Losing weight is only possible when one condition is met: eating less calories than you burn. If you don’t follow this rule, there’s no way to lose weight. There’s no shortcut around this, no easy way out and no alternate path. If you want to lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you take in.

If you’re trying to lose weight but failing, there are a few things you’re probably doing wrong. You’re either eating too much, exercising too little or doing a combination of both. To fix this, eat less, exercise more and eventually, the weight will start to come off.

Diet

Calorie restriction is the most important part of an effective weight loss strategy. Though exercising burns calories, without a solid diet plan, you probably won’t even come close to your overall weight loss goal.

Dieting to lose weight is about replacing your intake of unhealthy, high calories foods with healthier alternatives that are much less energy dense. Foods that need to go are soda, fruit juices, chips, doughnuts, pastries, fatty meats and most other junk and fast food. Foods that you should consume more of include fruits, vegetables, low fat meats, nuts, oats, 100% whole wheat breads/pasta and brown rice. Cooking your own food also usually leads to healthier and lower calorie meals.

If you’re not losing weight, you’re probably eating too much. You don’t need to count your calories but you do need to reduce your intake. If you’re eating any foods that contain a lot of sugar, get rid of them. You should also make your current meals smaller. Have only 2 eggs instead of 3, get a smaller bowl for cereal, use low fat instead of whole milk and cut down on serving sizes of meats.

Exercise

Exercising is also an important part of losing weight. If you’re not losing weight, you’re probably not exercising enough. You can start by doing an extra 10 minutes of cardio 4-5 minutes per week on top of what you’re already doing. To lose weight, you should be exercising at least 4 times per week at 30-60 minutes per session. If you’re already doing that and not losing any weight, you’re not doing enough. You can also extend your current exercise schedule by doing an extra 5 minutes of cardio before and after your normal workout.

The Bottom Line

Remember that everyone’s body is different. You can’t take one person’s exercise and diet routine and expect to have the same exact results. The bottom line is – if you’re not losing weight, you’re eating too much or exercising to little. Fix the problem!

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