If you’ve been hitting the gym, depriving yourself of the foods you love and passing on the espressos, and you still can’t manage to drop the pounds, then you know all about frustration about not losing weight. You’re doing everything right, and yet the scale just won’t budge. So, just what is the problem?
There are a number of reasons that you aren’t making traction towards your fat loss goals. In this article, we’ll take a look at the three most common and show you how to overcome them.*
Reason #1: Insufficient Sleep
Because sleep seems like such an easy and nondescript thing to do, most people dismiss it as a factor in Not Losing Weight. They’re all about working out and dieting. The truth is that the quality and quantity of your sleep is critical to your weight loss. Your sleep quality directly regulates the activity of 3 key hormones:
If you want to have a steady release of these key fat loss hormones rushing through your system, you have got to get serious about your sleep. You can do this by establishing a semi-ritualized night time routine in which you take the time to wind down. Your routine may include shutting down your technology at a certain time (make sure to keep it out of the bedroom, too), brushing your teeth or having a warm bath. You should minimize daytime napping and stop snacking, smoking or ingesting caffeine at least two hours before bed time.
Reason #2: You’re Gaining Muscle
The obsession with fat loss, fueled by such shows as The Biggest Loser, has made people bathroom scale obsessives. Their success or failure is dictated by the movement of that dial. Well, here’s the best piece of fat loss advice you may ever receive . . .
Take that scale and throw it in the garbage!
The scale will not tell you if you have lost fat or gained muscle. As a result, it can give you absolutely no insight into how your body is responding to what you are doing, especially when we consider that fat weighs five times more than muscle does. So, if you lose 5 pounds of fat, and gain one pound of muscle, the scale isn’t going to budge. Your body, however, is going to be transformed. A lot of people, though, would stop what they’re doing simply because the scale hasn’t changed. The solution for Not Losing Weight? Ditch the scale and stand naked in front of the mirror – that way you’ll be able to see what’s really happening to your body!
Reason #3: Wrong Type of Cardio
If you’re doing slow, boring cardiovascular exercise then you are stuck in the old school. To maximize the fat burning effect of your cardio exercise, you need to speed things up with High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). Not only will HIIT burn a lot more calories while you’re doing it, it will rev up your metabolism for the next 48 hours to allow you to burn extra calories 24/7 (as shown in a 2011 study published in the Journal of Obesity).
To perform HIIT training, you simply intersperse periods of hard and fast cardio with shorter periods of rest. For example, you can sprint on the treadmill at your top possible speed for 30 seconds and then throw your legs out to the side and rest for 15 seconds. Continue until you’ve done 8 sprints.
The three reasons that we’ve identified – lack of sleep, using the scale as your guide and not doing high-intensity interval training – could well be holding you back from reaching your fat loss goals. By making the suggested adjustments, you be able to make traction and finally see some reward for all of your hard work – good luck!
Fitness Disclaimer: This website offers health, fitness and nutritional information and is designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on this information as a substitute for, nor does it replace, professional medical advice, diagnosis treatment. This website does not promise any specific results, as each individual responds differently to training. The author of this article is not a medical professional.