“I feel like I’m doing everything right but no matter how much I workout or try to eat right I can’t seem to lose weight!”
Can you relate to this struggle? It is probably one of the complaints I hear the most from women.
Not getting results from a diet and/or exercise program is certainly frustrating, and there can be many reasons why. But the fix could be simpler than you think. There are three common mistakes I see women make that can be easily fixed.
Today I’m breaking down three major diet mistakes holding back your results and three simple ways to fix them.
1.You eat out a lot.
If most of your meals come from restaurants, fast food places or packaged food, you can’t really tell how many calories are in what you’re eating because you don’t have control over it. Those foods tend to be more high calorie, high in fat and sodium; things that don’t help us lose weight.
Even if you’re tracking your food using labels or restaurant’s nutritional content you can’t necessarily trust it (research has shown some restaurants and food companies are deceptive in their calorie counting). This means even when accounting for these calories in a tracker you might be eating more than you think.
2. You’re drinking your calories
Are you drinking soda, sweetened teas, or flavored coffee drinks that might have milk, sugar, syrups? All these along with alcohol could certainly be holding you back from getting the results you’re hoping for.
You want your calories to come from food as much as possible. Drinking extra calories:
a). Tends to add to more calorie intake that we don’t take into consideration. If you take a Starbucks drink that has 200 calories, it’s not food so you don’t feel like you ate and so you also have lunch and end up with an extra 200 calories unaccounted for.
b). Alcohol is loaded in calories and we tend to consume it and then eat not so healthy food on the side, leading to a higher calorie intake.
If a lot of your calories are coming from liquids that could be holding you back from getting the weight loss results you want.
3. Mindless Munching
I had a client say to me recently that since she started tracking food and paying close attention to her nutrition, she hadn’t realized she’d pick and nibble from her kids’ plates.
If you are someone who tends to grab from the candy bar at work, or snack while making dinner at home, these are things that can add up to a lot of excess calories and we tend to forget because we’re not sitting down having a meal.
Even if you’re logging in into a food diary if you’re not putting these down you lose track of how much you’ve consumed.
If you’re making any of these mistakes, not to worry, there is a simple way to fix them. Here are three strategies you can use to start getting results.
Make more of your meals at home
If you’re trying to lose weight or stay healthy, the more you know where your food comes from and you control what’s in it and how much of it you eat, the more successful you’ll be.
So if you cook your meals at home you can control what you’re taking in, your portion size and you can choose how much of each ingredient to include.
Cut out liquid calories
This is very important if you’re trying to lose weight. If you’re not getting results, stop and check what you’re taking in. Most of your calories should be from food.
If you’re having soda, alcohol, or coffee drinks, are you accounting for the extra 200 calories each day? They could be enjoyable but not satiating like food and these things are not giving your body anything extra except for sugar that can easily be stored as body fat.
Practice mindful eating
Think about what you are putting into your body every day. If you find that you’re mindlessly snacking, start keeping a food diary. Write down what you’re eating or use My Fitness Pal. This will give you awareness of your habits so you can develop a strategy to overcome it.
When you get tempted, think about:
a) Are you really hungry?
b) Why are you tempted to eat this?
c) Is it a habit you’ve created and you’re on auto-pilot?
You have to learn to retrain your brain, to stop doing those automatic behaviors. Eliminating those extra calories everyday makes a difference and the scale will start to move if you’re doing everything else right with your diet and program.