Have you been exercising and eating right but still not losing weight. This happens to all of us for varying reasons. Are you guilty of these top reason?
- You neglect to maintain a food journal
Keeping a journal is not only the best way to know what foods you are eating but the effect they have on your body. If you haven’t started one, now is a good time to do so. Document all the foods you eat for at least one month – hopefully you will keep it longer – including the amount of water you drink.
Here are some sample journals you can download and print off.
- You Only Do Cardio – running, swimming, cycling, dancing, and etc
Cardiovascular exercises are only one part of a complete workout routine . . . the others being flexibility and weight training. Many of us are guilty of only doing this portion and neglecting the other two – to our detriment. Doing excessive cardio will cause your body to lose muscle mass and make you look flaccid.
Having a more muscular body will help you burn more calories by increasing your metabolism. Start doing resistance exercises and challenge yourself each time you do it. Go heavier and faster. And do a flexibility routine regularly . . . like everyday.
- Walking is OK but you need to pump it up
Any kind of activity is better than none but to effectively lose weight you must increase your heart rate to a challenging level. Your body gets warmer and you will begin to sweat when you raise your heart rate – this is when weight loss begins. Since you will be in fat burning mode at this stage you will need extra fuel to keep up your energy level. Your body has to go to reserves (fat) for fuel. So instead of walking a mile at the same speed everyday – speed it up. Challenge yourself by cutting your time by one-third and add a quarter-mile periodically.
- You Don’t Eat Breakfast
This is the most important meal for weight loss. Not eating breakfast is like trying to drive your car on low fuel – you will only get so far. Neglecting a proper breakfast will also lead to snacking during the day which will cause weight gain so break your fast by eating a proper meal. This will power you through a strenuous routine.
You first meal of the day should be a nourishing one that supplies necessary nutrients to give your body energy to work hard. I like to have at least two fruits and a drink of choice made from natural ingredients.
For many people having a meal before exercising can lead to problems so timing comes into play. Don’t have a heavy meal then start working out. Give your body time to absorb to the food. This varies from person to person so experiment to find out the length of time you need to wait before starting you workout.
- You hit a plateau
There comes a time when doing the same workout routines yields little or no weight loss progress. When this happens you’ve hit what’s call the ‘workout wall’ or a plateau. No matter how much time you put into your routine you just can’t seem to make any stride.
Our body is very adaptable. It’s gotten use to the same movements. When this happens it’s time to change-up your routine. Do different exercise targeting the same muscle groups or change the rate at which you do them. For example, instead of doing squats start doing weighted lunges or do plyometrics or rope skipping instead of using a treadmill or stationary bike.
- You Don’t Sleep Enough
Lack of proper rest will result is weight gain. Most professional athletes get nine or more hours of sleep in any 24 hour period. It gives them time to heal and properly process nutrients taken in during wake times. We should follow their example by logging at least 7 to 8 hours each night.
The main reasons for weight gain due to lack of proper rest is (1) there is a longer window to consume foods and (2) we don’t give our bodies enough time to process what is eaten which leads to an over-worked system.
It’s important for those who work irregular hours such as the swing shift to make an extra effort to get at least 7 to 8 hours of quality rest because you are more prone to developing diabetes.
Starting today you can make these simple changes. There are a lot more things that can slow down your weight loss goals
Keep in mind the muscles are denser than fat and hence as your muscles become stronger you may not see immediate the signs of weight loss on the scales.
Visit How to Prevent Pre-diabetes for information on how to get stronger with targeted exercises.