macros/carbs if you realize you don’t have an an hour and a half to workout each day? Would hate start this all over, but I also don’t want to gain another 10-14lbs.

    • Team Powell - July 25, 2018

      Hi Michell: Has the app asked you to take an adjustment? When you do your weekly progress update, and if you’ve gained weight or hit a plateau, the app will prompt you to take an adjustment. You are fine to take this adjustment, and it will adjust your macros down. One question: Have you been drinking all of your water every day? We recommend 1/2 your body weight in ounces plus any sweat out during your workouts, and drinking enough water can really make a difference in your progress. It’s also a good idea to take your measurements each week when you do your weigh-in. And when you do take an adjustment, give your body a few weeks to adjust to this new level of macros before being tempted to take another adjustment. Let us know how it’s going!

    • Michell - July 30, 2018

      Hi Team Powell,
      Thank you for the reply. I have been drinking my water, but the app has not asked about an “adjustment”. Could you please tell me where would find this option?

    • Team Powell - July 30, 2018

      Hi Michell: You’re doing awesome! If your weight plateaus or goes up, after a certain point, the app will ask you if you’d like to take an adjustment and will also offer some troubleshooting tips to go through before deciding to take an adjustment. Hope that helps! 🙂

  3. Anna - June 30, 2018

    Hello,

    I’m also new to the app. I have a question about cholesterol. I was recently told I have high cholesterol. I need to loose weight to lower it. I’m not morbidly obese. I weigh 149lbs. Obviously I will loose weight while following the program but I’m wondering about fat intake. If I do a general macro count it’s a 40, 30, 30 ratio. I noticed your program has me set for a much higher intake of fat and lower carbs on cycle days. If I stick to the ratios on the app and I’m eating the higher quantity of fat will that cause a problem with lowering my cholesterol? I’ll loose weight I really need my cholesterol to drop. Do I need to adjust in a different way or just follow the plan? Thanks so much!!

    • Team Powell - July 2, 2018

      Hi Anna: Great questions! Often, high cholesterol can be caused, in part, by eating too many unhealthy carbs, so I’d make sure to choose high quality carbs like fruits and whole grains for your high carb meals and breakfasts, and don’t forget to add in veggies (the non-root/non-starchy type) as often as possible. You can add these types of veggies to any meal, and they’ll add volume to your meals and help you feel fuller longer. Fiber is really important, and these types of carbs (fruits, whole grains, and veggies) have fiber. Look for the 4 Ss: seeds, strings, stalks, and skins. Chicken, seafood, or pork are great options for protein meat-wise, and nuts are a great option since they have healthy fats. And make sure you’re getting in all of your workouts. Did your healthcare team have any suggestions on your diet? I’d follow their recommendations for sure. Hope this helps! 🙂

  4. Donna Jenkin - May 21, 2018

    Hello, I am brand new to the diet, and I am very excited. I have a meal related question. Can I use the same meal, whether it be a high carb or low carb recipe, more than once throughout the day? Will it have any negative effect? Because of time restrictions I would like to use one recipe for maybe two or three of my meals.

    • Team Powell - May 21, 2018

      Hi Donna: Welcome to the app! Yes, you can repeat meals as long as they’re from the same category (breakfast, low carb, high carb, reward). We hope you love the app! 🙂

  5. Robin Yost - January 7, 2018

    Hi there, Tomorrow, Monday, is the beginning of week 2 for me. I’m unable to meal prep for the week ahead as I can’t see any further than to log my weekly progress which I have done. Is there a way to see the days for next week so that I can pack my lunch for work tomorrow? Thank you!

    • Team Powell - January 7, 2018

      Hi Robin: If you’ll go to your Nutrition page, there are some dates at the top of the page. You can click on any in black and plan your meals for that week! We hope you’re loving the app! 🙂

  6. Kendall - January 2, 2018

    I am new to the program and a bit confused after reading a few questions and comments. I am wanting to lose about 15-20 pounds. I am not totally new to working out use to be a college athletes so I chose the physic program phase 1 but after reading things I keep hearing people talking about starting with the weight loss program. Did i chose the correct program

    • Team Powell - January 2, 2018

      Hi Kendall: All of the programs have a weight loss options, the main difference is in the type of workouts you like to do. This post can help: https://heidipowell.net/12104. And you can change programs at any time! 🙂

  7. Amanda - November 8, 2017

    I’ve just discovered and downloaded the Transform App. I’ve set it to start on Sunday and am really excited about the program. I’ve chosen weight loss turbo phase 2. I already eat low carb (keto), and reading the meal suggestions and the number of calories it has me eating is worrisome. I’m 5’5″, 206lbs and my goal is 175lbs. On high carb days it wants me to eat 1950 calories, and on low carb days 1800 calories and up to 2700 on the reset day. That seems ridiculously high to me; are you sure it’s correct? And are 76g of carbs on low carb days really considered low?

