Stuck With Your Weight Loss? 10 Reasons Why
You want to lose weight. Yet you find yourself constantly frustrated by getting little to no result despite [what feels like] your massive efforts.
It is hard enough to say YES to starting a weight loss journey, but to feel like you can't get the needle moving forward makes you want to quit before you give yourself the first high five.
In this blog, I'm going to help you replace your facepalm with fat loss!!
With 15 years of coaching experience, I have learned to quickly identify and eliminate any roadblocks in a weight loss journey. Whether you have a big double-digit goal or just want to drop the last 5-8 vanity pounds, there are several reasons your efforts are yielding lackluster results.
If you don't address the 10 things on this checklist, then you will continue to beat your head against the wall and scream at your scale.
Let's get to it…
THE LIFESTYLE REASONS
1 – YOU'RE NOT GETTING ENOUGH SLEEP:
Wah. wah. Wah. Seems like such a lame place to start. I know you're wanting me to tell you you're not doing enough burpees or hand you more action-packed items but THIS one is top… read on.
Not getting enough rest can signal imbalances in our cortisol hormone, as well as leptin and ghrelin levels (these two control our hunger and satiety cues.) The signals that say "Please eat, I'm hungry" and "Please stop, I'm full."
Just one night of wacky sleep can throw these off and makes them say…I'm hungry all the time… and you can just keep eating because I'm not full yet!!
If sleep is a struggle, pay closer attention to your caffeine intake and reduce it if needed. Reduce your blue light exposure in the evening and create a bedtime routine that helps your brain unplug and wind down. Yes, this means getting off your phone and turning off Netflix!
2 – YOU'RE EXTRA STRESSED:
Is life feeling like a fire drill?
All day, every day?
Cortisol isn't an ideal hormone to have out of balance if we're trying to lose weight. Our brain doesn't know if we are stressed because of a traffic jam or because a bear is chasing us – it just knows that we are in a constant state of fight or flight – and it won't release any weight until we chill the f out!
This is the ultimate goal once we get to our desired healthy weight – to maintain a physique we love every day! Maintenance mode looks different for everyone, but normally it will exceed 1500 calories if you're active. However, it can be upwards of 2500 calories depending on the amount of muscle you carry and style of training you choose.
3 – YOUR HORMONES AREN'T HEALTHY:
If you haven't had a recent blood panel, I highly recommend adding this information to your arsenal – especially when you are trying to decode weight loss struggles. If you can say honestly that you have strictly followed a quality food and fitness plan, with little to no success then it's time to take a peek "under the hood." Thyroid function, sex hormones, and your menstrual cycle need to be optimal to cut body fat.
4 – PRESCRIPTION MEDICATIONS:
I am not saying stop your prescription meds – but you need to be aware that hormonal birth control, SSRI antidepressants, along with a variety of other medications can alter metabolic function and affect the way your body stores fat and loses weight. Always consult your physician before making any changes to prescription medications.
5 – COMPROMISED GUT HEALTH:
If your digestion and elimination are off or compromised (missing gallbladder, leaky gut syndrome, bacterial dysbiosis, etc.) these issues need to be addressed first. You may be able to address these issues with nutritional changes, but there is no shame in getting a boost from some quality supplements to help nourish your gut health. You can grab one of my recommended gut health supplements HERE.
6 – NOT GETTING ENOUGH STEPS IN YOUR DAY:
This one is super common. Just because you log a one-hour hardcore workout doesn't mean that sitting at your desk the rest of the day will be forgiven.
You must move! So many of us are working from home, attending virtual meetings, and finding ourselves sitting more than ever.
Get up and move around for 5-10 minutes each hour and the steps will add up. Plus you'll get an energy boost and will recharge your brain. Aim for a minimum of 8K steps per day.
7 – YOU NEED MORE MUSCLE:
For all my cardio queens, I see you and I love you but that IS NOT your most effective way of burning fat. Even if it was, you won't have any shape to be excited to see once the fat is all gone if you don't build muscle.
Muscle burns 4x as many calories at rest than fat does. Therefore, having quality muscle on your frame positively impacts your body composition and increases your resting metabolic rate.
Focus on strength training over cardio and watch the magic happen!
8 – YOU'RE OVEREXERCISING:
More doesn't equal better. Doing too much cardio, HIIT, or lifting without prioritized recovery or time to positively adapt can halt progress. [your body goes into SOS mode]
Add variety to your workouts as well as active rest days that include restorative workouts like yoga or an outdoor walk.
9 – DIETING TOO OFTEN OR FOR AN EXCESSIVE TIME FRAME OR TOO SHORT OF A TIME IN AT MAINTENANCE CALORIES:
Have you ever successfully completed a diet and lost a ton of weight? Only to start eating "normally" and rapidly gain it all back plus more?!?!
Let me tell ya why…
Our bodies are designed with feedback loops, for our health and protection. We have to understand that your body doesn't care if you have a thigh gap or a muffin top, it cares that it keeps you alive.
When we stay at a calorie deficit for longer than 12-16 weeks OR if we cut calories down to a fraction of what we need to make it through the day our body senses trouble! [ Like….Is she lost in the woods without enough food… running from the bad guys?!?! ]
My maximum suggested timeframe for a caloric deficit would be 12-16 weeks, and no more than once or twice a year.
When you deprive your body for too long, it will adapt by slowing down your metabolism.
The problem could also be spending too short of a timeframe using maintenance calories. Maintenance calories are higher calories (with a good ratio balance of protein, fats, and carbs) in which your body maintains its weight.
This is the ultimate goal once we get to our desired healthy weight – to maintain a physique we love every day! Maintenance mode looks different for everyone, but normally it will exceed 1500 calories if you're active. However, it can be upwards of 2500 calories depending on the amount of muscle you carry and the style of training you choose.
10 – MAN-MADE MANUFACTURED PROCESSED FOOD:
Even if it's marketed as "healthy" it may still be a processed food! Processed foods are foods that have been removed from their natural state. This happens as a result of biological, chemical, and sometimes mechanical manipulation. Yes, carrots in a bag are technically "processed", but they remain as carrots. However, a potato chip (even the sweet potato ones) are a far cry from the potato you'd find in the produce section. To put it simply, we don't want our bodies to have to detox ingredients out of our food to turn it into energy. Simple ingredients that you can easily read and pronounce are the first step to fueling your body for success.
Maybe this checklist gave you a sigh of relief or a pang of overwhelm, but either way, you have some solid info to become your own detective and get to the bottom of your weight loss struggles.
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As always, if you have questions for me, drop them in the comments.
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