To lose weight successfully you must know that answer to these six questions. I don't mean that you can't lose weight without these answered, I mean that you can stumble into some weight loss but will inevitably gain that weight loss back, and likely get a little extra credit for your misdirected efforts. HERE WE GO!
- How many calories do you burn in a day? This means all in, including sleep, exercise, digesting food, going to work, playing with your kids, blah, blah blah - EVERYTHING. This is important because your body is thinking calories already, and we can impact this first answer with how we answer the other answers. Check this out!! I have a simple tool that will calculate this for your!!!! Follow this link and you can make life really easy.
- How many calories should you eat to lose weight? This part is just very simple math so stay with me. Get a pen and some paper right now. Decide how many pounds of fat you need to lose in a week, and be realistic with like 2 pounds. Take that number and multiply it by 3500, and the total is how many calories of body fat you need to burn in a week to lose that amount of weight, in the 2 pound example the answer is 7000. Next, divide your total by 7 representing 7 week days and your new answer is how many calories less than you burn (answer to 1) that you need to eat. So in my scenario I need to burn 1000 calories of fat per day to lose 2 pounds, so if I burn 2500 calories per day then I need to eat 1000 less calories than that, or 1500 calories. Easy, right?!?!
- How nutritious is my food? This is more complex but just as important. Your body demands a certain amount of nutrients each day because it does not have big storage for nutrients to draw upon. So we need to get those nutrients from food. The problem is that when we eat less to lose weight then we are also eating less nutrients. This is one of the biggest reasons that we gain weight back, because when we are starved for nutrients our body will want to slow the metabolism down so that we don't need the nutrients. Whatever you are not eating that you still need you should be supplementing to ensure that you keep that metabolism cranking!
- What signal is my workout sending to my body? WHAT does that mean?!?! Whatever we do throughout our day tells our body what is expected of it, and then our body adapts to that so it can establish homeostasis, or balance with the environment. When we exercise we can control to a great degree that signal so that we can get a very specific adaptation. For example, let's say that I have been doing the same circuit at the gym, or taking the same classes, for 2 months, heck even 2 years, our body has made all of the changes from that workout that is gonna! That is why your group exercise instructor does not just get skinnier and skinnier, their body adapted!
- How is my sleep? I know that you are not always 100% in control of this but it has a huge impact on your body. 80% of the recovery from life, which includes exercise, happens while you sleep. If you get insufficient sleep you have inadvertently told your body that you will not give it time to from a strenuous lifestyle, which includes hard workouts. In response it will tell you that you can't workout as hard anymore. Then you can't send as strong of a signal for change anymore so it has re-established balance, but not by giving you results, but by limiting your results!
- Will I stick to a program? There is no science to this. You either want it bad enough to stick to it, or you don't. FYI - The people who quit their program are not the ones getting insane results because they are getting sweet return for their investment. The quiters are the ones who are getting little to no results so they are getting a poor return on their investment (by investment I mean time, energy, starvation and money)
- How do I know if my plan is working? The easy answer, and my plug for the day, is to get help. We offer a FREE WEIGHT LOSS PROGRAM for 30 days to get people hooked. But let's pretend that you stuck on going to your gym or using your trainer, that is OK, I am not offended, then use your results as the measuring tool. The scale does not lie! If you aren't losing weight it means that your program is not right for you to lose weight, so stop doing it and find one that will!