Mistake 2: Eating Too Few Calories
We all know how to lose weight. Consume fewer calories than you burn on a daily basis. So obviously eating a little less food than usual will result in a little weight lost and eating significantly less food than usual will result in a significant amount of weight lost, right?
Unfortunately it’s not that simple although a lot of people fall into this trap.
This is the classic case where more does not equal better. Initially, you may drop weight but you are setting yourself up for disappointment, stalled progress, and worse rebound weight gain. In fact, studies have shown that people who crash diet for a certain event end up regaining ALL the weight back, and then some, when they return to “normal” eating habits.
What you are ALWAYS looking to achieve is a sustained result. You want your after picture to be the same after picture (if not better!) 1, 5, and 10 years down the road.
Your body is incredibly complex and intelligent. But it can’t differentiate between the concept of a “diet” versus experiencing real “starvation”. Your body doesn’t know of the short-term nature of the sudden reduction of calories it’s receiving. Your body also has protective mechanisms in place that are not always in line with your goals of dropping body fat.
What your body does know is that it requires a certain amount of energy to function properly. If it is not getting this energy it is going to compensate by down regulating your metabolism. Instead of tapping into body fat storage it is going to slow the rate of calorie burning. As a result of this down regulation it is going to start trying to hoard fat tissue as a protective mechanism. As a consequence, your body will sacrifice lean muscle tissue for energy since it is more calorically demanding.
This is the opposite of what you want to happen!
In addition, the substantial lack of calories over an extended period of time leads to soaring hunger levels, low energy, and will cause you to have a preoccupation with food. Cravings and binge eating is not what you want to cause at anytime, especially when you are trying to lose weight.
You want to supply your body with the energy it needs to have quality workouts. Burning the fat off through proper exercise programming is always the best approach. You don’t want to starve your fat off. You need to coax the body and not force it into doing what you want.
So what should you do?
You always want to be in a relative caloric deficit NOT an absolute one. This is about 200-300 calories below your body’s daily needs. You always want to strive to eat the MOST amount of food possible yet still be able to lose body fat.
You also need to get back to listening to your bodies natural hunger and satiety signals. I talk about this in my 4 Habits To a Great Nutrition Plan. Make sure to download your FREE copy and read through it.
Patience is a lost virtue in today’s world. We all want quick fixes and are always looking for the “secret” to achieving our goal. We are caught up in transformation contests and crash dieting to get ready for some special event. It’s all about the short game with no regard to long term consequences or success.
So remember take the smart approach. Keep your food intake as high as possible while still making progress and get ready to achieve healthy, sustainable results.
If you would like help getting started with a proper training program and nutrition coaching send me an email and we can set up your free transformation session.