“I’ve tried everything but I can’t lose weight!”
Even if you have the best personal trainer in Nashville, all the workouts in the world can’t help you lose weight if your nutrition has one of these fatal flaws.
Most of the time when people are having trouble losing weight, we can narrow down the problem to one (sometimes more than one) of these common reasons you’re not losing weight:
1) Not tracking your food.
Keeping a food journal is the ultimate reality check for how you’re ACTUALLY eating.
Tracking when, what, and how much you’re eating will give a very good picture of how close you are to our 6 Pillars of Fat Loss principles.
Just 2 or 3 days is usually enough to see patterns that have become problems.
For the record, by “tracking your food” I am NOT saying you have to count calories or macros.
All you need is a simple reality check of timing, choice, and amount.
You could even use a picture with your cell phone.
(If you haven’t kept a food journal and would like some feedback on what you’re doing, just message us and I’ll send you one to keep for a couple days)
2) Portion creep.
Portion creep or “portion distortion” is simply eating more total food than you think you are.
Here is a quick overview of portions i.e. How Much Is A Serving supposed to be?
It’s VERY easy to each more than a serving of the high-calorie foods like starches or nuts!
And a little overage here and there is no big deal, but check out this disturbing math:
If you eat just 100 calories more than you need each day (and that is NOT very much food, just a few extra bites depending on what it is)…
you will GAIN 10 POUNDS IN A YEAR.
That is what portion creep can do to you over the long haul.
Good news! That math works the other way too:
If you eat just 100 calories less each day (which again, is not very much food),
you will LOSE 10 POUNDS IN A YEAR without changing anything else.
Other ways that we commonly see Portion Creep enter our lives:
- Mindless eating (snacking while watching TV, for example)
- Eating kids food (nibbling off the kids’ plates in addition to eating your own food)
- Eating while cooking (unconscious appetizer every time you cook)
3) You’re not doing the right kind of exercise.
Any exercise is better than no exercise, but if your fat loss has stalled, you may not be doing the kind of metabolism-boosting strength training that you need to do in order to keep your “furnace” burning.
Cardio is good for you, and can be used to burn up some extra calories, but if ALL you do for exercise is steady-state cardio (jogging, elliptical, etc) then you’re missing a BIG piece.
4) Under protein-ing and Over-carbing
One of the most common problems I see on initial food journals is missing protein (usually combined with too many carbohydrates).
Your Protein + Plant combo is one of the key 6 Pillars for Fat Loss, so make sure you get a dose every time you eat!
5) Uncontrolled emotional eating.
We all get stressed out and overwhelmed sometimes, but if you reach for the donuts every time you have an unpleasant emotion, you’ll always struggle with your weight!
We all have urges to squelch our discomfort with food (or sometimes alcohol, drugs, or other activities), there’s no shame in that desire.
But that behavior is hurtful, so we need to learn how to do something different.
If you struggle with emotional eating, learning some tools to overcome these emotional urges is key to staying off the emotional eating roller coaster.
(Let me know if you want to talk about it — I *am* the guy who wrote Beating Sugar Addiction For Dummies, so I have a few things to say about emotional eating…)
There you go.
If you’re having trouble losing weight, chances are your biggest reason you’re not losing weight is one (or more) of those 5 things.
Let us know if you need a hand with any of it, we are standing by to help you!
Your friend and Coach,