As a health and self-improvement blogger, one of the biggest questions I get goes something like this:
“I’m wondering if you have any suggestions for me. I’ve been trying to lose weight for years, and I just can’t seem to do it. Eating healthy is too expensive these days. I can’t seem to fit exercising into my crazy schedule. And I swear, there are too many BBQ’s and parties to attend that all revolve around food. What can I do to lose the weight? Oh, and also, I have knee problems too so working out is limiting for me. I’m a hopeless case, aren’t I?”
Okay, so maybe that one is a little over the top, but I really have heard each one of those dilemmas in the past, plus some others. Here I’m going to post the top 10 reasons why you haven’t lost weight and then I’ll dissect each one of them.
Top 10 Reasons You Haven’t Lost Weight
1. The snooze button is your best friend. You have everything planned out to get up early in the morning to hit the gym. Bag is packed. Routine is planned out. iPod is loaded. Alarm is set. Then the alarm goes off and all you can do is hit the snooze button. You just can’t seem to get yourself out of bed, and before you know it, you’ve missed your workout!
2. You don’t prioritize or schedule your workouts. How many times have you said that you would workout later in the evening once everything else gets done? Honey, that is a recipe for disaster! Most females I know, especially moms and wives, are bombarded with a long list of t0-do’s that if they truly waited until everything was checked off that list to workout, it just wouldn’t get done. Don’t just “pencil” in your workout time. Pen, or even permanent marker, it in!
3. You eat more “junk” than processed food. So many people trying to lose weight are not eating the way they should in order to do so. Now, if you’ve been around the site for awhile, you know that I’m not a proponent of restricting foods that you like. With that being said, I am in a healthy weight range and am not looking to lose any weight. I also don’t eat a ton of processed foods. There are ways to eat foods you like, lose weight, and be healthy, just by making some of your own recipes at home instead of buying packaged foods that are full of preservatives and sodium. Eating real food with real ingredients that you can understand is what will make you healthy! Just because something is labeled “Skinny” doesn’t mean it’s actually good for you. Read the ingredients. Ask yourself if they are real ingredients that will help you on your journey to be healthier.
4. You compromise your goals for parties, get-togethers, etc. I am in no way saying that you need to stop being social in order to lose weight. What I’m saying is that so many people use weekend parties as reasons for why they can’t lose weight. Is someone at the party forcing you to eat that plate of nachos or a whole six pack of beer? Are you being forced to eat foods you know aren’t great for you? No. You are responsible for your own decisions. Either eat before hand or bring your own healthy snack to share. And as always, be aware of your actual hunger signals. Parties are hard. Many times, we’re eating just to eat because there’s so much good food. But truly listening to your body and what it wants and needs is what will get you through.
5. You tell yourself you don’t have enough money to be healthy. I’m sure you’ve said it yourself – it’s expensive to eat healthy! Yes, boxes of mac and cheese are super cheap. But so is brown rice, beans, and lentils, which you can usually buy in bulk at many stores (Winco and Whole Foods are two). Yes, your produce is going to cost you a little more than canned or frozen versions, but think about it this way. By spending your money on real foods from the produce section, you will be saving money in the future on things like heart surgeries caused by clogged arteries and medications needed for a whole host of illnesses caused by poor health.
6. You think you have to be restricted to “diet food” to lost weight. How many of you are under the mindset that you have to eat things that taste like cardboard in order to lose weight or be healthy? Did those nasty Kashi bars (sorry Kashi, I’m not a fan) close your mind to healthy food? There are so many healthy foods that taste deLISHous! For example, the granola bars my son and I made. Or what about the blueberry and peach salsa I made last summer?! Healthy doesn’t have to be boring. Pinterest is here for a reason, and all you need to do is search healthy snacks, and you’ll be presented with a plethora of options.
7. You have no enthusiasm for getting healthy. There are many people that don’t truly need to lose weight and because of this, they choose to live with a “meh” attitude toward working out. The truth of the matter is this: Just because you are of a healthy weight, that doesn’t mean you don’t need to keep up your cardiovascular health, bone strength, and overall joint health. And of course, working out also assists with your mental and emotional health as well.
8. You don’t have any goals. How many times have you said that you’d just like to lose a few pounds or that you’d just like to tone up a bit? I know I’ve said it. But many times, there lacks a finite number. There’s no real goal in mind. So we have nothing to work for. There’s no real push to get to a certain weight because you never told it to. You never said, “Ok body, we are going to lose 10 pounds in six months.” Once you tell it to do something and start giving it a deadline, THEN you might actually see some work getting done. Think about it: if you tell yourself you’d like to write a book at some point in your life, you’re going to keep putting it off until you get to it one day. If you tell yourself you’d like to write a book within a year, well, you better get your butt working, right?
9. You have an injury or poor health to focus on. Now don’t get me wrong here. Injuries and illnesses are not something to mess around with. But I’ve met so many people who claim to not be able to work out at all because of knee problems or because they are chronically ill. These people have also never tried water aerobics or a gentle yoga. Obviously, you are going to want to speak with a doctor first about your specific issue, but I feel like so many people use their illnesses and injuries as excuses for why they aren’t able to fit some sort of exercise in their lives.
10. You have a negative outlook about your body and its abilities. “I have been fat all my life. I have always struggled with my weight. I’m pretty sure my body isn’t even able to get in shape if I tried.” How many times have you heard people say things like this. Maybe you are that person. You are negative about yourself, and you don’t think you have the capabilities to even get to where you’d like to be. The more you start telling yourself that you can’t do it, well, you’re just going to start believing it, and that’s not going to get anything done.
So what do I think about all of this? I think they’re all poor excuses! That’s right. Excuses.
I’m sorry, but this is where I become a tough love kind of girl. If getting healthy and achieving your weight loss goals is important to you, make it seem important. Stop putting the blame on something external. The truth of the matter is that you have the power in you to make all your decisions. You can decide to wake up early to work out or not. You can decide if you should eat 10 cookies for breakfast or not. You can decide to make healthy food choices. That is the power of being human. Don’t place blame. Take responsibility for your actions and see yourself finally reaching your goals.