Weight Loss MistakesWhen trying to lose fat, there are several, easy mistakes almost everyone makes. If you are looking to lose fat, avoid making any of the mistakes listed below. Losing fat is not difficult, it just takes time and commitment.
Too much too soon.
Fat loss takes time, you can't rush it, plain and simple. If you try to lose too much in a short period of time, you will fail, get discouraged, and probably stop your diet. It's a long term process, making changes for life, not just "the moment" and making your commitment into a lifestyle.
Eating carbs later in the day.
You should not consume any carbs in the second half of your day. For example, if you get up at 8:00AM, stop eating carbs at 4:00pm. Make your meals consisting of a lean protein and a vegetable or salad and some fats. Good fats mind you. Here's a great article on night time eating by Tom Venuto.
Not taking time to prepare meals.
If you are going to diet, do it right. Plan you meals for the following day, the night before. If you need to cook anything, have it ready. If you don't prepare, you may end up eating whatever is available, which is usually fattening.
Not exercising regularly.
You need to exercise to burn fat. I suggest doing some type of cardio, 30 minutes a day, 4 times a week. This can include walking, biking, running, swimming, etc. For best results, exercise in the morning, on an empty stomach.
Not weight training.
Weight training not only makes you look and feel better, it also increases your metabolism, to help burn more fat. You build more muscle which then requires more fuel to support it and if you're cutting calories, that fuel must come from fat. Muscle is your friend, your best friend.
Doing the same thing over and over again.
If you don't switch up your exercises, you will get tired of it, and probably quit all together. Not only that, but the body will adapt to what you are doing, and you will not see any results. Most personal trainers switch up your program every 4 to 6 weeks. This gives you time to get used to your program and excel at it, and then just as it's becoming boring, it's switched up inspiring you as well as giving your muscles a "shock" because there's a "new program" in town. This is called periodization which I covered in 2004.
Another way to mix things up is to do a Random Act of Fitness. Throw something random into the mix.
Paying too much attention to the scale.
If you are weight training, and increasing muscle mass, you may not be dropping in weight, but you will be dropping fat. This is probably the biggest reason people dont think they're getting results. They pay attention to the scale rather than body fat percentage. Your ultimate goal is to gain lean muscle mass, while dropping body fat. The scale stays the same, but you look better.
Whatever you do, don't give up. You will regret it, a couple months down the road. If you are frustrated and not losing weight, try something different, try and make it fun. Try martial arts, yoga, Five Tibetan rites, or something different like that. The five secret Tibetan exercises will help you increase energy and improve mood. Activate your power centers and pop out of bed alert and happy every morning. Not only do you get to try something new, but you end up with a social network of exercise friends. Making friends at Taekwondo or Yoga gives you a reason to continue and possibly challenge one another.
A good social network for discussing your challenges and success' may help as well. Have a friend in your weight loss support forum that holds you accountable may be just the thing as well. I'm happy to recommend my new weight loss forum for just that purpose.
Never give up. If you're not getting the results you want, make sure you tell yourself that "you are getting results". Everything produces a result. If it's not the one you want, then it's time to take a look at what you're doing and modify it, then wait to see the results. Usually this can be done on a week to week basis. If you hit a plateau, ask yourself "is it because I'm eating too much, or eating too little". yes, eating too little can slow down your metabolism and create a plateau. Adding in a second cardio session at night might break the plateau as would adding extra calories in the form or lean protein. Add 2 ounces of chicken to each meal for the week and see if that breaks your plateau. You'd be suprised.