When it comes to achieving fat loss or weight loss, so many of us can get in the mindset that we’ll do “whatever it takes”. From my experience working with a variety of clients, I have seen barriers come in the way that so many people easily overlook. Neglecting to factor in these habits can lead to poor results…that is the last thing we want, so here are 5 ways to lose weight!
1. Casual drinks
Ah, alcohol. Such an important part of so many people’s social experience. However it is also unfortunately not your friend when trying to lean out. Your body will not be in fat burning mode (won’t be metabolizing stored fat) as you consume alcohol, as it is a toxin and your body’s first priority is to work on metabolizing that to get rid of it.
Having two drinks here and there (as in every few weeks or for a special occasion)? For the most part, I wouldn’t worry. But if you’re having drinks every weekend, for lunches/dinners during the week, etc…be honest with yourself: are you seeing the results you want and should from all that hard work at the gym and with your diet?
It is NOT just about how many drink calories you consume. Of course having clear liquors with club soda or water is best, but if you’re consuming alcohol and getting tipsy you can bet you’re affecting your progress.
Next time a friend invites you for a couple pitchers, why not suggest going for a workout or other physical activity (rock climbing, trampolining, etc)? I’m sure your healthy influence will rub off on some of your friends!
2. Unaccounted for calories
When you’re serious about improving body composition (not just maintaining a healthy weight, but getting really lean), I highly suggest tracking macros and food intake.
When you have your set plan, any and all “extras” most certainly count. Trust me, I am the first one to want to go to the peanut butter jar and dip the spoon to have “just a taste”…but that taste multiplied throughout the day/week equals a lot of unaccounted for calories. That most certainly affects your plan and your results.
Extras include: sampling tastes of other people’s food, licking the spoon when prepping food, not measuring food and just eyeballing it, assuming calories at a restaurant and not looking it up, grocery store samples, finishing your kids’ food…
Be prepared with your meals prepped, have lots of veggies and fruits for when hunger strikes and just know that each of these extras makes a difference to your results. If you eat all your meals and are still hungry, make sure you have adequate calories in your plan!
3. Half assing workouts
I gotta put this bluntly… and here is a meme to show it:
This means you don’t push yourself during your training. Avoiding upping your weights (form is always number one of course, it goes without saying!), going through the motions but don’t really go for intensity, or you don’t follow rest periods diligently, etc… you know when you just don’t give it your all.
Of course we are going to have days like this! An isolated couple sessions that aren’t amazing will not deter results. But always having so so workouts, not pushing yourself… “if you kind of sort of try, you kind of sort of get results”.
Maybe there are other issues to address. That brings me to my next point…
4. Lose weight by addressing your basic needs
Sleep, hydration and stress management – do you give these 3 things enough attention? Busting your butt at the gym (as much as you can bust it) while you’re chronically fatigued/dehydrated/stressed will not get you far.
Before your body wants to focus on losing body fat, it’s first priority is simply maintaining basic functions. If you aren’t giving yourself adequate or restful sleep, you are constantly stressed and producing excess stress hormones and/or you are not giving your body adequate water to perform basic processes such as digestion/elimination…do you really think it’ll say “hey, thanks! Time to burn some fat and lose some weight!”?
Actually, pushing yourself further in strenuous and long workouts can do more harm than good if you’re suffering from adrenal fatigue. You can read more about that here.
5. You don’t stick with your program long enough
When you are just starting out a new exercise program, your body needs time to adapt and make changes. If you factor in that you are new to exercise and need to take several weeks or months doing just basic movements before progressing to more complex exercises, your timeline to reach your goal may be longer…so don’t give up!
I have seen so many clients have this dream body in their head but they don’t understand that they may have lots of mobility to work on, strength to be built and form to be improved on before they progress to exercises like deadlifts or squats which can create that shape they are looking for. Patience is key.
If you have been exercising a while, results can be come slower. Flip flopping from one training plan to the next and never really sticking with one long enough for the body to adapt will lead to impaired results.
The most frustrating thing can be feeling like you do everything right but not achieving the results you want.
If you are struggling with achieving fat loss and feel a little lost, I would love to help you out. You can shoot me an email at [email protected]