    • Amanda - November 8, 2017

      I’ve read the answer provided to other people who have asked a similar question, but as I’ve been researching, I’ve gone to two of the other macro calculator websites suggested by Heidi, and they both tell me around 1500 calories a day versus 1800.

    • Team Powell - November 9, 2017

      Hi Amanda: We understand your concerns. Since many people who are trying to lose weight have been eating very restricted calories, we start you at the highest calorie intake possible to boost your metabolism and prime your body, then as needed, the program will adjust your calories in a “step-down” manner, to maximize your results and keep you losing. Since your meal plan is totally customized to you and your goals, you can feel confident that you will achieve your goals. And if you do find yourself plateauing, the app will ask you if you’d like to adjust your program, and you can click to let the program adjust. Give the app’s recommendations a try – they work!

  8. Teresa vigil - August 23, 2017

    I’m 212 pounds just got the app and I know online it has like 3 month goal could you tell me what my goals should be if I did at home transform? I was guessing 40 pounds every 3 months does that sound right?

    • Team Powell - August 24, 2017

      Hi Teresa: We recommend a 10% weight loss goal for your first 3 months, so aim for losing 21 pounds. 🙂

  9. Autumn - June 26, 2017

    Once I get to a weight/body comp that I want to maintain is there a maintenance phase?

    • Team Powell - June 27, 2017

      Hi Autumn: Yes! Each program has a maintenance phase! 🙂

  10. Camas - June 21, 2017

    Hello, I just started with the program and app. I was wondering about coffee. I love to have my morning cup of coffee and come to life in the mornings but I’m not sure how it fits into my nutrition since I would like some cream in it not straight black. Is there a way to accommodate this and pull from other areas or do I just need to give it up. 🙁 Thank you!

    • Team Powell - June 22, 2017

      Hi Camas: We recommend black coffee with 0 calorie natural sweeteners, but if you do add cream, just subtract those macros from the macros for that meal. No need to give it up! 🙂

  11. Bonnie Pederson - June 17, 2017

    Hi, I am a 40 year old wife and other of 7 . I had Gastrectomy: sleeved. Done 5/13/15
    I weighed about 330
    Now I weigh 236
    With my tummy so small I can only hold about 6 oz. at a time. So my calaries being about 900 to 1100 a day. So I was wondering if you would have any ideas of how I could loose the last of the weight I need to to have skin removal done. I had blood work done my thyroid tested n my iron they came back normal then I went to a food nurturian she was even at a loss of why I couldn’t loose any more weight.
    I started going to the gym on January 1 of this year, I go 5 days a week, I work out with a trainer for an hour. So I was wondering if you would have any ideas of what I could do? Do you think I need to work out more? Now I go 30 min. on the treadmill then 30 min. strength training n sometimes with weights. If you could help me that would be great. 🙂 Bonnie

    • Team Powell - June 19, 2017

      Hi Bonnie: Thank you for your comment! It sounds like you’re definitely on the right track to achieve your goals. With your past surgery, it’s best to work with your healthcare team on any nutrition and exercise program since what could work for one person wouldn’t be best for another. Your healthcare team are the best ones to help you since they understand your health history and can work with you personally now and in the future. One thing to remember is that weight loss is 80% nutrition, so hang in there, eat and workout as directed by your team, and you can do this!

  12. Tammy Shue - June 12, 2017

    Heidi, how does the app work. I see it says free for a one week trial. Secondly, I read the book Choose more, lose more for life. Originally, I did great. I lost 20 pounds and held that off for about a year and a half. Then came menopause, now I am officially post menopausal and have gained about 8 pounds all in the middle area. Feel like I need to start over again. I am 5 foot 3, 140 (currently), exercise not a problem as I work out 5 to 6 times a week with strength and cardio. Can you advise on both my questions.

