Daily Nutrition & Health
Why can’t I lose weight? (And 4 tips to help get you back on track)
Herbalife Oct. 23, 2023
Some succeed. Some don’t. And for those who fail to lose weight, the disappointment can be palpable – especially when you believe you’re doing everything right. Or are you?
You may be exercising regularly and eating healthy, most of the time, but when you look in the mirror, there’s still no evidence of weight loss!
You’re exasperated, left asking: “Why can’t I lose weight?”
It’s possible your exercise and eating strategy may have lost focus.
For example, your training routine may have gone stale (we’ll get to that shortly).
Furthermore - and this is key - weight loss is more biologically influenced than you may have realised.
Here are some tips to reinvigorate your strategies and help you get back on the weight-loss track.
Has your exercise routine plateaued?
There’s a science behind exercise and training.
That’s why at the elite level we have sports scientists and fitness professionals.
These experts focus on ‘tapering’, ‘periodisation’, ‘adaptation’ or ‘loading’ which are all used to plan an athlete’s training program.
Periodisation is related to plateauing. And this could also apply to you and your exercise plan.
When your training remains the same – and at the same level – you plateau.
It occurs in training due to homeostasis, a term described by endocrinologist, Hans Selye.
If you’re doing the same exercises, sets, reps and resistance, your training becomes stale and your body will soon adapt and stop progressing.
To combat plateauing, adjust the variables with an increased intensity.
In other words, give your training a jolt.
‘Homeostasis means a biological balance exists,” says Dr. Jim Walker, director of sport science at the Orthopedic Specialty Hospital, Utah, USA.
‘In terms of fitness improvements, it means that this balance must be altered.
‘An overload must be added in terms of training (increased volume and/or intensity; change in type of training, etc.) in order for fitness to progress.”
This could help kickstart your weight loss.
You could also find more information from fitness professionals at Herbalife here.
“You can’t out-train a bad diet”
It’s amazing that you’re exercising, but there is a theory that weight loss is 80% what you eat, and 20% exercise. [iv]
This can vary to 70%/30%, but the message is clear. You can’t out-train a bad diet. [v]
Here’s a common example.
If you’ve done a fantastic session – burning say 500 calories – and as a reward, you binge on a high-calorie meal afterwards, you could be wasting all that hard work.
You may think that because you’ve just done an amazing session, it’s fine to binge on a super-high calorie meal.
You need to refuel, after all.
But remember the basics of the energy balance equation.
When you take in more calories than you burn through exercise and normal daily activities, your body stores these excess calories as fat.[vi]
Think about it.
Eating certain takeaways could add, say, 800-1500 calories to your daily intake. How long would you need to train to burn that off?
Bad food choices beat exercise. [vii]
So, try to refuel smartly after your exercise. [viii]
Meal replacement shakes are another smart choice, and they taste amazing while relatively low in calories.
Monitor your calorie intake
Everything you consume counts towards your daily calorie intake.
A candy here, a snack there. It all adds up.
When you take in more calories than you burn through exercise and normal daily activities, your body stores these excess calories as fat.[ix]
This might just be the difference maker in your weight loss.
There’s nothing wrong with a healthy snack such as fruit, but keep a track of what you consume with calories counters.
And discover a range of free fitness and nutrition tools and tips by Herbalife here.
‘Choosing a protein shake will save you approximately 350 calories per meal, and you get an excellent balance of micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) and macronutrients (protein, carbs, and healthy fats),’ writes Nataniel Viuniski, M.D. and Member, Herbalife Nutrition Advisory Board.
‘Protein shakes often come in different flavors and allows you to add fruits, spices and other healthy ingredients to create an endless variety of recipes.’
Move during your work day
If you’re sat in front of a laptop all day, walking and stretching at strategic times can help.
When you sit for hours at a time without any movement, your body stops producing lipase, a fat-inhibiting enzyme that can be a key in weight loss. [xi]
And when your stand up and stretch once an hour, there is a boost in metabolism of around 13%.[xii]
So, find a notification app to remind you to get up and stretch.
These small changes can have a big effect on your weight loss.
These behavioral, genetic, metabolic and hormonal factors can all affect your body weight. [xiii]
Which means, losing weight isn’t straightforward.
But a few tweaks like these will help get you back on track.