This is a very common question that I get a lot from new and potential clients. They tell me about their elaborate workouts and how often they are going and how dedicated they are. Some will go in the mornings before work and some will go after work. Some even go in twice a day before and after work. Yet they still have this infamous question. “Why can’t I lose any weight?” Then I start hearing the responses like, “Maybe it’s just not in my cards, and I am destined to never be in shape”. “I don’t have the right genes to lose weight”. “I have tried everything and it’s just not possible”. “Ever since I had my kids it’s just impossible to lose the weight. It cant be done”. Not true on any of these.
Now yes, some people do have a legit reason that makes it more challenging for the average person to lose weight. Such as they may have a thyroid issue and will need to see a Dr. to get it tested. Or they might need a thyroid medicine prescribed. Some people have an injury that is either recent or old and it may limit some mobility. Some people may have very hectic schedules and find it difficult to find time in the day. It can be hard even to make a routine to fit into the day for even 3 days a week. Yes, these are legit arguments to make but none are an actual reason for why you can’t lose the weight.
Here is a piece of info that most people don’t realize:
70% of weight loss comes from your diet. Not from exercise and working out. If you are doing an hour of cardio and working out for an hour but then either eat only 1-2 meals a day because you are afraid to take in too many calories or if you are eating 1-4 meals a day but they are the wrong foods. Foods that are high in saturated fats, sodium, calories, carbs, etc then everything that you just did in the gym, isn’t for nothing, but it isn’t for weight loss.
Most people don’t realize just how important a properly balanced diet is for one’s health and for weight loss. It’s not just about working out but it’s about feeding your body with the proper nutrition it needs so that all your organs can keep working without any hiccups or stress. Now each person’s diet may need to be different. Based on your fitness goals will help determine what kind of diet you will need to be on. Then what can change that even more is if you are allergic to certain kinds of foods or if you don’t even like certain kinds of foods? Timing your meals out and how many meals a day will also make an impact.
Don’t eat to get full, rather eat to fuel your body.
Your body can only digest and utilize so many nutrients and calories before the excess needs to leave the body in either your urine or your poop. If you consume too much more than that then the body will convert and store the excess into your fat cells. I will do another blog post on how the fat cells work within the body and what their purpose is. But for the sake of this article, just know that it is a storage facility for excess nutrients within the body.
So with a well-balanced diet where you are balancing out all of your calories, protein, carbs, fats, etc, then your body can utilize the right amount of nutrients for everything to function without consuming excessive amounts. Timing out your meals is a must as well as this will get the metabolism on track to speed up. If you can consume ideally 5 small meals a day but at a minimum of 4 small meals then the metabolism will speed up and break the foods down and circulate the nutrients within the body so that they get to the organs and cells for utilization. By the time the foods are broken down, digested, utilized then the body can relax and get ready for the next meal that will be coming shortly.
A lot of people think that eating too many meals a day will cause you to gain weight.
Yes, this is true if the portion sizes are too big or are made up of the wrong kinds of foods. But with smaller portion sizes and the right foods then the body will work more efficiently and productively. An individual’s goal will determine exactly what their diet will consist of, how many calories they will need to consume when they will need to either increase certain foods or taper off certain foods.
That’s why it’s important to speak to an experienced professional about setting up the right diet based on your goal. Template diets don’t work for everyone. They should only be used as guidance if you are curious about what some clean meals you can eat. The most efficient diets are the ones that are tailor-made for your specific fitness goal.
Now with the right diet in place, you will start to see some weight loss changes.
Now if you want to speed up those results then it comes down to the timing of your workouts and cardio. There are two ideal times that you want to do your cardio. The first time would be first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. The second time would be right after you finish your workout with the weights, machines, HIIT, etc.
Why at these times? When you do your cardio first thing in the morning on an empty stomach your body will need to get an energy source from somewhere since you haven’t eaten anything to provide that. Well, the fat cells will now become that energy source. It will take the excess nutrients stored up and start using them to fire you through your cardio thus causing the fat cell to shrink down in size.
The second best time to do your cardio would be immediately after you finish your rigorous workout and have depleted all the food energy that you have consumed to power you through that workout. With the food energy depleted and now you have to do cardio, the energy source to power you through that will come from the fat cells. These are your two ideal times to do your cardio for optimal weight loss.
So now with a better understanding of the importance of nutrition and the timing of when to do cardio for optimal weight loss, these will help get you past those plateaus. Try this way out and fully commit it to it. By week 3 you should see some improvements and results.