    • Tammy Shue - June 12, 2017

      PS: I am 53 years old

    • Team Powell - June 13, 2017

      Hi Tammy: Yes, your first week of the app is free so you can check everything out. It’s amazing! It customizes your meal plan and your workout plan to you and your goals, and it changes as you progress. Here’s a post that outlines the 3 programs in the app, and you can change programs at any time: https://heidipowell.net/12104. 🙂

  13. Bianca - June 9, 2017

    Hi my name is Bianca and I am currently using the transform app and loving it! I am a little confused on my body fat percentage because my scale says one thing and my math says another. What is the best way of calculating body fat percentage? My scale says it’s 41.2% but my math says it’s around 27% and the those pinching things say 35%??? What’s a girl to do….Can you please advise, thanks in advance

    • Team Powell - June 9, 2017

      Hi Bianca: Getting your body fat measured with the calipers by someone who knows how to do this is the best way unless you can get your body fat measured through something like a Bod Pod. Using the scale can be unreliable since that number can be affected by several different things. 🙂

  14. Erin - May 27, 2017

    I’m just finishing my first week and wondering when I can start planning next weeks meals. Friday is my reset day, today is Saturday and I see my meal plan for today, but there isn’t an option I can find to plan my upcoming meals. Did I miss a step somewhere? I completed my progress report yesterday and thought maybe that was needed to calculate meals for next week, but nothing updated or changed. Otherwise, I’m loving the app!

    • Team Powell - May 29, 2017

      Hi Erin: If you’ll go to your Nutrition page, there are some dates at the top of the screen. Any that are black are available for meal planning, so click on those dates, and plan away! 🙂

  15. Nicky - May 23, 2017

    Hey Heidi! I look up to you and follow you daily on the Transform App! You are so beautiful and have such a rockin bod! I’m wondering if you’ve ever struggled with spider veins after having children or from lifting heavy? I don’t feel like I can wear shorts because of this issue so I’m considering having them treated. So I guess I’m wondering if you’ve ever had veins treated because I’m worried they’ll just come back because I love lifting heavy?

  16. Sheree - May 8, 2017

    I am looking for some direction. I am following the turbo plan, I am 5’7 and 219#, i am trying to locate the macro per meal for low carb and high days. I am trying to fit some personal meals into my daily meal plan and want to do it the right way.

    Thanks,

  17. Linda LaCourse - May 2, 2017

    I don’t have the app (no smart phone) but have read your Extreme Transformation book and I loved it. I just had a question about carb cycling. Ive noticed on my low carb days I get really “Hangry” (and I mean really-to the point of screaming at my husband and throwing fits) , and also feel shakey. I work really hard to get the right amount of calories, carbs, fats and proteins. I average 1300 calories a day, 45 g fats, 65 carbs and 95 protein on my low carb days. I make sure I eat/snack every 2-3 hrs (if I make it that long!), so I don’t understand why Im feeling that way (though I have had problems feeling hypogycemic sometimes in the past. I’ve seen my dr about it and he has done tests and has never found anything. I think now I know why, its related to my carb intake). I don’t feel this way on my high carb days. Im 5′ 4 and weigh approximately 158, Im trying to lose 30#. I workout on the treadmill 5-6 days a week. Any idea whats going on?

    • Team Powell - May 3, 2017

      Hi Linda: You’ll want to aim for closer to 1500 calories on both low and high carb days, and you’re welcome to add non-starchy/non-root type veggies to any meal, which will add some carbs into your days. It can be common to have a hard time on low carb days at the beginning of the program, especially is your body is used to lots of carbs, so please give it some more time, add in those veggies, make sure you’re eating 1500 calories a day, and things should get easier. You’re doing awesome!

  18. Erica - April 27, 2017

    Hi Heidi,

    I’ve downloaded the app and been following for almost two weeks now. I don’t really have a question, I just need an ear or an outlet. I had my second baby 8 months ago and I have been struggling so hard to lose this baby weight. I just want to be my normal self and I feel like I keep face planting along the way of trying to get back there. I am just so frustrated and sad. Like I said, I dont have a question, but just needed an outlet to someone who I think “gets it.”
    Thank you,

    Erica

    • Team Powell - April 28, 2017

      Hi Erica: We hear you! Losing that baby weight and getting back to “normal” can be so frustrating! You’re definitely on the right path, and the app can help you get to where you want to be and beyond. Keep taking those baby steps one after the other, and you will get there! You got this! 👍

  19. Amber - April 15, 2017

    If I chose a start day of last Wednesday, but haven’t been able to commit and want to start fresh today from the beginning is there a way to reset the App?

    • Team Powell - April 17, 2017

      Hi Amber: Yes! Here’s what you’ll do:
      1 – Go to [Me] and select [Program] on the top navigation bar
      2 – Select another transformation program (Weight Loss, Physique, Cross Training)
      3 – When the pop-up asks if you want to select THAT program, select “Yes”
      4 – Then select to go “back”
      5 – This will override the system and place you back on the original Transformation selection page. Now you can start fresh!!

      We wish you the best – you got this!

  20. Nikki - April 7, 2017

    I tried downloading the app and it says it’s not available in the U.S did you guys take it down?

    • Team Powell - April 7, 2017

      Hi Nikki: It’s there now – we hope you love it!

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