What To Do When You Can’t Lose Weight
I was sitting in traffic listening to a health and wellness podcast (I know, sounds boring but it’s pretty amazing) when I heard something profound. The guest speaker said, “Want to know the best way to gain weight—go on a diet.” I think my brain exploded when I heard her say it. Sounds disheartening, but depending on the diet, this oftentimes is true.
I know first hand how it feels to be desperate to lose weight fast with no motivation. As well as how discouraging it can be when you’ve seemingly tried every diet but nothing works for getting results.
There are plenty of inspirational weight loss blogs out there full of amazing tips, but when you aren’t losing weight fast enough you may ask yourself, “Why is my diet not working?” This is a question I’ve asked myself repeatedly in recent months.
After my own trials and tribulations, I decided to do some research and found out some pretty interesting tidbits along the way. As a result, I’ve put together a list of the top steps to lose weight that’ll cover what to do when you can’t shed the pounds.
1. Stop Thinking Of It As “A Diet.”
If you can be “on” a diet, you can be “off” it as well. This is one major reason diets fail. Because they’re temporary. 📆 Eating healthy should be more than just a temporary diet, it’s a complete lifestyle change; one you have to be comfortable maintaining. This change in mindset is one of the major steps to lose weight and improve overall health. You can see major weight loss eating only chicken broth, low-calorie, low-fat meals, and drinking tons of water, but if you go back to the way you were eating before as soon as you start losing weight, your weight loss experiment will ultimately be doomed.
- Turn your weight loss diet into a more sustainable regime, so you can maintain your healthy weight.
- Learn how to control your portions, and how to properly balance your meals. Try to get a good idea of what a proper serving of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, and fiber looks like, and what the proper ratios are for your body.
- Practice creating your own healthy and delicious foods, and you’ll learn how satisfying eating healthy can be.
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2. Exercise On A Consistent Basis
Easier said than done, right? Tell me about it. The drive-time commute, and evening family duties, on top of the fatigue that starts to set in after working a full 8 hours at the office all factor into your decision whether to workout or settle down, eat a good dinner and take in a little America’s Got Talent. 🎤
While studies (1) have shown that exercise isn’t as important as cutting calories, it’s one of the most important steps to lose weight—it’s also a major factor in weight maintenance among the thousands of successful losers in the (2) National Weight Control Registry—which is an ongoing study of how people manage to keep the weight they’ve lost off. 90 percent of those that kept the weight off exercised about an hour a day. Most of them aren’t doing intense cross-training either—they merely walk every day.
Fun Fact: Normal low-intensity exercises, like walking and swimming, reduces cortisol, the hormone that causes stress, which has also been linked to overeating. 💡
Takeaway: Find an activity you enjoy doing and do it every day consistently. Walking is always one of the more convenient ways to exercise. You can do it anywhere, from your neighborhood to the local high school track—even around the mall! 🛍 Another easy way to stay active is dancing—yes, dancing. Que up the playlist, throw on your headphones, and just dance to your heart’s content! Being consistent is tough, but the important thing is to find something active that you love doing so it’s not just a task you dread.
3. Get Your Preparation Game Up
As the old saying goes, “Failing to prepare, is preparing to fail”. This holds true when it comes to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Food is our source of life, and energy (and joy!). Unfortunately for us, what tastes the best is usually not what’s best for us in the long run. Humans are biologically wired to crave fats and carbs because those energy-dense foods have helped us survive food shortages throughout our history. But don’t go blaming your ancestors when you down a half dozen glazed Krispy Kreme donuts. That’s on you. 😆
Whether we’re genetically predisposed to eating fatty foods or not, there are still ways to be sure that you’re eating healthy no matter what the situation is. Since eating out is one of the main culprits behind gaining weight, you can start by putting in a little extra effort into grocery shopping, and food prep.
Takeaway: Purchase storage containers, and other accessories that will support your lifestyle change. Carve out some time on the weekend to cook and store several meals. As a result, you’ll find yourself eating more wholesome meals and snacks (good fat, protein, and fiber), which will, in turn, reduce your cravings for those tempting sugar and fat combos, and give you more energy to perform at work, with your family, and during your fitness activities.
4. Pump Some Iron 🏋🏽
Relying on dieting alone to lose body fat could be a frustrating road to travel. You must pair your diet with a consistent workout plan, more specifically one that includes a variety of exercises. A very common misconception is that lifting weights is only for bodybuilders and hardcore fitness enthusiast. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, lifting weights could be what your fat loss campaign is missing.
You’re probably like I was; on a low-carb, high-cardio plan because you think it’s the quickest way to reach your weight loss goals. Turns out, I was wrong and there are a couple of reasons why.
