Losing weight is hard – no doubt about it. Finding a plan that works for you is tough enough, but pushing yourself to follow through with it can be even more difficult. If you’ve been trying to lose weight for awhile now but don’t seem to be making progress, or if you lost weight only to gain it back, hopefully this post can help you. Let’s explore 5 things that might be interfering with your weight loss. But don’t be discouraged! They are all easily (or simply, I should say) fixed – you can be back on the right track in no time.
- You aren’t staying consistent. To lose weight, you have to work out on a regular basis, at least 3-4 times per week. 5 days a week is ideal, although you can do up to 6 days a week if you feel up to it. If you are going more than 2-3 days without working out, you won’t see the results you are looking for. You can’t work out for a week, take 3 days off, and then complain you aren’t getting anywhere. It takes time to see results, and you have to put in consistent work to get there.
- You’ve reached a plateau. If you do the same type of workout over and over, eventually your body will get used to it and stop making progress, or worse, you will lose the progress you had made. A common example of this is when you use a cardio machine (like a treadmill) for 30-60 minutes 4-5 days a week. At first you will probably start losing weight because your body isn’t used to having to do that much work. At some point, however, you will likely quit making progress simply because your body isn’t being challenged anymore. It is used to the type of workout you put it through, so it doesn’t feel the need to change. A better way to do it is by consistently adding variety to your routine. Don’t just do one type of steady-state cardio, add in some interval training and strength training for faster, more efficient results.
Fun fact: Did you know that steady state cardio is actually the worst way you could exercise to lose weight? It may yield good results at first, only to cause muscle loss and plateaus later on. Strength and interval training are much more efficient and effective.
- Your diet doesn’t match your training, or vice versa. You can’t exercise well and eat crap and expect to get a healthy body in return. You need a good training program and a healthy diet to achieve the results you are looking for. Exercise to strengthen and transform your body, and eat to fuel your training (as opposed to eating for comfort). It will be tough at first, but once it becomes a habit and you start noticing results, it will turn into a healthy addiction. Contrary to popular belief, healthy living doesn’t have to be miserable. As you start gaining strength and losing weight, you will find yourself craving the healthy foods because you need them to fuel your body. Once you get used to eating clean, you will notice how truly awful you feel when you eat junk, which makes going back to the healthy foods a lot easier.
- You have an underlying health condition. Sometimes an underlying health problem can cause you to have a more difficult time losing weight. For instance, some food allergies can cause bloating and fat gain, and when you eliminate those foods (such as gluten), the pounds shed a lot easier. Other conditions such as Diabetes or Cushing Syndrome have also been known to lead to unintentional weight gain. If you suspect there may be a health problem contributing to your weight problems, please consult with your doctor.
- You are sabotaging yourself on the weekend. A lot of people can stick to a healthy diet and workout program during the week, but when the weekend comes, it becomes much more challenging to say no to that dessert, drink, etc., especially if they are partying with friends. If you are serious about losing weight, one of the best things you can do to help yourself succeed is surround yourself with people who will support you in your goals, not drag you down into an unhealthy lifestyle. There comes a point where you have to make a choice between what feels good for the moment but will sabotage your health in the long run, and what feels awful today but will set you up for a healthy, enjoyable rest of your life.
Are you having a hard time losing weight? What do you think might be causing this? What do you need to change to fix it? I would love to hear about it in the comments. If you would like someone to help you create a plan that fits with your unique goals and needs, encourage you, hold you accountable, and give you a push when you need it, you might want to consider working with me as your health coach. For a limited time, I’m offering coaching at a 50% reduced rate of $50 per month for 2 months. For something valued at over $100 per month, you really don’t want to pass up the opportunity. Click here to learn more.