Here’s a hint, we are our worst enemies. The truth is weight loss math is fairly simple and the hurdles are manageable. However, as with most things in life, it’s not the problems that are the problem but how we handle them that is.
The first major problem with fat loss is that your body loves consistency. If you have consistently eaten a certain way, exercised rarely, gotten up at a certain time, making a change to the routine is hard whether it’s a good for you or not. Stopping when it get’s hard is the wrong solution to the problem. Discipline bridges the gap between our excitement in the beginning and our goals, the middle where motivation fades is where disciplined good habits make all the difference. Good choices can only happen today, nothing happens tomorrow.
The next major problem losing weight is most people overestimate the calories they burn from exercise and underestimate the calorie content of the food they eat. In short, it’s the guesswork. “The difference between science and screwing around is in writing it down”, for our purposes replace “science” with “success” and the quote is even more accurate. If you’re not logging your food into a system that calculates calories then you are just screwing around with your diet. If you don’t know your resting metabolic rate (RMR) and your activity level then you are just guessing how many calories you actually need each day. Start weighing everything for at least 2 weeks. Measuring will make you accurate enough to eyeball it later, you’ll become really good at it with practice.
Use these resources to help:
- Myfitnesspal.com – extensive database and your favorite foods are saved in a quick list to make it even faster to log everything
- 1800 calorie meal plan – will give you a few ideas about what a low calorie day looks like
You should not use your pedometer/fit tracker/smart watch to judge how many calories you’ve burned from your workout and then eat food you’ve “earned”. Fitness trackers are not very accurate and most of the calories you burn in your workout (you burn fewer than you think) are accounted for in your daily calorie goal calculation using our Calorie Calculator. It’s easier to not eat 200 calories than it is to burn 200 calories of fat.
Now we reach our final hurdle. Success is not an end point, there is no end point. There’s only today’s success. If you make good choices about what to eat, logging your food, showing up to the gym then you have succeeded today. Failing one day is not failure, it’s only failure if that derails you from continuing your efforts each day towards your goal.
The beginning is exciting and full of hope, it’s everything we do after that which makes the difference. Many people say I must have a “fast metabolism” to eat what I want to and still stay lean. Truth is I’ve been doing this for my whole life, I got lazy with it for a while and gained nearly 20 lbs then realized how much I’d gained and got back on track. Everyone thinks its easier for someone else, truth is it’s hard work for everyone you just don’t see the whole picture for anyone but yourself.
Goals are targets, success is just the sum of choices we made today that help us get closer to our goals.
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