Within the diet culture, we can find infinite opinions and beliefs regarding weight loss.
Some of them are accurate, but others, not that much.
It’s common to find some “tricks” that are actually fat loss mistakes to avoid in your journey.
Of course, for someone who’s not a fitness coach or athlete, it may be hard to discern which advice is worth it.
You must perform thorough research before you adopt any diet, training plan, or eating regime.
In this article, we’ll show you what you should avoid to speed up journey.
15 Fat Loss Mistakes To Avoid
To help beginners on their weight loss journey, find out the reason why they’re not losing weight, we bring the top fat loss mistakes to avoid.
Keep reading and make sure you’re not just working hard, but also working smart toward your dream body!
1. Not Resting Enough
When you train your muscles, the fiber that composes those muscles get damaged.
This damage or micro-trauma is what causes the common soreness you feel after working out.
But, this micro-trauma is also what allows the muscles to grow and gain strength.
The thing is that these gains only occur when you rest.
When you sleep 7-9 hours at night, you allow your body to repair itself, control the cortisol (stress hormone) production, and replenish the muscle energy (glycogen synthesis).
Not sleeping enough can, instead, lead to an excess of stress and injury and prevent the body from losing fat.
2. Eating Too Much, Or Not Enough Calories
Ok, so why is being in a calorie surplus a fat loss mistake to avoid is clear.
Calories are what make you gain weight, if you consume more than you burn, the fat will accumulate in your body sooner or later.
Tracking your calories is crucial to avoid calorie surplus.
But, when eating under an extreme calorie deficit (such as eating only 1000 calories a day and still hitting the gym), you may slow down your metabolism considerably.
Instead, you should be getting more protein and weight lifting.
3. Not Tracking Your Calories Properly
This section is particularly tricky, as it includes more than one fat loss mistake to avoid.
Tracking calories is one of the most efficient ways of assuring progress, but you have to count EVERY calorie.
It’s common to believe that only the calories on our meals count, which hinders your calorie deficit, because of the total calories.
And, if you add a cheat day or cheat meal, you will slow down your progress.
You can make a cheat-sheet and assure your calorie count by dividing the types of calories you can consume and go through the list every day.
For doing that, you must consider:
- The Calories You Burn
Odds are you’re overestimating the calories you burn.
This happens to all of us, and it’s actually hard to be sure, especially when you are not a nutritionist or expert.
While you may believe that 60-90 minutes of exercise results in around 600–800 calories burned, the truth is that it was nearer the 250–350 calories.
A fitness tracker could be a useful way to get a more accurate tracking of your calories, even though they’re not absolutely precise either.
- The Calories You Eat
Overestimating the calories you consume is just as easy as doing it with the ones you burn.
You may think that you just need to read them in the package, but you would probably overestimate the serving size, to begin with.
Portion control is commonly known within the fitness community, but while everyone talks about it, it may not be so simple to apply.
The package may say one portion is a tablespoon, but it may vary considerably, depending on the size of your spoon or how much you fill it.
One serving could actually become three, and therefore, the calories you track are inaccurate.
A functional idea is buying measure spoons and a spice balance to weigh your food.
You could use some other measuring tricks such as protein should be the size of your clenched fist, fats a thumb, etc. which are not exact, but the differences are limited.
Some apps, such as My Fitness Pal, are useful for tracking your calorie intake. But be careful! They can also lead you to overeat.
- The Calories You Add
This one should be obvious, but when counting calories, even the smallest snacks, and spices must be added.
A teaspoon of butter makes a difference, that spoon of PB, the sugar in your coffee; everything counts.
Otherwise, the consumed calories would probably be higher than your needs, leading to a calorie surplus and weight gain.
- The Calories You Drink
So, this is similar to the previous one.
Drinks have calories; a natural juice has calories, and healthy strawberry-flavored water may have LOTS of calories too.
Trying to drink more water or including your liquid calories in your tracking is essential for truly lose weight.
- The Calories You Cheat
This is an easy one; having a calorie deficit the entire week is a must.
But, if the weekend comes by and the cheat days involve too many calories.
Then, that deficit will disappear, bringing back the weight and sometimes even add some extra pounds.
4. Focusing On Cardio Instead Of Weights
You may be thinking about how much cardio you need to do to lose weight; this is another fat loss mistake to avoid.
Even though, cardio is a significant part of a healthy lifestyle, weight training is what will actually help you with your weight loss journey.
Cardio would make you lose sizes quickly the first two weeks, but then your body gets used to it.
Strength training, on the contrary, accelerates metabolism, burns fat, and grows lean muscle mass; the ultimate combination for that summer body!
5. The Fat/Carb Phobia
You may be tempted to shorten the time you need to lose weight by cutting off carbs or fats.
But, as much fear as diet culture brings regarding these foods, your body needs both of them.
Healthy fats are essential for the cells to move and grow, and are a long-term energy source for your body.
Of course, consuming saturated or Trans fat consistently will make you gain fat.
