Did you know that it takes at least 20 minutes of aerobic exercise before you really begin to burn body-fat?
Did you know that toning is the most important exercise for weight loss because more tone means a much higher metabolism and you burn way more fat 24 hours a day!
Did you know that you need to ‘save’ 3500 calories per week for every 1 lb you wish to lose?
You cannot do weight loss ‘in your head’. You have got to be prepared to pay a little more attention to the precision , detail and track what you are doing so that if results are not what you expect you can find out why. With all that in mind I thought it would be interesting to tell you about the 10 most common ‘weight loss personas’ I encounter in trying to help people lose weight.
I have found this to be very helpful for my clients when they are trying to lose weight and to get them in the ‘zone’ for better weight loss. It can be a real wake-up call and get them to finally realise that the buck stops with them and that change is required if they really want results. Perhaps it will help get you on the right track to success.
Good during the week but then over-rewarding yourself at the weekends. This is a very common weight loss mistake. People often do great Monday to Friday saving 5000 or 6000 calories but then eat or drink back on 2000 or 3000 extra calories over the weekend. The net result is that they have now only saved a total of 3000 calories over the week which is less than 1 lb of fat and with day to day fluid fluctuations this might not even show on the scales.
Not following a set plan or tracking what you do. You cannot do weight loss ‘in your head’ for many reasons. First we overestimate how good we are and we tend to minimise the bad. We also forget lots of details. It is impossible to judge progress without a written record, especially progress in exercise. Weight loss requires precision not estimation. If you overeat by just 100 calories per day then that becomes 700 calories per week which for most people is two good 1 hour workouts wiped out! You’ve got to have a structure to lose weight consistently.
More and more exercise isn’t better! If you have to do more than 5 workouts in a week to see results you need to take a serious look at other keys to weight loss e.g. food, nutrition, toning or sleep. You cannot exercise your way to great weight loss because you simply cannot burn enough calories for real results. At 3500 calories per 1 lb fat loss, it would take about 8 hours of exercise to lose just 1 lb a week! An especially bad form of over-exercising is two exercise sessions in the same day.
The Show Jumper:
This person jumps from week to week to different things, resulting in not enough consistency to get any real results. They are listening to too many people and too many ideas, especially new fads! They are really waiting for a miracle and the bottom line is there is no weight loss miracle. Sooner or later they will have to make the changes we talk about or else live with the weight forever. It is vital to stick with one plan and give it reasonable time to work.
The Emotional Eater:
This is where regular events get on top of you and trigger an episode of comfort eating or even binge eating. This can often be ‘unconscious’ eating in that you will not remember the episode or even the quantity of food eaten. Just one episode of emotional eating can wipe out several days of good dieting, making weight loss very difficult. Under all emotional eating is unhappiness that has not been dealt with and the food is used instead of confronting the unhappiness. Unless you identify and deal with the unhappiness emotional eating could always sabotage your weight loss. Identify who (partner, boss, colleague, friend) is causing your unhappiness and start with the words ‘this isn’t working for me’ to open the discussion for a solution.
This can be based on the belief that the less you eat the more you will lose. If only this worked! There are many people who would love to eat very little because they are ‘too busy’ for food. The problem is that this kills your metabolism very rapidly and health problems will follow soon. Just 4 days of under-eating can really slump your thyroid – your main metabolism gland. Once you get a slumped metabolism it can take weeks to fix it so don’t go there in the first place. For many people under-eating is the main reason they are overweight in the first place.
The Mini Toner:
Toning is the most powerful way to increase your metabolic rate. Every 1lb of toned muscle added burns 300 calories extra per week! If you can add 5 lbs of muscle tone (and most of us need this or more), you will be getting slimmer and firmer but you will burn 22.5 lbs of fat per year before you even begin to change your diet or exercise However toning must be done right! Some people think they are getting the muscle ‘burn’ when really the exercise is too easy and they are not toning at all. If you finish an exercise and feel you could have done 5 more repetitions if really pushed then it probably isn’t toning you in the first place!
This person thinks they are good with the plan but is making so many small tweaks that they are really not on the plan at all! 50 calories here and there easily can become 200 to 300 calories a day or 1400 to 2100 calories per week. Add to this a few tweaks to the exercise and a few habits that slow your metabolism and your total calorie saving quickly dries up! By the time you get to the scales the results are gone.
This person believes the harder you exercise the better. This is a huge mistake in weight loss. At higher levels you burn more calories but less fat calories. The effort triggers a different metabolic response often resulting in more cravings and over-eating. On top of all that you are prone to burnout and injuries. Sometimes this approach to training is a form of compensation for not being good with your food plan. High intensity training is especially bad for people with a weak metabolism or suffering from low energy or fatigue.
This person wants to lose weight but doesn’t want to work for it. They are not really willing to make changes. They like the idea of weight loss but are not committed to it. They talk a great talk but are not really doing anything underneath it all. Weight loss is simply not high enough on their priority list. They need to step back and find a way to make weight loss a much higher priority so that they will stop making excuses and start to do what it takes
Does any of the above personas resonate with you or someone you know?
As always I hope you get something useful from this article and please share it with others. Someone making one simple change can lead to big improvements in time.
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David McDonagh (Nutritionist, fitness trainer & creator of System 10 Weight Loss)
My system is about real weight loss done the right way! My plan takes into account all the above reasons and more and makes sure weight loss will work for you. Don’t miss my NEW online plan starting soon where you can lose 10+ lbs in 4 weeks or 20+ Ibs in 8 weeks and get an amazing change in shape because it is real weight loss. Click here for more details on these options. Alternatively arrange a one to one consultation in your nearest clinic by clicking here.