1) RESTRICTING CALORIES.
Losing weight isn’t about eating less. It’s about eating right. Someone who eats 1700 calories of doritos, tequila, and taco bell will not lose more weight than someone who eats 2000 calories of broccoli, chicken, and almonds. Why? The effect of toxic, processed foods on the body can cause inflammation in the gut, halt digestion, create insulin sensitivity, and lead us to retain fat.
2) EXERCISE FREQUENCY.
We are designed to move everyday. That doesn’t mean that you have to hit the gym every day. But, on days that you aren’t at the gym, you should do at least one active thing – go for a walk or run, do some yard work, play a sport or game, chase your kid around, etc. Back in the day, we had to hunt our own food, build our shelter, make tools, walk to go talk to someone. Now we have the luxury of not having to perform theses tasks, but think of all of the calories we’re not burning.
3) EXERCISE INTENSITY.
Any movement is good for the body. But if your aspirations are to be better than just “good”, intensity must be there. Just showing up to the gym and b.s.-ing your way through a workout won’t help much. Walking around the track isn’t nearly as good as jogging or, even better, sprinting. Have a plan before you start your routine. Map out your sets and repetitions, and set some goals with weights. If you’re unsure how to do this, hire a well trained Fitness Coach.
4) FOOD ALLERGIES.
Maybe you’ve decided to go keto or vegan to lose weight. But what if you have an undiagnosed dairy allergy or gluten sensitivity? This can cause inflammation in the gut, which can lead to leaky gut syndrome. This causes an ever-present state of stress in your body where it constantly thinks it’s under attack. You will never lose weight when your body is stressed. Look into the most common food allergies first: gluten, dairy, eggs, soy, and nuts.
5) POOR FOOD QUALITY.
Maybe you’re seemingly doing everything right. You’re exercising regularly and at the right intensity. You’re eating real foods. Meal spacing and calories are where they should be. But you’re not losing weight. The question becomes, has your broccoli been sprayed with a molotov cocktail of chemicals? Is your chicken pumped with antibiotics and hormones? Is your beef fed cement dust, plastic, and other dead animal parts? Is your peanut butter roasted with rancid oils? If you’re not eating a diet that is complete with whole foods from organic sources, your body will be working overtime in an attempt to detoxify from all of the chemicals that you ingest. Remember, fat stores toxins, so the more toxins you ingest, the fatter you will be.
Throw everything else on this list out the window if you have difficulty managing stress. Stress will override everything. When your body is in a state of stress, it does not care about burning calories, shedding fat, or digesting food at all. A stressed body will bring metabolism to a standstill while shunting blood away from the digestive system and into the extremities for fight or flight. In this situation, slowing things down and relaxing the central nervous system (think yoga and meditation) will enable the body to return to normal function. Amping yourself up for a killer workout will only keep you in fight or flight mode.