90% of people who try to lose weight fail. Furthermore 75% of all statistics are made up. Either way, losing weight is extremely difficult. The biggest problem I notice is in the approach to making healthy dietary changes. Here, I have listed 4 game-changing reasons why you haven’t reached your goals.
1.You’re a Perfectionist
Ah, the ever-present all or nothing dieting mentality. I find this mentality to be the most detrimental factor in the struggle to lose weight. Those with this viewpoint are rarely successful, that is, unless they change it.
“Starting tomorrow I’m going to start eating healthy”
“Well I already had a cookie, so I said screw it, today is ruined. I’ll start fresh tomorrow.”
Does this sound familiar? If it does, you’ve probably noticed it has gotten you nowhere. Why go to such extremes? Your body does not pass judgement on you each day.
Body: welllllll, you ate a lot of vegetables, got all the nutrients you need and are technically in a caloric deficit so in theory you should lose a little weight… buuuuuut you did eat that chocolate soooo…BAD DAY! YOU GAIN A POUND!
Pretty ridiculous, no? The body simply doesn’t see nutrients and calories as good or bad. Furthermore, the body doesn’t put on weight in 1 pound increments.
If the rest of your food consumption is dialed in, you can eat a cookie and still lose weight. Sure, you won’t have as large of a deficit, but it will probably make the rest of your diet easier to follow as you won’t feel deprived and miserable.
A diet can be effective without being optimal. More often than not, optimal is not effective. This is because optimal isn’t realistic.
2. You have too Great of Expectations
Setting your hopes too high means that disappointment is nigh. Quitting the plan prematurely is much more likely when the bar is set too damn high. Sustainable weight loss takes time.
By changing habits slowly and sustainably, you may not notice any weight loss for quite a while. However, once you do change enough habits to create a deficit, you will hit the tipping point and the pounds will start to come off quicker and easier.
For example, say you have the habit of overeating 1000 calories a day. You must cut 1500 calories a day to lose a pound a week. That’s a hefty jump. To build up to a 500 calorie deficit in an easy, realistic way, you cut 500 calories a day for the first month. In this first month you still gain weight, but you gain less weight than you would have. This is still notable progress. And making that change was a breeze. In fact you hardly even noticed. You make an additional 500 calorie cut each month, until three months later you start losing a pound each week. The best part is you don’t feel like you’re dieting and are able to enjoy life whilst making strides towards the body you want.
When progress isn’t as rapid as expected, it leads to frustration. Frustration leads to giving up on a strategy that would have been successful with a little patience. Giving up leads to…
The Dark Side
I apologize for referencing Episode. Oops
An very important aspect of this approach is that it makes losing weight easy.
You don’t need to make dieting difficult.
Seriously, why are you torturing yourself? Do you think that if you aren’t miserable it’s not working? You masochist, you!
That’s a load of rubbish. As alluded to above, you will be more successful if you make strides that are small, easy and doable. We can do doable things. Yes, quite profound. Make your weight loss journey easy, be consistent, and you will get there.
3. You think it’s all about Willpower
Willpower, when it comes to weight loss is largely a myth. Those who willpower their way through the pounds don’t stay there for long and are in a perpetual state of yoyo: cut, binge, cut, binge, rinse and repeat.
Fit folks have fit habits, plain and simple. They do not have greater willpower, they are not better people, and
they do not have a higher midi-chlorian count (reference Episode 1 again..uggggggggh).They simply have habitualized behaviors that are conducive to being fit.
We don’t look at some bro with super white teeth and say, “daaamn, that dude’s got some hawt willpower to brush his teeth that much”. Even when ignoring the fact that nobody would ever describe willpower as “hawt”, this statement sounds absurd. So why do we do that with people in better shape than us?
This leads to the conclusion that to get fit you need to *drumroll please*
Change your habits.
Big surprise right? I hope you are sensing a theme with this article.
4. You aren’t fully aware of what you are eating i.e. make a Food Log!
Studies show that people are pretty damn terrible at knowing how much they consume. The root of this problem is exacerbated if you don’t try to measure it the first place. Making a food journal for as little as 3 days to a week makes it much easier to be fully aware of what you are consuming. I don’t usually advocate recording portions as that is too much work, but sometimes it is helpful. Oftentimes, people will have dietary epiphanies when they begin writing down what they eat. When what you eat is on paper it is much easier to get the bigger picture of why you are not losing weight.
There you have it, 5 reason your diet isn’t making the cut. I truly hope this helps you on your weight loss journey, and drop a comment below if you have any questions!