Every day there’s a new miracle diet that will help you shed pounds quickly or some new supplement that makes it easier. That’s one of the reasons there’s so many fat loss mistakes that not only can slow down your progress, they even make it harder to lose weight. One of the biggest mistakes I often see is doing too much cardio. Yes, cardio does burn calories, but it also uses both lean muscle mass and fat to secure those calories. That means you’ll lose more muscle mass. The less you have, the slower your metabolic rate, since muscle tissue requires more calories than fat tissue does.
Another fat loss mistake is thinking that all it takes is exercise.
It happens all the time. People spend 45 minutes to an hour working out and then leave and eat more than they otherwise would. Just because you’ve worked out, it doesn’t mean you can eat whatever you want to eat and still lose weight. A large order of fries and a large soft drink at a fast food place has more than six hundred calories. An hour workout will burn slightly less, so you’ll be gaining weight, no matter how hard you work. It takes more than exercise, a healthy diet is mandatory.
Cutting out fat and choosing “low-fat” foods may be your downfall.
Watch out for those low fat foods. They’re often worse for you than the full fat variety when it comes to weight loss. Not only do you need healthy fat for younger looking skin, a healthy heart, healthy brain and other health benefits, it also fills you up and keeps you satisfied longer. Studies show that low fat options often leave people hungrier and they tend to eat more. They also are made more palatable by adding extra sugar that can spike your blood sugar levels and increase insulin. That can pack on the pounds.
Not hitting the weights is a big mistake.
If you want to burn calories and boost your metabolism, strength-building exercises are the way to go. When you do strength-building exercises, you’re building muscle mass while you burn calories. The more muscle mass you have, the easier it is to keep weight off in the future. There’s also an afterburn that boosts calorie burning by as much as 11% for up to 38 hours. You’ll lose both inches and weight when you do strength-building workouts.
- Make sure you eat enough protein. It’s necessary for building muscles. It’s also a thermogenic food with up to one-third of the calories being used for digestion. It also keeps you feeling fuller longer.
- Making certain you have enough fiber in your diet, especially viscous fiber that absorbs water and creates a gel, will fill you up quicker and keep you fuller longer, while also blocking the absorption of some calories.
- Setting unrealistic goals can impede your progress by killing your motivation. It can cause you to be frustrated and give up completely.
- Extremely low calorie—fad—diets can impede your weight loss progress. The body mistakes it for starvation and slows your metabolism to make sure there’s energy for vital organs.