Everyone wants to lose some amount of weight. Well, mostly everyone. And chances are, you’ve tried your hand on different weight loss methods. A good amount of you have found results, but the overwhelming majority. From trying diets such as low carb, no carb, no fat, high fat, high protein, paleo, zone, keto, Atkins. Even if it fits your macros to eating 2 meals a day, 3 meals a day, 6 meals, 10 meals, 1 meal, not eating at night, not eating in the morning, or eating only a certain time. Fact is, you’ve probably exhausted your mind from just choosing a diet and exhausted your body from actually trying it. It’s best to avoid making these 5 common weight loss mistakes.
1.Underestimate How Much You Eat
Aunt Jay swears that she’s been eating only 1000 calories a day MAX. But for some reason, she’s still not losing weight. So what gives? Things is, Aunt Jay is a liar. And it’s no fault of her own other than basic human intuition. Thing is, people commonly underestimate the number of calories they really eat. A study found that people underreported the number of calories they consumed by as much as 50%. Aunt Jay says she’s eating 1000 calories, but it’s probably closer to 2000. So your best bet is to count your calories, but let’s face it, it’s not fun having to read each nutrition label and measuring your food. You’re better off using a calorie counting app or website that will help you do it. Granted, it’s not always accurate, but much better than having to do it alone.
2. Finishing Your Plate
If you’re anything like myself and don’t like to waste food, you’re gonna finish everything on your plate. After all, you work hard to put food on that plate, and the last thing you’re going to do is throw it away, almost like throwing away money. And if you’re more like me, usually there’s maybe a bite or two left, or a single chicken wing or pizza slice, so you irrationally tell yourself, “Might as well just eat it. This happens a lot, like every day, no matter how gut-bustlingly full you are.
And it also means bye-bye to weight loss goals. So to fix this, you either stop eating completely once you feel satisfied or… bare with me here… buy smaller plates. Sounds silly, but it works. In fact, there’s a whole Wikipedia page called the “Smaller Plate Study,” where it was shown that using 10-inch diameter plates instead of 12 inches decreased the number of food people ate without affecting fullness or satisfaction. Pretty darn cool.
3. Doing Long Tedious Exercises
Cardio and weight loss. They usually go hand in hand, but should they really? Cardio, short for cardiovascular exercises initially was used to promote a healthy heart. But with the rise of aerobics, it became the standard method in weight loss. However, it takes forever to actually do. Today’s world, time is money, so spending an hour to burn 3 to 400 calories is just not worth your time. And steady-state cardio, such as jogging on a treadmill, is super tedious, repetitive, and… it’s just not fun… for most. Which means, many people will eventually quit. So instead of boring yourself with grueling long-winded cardio, you can try something known as high-intensity interval training. Not only does it burn calories and even promote muscle building, but it also does it in half the time as traditional cardio will take. Come learn more about it in this video here.
4. Expect Results Too Quickly
You can thank the media for this one. With so many so-called fitness companies and self-proclaimed fitness “gurus,” all promising that you can lose something like 20 pounds in 20 days, there’s no doubt that people will begin to believe that it can actually be done. Well, honestly, it can be done, but at the cost of your overall health by restricting nutrients that your body needs. Also, when losing weight so drastically, your body goes into survival mode and fights to keep every single fat molecule it can, making it harder to burn fat.
On top of this, a study found that in the popular television competition show, “The Biggest Loser,” where contestants compete to lose the most weight in a small amount of time, many of the contestants ended up regaining all the weight they lost with some even gaining more. It was shown that this was due to their basal metabolic rate completely crashing. Your best bet is to shoot for roughly 1 to 2 pounds a week, or about 10% of your starting weight in 6 months.
5. Changing Too Many Things At Once
Wanting to lose weight is usually followed by a sudden spark of motivation to change your habits. And a lot of times, people want to change multiple habits… all at once. And when they try to do it, they end up failing … all at once. Losing weight itself is a multiple habit-changing process. Eating less is a habit. Exercising more is a habit. Drinking more water is a habit. Heck, even counting your calories is a habit.
When you try to do all of this at once, it gets pretty difficult to follow through. You’re better off just going after one a time. So whether it’s eating more chicken or waking up early to work out, stick with one until it becomes a solid habit. And remember, people, are different. Some habits are easier to change than others, and some, just won’t change. Try changing different habits until you find the ones you know you can do.