Let’s get right to it. Here’s a list of 5 biggest weight loss mistakes that I see.
1. Fad Diets – Isogenix, Nutrisystem, Optifast, Jenny Craig, the grapefruit diet, the lemon & chili pepper diet, etc.
Please don’t be offended if these programs have “worked for you.” If they did I am happy for you!
However, while many people have initial success, the long term success is just not there.
Many women have come in to see me and just didn’t want to follow my advice because “My past diet worked!” Yes, it worked for a few months, but why are you 20# heavier than you were before you started it?
No habits changed, temporary fix, nothing learned. Time wasted and potentially damaging to the body.
2. Focusing all exercise on walking and cardio.
Resistance training (strength training using bodyweight, bands, dumbbells, kettlebells and other resistance) is the KEY to weight loss. At Her Fitness our workouts are based on this type of total body training and cardio comes as an addition.
Cardio burns calories while you do, helps give you a solid foundation of strength and heart health, but most women I meet want to change the shape of their bodies – and all cardio just won’t do that.
Do you want your body to be a different shape (toned muscles which means shapely), not just a smaller version of your current soft, self? Lift some weights.
3. Not changing what you eat and when you eat!
A lot of women believe that they can “out exercise” a poor diet.
Nope, it ain’t gonna happen.
You can eat soooooo many more calories, and the wrong type, that you will never expend that much energy unless it was your entire life’s mission – and it’s still questionable.
A calorie in vs a calorie out is not exactly how it works. (And you can come to my seminar, Weight Loss Lies & Myths, on Thursday, February 15 at 11:00 a.m. to hear more about this!)
4. Neglecting Proper Sleep
Lack of sleep – it can wreck you and your weight loss efforts because when you don’t sleep enough it messes with your hormone balance and weight loss is all about hormones.
This is a tough topic for many women, especially if you are over 40 and have five layers of life responsibilities (parents, kids, job, household, oh, and self!). I find this my most challenging component of health. I wake up in the middle of the night, can’t get back to sleep and then get up early. BUT, I haven’t given up and do what I can to ensure I get as many hours as I can. Here are some tips:
- Go to bed before 10 p.m. (I’m sleeping most nights by 8:30 because I get up early). Cortisol starts to decrease, growth hormones and testosterone increase, just to name a few that have a direct impact on fat loss/gain and muscle development.
- Get dark out shades – oh, I love them! Plus, cover your alarm clock and keep your phone out of your bedroom.
- Avoid alcohol before bed – it knocks you out to go to sleep, but it doesn’t allow for deep and long sleep.
5. Not eating enough.
This happens when a woman is on a mission!
She takes out all the obvious foods like processed foods sugar, fried foods and such. She begins to exercise or increases the amount of activity. She loses weight, and sometimes a fair amount, but then it stalls out.
Weight loss plateaus happen to women who don’t eat enough because their bodies are in survival mode. Our bodies are designed for survival – not fat loss.
If you start adding activity, taking away food and you’ve got classic plateau environment.
I’ve seen it many times and it really goes against our grain and everything we think we know. This mistake can be a tough pill to swallow. It just doesn’t feel right, I know!
BUT, think of it this way: Imagine a coal factory/energy plant. It’s got resources coming in – no shortage of coal so the plant manager says “Pick up the pace, people! We’ve got plenty of coal.” Suddenly, there is a shortage of coal, but the need for the final product is still there. The plant manager will NOT tell his workers to pick up the pace. The plant manager will say “Slow and steady. We don’t know how much longer we have until our next delivery. Make it last. ”
Your body is doing the same thing as the plant manager when it doesn’t get enough food – slow and steady.
Make sure you are eating enough for your body to use fat as energy, not muscle.