If you are having trouble losing weight there could be any number of reasons. I have listed 5 reasons that I feel are both manageable and achievable. While reading through these reasons, grade yourself on a scale of 1-10, 10 being perfect. This little test will help give you insight on areas of your health that you can improve.
1) Lack of movement -- If you sit and work long hours or have a sedentary lifestyle, start moving around. Functional movement increases circulation and can also affect energy levels. Try the following:
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Frequent walks like parking further away or taking a break from doing work can help you burn an extra 300-500 calories/day!
2) Overeating -- By eating excess calories and low-quality foods you are doing more harm to your body than good. Try the following:
- Keep a food log. Food logs provide visual feedback on what you’re putting into your body.
- Cook your own food with fresh ingredients.
- Measure portion sizes until you are comfortable eyeing portions on your own.
3) Undereating -- Not eating enough can deprive your body of essential vitamins and minerals. Undereating also slows down your metabolism because your body will just hold on to the few calories it gets. Try the following:
- Eat 4-6 smaller meals/day. This will help regulate blood sugar and calorie intake.
- Plan out your day in advance. Now you’ll know when you have time or can make time to eat.
4) Not enough rest -- Your body does much more than you think when you sleep. Sleep effects metabolism and hormone function. Not enough rest can affect some of the hormones that affect appetite and hunger. Try the following:
- Make an effort to get at least 6-8 hours of sleep.
- Go to bed earlier.
- Exercise 3-5x/week.
5) Low muscle mass -- Muscles require energy and burn lots of calories. Resistance training stimulates muscle growth and increases your resting metabolic rate. This means you’ll continue to burn calories long after you exercise. Your resting metabolic rate (BMR) makes up for 60-75% of your body’s total calorie expenditure. Someone with a healthy and high BMR can burn over 1,000 calories in a day without even breaking a sweat! Try the following:
- Resistance training 2-3x/week. Each session should average 30 minutes to an hour.
- Eat more protein. Lean meats, eggs, and protein powders are excellent sources of protein which help rebuild and develop your muscles.
A great way to help improve your scores in these categories is to find a workout partner. Working out with someone has all kinds of benefits. A workout buddy will help keep you motivated, hold you accountable, and even make exercise more fun. If you feel you and your workout partner need more education on workout routines and programs that will help reach your physical goals, contact THE LAB at www.traininglaboratory.com/contact.