Now if you’ve fallen into a weight loss trick or gimmick in the past don’t give yourself a hard time. Most people have at one point or another. I mean, I don’t think it’s a billion-dollar industry for no reason. Now although your intentions were pure, I’m sure at this point maybe you’re feeling a little bit restless and don’t know who or what to believe when it comes to properly losing weight.
By watching this video to the end you can at least avoid these twelve very common weight loss mistakes that I see all the time, plus I’ll give you a few pointers on what you can focus your attention on instead, following a diet. Now distinguish between a diet and a lifestyle.
Weight Loss Mistakes #1: Following a Diet
Understand Differences Between a Diet and a Lifestyle?
Diets or a diet is something that we do for a short-term gain, whereas a lifestyle is something that you can see yourself doing truly for the rest of your life, and that’s where you want to focus your attention when you want to lose weight sustainably. But if you’re trying to lose those 10 pounds or 5 kilos in one week, you might actually be able to do it but it’s not going to stay that way.
People following crash diets often gain that weight back plus more. But that’s probably something you’ve already heard so the question to really be asking yourself then is: “Why do I keep jumping from one diet to another or keep trying the same diet over and over again if I’m not seeing any results?”
One thing I’m always telling my clients to remind themselves is: that if there was a diet out there that really truly worked we would have all already known about it by now and we would all be skinny.
Mistake #2: Short-Term Gains
Anything that promises instant weight loss results is a gimmick. This can also be shakes, bars, pills, light therapy, laser therapy, the list goes on. I’m sorry to break it to you. But at least this way you can save your money and instead spend your time on focusing on long-term gains. Changes that you can make slowly and strategically to get to the results that you are hoping for.
Mistake #3: Restricting Calories
Now restricting calories puts our bodies into a state of “Ketosis” it’s called. This is why those Paleo diets and those ketogenic diets are all the rage right now.
Because ketosis suppresses the appetite, which obviously means eating less, fewer calories, calorie restriction, weight loss ensues. I mean, why wouldn’t you want to do this, right? And we’re seeing loads of people with these before-and-after pictures. Two months later, six months later. And you see these ripped bodies and you want that for yourself and I get it. But what you don’t see is these people two years or four years or six years later. Calorie restriction is truly not sustainable in the long term.
And as I mentioned before you end up gaining that weight back plus more. The problem here is that calorie restriction slows the metabolism. So your attempts at wanting to lose weight in the future, after calorie restriction is over, tends to be slower or totally impeded. Studies show that even long after calorie restriction is over, people who eat in this way tend to have a very unhealthy relationship with food.
So again, we want the focus here not to be calorie restriction, but rather healthy lifestyle changes.
Weight Loss Mistakes #4: Skipping Breakfast
Time and time again studies are showing us people who have breakfast tend to be of a lower weight and are better able to maintain weight loss than those who don’t. Now I get it too, that skipping breakfast can seem like a really easy way to cut calories.
But what ends up happening is unplanned snacking, grazing and overeating later on in the day. So most certainly have some breakfast and try to include more fiber in your breakfast. Things like whole grains, fruits, nuts, and seeds to help keep you full for the entire morning.
Mistake #5: Losing Track of Snacks
Now mindless munching can really add up. I’m not saying don’t have a snack. I’m just saying watch the grazing and instead maybe have some planned snacks. Not snacking at all.
Now, some people can not snack at all and they do just fine. But if your track record indicates that you’re somebody who really needs a snack, and I am certainly one of those people, then do, please, have some snacks! Just plan for them. By planning your snacks and not depriving yourself you’ll be better able to control your hunger and lose weight. This is also especially important if you’re going to otherwise be going six to eight hours between meals.
Mistake # 6: Not Snacking At All
Snacking helps to keep the metabolism in high gear. Try some fruit, some homemade oat bars or a small handful of nuts or seeds.
Mistake #7: Sipping Calories
For some people this is the silent culprit. I’m all for drinking smoothies and having occasional juices. But I’m talking about excess. Excess juices, sodas, alcoholic beverages, or those specialty coffees. You know the ones like from Starbucks that have 500 calories per cup! I mean that’s a whole meal in a cup! So stay hydrated. Just sip smart.
Weight Loss Mistakes #8: Drinking Too Little Water
Now some people don’t realize this, but water really is essential when it comes to burning calories and not drinking enough water for weight loss could be one of the biggest weight loss mistakes you commit. When you’re dehydrated, your metabolism drags, which means slower weight loss. Try getting in the habit of having a water bottle with you at all times and maybe also getting in the habit of having a glass of either water or tea at every meal and snack time.
Mistake # 9: Eating Out
Drive-throughs and cafeterias add loads of oil to their foods to keep you coming back for more because of the flavor that it might add. Of course this is going to be a lot higher calorie than if you were just to make it for yourself at home. So certainly eat out on special occasions, or as a treat, but not as a ritual. Maybe you can get in the habit instead of meal prepping or batch-making your meals on your evenings off. That way you’re going to be spending less time in the kitchen. And it’s also going to help you with your weight loss goals. Plus, it’ll save you some money.
Mistake #10: Focusing on Willpower
Now studies are showing us time and time again that willpower is a “depletable” source. It means that if you’re going to be focusing on willpower to try to eat better or to exercise more, you’re going to maybe find that it’s not going to work. And this really leads to frustration for a lot of people and self blame for not being able to stick with something when really, it’s not your fault.
So what can you do instead? Focus on the ‘why’ power. And by that I mean ask yourself: “Why is it that you want to eat better or be more active?” Write that reason down and reinforce the why instead of the will.
Mistak #11: Tunnel Vision
Are you focusing on just one thing as being the source of your weight loss? Is only the food changing? Or only the exercise?
Food or activity and isolation will certainly help a little but it might not get you entirely or fully to your weight loss goals. You want to be looking at a whole wellness approach to health. So this means adequate hydration, adequate sleep, lack of substances and even a positive emotional state. You may have heard that increased stress levels also increase Cortisol in our body and that can actually cause weight gain and impede any attempts at weight loss. So do what you can to find some zen.
Mistake #12: Setting Unrealistic Weight Loss Goals
This is also one of the biggest weight loss mistakes people, especially starting new make. Now again, your intentions with this one may be pure but do you find that you’re setting these goals that you just can’t stick with? Well, instead of getting frustrated at yourself, it might be more productive to look into seeing if you can find some one-on-one counseling or nutrition coaching.
Now let’s think of the most successful athletes out there, for example. Do you think they are also susceptible to these weight loss mistakes? You bet they do. But their success is no doubt because of their relentless effort, but it’s also in part due to the ongoing mentoring and guidance that they receive from their coaches. Having a coach or someone to check in with is extremely powerful when it comes to you trying to achieve your weight loss goals.
Alright. So those are the 12 most common weight loss mistakes that I see all the time. I know that it’s not necessarily the easiest journey but giving up isn’t going to make it go by any faster.
And going to the extremes is truly not sustainable in the long term. So slow and steady wins the race here. I’m going to let you go now so that hopefully you can write down your why power on a little post-it and stick it onto your mirror or your fridge as a daily reminder to keep you going. As always if you have any questions be sure leave them in the comments section below regarding these 12 weight loss mistakes.