Fat loss is hard for a lot of people. The last thing anyone needs is more complications when they're trying as hard as possible to shift some excess fat.
Here are my 5 top things that are ruining your fat loss, and how to combat them.
1. Calorie Restriction (Not enough food)
Sometimes in an effort to speed up results, women will continually cut the amount of food they eat, hoping that less food means more fat loss. This is most definitely NOT the truth and, in fact, it can actually make things worse for your body. Get your hands on a well balanced, healthy eating and lifestyle plan and stick to it. Stop changing and cutting calories, this only makes your body play catch up, and more often than not it doesn't like it.
2. Too Much Exercise
This is quite similar to calorie restriction, in the sense that when we don't see the results we want, we think pushing through will just fix that. It is common to think that more calories burnt equals more fat lost, but again this is most definitely NOT the truth in all cases and provides a huge risk of injury and exhaustion.
To minimise the risk of fatigue and injury, I highly recommend finding a training program that isn't overly time consuming and fits in with your lifestyle. You don't always have to workout for a long time to get results, it's more important you work hard during the workouts. All of my resistance sessions are only 30 minutes and can be done almost anywhere with minimal or even no equipment. This works really well for busy people.
Something that gets said a lot is "you always have to keep your body guessing". This is a myth. If you have a training program that covers multi-direction movements, resistance, rehabilitation and function as well as a nutrition plan that covers your energy output needs, you are safe. There is no need to keep changing things. You can make things progressively harder, but there is no need to chop and change things all the time. All it does is make your body play catch up, but sometimes it doesn't catch up in the way that you'd hope.
For this, my advice is similar to point 2. Choose to train and eat in a realistic way. Don't be too extreme, because you want to be able to maintain this for life. Training super hard for 6 months is awesome, but it doesn't mean anything if you don't train for the following 6 months. So don't go 200% for a little bit and crash and burn. Cruise through at a rate you can sustain, that's just enough to get the results you want while maintaining a balanced lifestyle and then slowly but surely push yourself harder and harder.
4. Time Wasting in the Gym (or when working out)
Now, every woman who has ever been to a gym, has seen that "bro" flexing in the mirror who never breaks a sweat. But in terms of training, sitting there pondering your weekend, scrolling through Facebook or chatting to girlfriends is probably just as bad. Not only because you don't get things done, but also because you end up being at the gym for way too long and it just wastes your time.
The easiest ways to avoid this are:
- get good music to keep you focussed and use iTunes to cut out the boring parts
- if you're going to train with friends, choose the motivated and serious ones
- time your rest periods
- track your progress and results from each workout using a diary, this way you can compare each time you workout
There is nothing like the good old "I ate so clean today, why don't I have a six-pack?" Your body is an amazing machine and really can change in many ways. From being a little baby, growing into an adult, gaining fat, losing fat and to someday reproducing children of your own. But, it is important to understand that nothing great ever happens overnight. So if you're looking for the best results as fast as possible how do you deal with impatience?
This is how.
First, you need to educate yourself about the body, and what to expect from the work that you're putting in. If you expect 5kg to drop off and you "only" lose 1kg you'll be upset, because you were hoping for more. So it is very important to understand that things work at a certain rate both positively and negatively. Secondly, you need to set realistic goals and stick to them. Once you understand how long things "should" take you can then start to plan for yourself when you're going to make them happen. Finally, you need to actually do the work. Don't do half the work and expect all the results.
Hope these tips help you in your fat loss journey!