Here is part 8 of 101 Weight Loss Mistakes, please read the following 10 mistakes carefully and make sure you never commit them when trying to lose weight. Otherwise you risk reducing the effectiveness of whatever exercise and diet program you’re on.
The links to the other parts of this series are at the bottom of this page.
71. Going on a liquid diet
Have you heard of anyone living off liquids and no solid food? No, neither have I.
That’s because you’re not designed to live off liquids alone, you need solid material in your diet to keep the digestive system working properly. The muscles in your lower GI track will lose tone and strength if you don’t eat solid food, which isn’t good for healthy bowel movement.
Liquid diets are often promoted by fad weight loss marketers, trying to flog a worthless products and trying to differentiate themselves from what is mainstream and actually works.
Don’t go on a liquid diet! Stick to healthy diets which are well researched, planned and edible!
72. Not Planning for setbacks
With all endeavor there will almost certainly be points where you feel like giving up, or something unexpected puts you at a disadvantage. This is completely normal and most of the challenge is actually in how to deal when them well.
You’re more than likely going to fall off the healthy diet wagon at some point, and the best way to deal with it is simply to jump right back on and hold on tight(er).
What you shouldn’t do is berate yourself, lose confidence, think it’s a really big deal or give up because of it. Easier said than done! But that’s why this is the real challenge, the actually dieting part isn’t difficult (that bit is just putting the right food in your mouth at the right time).
To build up some resilience to setback is one of the greatest successes you can have in life, and it’s never too late to achieve. It’s achieved by taking small steps, which are reinforced every time you go the self improving direction.
Plan to expect these set back and have some kind of contingency in place, it may be to visit a close friend or family member or something else to take your mind away. Make sure that this contingent is not food related!
73. Not stretching
Stretching is often missed out in exercise programs, but it’s a very useful thing to do and it helps correct many problems.
Here are some benefits of stretching:
Like yoga stretching will help calm you mind and make you feel better
Increases your flexibility which helps prevent against injury
Helps correct muscle imbalances
Makes you workouts more effective and efficient
You should do a stretching workout before and after your main workout, this will help prepare your muscles and then help them cool down afterwards. You can reduce a lot of aches and pains associate with exercise by doing stretches.
By doing these stretching you improve workouts and thus overall calorie burn, which means faster weight loss.
74. Cheating on yourself
We all hate being cheated on no matter how big or small the matter, but we more often cheat ourselves and don’t even notice!
We cheat ourselves by not being honest about what we eat, drink and do. When you’re trying to lose weight one of the things you need to mindful of is your diet, this mean more than just know what you should be eating.
You have to limit yourself to exactly what is on your diet plan, avoid snacking and certainly don’t delude yourself into trying to justify it.
75. Submitting to peer pressure
When you’re out having fun when friends it easy to lose all inhibitions and just go with the flow. This is especially true when it comes to drinking alcohol and eating unhealthy foods. Don’t do this! It’ll completely destroy any healthy weight loss diet you’re trying to keep to.
I know it’s hard to say no, but you must do so or at least limit the amount of times you give in.
Sometimes you might need to just stay in and miss out, particularly if you know everyone will be drinking alcohol.
If it does happen and you end up on a binge then that’s OK, just limit from now on. Don’t punish yourself for lack of self discipline, that’s just going to make you feel worse. Instead focus on how you can avoid these situations in future without losing sociability.
76. Relying on other people
Your family and closest friends are always there to support you and are there to motivate you. Don’t become reliant on them to keep you going towards your goals, this includes losing weight.
You need to take full responsibility for all things that are pertinent to you. If you’re trying to lose weight you need to find ways to motivate yourself, and external support is a great booster when you’re really down.
If you depend on other people motivating you, kicking you into shape, then you will ultimately fail because they all have their own lives to live, their own challenges in life and won’t be there always to support you (they will certainly try hard though).
Know exactly what your plan is, construct it yourself, schedule your workouts yourself and out your trainers on yourself.
77. Misjudging the amount of calories you are consuming
Something like 9 out of 10 people trying to lose weight misjudge the amount of calories they are consuming. If you are one of these people then I’m sorry to say you are probably not doing your efforts the justice.
Starting looking at food packaging to get accurate nutritional information, and start using kitchen scales to measure the amounts your supposed to eating.
If you don’t have a diet plan already then this is what you need to put in place before anything else. Having nothing to go by means you’re not actually trying to lose weight, you’re just thinking about it.
78. Exercising at the wrong times
There’s great debate about when you should exercise to maximum effect. Did you know that there is a disproportionate amount of track athletics and cycling records made during early evening events!?
Most people are at their most physically capable during the early evening, so you could argue that doing exercise at this time would see the best results.
A time when a lot of people are out running is early morning, before the start of the work day. It’s usually for convenience and to help wake up in the mornings. But it’s been found that there’s a disproportionate amount of heart attacks that occur in the morning.
Exercising in the morning may increase the risk of having heart attack, although this is only the case if you are already at some risk.
Other considerations need to be accounted for when deciding when to exercise. I find that after workouts I am very hungry (particularly after cardio), this makes me want to eat just about anything within sight.
I recommend you do exercise before your evening meal, and once you’ve finished it’s time to cook a meal which ends perfectly with eating it. If you do exercise too far from meal times then you risk giving into your hunger pang and eating when you shouldn’t.
79. Not consuming enough calcium
Calcium is a vital mineral for the metabolism of fat, and it’s been shown to help burn fat in studies. It’s also an essential mineral for the health of your bones. Other studies have shown that calcium prevents some of the fat in your food to be absorbed in the process of digestion.
- Foods that are high in calcium:
- Dairy products – milk, yogurt and cheese (cream too, but that’s not so good when you’re trying to lose weight!)
- Beans – soy (tofu is a good choice), black beans
- Sesame seeds, peanuts, almonds, maize and blackstrap molasses
- Fish – particularly sardines and salmon
- Fruit and veg – broccoli, dark leafy greens like kale (which actually contain more calcium than milk per unit weight), spinach, mustard greens, figs.
- Calcium added products – these are also a good source of calcium, but I would stick to the natural stuff first.
A lot of people are lactose intolerant to some degree, so if you can’t have dairy products then you can see that there are plenty of sources of calcium. Simply include a more of those other sources and you’ll be fine.
80. Unrealistic goals
I’ve said many times before than planning vital to the success of anything you do. Weight loss included. Part of that planning is to have a clear goal, in fact its the first step in planning.
An unrealistic goal will mean your plan becomes something that’s really difficult to keep to, and you will likely be very disappointed with your actual progress. Your goal may be unrealistic and seem completely fine at first because you’ve told the wrong things, given the an incorrect impression of how things works.
I blame this primarily on the media and weight loss marketing employed by those selling fad products which promise extremely fast weight loss which is also easy. This doesn’t exist without some or a lot of negative side effects – such as losing muscle mass, impact on health in general, unsustainable diet, etc.
To avoid setting yourself an unrealistic weight loss goal you should research more into diet, exercise and look at case studies of people who have gone through the process. Build up a better understanding of what you are about to do. It’s your responsibility to yourself to know as much as possible regarding your health.
I hope you enjoyed reading those 10 mistakes and will take them all to heart. This part has focused mainly on mentality and planning more than anything else, I believe this is possibly the most important part of trying to lose weight.
Links to the rest of the series: