When it comes to losing fat…are you your own enemy?
You just may be…and not even know it!
It’s January, so you know what that means: Resolution season. Year after year many people resolve to change their unhealthy ways and make this the year they finally get in shape! Unfortunately, quite often they make the very… same… resolution…next year.
Why is this? Why do we seem to struggle so hard at something we’re so motivated to accomplish?
Well, sometimes we don’t really have our heart in it, let’s be honest. However, others we seem to do everything right and just cannot make any progress. What if we don’t realize it but some of the things that we think are helping us are actually what is hurting us? Read below to see if you are making or have made these mistakes in the past.
- Eating “healthy” foods– With so many different alternatives out there when it comes to eating, it’s easy to get lost in labels like “nutritious”, “low carb”, “low fat”, “paleo friendly”, “gluten free etc. What we must remember though is that calories do still count. While sometimes switching over to diets made exclusively of this food can lead to initial weight loss it’s also very easy to fall into the “health trap” and eat without much thought of quantity. Over time this leads to an increase in overall calories and slows or even worse, reverses progress.
- Trying to out run/lift/yoga your food. – It is not uncommon to pick up a new activity such as running, biking, lifting or yoga to jump start your weight loss efforts. This is a very good thing. You may even feel your bodycomposition changing, meaning even if the scale doesn’t go down, you may find your clothes fitting better and liking what you see in the mirror. Initially this is great but without some thought put into nutrition it usually becomes undone quickly. The more we work or the harder we work usually stimulates appetite a bit. We could be adding calories without realizing. On the flip side maybe you think you worked so hard you deserve that reward or from yet another viewpoint you will just do “extra” to make up for the additional calories. Its extremely easy to eat an extra 400 calories (muffins anyone?) burning that 400 on top of what you already do? Not so easy, I’m afraid.
- Snacking – Now, let me say first that there is nothing inherently wrong with snacking. In fact, for some it can regulate hunger, blood sugar and be just the thing that keeps you sane. For others the “healthy snack” may be an additional opportunity to take in calories, stimulate hunger or worse be an unintentional anchor on diet progress. Healthy snacks aren’t exempt here and in fact sometimes make things MORE difficult. A serving of almonds is not very large and packs a pretty potent punch, same thing with some cheeses and dried fruit. Unfortunately, it is often difficult to portion control.
- Relying on willpower- This could also be labled “Failing to prep”. This doesn’t mean that you have to neatly line up your food in Tupperware for every meal for 7 days. It may just be as simple as having easy to cook quality options available to make and keep less quality ones out of the house. Pizza and chips are always easier to make than chicken or fish. The problem is that you have to rely on willpower and that only goes so far. There’s some good research that shows that willpower is not unlike a bank account. You can only spend so much without taking a break and building your funds back up. Trying to tough it out with fingers crossed is not a great long term strategy
- Trying to follow someone else’s plan- There are always going to be diet strategies that work for a multiple people. Heck maybe hundreds or thousands, but they don’t always work the same way. In fact, sometimes what was amazing for one person may just dud out for another. It is important to find what is both effective and sustainable for you! The way your metabolism and body works may be completely different from your friend or cousin’s. You may need to stop trying to break the wall down for fat loss when there is a door right next to you!
If you are having trouble with any of these issues above try to identify places in your efforts where you can make small changes, find a diet that sounds do-able and stick to one plan consistently. Lean on others for accountability and support. Tell them what you are doing and hold yourself accountable!
If you’re looking for something already done for you with proven results you can check out our 6 week New Year’s Revolution challenge that has been quite successful for so many here : http://tinyurl.com/fitclubrevolution
Losing weight is hard enough, don’t let these common mistakes sabotage your hard work!