But, a small portion of healthy fats will determine the optimal functioning of your body.
In the first place, you need carbs in order for your body to function properly.
And, while you may considerably reduce them, especially the refined carbs, consuming a moderate amount proves essential for weight loss and health.
Try alternating your diet between low and high carb days, and focus on non-refined carbs.
6. Forgetting About Veggies And Fruits
Diet culture may have trapped you into believing fruits and veggies may have too many calories and sugar if eaten often.
This is straightforward nonsense.
Both the calories and sugars in fruits and veggies are safe, they contribute to your health and can be easily processed by your body.
Plus, they provide tons of micronutrients and fiber and will help you stay full longer, preventing you from overeating.
7. Not Chewing Enough
People take chewing for granted all the time, and you may be one of these people even without noticing.
Chewing has a specific function, which is helping our digestive system to process the food and absorbs its nutrients.
When eating too fast and not chewing enough, your body has trouble absorbing the calories on your food.
But, it also leads to slow digestion, bloating sensation, and reckless eating.
As the stomach takes around 20 minutes to communicate with your brain, the information on the hunger status would be delayed, making you eat more than you actually need.
Chewing more will give time to your digestive hormones and enzymes to do their job and get you full before you put too many calories in your body.
8. Eating Out Too Often
Choosing to have a salad or eating in a restaurant with healthy options may lead you to think the calories would be the same as the food at home.
But, the truth is that restaurants and, particularly, fast food franchises add processed ingredients in their preparation that will sum up calories without you even noticing.
9. Lack Of Protein
Protein is essential for getting full and eating fewer calories.
Proteins affect the hormones we produce; a higher intake can increase the production of the satiation hormone.
Others combat the ghrelin in our body, which is the hunger hormone.
But, far from being hormone controlling the only way protein contributes to weight loss, it also makes your body burn fat faster.
This happens because of the higher thermic effect on protein, which accelerates your metabolism, providing a dietary advantage in front of other food regimes.
10. Lack Of Fiber
All fibers are essential for fat loss.
They accelerate the intestine traffic, help the organism break down carbs and sugars, and provide a filling sensation.
But, one particular fiber, known as viscous fiber, has been proven to be exceptionally helpful in weight loss.
This fiber is water-soluble, and when consumed in high amounts, it creates a water and mass mixture in your stomach that keeps you full for longer.
11. Keto went wrong
This fat loss mistake to avoid is a tricky one, it may take a bit to explain.
Keto diet – and any low-carb diet – is based on getting your body to a ketosis state.
This means that your body will choose to burn fat for energy first, instead of choosing carbs.
Plus, these diets reduce your appetite, which in combination with the ketosis, result in losing weight naturally.
But, this appetite reduction sometimes fails and leads to eating more fat than burned, and the consequent body fat increase.
12. Stress Eating
Stress and anxiety are a common reason for overeating.
Our brains try to replace the bad feelings and sensations by coming up to a comfort zone, which is eating.
This way, it reliefs some of the emotional burdens that we are not taking care of.
Of course, not managing our anxiety and stress will lead to consuming more calories than we can burn, and therefore, increase weight.
Try practicing breathing exercises, yoga, having a hobby, or consulting with a specialist for tools to manage anxiety.
13. Unlimited diet Plans
Another common fat loss mistake to avoid is living in a constant diet, which is a sign of failing at weight loss than actually succeeding.
Dieting indiscriminately and without a plan will make you lose track of your progress; it will make you feel punished, and most likely will take you back to binge eating.
Making sure to have a plan, specific goals, and healthy dietary changes is essential for a sustainable fat loss.
14. Setting Unrealistic Goals
Diets, weight loss, and changing for healthier habits take time.
When assuming unrealistic expectations such as trying to lose much weight in a couple of weeks, or banning treats for life, you are only leading yourself to failure.
The idea of weight loss is making your new size your regular size, which means a full lifestyle change.
For that to happen, your new lifestyle must be sustainable.
When forced to adopt extreme attitudes like these, your brain marks your goal as impossible, and disappointment will lead to binge eating and quitting.
15. Paying Too Much Attention To The Scale
Believing that muscles weigh more than fat is a mistake, what actually happens is that the same weight of fat and muscle occupy a different amount of space in the body.
In this sense, you may be thinner and still weight the same.
For that reason, relying only on the scale and not analyzing the external factors will result in an inaccurate perception or progress.
Other than fat, muscle gain, inflammation, and water retention also plays a part in the number shown by the scale.
Knowing this is essential, as it will prevent you from quitting out of frustration.
Conclusion – Mistakes To Avoid When Trying To Lose Weight
We could keep counting fat loss mistakes to avoid for a long time, as many details may sabotage your weight loss.
But, as significant as it is to prevent from falling into these traps, the crucial step you must take is being focused and determined.
In that sense, our community wants to welcome you and invite you to join the fitness side!
Do you have any suggestions or stories to share? Leave them in the comments section, and we’ll all be glad to give you some feedback and support!