Losing weight might not be the easiest task, but there's no reason for it to be the hardest. While how soon we lose weight or how much weight we actually lose all depends on our individual bodies, there are some basic mistakes that many of us make that prevent us from shedding those extra kilos. If you're trying to lose weight, here are a few mistakes you should avoid making:
1. You only stick to doing cardio
While cardio is great for burning calories and it's true that it helps burn stored fat, if you're skipping out on strength or weight training, you're missing out on maximising your body's potential to burn calories. The logic is simple - a body with higher muscle percentage acts more efficiently and burns more calories. So if you're looking to increase your muscle mass and reduce some fat, include strength training to your workout routine.
2. You eat anything you want
It's good to indulge once in a while, especially if you've started working out and taking better care of your body. But using the fact that you've started working out as an excuse to eat whatever you feel like will do you no good. Exercising is important if you want to lose weight, but what you put in your body and your daily calorie consumption is equally, if not more important. Set yourself a daily calorie goal and stick to it. Going above it will prevent you from losing weight, but staying under will only deplete your body of its much needed nutrients.
A balanced diet is key to losing weight and keeping it off. Remember, how you look and feel starts as much in the kitchen as in the gym.
3. You never change your workout
You're not the only one who is bored of constantly doing the same workout everyday. Your body reaches a saturation point too - after which, doing the same thing over and over will have little effect. If you do the same workout 3-5 times a week, your muscles become accustomed to it and you will see your weight loss plateau. Try switching up your workout every few weeks to maximise results and keep the weight loss going.
4. You're doing the bare minimum at the gym
Just hitting the gym and spending time leisurely doing what you're comfortable doing, will not aid your weight loss journey. It might seem like the hardest thing to get yourself to do high intensity workouts, but that is what will really give your metabolism and fat loss the kick that it needs. For best results include high intensity interval training to your routine. Experts agree that it's one of the best workouts for weight loss. High intensity interval training or HIIT works for cardio and strength training. It involves working out at your maximum with high intensity followed by a short rest period. A popular work-to-rest ratio is two to one, which means there could be 40 seconds of working at your max followed by a 20 second rest period.
5. You're inconsistent
While a 20 minute walk in the middle of a work day is great to get some fresh air and get some blood pumping through your body, it cannot qualify as your workout for the day. If you're serious about losing weight, skipping the gym or going off track with your meal plan more than just once in a while can't really be an option. Try and put in at least 45 minutes of solid exercise 3-4 times a week if you want to see the results you desire. As far as food is concerned, pick a cheat day and stick to eating what you desire only on that day every week. This way you get to bust some cravings as well as meet your goals.