A cardio workout does burn more calories than a weight-training workout. However, your metabolism may stay elevated for longer after weight training than it will after a cardio session. Weight lifting is also better for building muscle.
Takeaway: The ideal exercise program for improving the composition of your body and maintaining overall health includes cardio and weights. You won’t be able to eat whatever you want just because you add a few pounds of muscle. But weight training will help you retain lean body mass while on a diet, ultimately giving you the look and feel you want.
Need a little motivation to start your cross-training campaign? Try SkinnyFit Jump Start! Jump Start is a powerful pink lemonade flavored pre-workout supplement, formulated specifically for women who need a boost of energy and focus to get the most out of their workout. It keeps you motivated and energized throughout your whole workout, and helps you maintain your focus and endurance so you can reach your goals quicker!
5. Start Counting Calories
It’s easy to lose track of the calories you intake throughout the day. Especially when you aren’t eating meals that you prepared from home. A coworkers birthday in the office—raspberry white chocolate cheesecake, yum. Coffee machine broke in the kitchen, no problem—double latte with vanilla sweetener from the fancy cafe across the street. Calories just start to add up and before you know it you’ve blown right past the 1600 you’ve allotted yourself for the day.
Losing weight and building lean muscle is a science. The key is to burn more calories than you intake, so at the end of the day, you have a deficit of at least 500 calories, which averages out to losing about a pound per week. Keeping track of your calories also allows you to think twice about making a food choice that may work against your goals. Studies (3) show that keeping track of your diet does help with weight loss. People who use food diary apps on their smartphones, keep food logs or take pictures of their meals, consistently lose more weight than people who don’t. It’s all about accountability!
Takeaway: Download an app, learn how to use it, and track your calories. Some of these apps allow you to also track your workouts so you can see how many calories you burn throughout the day. They even include an internal search engine that pulls up the calories of any food you look up. Over time this will help you learn what foods to avoid, and how much food you really need to feel satisfied. As a result, you’ll feel more confident about your weight loss journey.
6. Stop Drinking Your Sugar
Studies show sugary drinks are the most fattening items in our food repertoire. Our brains just don’t account for the calories in these beverages by making us eat less of other foods, in other words, they don’t make you feel full. (4) This isn’t only true of sugary drinks like your go-to soda and energy drinks; it also applies to so-called “healthier” beverages, like cranberry juice cocktail and sports drinks.
One of the biggest culprits is alcoholic beverages. They’re typically high in sugar, and since alcohol impairs your judgment, we tend to overdo it and lose track of how many calories we’re intaking. A few cocktails can easily cost you 600 calories, which is probably more calories than you had at dinner.
Takeaway: Replacing some of your high-calorie drinks with super tasty, all-natural SkinnyFit Detox will not only help you reduce your caloric intake, but it will reduce bloating, release toxins from your body, and give you sustainable energy; unlike fattening, sugar-heavy drinks that make you crash hours after drinking them.
7. You’re Not Getting Enough Sleep
Between your job and your family life you hardly get any time to yourself. So like most of us, “me time” gets pushed into the late night, consequently affecting the nutrition and fitness decisions you make the following day. Though there’s no doubt you can get by on 4 to 5 hours of sleep, playing iron woman will catch up to you in the long run. Getting good sleep is one of the most important factors for your physical and mental health, as well as your weight.
Studies have shown that poor sleep is one of the biggest factors in obesity. Adults and children with poor sleep have a 55% and 89% greater risk of becoming obese, respectively (5). Pretty staggering numbers.
Takeaway: Lack of quality sleep is a strong risk factor for obesity. It will also lower your motivation to workout. But if you struggle with getting good rest on your own, I have just what you need. SkinnyFit ZzzTox is a soothing, caffeine-free blend of whole tea leaves, herbs, and flowers that will help you burn calories while you sleep, and calm unsightly bloating. Its all-natural ingredients and antioxidants promote healthy digestion and flush harmful toxins from the body, all while promoting restful sleep.
8. Start Drinking More Water… (Really)
Diet not working? Desperate to lose weight fast? You may not believe it but water could be the boost you’re looking for. We’re all aware of the other health benefits of drinking water regularly, but believe it or not, drinking water CAN also benefit weight loss.
In one 12-week weight loss study, people who drank half a liter (about 1 ½ bottles) of water 30 minutes before meals lost 44% more weight than those who did not (6). Drinking water has also been shown to boost the number of calories burned by 24–30% over a period of 1.5 hours (7, 8).
Takeaway: Water is your diets best friend—like really, bff’s. To reduce the number of calories you intake, drink a glass of water before you eat. In fact, drink water all day long! 💧❤️ Drinking water may also increase the number of calories you burn so drink up, and good luck with your weight loss journey!