If it happens that you work-out hard to lose body fat and you don’t see results, you could start to wonder what are the reasons for that. What is stopping you from reaching the body of your dreams. This article identifies the obstacle that stay between you and your ideal body.
The truth is that not everyone is equally build when it comes to fighting against the extra weight or extra fat. Similarly, is not equally easy or hard for all of us to gain muscle mass. This are two points you need to remember when embarking in a challenge for a better body. With this in mind, you will be easier on yourself and you will not compare yourself to the others. Or at least, if you do it, your motivation should not be affected so badly by the comparison because you should understand now not to aim for the impossible.
Set your goal to be: reach your goals, but the goals that are attainable.
Set your life-style to be: have an balanced diet, do sports regularly, and get enough sleep.
Remember that a healthy body also leads to a healthy mind.
And now to the 7 reasons why you are not reaching your goals:
1. The quality of your workouts is bad
For example, you are not adding weight lifting to your workout program and you are relying solely on the cardio sessions. If, on top of it all, you have an endomorph type of body (you gain weight and you keep it on). The problem with your cardio session is that you will burn some calories during your workout but as soon as it is done, it will not do much to help with burning extra calories.
The better approach is to add sessions of weight lifting and functional exercises (training the body for the activities performed in daily life – as Wikipedia explains). The benefit comes as an increase in the base metabolism and an increase of the number of calories that we burn after these types of workouts (post training).
Before jumping into weight lifting and functional training, it is recommended to ask for a coaching session. Your local gym team will be more than happy to assist you with that.
Since your goal is to burn calories from the fat storage after the workout, an error that needs to be avoided is to eat just after your training. As consequence this leads to the body not using its reserves. Give yourself around 90 minutes after the workout and eat a balanced meal composed of protein, vegetables and just a bit of carbohydrates. This waiting period is a very good ally for reaching your fitness goal.
2. You lie to yourself about how many calories and how much you eat
If there is a big difference between the real number of calories that you consume and the number of calories that you wish you would eat, there goes your goal of losing that stubborn body fat. The error comes most times from your part, by making wrong estimates about your caloric intake.
And, just as your enemies would do, you might lie to yourself about how much you actually eat. You might simply “forget” about all the not-so-innocent snacks you have throughout the day. Even more, you might allow yourself a highly caloric desert that will cancel all your other efforts to lose body fat. Finally, don’t forget to count the calories found in your drinks.
The better approach is to use a calorie intake monitoring tool.
3. You are actually not eating enough
The opposite to the previous point, meaning that you are not eating enough, might also be problematic. Even if you lose weight in the beginning, not eating enough leads to dangers to your health, to changes in your metabolism, and it is not a good approach for the long-term.
The main effect that you should remember in this situation is that if you eat less, the body learns to survive with less food. Therefore, your body with try to use less and less energy, leading to less body fat burning. Your body really is in survival mode, in such a situation. Even more, if it has access to any excess of calories, it will try to store this excess as body fat. This is a recipe for a roller-coaster evolution of your weight and body fat.
The better approach is to make a habit of burning through exercise more and more calories, and take a slower dive into a drastic calorie restriction.
4. You try to lose weight way too fast
As the previous point points out: losing body fat should rather be a long-term, and not-so-fast endeavor. That is because if you lose weight fast, the most likely it is that you will gain it back also as fast, and sometimes even more. And such an approach, of a rapid weight loss will lead to the loss of more muscle mass than you would want, and less body fat loss, as hoped.
The right approach is to set your body fat losing goal as a long term. And important note here, see how we use body fat loss and not weight loss? That is because it is the fat that you want to lose. A goal anywhere between 1 to 2 Kg per month should be on the safe side.
5. You are sensitive to certain carbohydrates
If we looked at mostly external factors so far, it is now time to start looking into your own body issues.
If your fight with the body fat loss is stagnating, you could try eliminating some of the (sometimes) problematic types of carbohydrates: the gluten, the products based on corn, the fermented sugars, the lactose, the extra fructose in the case you are eating too many fruits.
The best approach here would be: if your sugar is not in the shape it grew from the earth, don’t eat it. Avoid anything that is industrialized.
6. You have some hormonal imbalance
We are looking here at the hormone that has the most important role in regulating our weight and implicitly our body fat excess, that is Leptin. One of its roles is to tell the brain that you are not hungry. Also, it is secreted in your body fat (more scientifically – in your adipose tissue). The problem is that if you don’t listen to the signals that leptin is transmitting to your brain, and you try to eat way too little or way to much, you are setting yourself for the roller coaster effect that we mentioned at point 3.
Very important for the leptin production is the quality of your sleep. A good sleep is essential for a healthy approach to lose body fat. This is on top of other benefits like controlling the production of cortisol, and therefore reducing the levels of stress.
The better approach would be to be aware of your endocrine balance, for which your medic should be your best coach.
7. Your genetic heritage is against you
So the last one will be the first. Your type of body and metabolism is determined genetically, and it is a very important factor in your challenge to reach your ideal body.
There are three types of metabolism and therefore three body types:
- ectomorph – has a hard time gaining both fat or muscle
- endomorph – gains easily both fat and muscle
- mesomorph – gains muscle easily but doesn’t gain fat as easy – the athletic one
If your body stores more fat rather than burning calories, it means that it is not adapted to your calories excesses or restrictions. That’s how some people can eat a lot and not gain fat while others will eat less and store it all.
The take-away point is that you should try to learn your own body in order to take the best approach in your goal to lose body fat.