You are busting your butt everyday at the gym, sometimes two times per day. You are doing endless amounts of cardio and eating a very strict
low-fat diet. It has been months now, and you have only lost one pound! At this point you are thinking….
“Why do I even bother? Why is the weight not coming off?”
I probably hit a sore spot with a lot of women just now with the first paragraph. I see this almost every day with my job as a personal trainer and a competition coach. I have many women sit down with me and ask me the same question. Usually in about a matter of 2 minutes, I figure out what is going wrong with a few simple questions.
Your Current Diet
It can be the amount of food you are eating, or the type of food. A lot of us get caught up in the low fat, low carbohydrate diets. We buy bars, shakes and other processed foods thinking that they are healthy for us. Most of these foods are loaded with chemicals to preserve them and make the foods taste better. Low fat versions of food usually will have some sort of sugar added to make them flavourful. There can be many other reasons why your current diet is holding you back, for example too many carbohydrates or too many “treats” during the day. Or it can be as simple as too many calories.
Start prepping whole and fresh foods, and avoid anything in a package. If you think you may be eating too many calories, keep a food journal to figure out where you may be going wrong. Most people eat too many carbohydrates and not enough lean proteins and healthy fats, and if you
document your food, you may be shocked at what you are doing to yourself. If you have a weak spot for certain treats, keep them out of your house. If your favourite treats are not around, you won’t be tempted to pick at them.
More is not always better when it comes to training, and I can be guilty of this myself. I have spoken to many women who over-train,
especially with cardio. Some women I have spoken to do massive amounts of cardio; 2 hours in the morning and again in the evening! This to me is a hard concept to grasp since it is pretty tough for me to actually do a boring cardio session for a long period of time.
Try interval training. Interval training is very efficient and can burn a lot of calories in a short amount of time. Interval training should be so intense that you shouldn’t last more than 20 minutes, and in my opinion, 20 minutes of interval training is plenty. Switch it up day by day between interval training and continuous cardio, and keep continuous cardio to 45 minutes max.
Not Enough Weight Training
There are still many women who fear weight training, or to lift more than 10 pounds. The fear is that their bodies will “bulk” up and they will look manly. The fact of the matter is, women do not have the genetics to build up large muscles like men do. To increase your metabolism you need to build muscle. Muscle is more metabolically active than fat, you have the potential for a negative energy balance, which can result in weight loss – or fat loss – due to your metabolic rate. And that can add up. Muscle is also smaller than fat, so it takes up less space in our bodies than fat does.
Try full body resistance training 2 to 3 times per week, starting with the large muscle groups and ending with the smaller muscles. Try
super sets, strip sets, and giant sets. There are many ways to have a great workout, and avoid taking a lot of rest in between sets to burn lots of
calories and to make the most out of your workout.
You Train the Same Way Over and Over Again
You may have hit a plateau with your training and don’t even realize it. Many of us get caught up doing the same exercises the same way day
after day, and when this is done too much, your body will get used to the same exercises and will not respond to them any longer.
Change your routine maximum once per month. Change up the way you train and lift heavy. Ask advice from a fitness expert for new and
challenging ways to train to keep your body guessing.
You Don’t Give Yourself a Chance
There are many women I have spoken to with weight loss goals in mind. Unfortunately they don’t allow themselves a chance to actually acheive their goals. There is always an event, or a party or just an average weekend that the sabotaging happens. These women beat themselves up to no end, and then they do this again! Its a never-ending evil cycle that needs to be broken.
Keep in mind what is important to you; your weight loss goals or a weekend of binge eating and drinking alcohol with your friends. The answer will always be the same – You Are What is Important! Stop making excuses and stop selling yourself short. If you really want something to happen for yourself, you should never give up. This way of thinking is used in all aspects of life; job promotions or a dream vacation. Why should it be any different for weight loss or other fitness goals? Your family and true friends will understand eventually, and you still can have a good time at events without all the extra calories from food and alcohol.
There is always a solution to a problem, no matter how frustrating it can be. Take a step back to evaluate the problem and figure out a way to solve it. Weight loss does not have to be this stressful, and you should avoid over-thinking things. Keep your head in check and your eye on your goals. Good things always come to those who wait, and the best thing to do is stay patient! Remember that next time you feel like there is no hope.