5 Reasons Why You’re Not Losing Fat
1. You’re consuming too many calories
Many people buy into the belief that the more exercise we do, the more weight we’re going to lose. Yes exercise can assist with weight loss, but if you’re still consuming too many calories, you’re going to see very little change, if any.
I see many people working hard and training hard to lose weight, only to end up frustrated and unchanged. Many people do an awesome workout, burn some decent calories, only to put it all back in (plus some) by consuming too many calories. They’re genuine in their pursuit for fat loss, but they’re often misinformed or just totally uniformed.
Your weight is defined entirely by calories. And to lose weight, you need to consume fewer calories than your body requires each day. It doesn’t matter what diet approach you use, eg keto, low carb, vegan, paleo, etc. What matters is that your total calories are below your daily calorie requirement – also known as your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). This is the number of calories required to keep your body functioning at rest.
To do this, you can either:
- Consume fewer calories than your daily calorie limit/BMR
- Exercise (burn) your way below your daily calorie limit/BMR
Option 1 is the simplest, smartest, and most sustainable option. It is the option we use at Empower, in combination with option 2.
Option 2 is doable, but not sustainable. For example: you may lose a lot of weight from exercise, but what happens when you stop? Or get injured? Or as you get older and cannot exercise as much? You’ll start burning fewer calories, and your weight will either stall or begin to increase due to the amount of unused (unburned) calories.
When you’re unable to exercise, you need to know how to counter or balance your calories so that you can maintain your fat loss and keep it off. And that’s what we offer and teach here at Empower.
2. You’re consuming too few calories
This is the other side of the pendulum. Don’t read number one above and make the mistake of thinking that eating near-to-no calories will help. It may for a short time, but in the long run, you’ll have no energy, slow down your metabolism, weaken immune system, and set yourself up for a rebound that will very likely have you putting on more weight than you started with.
Eating too few calories not only increases the risk of serious health problems, it also doesn’t help with long-term weight control. When calories are severely restricted, the body goes into conservation mode by holding onto fat. It’s the bodies natural survival mechanisms. That’s often why a lot of those in famine or poverty have bloated stomachs – the body is trying to hold onto fat to protect their organs.
Another drastic thing happens after a long time in a severely restricted calorie diet. When you decide to increase the amount of calories you’re consuming, your body will increase its reserves and actually try to store more fat as a means of protection. It basically tries to build an immunity or greater protection against starvation. This is why those who were once on a very strict diet, and then gave up to start eating regular amounts, actually put on more weight – the body is trying to protect you and your organs, but it does no good for your weight loss goal.
Not only will you end up holding or putting on more weight, you’ll actually have a huge drop in energy. And this is probably the main reason why people give up. Without energy, you’re tired, grumpy and pretty much unpleasant to be around. And because of that, many throw in the towel because it’s not worth living that way.
At Empower, we counter this and calculate your calories to hit the sweet spot, so that you’re neither consuming too many nor too few calories. You have enough calories to keep your energy alive, while also being able to lose the fat. And it’s sustainable so that you can do it for the rest of your life.
4. You’re not getting enough sleep
When we lack sleep and/or are highly stressed, cortisol can also inhibit the breakdown of fat for energy and increase breakdown of muscle – we don’t want this. We want to retain muscle, not lose it.
Also: when you’re overtired, your brain’s reward centers rev up, looking for something that “feels good.” This can spark hunger and cravings in your head, causing you to comfort eat.
4. High Stress Levels
Like sleep deprivation, stress too can cause you to hold weight. This is due to a rise in cortisol that causes water retention. Stress can also increase moodiness, and may even have you comfort eating, which in turn adds to weight stalls or gains.
5. You’re not willing to put in the effort
We get many consultations from people who want help, want to lose weight, and want it for all the right reasons, but just don’t want it bad enough. They’re not willing to put in the effort to actually make it happen. And that’s a real shame.
To get anything in life, you must be willing to put in the effort, to make sacrifices, to get uncomfortable, and to make some changes. If money is your obstacle, then replace it with self research and find out how to do it yourself, without hiring. If your love for food feels like kryptonite, then learn how to fit ’em into your diet. If time is your excuse, then you need to check your priorities – and your excuse – ’cause that’s usually a lazy man’s ticket out of doing anything.
At Empower, we’ve made it as simple as possible, we’ve done all the trial and error testing for you, and all you have to do is follow – and we support you the entire way!
So if you’ve been training hard to lose fat but not seeing any changes, then you likely need to adjust your calories, and/or get your sleep and stress under control. Or, if you’ve been wanting to lose fat but haven’t done anything about it, then you need to start putting in the effort to make it happen.
You can do it, and you deserve it.
Our fat loss approach is sustainable so that you can do it for the rest of your life.