3 FAT LOSS MISTAKES PEOPLE MAKE WHEN DIETING
Here’s what you need to know….
- If you’re not tracking your daily calorie intake it’s easy to over-indulge on foods that have a high calorie content without noticing. This can result in a positive energy balance and compromise results.
- Restricting your intake of certain foods, or entire food groups, will ultimately render your diet unsustainable in the long term. Remember, the best diet is the one you can stick to for the longest.
- Setting calories too low, too soon can lead to what’s called ‘adaptive thermoneogenis’ – a metabolic state which can seriously undermine your results.
Despite Fat Loss being a relatively simple and straightforward process, it’s easy to make mistakes if you’re ill-informed or unsure of what you’re doing. Unfortunately, this constitutes a large proportion of people trying to lose weight, many of who undermine their own progress by making mistakes that are entirely avoidable. Of course the best way to avoid making such mistakes, is to learn from other people’s. With that in mind here’s three of the most common mistakes people make when dieting to lose weight;
Mistake No.1 – Not Tracking Your Calorie Intake
Tracking your calorie intake is important for a number of reasons, most notably it allows you to measure what’s known as energy balance – the relationship between the amount of calories you consume through food and those you expend through exercise and activity. The difference between the two figures will determine whether or not you lose weight. If you eat more than you burn, then you’re going to gain weight. Conversely if you eat less than what you burned, you’re going to lose weight. This all might sound painfully obvious but if you’re not tracking your calories, then you have no real way of knowing whether you’ve burned more or less than what you’ve consumed. The problem is that without a reliable measure, people tend to over-estimate the amount of calories burned through exercise whilst underestimating the amount of calories consumed through food. Inevitably, this will cause your total daily calorie intake to rise, significantly reducing your calorie deficit or even putting you in a calorie surplus – neither of which are conducive to fat loss.
Mistake No. 2 – Heavily Restricting Your Intake of Certain Foods
Adherence is an important thing to consider in the design of any diet and the easier it is to stick to your diet long term, the greater your chances of success. Conversely, the more rigid a diet it is the harder it is to follow. Rigid diets generally require abstinence from foods that are either high in sugar, salt, artificial flavourings, total fat, saturated fat or considered ‘unclean’. This omission of food is effective at reducing body fat because it decreases daily calorie intake while increasing the consumption of satiating high protein, high fibre foods. Where this approach fails, is that these type of diets become increasingly stressful, rigid and obtrusive. As time progresses, it becomes harder and harder to exercise restraint and resist the temptation to indulge in foods we both crave and enjoy eating. At this point the diet usually descends into episodes of binge eating, undoing weeks (if not months) of hard work whilst leaving the dieter feeling guilty, depressed and demotivated to continue. The solution to this problem is to make your diet easy to follow. The simplest ways to do this is to include foods you enjoy as part of you plan, avoid overly restricting any particular food group or nutrient and be careful not to lower your calories too low for too long. This approach, whilst as equally effective, will enable you to sustain your eating habits long term without suffering the inevitable social, psychological and physical stress associated with rigid dieting.
Mistake No. 3 – Crash Dieting
Drastically reducing the amount of calories you consume in order to achieve rapid, short term results is another common mistake people make when trying to lose weight. A moderate calorie deficit of around 20% is usually more than sufficient to stimulate fat loss of 0.5-1kg per week. Despite this being a realistic and sustainable rate of fat loss, people will opt for deficits as large as 40% in an attempt to expedite results.This is counterproductive for a number of reasons. Firstly, if you start your diet in a 40% deficit you’re not giving yourself much room to manoeuvre when progress stalls, which it inevitably will. If you’re in a 20% deficit and weight loss begins to plateau you always have the option of reducing your calories by 10%, which should be more than enough to get things started again. Second, large calorie deficits can induce what’s know as adaptive thermoneogenesis (AT). This what people commonly refer to as ‘starvation mode’, where the body attempts to preserve energy in response to the decrease in calorie intake. The body does this by reducing physical activity and other metabolic processes that burn precious calories. The impact of these protective measures is that the difference between calories burned versus calories consumed is reduced and less body fat ends up being burned as a result. From a fat loss perspective, crash dieting and drastically reducing your calories is akin to pointing yourself in a corner. A hungry, miserable, frustrating corner.
Whilst they are undeniably frustrating, making mistakes is a fundamental part of learning and growing as a person. Hopefully by reading this article you’ll be able to avoid some of the more common mistakes that people make when trying to lose weight and in doing so increase your own chances of success. If you’re confused about what to eat and how to train to lose weight, then book you place at my upcoming Fat Loss workshop which is going to be held at 18:00 on the 15th February in the upstairs studio. During this fast-paced, interactive workshop you’ll learn exactly how to structure your diet, training and lifestyle to not only lose weight in the short term but to keep it off in the long term as well. Click Here to find out more details about the event or, to reserve your place today email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.