Four things that might be hurting not helping your fitness journey

Today I was talking with a friend about her current fitness journey.  She is trying to get herself together and lose some weight and she’s at a high number on that scale so she has a bit to go.  She knows my story and has seen the pictures and she wasn’t always this heavy so she knows that it is possible.  This fact is awesome as the belief in your ability to make change is one of the best places to start. As she was sharing her current realization it made me think about some of the traps that people fall into that actually hinder their attempts rather than help.  Often it’s things that are done in earnest and people have no ideas that they are making a mistake.  So I thought maybe I would share a few common mistakes to help you out in your journey:

  • Eating too little– Yes it is possible to eat so little that you actually cause yourself problems with losing weight.  I can’t tell you how often I and other people in the health and fitness field hear that “I only eat once a day I don’t know why I’m not losing weight” or something similar.  Your goals in weight loss or muscle gain will help dictate how many calories you eat, but if you don’t eat enough to fuel your body you may find that your body decides to hold on to every calorie you take in.  Think about it, if your body doesn’t know when it will get the next meal it will hold on to that food and save the calories for later because it thinks you are starving.  My friend for instance although she is looking to gain weight if she eats too little may have problems physically, mentally, and will slow her metabolism making it hard to lose.  See a dietitian or a doctor if you want to lose weight and are having trouble figuring this out. 
  •  Doing too much to quick– I am so guilty of this when it comes to the resistance.  I have no idea why it makes sense to build up with running, but I think I should be superwoman with resistance.  The other day I did an awesome workout, but I hadn’t done some of those moves #1 ever #2 in a long time.  I had a hard time walking for a few days I had a pain similar to after my half marathon.  I pushed too hard too quick and then couldn’t work out for two days.  You might feel some pain after working out, especially if you haven’t for awhile, but if you can’t move you’ve done too much.
  • Eating too much of a good thing– There are “superfoods” out there and they are foods that are good for you because they are dense with nutrients that we need, but…too much of any kind of food can lead to weight gain.  My friend Pam at Thrive Personal Fitness shares her insights on this and I will let you read her summary for more details, lets just say there is such a thing as too much hummus (I know blasphemy right?), The 5 Good for You Foods That Are Sabotaging Your Weight Loss
  • Not taking rest days– The days you rest major muscle groups are the days your body is actually building muscle.  Without allowing your body to rest it cannot repair the strain you put on it by challenging it with working out.  Over taining can lead to fatigue which leads to injury.  Your body also uses carbohydrates as it’s main source of fuel, this is one of the same nutrients your body uses to help support your immune system.  This is thought to be a reason why a lot of runners get sick after long distance races.  There was an interesting article in Runner’s World that provides a suggestion on how to still train, but take care of yourself. Remember that whether it is resistance or aerobic your body needs rest.  Bottom line let your body rest when it needs to and don’t use the same muscles to do the same exercises on a daily basis. Immune to it all- Runners World 

These are just a few things to consider when starting to make some lifestyle changes.  We have enough tempting influences out there, it’s important to keep our motivation going and keeping from making some simple mistakes can help you resist the temptation to give up. Do any of these sound familiar or can you think of things that might have hurt your journey along the way?


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Pamela
    Dec 17, 2013 @ 11:35:31

    Thanks for the shout out!


  2. Sarah
    Dec 17, 2013 @ 14:45:08

    I think "doing too much too quick" is the one that I most often do–like you, I think I should be able to lift a heavier weight that I really can, and I end up sooo sore and not wanting to lift for days after that. Not really productive to getting into a workout routine!


  3. Suzanne @WorkoutNirvana
    Dec 17, 2013 @ 17:55:15

    All true. I would add that mindset is critical. Accepting that no matter what your weight, it's part of the journey to be at this weight. Being positive, and creating a supportive environment :).


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