Why Can’t I Lose Weight? Part 1 of 2

If you’re finding no matter what you do you can’t seem to lose weight, there are specific reasons for this that you have more control over than you think:

You’re not strength training.  Often, people who can’t lose weight don’t do any strength training or use 2 and 4 pound weights.  I mean come on, when your purse weighs more than your weights, you have a problem.  Build some lean, sleek muscle (think pro beach volleyball player) and your resting metabolism will soar – meaning you’ll burn more calories every minute of every day and night.

You’re not exercising in a way that forces your body to change.  Intensity requires energy; it raises your body’s energy needs. Your body will be forced to dig into stored fat for this energy.

If you’ve been working out and the weight hasn’t been coming off, it’s because you’re just going through the motions. To get a training effect you have to do more than just show up.

There’s the story of a heavy-set woman who’d been doing kettlebell swings with 20 pounds for about a month.  A trainer went over to her and said “Hi,” with a smile, “I have a gift for you.” and handed her a 30 pound kettlebell.

The woman’s mouth fell open, but the trainer said, “You’re going to do 30 pounds for as long as you can, safely.”

“I can’t do 30 pounds!” she retorted.

“Oh yes you can. Trust me. You’re stronger than you think.”

The woman said her goal was to lose weight, but not much was happening despite regular workouts.  She began swinging the 30 pound kettlebell and it wasn’t easy.  She had to fight her way through the last 10 seconds,  but she finished it… with a gasp.

The trainer said, “Now that’s how every round should feel. Make this kind of effort with for every exercise. You won’t lose weight if you keep doing something your body is good at. This is why runners struggle with weight loss after a while.  You must do something that forces you to work harder.

Moral of this story: “Struggle brings Change.”  Only exercises that require a massive effort will burn fat and cause weight loss, especially when coupled with sensible eating.

You eat mindlessly. Every little sample and nugget counts. One little tablespoon of gravy is 100 calories.  A “nibble here and there” adds up.  You’ll almost always overeat while watching TV or in front of the computer, portion it out before you sit.

You drink diet sodas. Artificial sweeteners often trigger hunger,  Stick with plain ol’ water as much as possible.  You can drink it cold or hot (with a little lemon).   Green tea is good too.

Too many processed foods. Processed foods trigger hunger and cravings for more processed food.  While too much white sugar and high fructose corn syrup will get immediately stored as fat.

You skip breakfast or have the wrong kind of breakfast. Breakfast, even if it’s only a slice of whole wheat toast with peanut butter, will keep your energy level more stable and kill late-day hunger.  However, a poor breakfast like a sugar-filled yogurt or coffee and a donut will cause your blood sugar to spike setting off an energy (and mood) roller coaster that lasts all day.   Plus, skipping it can make you feel entitled to overeat later on (NOT good).

More on this tomorrow.

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