The Top 10 Weight Loss Mistakes

Even though it looks pretty simple on paper, losing weight can be pretty tricky business. And, even with fairly simple maxims like “Eat less, move more” kicking around the internet and fitness magazines, many people still struggle to reach their goals. The fact is that there are still many common mistakes people make when trying to lose weight. To help you avoid them, let’s take a look at the 10 most common weight loss mistakes.

  1. Drinking Your Calories – With a few exceptions that we’ll discuss later (see number 4), calorie-laden beverages are one of the worst diet traps people fall in to. The problem here is that things like sodas and juices can carry plenty of calories, derived from simple carbohydrates, without making you feel full. Since hunger and thirst are controlled by different systems and carbohydrates do not create lasting feelings of fullness, you’ll end up taking on excess fuel – which gets stored as fat – and only craving more. Not a good situation.
  2. Using Artificial Sweeteners – Based on the above information, many people think it’s only natural to switch to diet drinks. Don’t do that. Numerous studies have found that diet drinks can actually increase body fat. One particularly startling study showed that people who drank diet sodas gained three times as much belly fat over nine years as people who didn’t. This is especially concerning because belly fat has a greater impact on health than fat stored elsewhere in the body.
  3. Overestimating the Benefits of “Health Foods” – Here’s a fun little test: What’s the healthier breakfast? Pancakes with butter and syrup, a donut or oatmeal with walnuts and bananas? If you’re like most people, you probably picked the oatmeal. And you’re right… Mostly. The oatmeal is a much more nutritious meal but it also contains many more calories. So, while the oatmeal is a much better option, watch your portions. The same rules goes for all food. Just because it’s more nutritious and “healthier,” doesn’t mean you don’t have to worry about the calories.
  4. Not Eating Enough Protein – Along with being vital for muscle building and repair, protein is vital for a huge amount of biological functions. But the average person simply doesn’t get enough. When it comes to weight loss, this can be particularly harmful since protein aids weight loss efforts by speeding up your metabolism, increasing feelings of fullness and limiting the severity of blood sugar spikes caused by any carbs eaten at the same time. This is the one time it’s acceptable to drink your calories. A protein shake (or something like Gnarly Slim) can help you reach your protein goals without having to cook a full meal.
  5. Doing Hours of Cardio – Long, boring sessions on the treadmill at the same speed – referred to as steady-state cardio or SS – used to be the go-to weight loss method. This is a pretty bad idea. For one thing, it takes forever. And, as your body adapts and you become a better runner, you’ll need to add more time to burn the same amount of calories. In addition, long bouts of low-intensity exercise have been shown to spike levels of the stress hormone cortisol which tells your brain it’s time to slow your metabolism and store some extra belly fat.
  6. Lifting Light – The other bit of weight loss wisdom that just won’t go away is the idea that, to lose weight, you have to lift light weights for a billion reps. After just about two weeks, your muscles will adapt and these sessions will essentially become cardio. Lifting heavy weights, though, that limit you to about 10 to 12 reps will get your muscle fibers firing and burning huge amounts of calories. This type of workout also puts your body into a mode called Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC) in which you continue to burn calories for hours – or even days – after the workout has ended.
  7. Mindless Snacking – You’d be amazed by how many extra calories you can eat when you aren’t paying attention. Crunchy, salty snacks like potato chips can be especially destructive. And, think back to #3 when it comes to “veggie chips” or snacks that appear to be healthier options. While they might be more nutritious, they can contain just as many calories and have the same addictive power as a standard chip.
  8. Binging After Workouts – Killing yourself in the gym might make you feel like you have license to go nuts with your post-exercise meal. It doesn’t. The painful truth is that even a very challenging workout may burn about 250 calories. It doesn’t take a lot of food to add up to that or even exceed it.
  9. Eating Too Quickly – Research has shown a connection between eating slowly and a healthy body weight, but the exact mechanism is a little cloudy. In large part, this link is likely because it takes time for your stomach to let your brain know that it’s full and for you to feel that signal. By eating too quickly, though, you could overeat before you even know it.
  10. Not Sleeping Enough – Sleep deprivation, even just lacking a few hours worth every night, can have huge impacts on your health. When it comes to weight loss, you body will not be able to recover properly from your workouts and will feel stressed – causing a release of the dreaded cortisol.
Eli Kerr

Eli Kerr

Share with friends

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on tumblr
Share on reddit
Share on whatsapp
Subscribe to our newsletter.
Grab a 15% OFF discount!