Soda, alcohol, juices, and all other sorts of sugary drinks are delicious…but pack a punch with the calories. For many women, it is a popular option to jump start their fat loss journeys, by cutting off all of the soft drink consumption overnight. It’s an effective plan, which I’ve partaken in, myself. The question is, how long does it take to lose weight after giving up soda? What type of fat loss pace, can one expect?
How Long Before Weight Loss after Stopping Soda or Other Sugary Beverage Consumption?
The answer is going to depend.
What it depends on is, how many excess calories each day, is through your soda consumption.
Also, are you currently gaining weight or have you maintained about the same body weight for a period of time?
So, if you have been drinking soda and are currently maintaining about the same weight (within 5-7 lbs) for the past 2-3 months; it will be pretty easy to estimate the weight loss.
If you drink 3 cans of soda per day at 160 calories each, that equals 480 calories per day.
There are 3500 calories in a pound of fat. As such, you can expect to lose 1 pound, every 7.29 days. Roughly, 4.11 lbs per month.
So, 4.11 lbs per month, without changing anything else. No exercise or change in the rest of your diet. The scale may be reading more or less with any fluctuations in water weight.
This fits in with my own experience of quitting soda and sugary drinks back in high school. I changed absolutely nothing else, in terms of what I ate and the exercise that I did, and lost 15-18 lbs within 3.5 months.
(To visualize what that amount looks like, here are some older pictures of my physique after losing 21 lbs, another time. This was on my way down to losing about 35-40 total, at the time. The workout I did was a mix of Visual Impact for muscle and Visual Impact Cardio for fat loss).
I don’t remember the exact numbers, as this was over 15 years ago, but that was about the range.
Without tracking your exact numbers, the estimated loss might be too high or too low. You can further fine tune this fat loss, by following the same guidelines, as I write about below.
What About if You’re Currently Gaining Weight?
Well, you’re going to have to get some estimates about your daily calorie consumption. Cutting soda, is at least going to slow the weigh gain. Though, you may just stagnate at your current size, and not lose any excess.
To get into a deficit, you need to get a calculation of your caloric maintenance number. This is the number of calories you need to consume each day (net of exercise), in order to keep the same weight.
No worries, pretty much any fitness app will calculate this for you. I use one called MyNetDiary Pro and its estimates have been right on target for me.
Once you have that number, track what you would eat on a normal day. Don’t change anything, just log it in the app accurately, to see where you’re landing without the soda consumption.
If the total calories you’re eating is below the maintenance number, you will lose weight, but the pace will vary.
If it is above (on average), then quitting your soda habit, is merely going to slow the weight gain (which is still great).
In order to lose the weight, set a weight loss target with the app. It will calculate what it’ll take to lose 1-2 lbs per week, keep within those numbers consistently, and the fat will come off.
Yes, you can hit a faster pace than 1-2 lbs per month, but this will usually be during the initial weeks before it levels off. The more fat you have to lose, the higher the pace will be.
So, if you’ve only got 20-30 lbs, don’t expect to lose it all in a month. Give it 2-3. Maybe 4 months for the 30 lbs scenario. It really isn’t that much time at all, and it flies by, quite quickly.
Continuing the Loss After Soda
So, when I quit drinking all of the excess calories, I lost those 15-18 lbs. However, the loss then stopped, and I was still ‘skinny fat’.
Yes, losing that extra weight, and the added health benefits of not guzzling down sugar was awesome. I did still need to make further changes, in my workouts and diet, to really get the physique I wanted.
For some folks, the soda fat loss will be enough. For others, the initial burst will level off, and they’ll still have some more weight they’d like to drop.
You can utilize the fitness apps and the same strategy with foods that you did with soft drinks, to make it easier. For instance, cutting most of the sauces, condiments, or junk foods piece by piece to maintain the caloric deficit.
Slowly peeling away the junk foods, is a very effective way to lose the fat without ever, really feeling deprived.
Conversely, you can just go for the gusto, and change your diet and exercise regimen overnight. Just keep in mind, that it can be really tough, to stick with.
Need a Workout Program to Get Started?
As I mentioned above, I used a mix of Visual Impact Muscle Building and Visual Impact Cardio, to eventually drop 35-40 lbs a number of years ago.
Nowadays, I still use the Cardio program to cut fat, but have moved on to my own weight lifting routine.
The muscle building program, was designed for men anyways, and this site is about female fitness. Though, you could indeed blend these two programs, to get really great results (or pick one):
Women who just want to lose fat without weight lifting use: Visual Impact Cardio
Women who want a slim/toned feminine physique with weights and cardio exercise: Visual Impact for Women
Anyway, I still love using the cardio program because of the sheer intensity, and how well it works. There are three separate levels from beginner to intermediate to advanced.
While each level lasts for 8 weeks, you don’t have to go through all of them. In fact, I did the beginner and into the intermediate level to drop that 35+ lbs. The “Advanced Program” is a short-term use to really burn through fat fast, but it is seriously difficult (actually for people who are advanced, not just a title).
The program is an ebook, delivered as a PDF to your email, so you can get started right away. You will need access to a gym, because you will need to change to different speeds and timings during the workout.
No worries, it’s all laid out how to do it. If you do want to undertake this program, I’d advise switching up between machines (treadmill, elliptical, stair master, or bike) AND taking rest days, when you feel you need it.
Trust me, it can be really difficult at times, and you will need to pace yourself.
Again, these workouts aren’t for everyone, but if you want a plan spelled out step by step for you. I’ve always gotten great results with it. Plus, it has a 60-Day money back guarantee. So, try it out and if it’s not for you, you can get a refund.
Full disclosure: I do get an affiliate commission, if you buy. It doesn’t cost you any more money and it helps pay to run this site. I am promoting it, because I use it myself, and have seen the results first hand.