Even with a fitness regimen and overall healthy eating, you can still be making small weight loss mistakes that may be derailing your fitness goals or even have you stuck in the dreaded plateau zone. Below are a few weight loss mistakes we’ve realized many people are doing without even realizing it. Hopefully, knowing what you’re doing wrong will help you get back to dropping a few pounds.
If you’re already tracking your macros or counting your calories, make sure you’re counting right. We all tend to overestimate how well we’re doing when it comes to our nutrition and exercise routine. So if you aim to eat a precise amount of calories per day, make sure you’re actually tracking every single thing. Write it down, and add every little bite, even if it’s just a taste-sized sample. A teaspoon of sugar in your coffee every day, for example, can add up to 112 calories every week. That’s nearly 450 calories a month! When you’re already strict with your diet, small details like that can make a big difference. If you’d rather not keep a food journal, try to look for a phone app that can help you with tracking calories in a more convenient way.
Not eating enough of the right foods:
If you swear you’re eating healthier but still not making progress in the weight loss department, you may just not be eating the right foods. As you know not all calories are created equal, so even if you’re getting enough energy for your frame and activity level, you may not be getting it from the right source. Make sure your protein levels are where they should be. Calculate the right amount of protein for your body and get the all-important macro from lean sources such as chicken breast.
When you don’t have the time to cook or groceries at home are running low, just pick up a high-quality protein bar like BPI Sports’ BEST PROTEIN BAR™. It has 20 grams of protein per serving and it’s convenient for on-the-go days without sacrificing taste. BEST PROTEIN BAR™ is made up of whey protein isolate, milk protein isolate and whey powder. It has zero trans fat and zero fillers like maltodextrin and corn fiber. It can be used as a post-workout pick-me-up or even as a nutritious meal replacement.
This is a very common weight loss mistake. When you’re hungry, you’ll reach for anything in front of you. The last thing you’re thinking about when your stomach is growling is calorie counting. All you’re thinking about is getting rid of those hunger pangs. So finding creative recipes, planning your meals and snacks, dedicating a day or two during the week where you can meal prep and devoting one day for grocery shopping can really make a difference. When you’re nutritional intake is already planned out, all that’s left is to enjoy the food when hunger strikes.
No portion control for diet foods:
You know what 4 ounces of chicken breast looks like and you know how to measure half a cup without a tool; but are you as careful with diet foods like light yogurt? Do you tend to eat more when the foods claim to be light, fat-free, sugar-free, low-carb or gluten-free? Researchers at Cornell University found that overweight people who choose low-fat versions of snacks instead of the regular kind are, on average, consuming twice as many calories. So make sure that you don’t indulge in lighter version of foods, just because the label says its less in total calories. Your portions should stay the same: a fist-full of rice is a fist-full of rice whether it’s white or brown. A palm size of beef is a palm-size whether it’s lean or not and so on.
Not sleeping enough:
Yes, catching those ZZZs really affects your weight loss efforts. Appetite and hunger hormones are significantly influenced by how much shut eye you’re getting. According to various studies, lack of sleep can create cravings, not to mention increase their cortisol levels, which is typically associated with gaining fat. One of the most common weight loss mistakes is sleeping less than six hours a day. This can trigger the area of the brain that increases your need for food. For more information on how your sleeping patterns are affecting your metabolism and weight loss efforts, check out “How does sleep affect your diet and food cravings.”
Are you guilty of any of these weight loss mistakes? If so, correcting them should help you get back on track. Don’t give up!