Weight loss is considered hard, but mostly your success depends on attitude and your ability to follow a plan. Like the wise man said “People say that losing weight is no walk in the park. When I hear that I think, yeah, that’s the problem.” Here are the common mistakes in trying to lose weight.

weights kettle ball

Not Lifting Weights

Performing resistance training is incredibly important during weight loss. Studies show lifting weights is one of the most effective ways for gaining muscle and increasing metabolic rate. Weight training also improves overall body composition and boosts fat loss.

TIP: Weightlifting or resistance training can help boost metabolic rate, increase muscle mass and promote fat loss, including belly fat.

salmon eat protein for weight loss

Not Eating Enough Protein

Getting enough protein is extremely important when losing weight.

It can reduce appetite, increase feelings of fullness, decrease calorie intake, increase metabolic rate and protect muscle mass during weight loss.

A study showed that when 19 adults ate as much as they wanted on a diet consisting of 30% protein, they consumed an average of 441 fewer calories per day than when they followed a diet consisting of 10% protein.

You will find that consuming protein rich foods makes you less hungry, it affects your appetite in a good way.

Not Tracking What You Eat in Any Way

Eating nutritious foods is a good weight loss strategy. However, you may still be eating more calories than you need to lose weight.  Monitoring your calories is esssential for success,

It may first seem as a time consuming big task to use a scale or measure your ingredients. But pretty soon it will become automatic and you actually won’t have to look up ingredients and their calories because you remember what the numbers  are.  Choosing a small set of healthy meals that you repeatedly make is a great way to keep track easily.

Studies show that tracking what you eat can help you get an accurate picture of your calorie and nutrient consumption, as well as provide accountability.

You could also use an online calorie tracking tool.  Here is a review of several popular calorie tracking tools.

Choosing Processed Low-Fat or “Diet” Foods

Processed low-fat or “diet” foods are often considered good choices for losing weight, but they may actually have the opposite effect.

Many of these products are loaded with sugar to improve their taste. Granola, spaghetti sauce, premade soup, cereal bars and canned fruit  are some examples that contain lots of added sugar. 

Rather than keeping you full, low-fat products are likely to make you hungrier, so you end up eating even more. Instead of low-fat or “diet” foods, choose a combination of nutritious, minimally processed foods.

exercise class

Overestimating How Many Calories You Burn During Exercise

Studies show both normal and overweight people tend to overestimate the number of calories they burn during exercise, often by a significant amount.

In one study, people burned 200 and 300 calories during exercise sessions. Yet when asked, they estimated they had burned over 800 calories. As a result, they ended up eating more.

If you exercise at the gym don’t blindly believe what the machines say you burned.  Some reports suggest that treadmills and other cardio machines  overestimate calories burned by up to  20%.

That being said, exercise is still crucial for overall health and can help you lose weight. It’s just not as effective at burning calories as some people think. Remember to vary your routine and do several types of exercise. It will be more efficient and won’t get boring. Consider exercise that takes place outdoors – hiking, biking, paddling, etc. Being outdoors in nature has been proven to provide many  health benefits. Check out our article on how nature affects your mood and brain.

Not Counting Liquid Calories

Alcohol has calories, one deciliter of wine  (less than half a cup) has about 80 calories. And those margaritas or other mixed wonders can really pack the calories.  A  University study found that women ate just as much food with a high-calorie beverage as with a low- or zero-calorie drink. Watch out for “healthy” juices and smoothies as well—they may seem weightless with their kale and celery, but those drinks can pack up to 300 calories from all the natural sugar.

 Also keep in mind that drinking on an empty stomach leads to quicker intoxication.  You might quickly lose your ability to resist something super delicious from the high fat menu, it just sounds so yummy! 

Overestimating weight-loss rate

Most people shed a lot of pounds in the first couple of weeks of a program, a combo of carbs and water. It’s an artificially high drop, so don’t get discouraged when progress slows down.

Tip: Remind yourself that it took months or years to gain that weight-it’ll take some time to lose it, too.  People who lose weight slowly are much more likely to keep it off long-term. Don’t be too hard on yourself, there are many reasons why weight loss is not an exact science. You naturally go through times it slows down even if you are exact in your calculations. Keep following your program, and remember to enjoy life! 

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7 biggest weight loss mistakes

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