5 Reasons You’re Not Losing Fat

Around 45% of people join a gym to lose fat. The number of people who succeed is probably less than 10% and furthermore 80% of those people succeed end up regaining their body fat. So what is it, these people who keep their fat off, are doing that you are not doing? First lets be clear – fat loss is different to weight loss. You could completely cut carbs out of your diet & lose 2-3kg in 5 days, but unfortunately this is mostly water and once those carbs go back in, your weight will bounce back just as fast. 5kg of fat lost will change your appearance much more substantially then five or ten kgs of water loss. So lets look at 5 reasons why you haven’t been getting the results you want:

  1. Excess Calories: Obviously!! But do you actually know how many calories are in your 4 coffees with milk per day? In the sauce you used at lunch? In the few wines you had after work? To know how many calories you are consuming you must track (not forever, but initially its essential) or get a meal plan that tracks them for you. Download Myfitnesspal or Cronometer and start carefully logging your meals – knowing the numbers is essential.
  2. NEAT: Non exercise activity thermogenesis, basically the calories you burn outside the gym, which is significantly more than the ones you burn in the gym! Stand whenever possible, it increases your daily caloric expenditure. 10,000 steps daily – walk to lunch, walk to work, walk the dog, walk to shops. By making small changes to your lifestyle you can really ramp up your daily calorie burning.
  3. Metabolic Issues: Prolonged extreme calorie deficit causes our metabolism to down regulate, in other words slow down, making it more difficult to lose fat. The trick here is to find a very slight calorie deficit (or even a maintenance level) & then take 1-2 day a week with a surplus. This should kick your metabolism up a gear to start burning fat again. From a medical stand point, taking a simple blood test can also show whether or not you have an under active thyroid (hyperthyroidism – which is much more common than you would think). If this comes up you should contact your health professional to find out what medication you need to treat this, although I’m of the firm belief that weight training & a proper diet can solve this.
  4. Medication: Some medications like antihistamines, antidepressants and some blood pressure medications can cause you to gain weight. If you are taking these and they are absolutely essential for you its best to focus on slowly weaning yourself off these before taking on the task of losing body fat.
  5. Sleep: Solid sleep is the gateway to great health, and especially fat loss. Studies have shown that a lack of sleep encourages mindless eating throughout the day, and it can also lead to poor performance in the gym. If you’re fatigued during the day, you most likely won’t be able to power through a workout intense enough to burn a significant number of calories.

Losing fat is not easy, being on a diet sucks and doing a heap of cardio sucks but at the end of that struggle is the body you’ve always wanted. Trust me, its worth the sacrifice!