Hey everyone it’s Travis again.  Yes, I realize we are supposed to not be counting calories, but here’s my WIAW style recap of my 5,000 Calorie Day.  Since you are curious I posted my weight gain at the bottom.  But I know your first question is going to be why.  The short answer is I’ve been eating a caloric deficit recently, and need to have a metabolism boosting day.

Some people live in a caloric deficit.  I’d guess there are quiet a few of you that can’t remember that last time you weren’t trying to burn more calories than you ate.  Regardless of the popularity of Set Point Theory currently, it’s pretty widely accepted that a constant caloric deficit will lead to reduced metabolism.  Which means the longer you “diet” (verb) the more difficult it is, because you need to be consuming less and less as your body adjusts your new diet (noun).  THEN when you are done “cutting”, your metabolism is so broken down and weak, you can’t eat half what most people eat without gaining weight.  Sound familiar?

There’s a solution!

You need to be actively combating this.  What’s the point of getting to your ideal weight if the rest of your life you can only eat salad (with the sad fork-dipped-into-the-dressing-first method)?  In fact I’ve actually got the exact opposite thinking.  Back when I wasn’t cutting, I’d eat my 1300 calorie nightly ice cream bowl…well, nightly.  I’d like to get to the point where I can eat 3,000 calories a day and maintain my weight.  Then when you want to cut you drop to the extremely deprived level of 2,500 calories per day.

So without further ado, here’s my WIAW – The 5,000 Calorie Metabolism Boosting Day!

5000 Calorie Day Breakfast

Breakfast – 2 eggs over easy, 2 biscuits and gravy, 2 sausage patties ~ 1,230 Calories (Not counting the bites of Lindsay’s pancake I tried)


5000 Calories

Katie’s Kraut Burgers (Lindsay took umbrage with myfitnesspal’s estimate of 272 per burger so I’m only counting 2 of them) ~ 544 Calories


5000 Calorie Day Second Breakfast

Second Lunch – Van’s Flax Waffles with peanut butter and The Laughing Cow cream cheese (a Blend sponsor)~ 540 Calories


5000 Calories

Quick Snack – Newton’s Fruit Thins with peanut butter (I had 6 plus some Justin’s Vanilla Almond Butter – another Blend sponsor!) ~ 310 Calories



5000 Calorie Day Eggs

Dinner – 4 eggs with grilled chicken and cheese ~ 710 Calories


5000 Calories

More Dinner – Chocolate Chip Clif Bar ~ 230 Calories


Cinnamon Roll

Post Dinner Snack – Cinnamon Roll ~ 200


5000 Calorie Day

Ice Cream ~ 1,250



  • 1,230 – Breakfast
  • 544 – Second Breakfast
  • 540 – Waffle Lunch
  • 310 – Lunch Dessert Newton Fruit Thins
  • 710 – Dinner Eggs
  • 230 – Clif Bar
  • 200 – Cinnamon Roll
  • +     1,250 – Ice Cream
  • 5,014 – Total for the day

Weight Gain:

Now the part for which you’ve been waiting with breath that is bated…(First, obviously since it’s Wednesday I didn’t eat this on Wednesday.  I actually ate this on Saturday.)  On Sunday morning, I weighed 4 pounds more than on Saturday morning.  I’m actually back under my Saturday number as of this morning.

Question:  What would YOU eat on your 5,000 calorie day?

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  1. This is an interesting concept – something I’ve been reading up on a lot lately, so I really appreciated this post! My 5,000 calorie day would consist of pancakes, a ton of chips and guacamole, lasagna and apple pie – very random. In theory, this would have to be gluten free but for a hypothetical day…

  2. This is very interesting! And as someone with some past/current abnormal eating issues, it really sheds a new light on some of my thought patterns (that I KNOW are flawed, but they sometimes get the best of me). Thanks so much for sharing Travis (& Lindsay!).

  3. Now that I’m eating more intuitively and healthfully I can tell when I need more calories versus when I don’t. Before, it was just cravings for sugary things (which were cravings, not a need). Now, sometimes my body is like “I want a juicy burger and fries,” I indulge, feel great, and the next day head back to salad land.
    It’s a good system, intuitive eating, once you hit that reset button.

  4. I love this post, Travis (and Lindsay). I fully believe in calorie cycling. I’m intuitively eating now, and I feel like I naturally do this. Some days I’m not that hungry, and others I’m starved so I eat more, and my weight has been maintaining (and I’ve been slowly losing). I’d assume that your 4-lb gain was water retention from the added carbs you ate, as well as weight from the food itself that you ate since it didn’t stick around (and if I can be completely honest and gross, I’m guessing part of it went away later in the day, if you get my drift).

    Love you guys. :) Keep sharing both sides of the coin!

    1. Oh, duh, forgot to mention this. The entire first chapter of the Intuitive Eating book talks about what Travis hits here: dieting makes you gain weight (over time) b/c it shoots your metabolism. Calorie cycling totally makes sense if you’re going to diet for whatever reason. You can’t just sit in starvation mode all the time and expect that to always work (those of us who’ve dealt with ED have come to that realization the hard way).

  5. wait… this isn’t why weekends exist? ;)

    I think I have a “natural” rhythm to my calorie intake. Some days I’m just hungrier and tear some food up, while other days I almost have to remind myself to each lunch. When I watch my son eat (he’ll be one this week!), it seems like that’s how we are supposed to do it. He’ll totally ignore food one day and dive face first into it the next. It’s like he *knows* how to eat, and somehow adults have just forgotten. We fall into so many fad diets and different ways of thinking that we forget how simple it can really be.

  6. This was very helpful! I believe I have totally destroyed my metabolism and my body by not getting enough calories. I am now trying to figure out how to fix it! The thought of eating this many calories terrify’s me though. If I were to ever eat 5000 calories, I would definitely eat ice cream. :)

  7. I totally believe in the “refeed” mentality. I eat very healthy during the week and am probably in a deficit most of those 5 days because I am on my feet constantly and very active personal training, working out, etc. BUT during the weekend I eat whatever the hell I want! Come Monday, I am looking back to my usual self, no weight gain. :) I can’t wait for this weekend when I can indulge again!

  8. First of all, I love the complete honesty around here! It’s really why I keep coming back because somedays even I feel like I can’t be honest with myself. So a big kudos for that.
    Secondly, I’m a big fan of second breakfast. Breakfast is an amazing meal and 2 is better.
    And I’m not going to crunch numbers this early in the morning but for sure on a 5,000 calorie day, there would be some pancakes/waffles (I love both!), pineapple brats (which taste like breakfast sausage but bigger) and cap in off with ice cream + brownie dessert. Awesome. I love just dreaming about it. The metabolism boosting break from constant calorie deficit makes sense as well. I think the whole counting calories thing scares people when that set target changes. Thanks again!