Whether it’s for your new year’s goal, or out of general interest for your health, at this time of year many of you are going to be looking for what you can do to kick your fat loss into high gear. With this goal in mind, you’re going to want to make sure that you continue to make progress, moving closer to a leaner, fitter, and healthier body.
One of the best ways to ensure you make progress is by knowing things you shouldn’t do. There are many ways to get from point A to point B when it comes to fat loss, but also many things that will detour you down a road you shouldn’t be traveling.
We’ve called on some of our Kaged Muscle expert athletes to share with you some of the mistakes they see most often. Take a note from their book and make sure you avoid the following.
Slashing Calories Too Soon
“One common mistake when striving for fat loss is that people think they should eat less,” explains Kaged Muscle CEO, Kris Gethin. “When dieters begin drastically cutting carbs or calories, they will usually lose some fat and water weight in the beginning, but over the long-term, the metabolism shuts down.”
Your metabolism is what dictates how many calories you burn each day, and if this shuts down or slows, it only stands to hinder your fat loss progress. That’s not all though. “As this process ensues, people become more inactive because they have less energy to exercise, and they also encounter more drops in blood sugar, which encourage cravings. Sooner or later, they’re hating the transformation process entirely,” says Gethin.
He recommends that instead, you make better food choices. Focus on cutting out sugars and unhealthy fats, eating smaller meals frequently throughout the day, and not skipping any meals.
Rushing the Process
Another mistake that’s often made is looking to get from point A to point B at record speed. “Too many people are looking for a quick fix to a major problem and go on something like a 30-day cut, for example,” says Kaged Muscle athlete, Jesse Norris. “I believe these can be beneficial for some people, but if you’re looking for a long-term fix, you have to set long-term goals and realize the process is not always going to be quick.”
He notes that people often lose the weight they want, only to have it come right back. This is a sign you did things too quickly. “If you take small steps and make small changes over a long period of time, it’s unlikely that you’ll regain the weight back.”
Failing To Track Calories
When it comes to losing weight, it’s very much a situation of calories in versus calories out. While there are still factors that will influence your results, if you’re consuming too many calories, it doesn’t matter how healthy you’re eating, you’re won’t lose weight.
Therefore, one of the most important things to do in order to sustain optimal weight loss, is perfecting this equation.
“One of the biggest mistakes people make when trying to lose weight is not tracking what they eat,” says Kaged Muscle athlete and IFBB Pro, Daushon McGregor. “Eating healthy foods is definitely a good strategy for weight loss, however, you may still be eating more calories than your body needs in order to lose weight.”
He also says that not eating enough protein is another common mistake people make. Consuming adequate protein based on your body will help control your appetite, boost your metabolism, and prevent muscle loss during the dieting phase.
RE-KAGED™ - Support Muscle Building & Maximize Recovery with Post-Workout Anabolic Protein.
Fortunately, there are many helpful calorie and macro tracking apps available, so you definitely don’t have to walk around all day with a calculator in hand.
Overdoing Cardio Training
“One of the most common mistakes I’ve seen, and am guilty of myself, is cutting carbs and upping cardio training immediately,” says Kaged Muscle athlete and IFBB Pro Tawna Eubanks. “Of course you will have to do that in time, but both approaches should be used in moderation. If you cut everything in the beginning and add a ton of cardio, what will you have to work with for the rest of the time?”
She stresses that following a balanced diet and adding a little bit of cardio as you go is the smarter and more sustainable way to do things. Then, you can simply make incremental adjustments as needed, to break through plateaus.
Neglecting Weights For Cardio
Stemming from the previous mistake, another common misstep made in your quest for a leaner body is doing too much cardio and not enough heavy weight training. “People make the simple mistake of thinking more is better, but their energy seems to be misguided,” notes Kaged Muscle athlete and IFBB Pro, Fouad Abiad. “Immediately when most people think of losing weight, they run to the treadmill and start jogging for hours on end. They make their weight training a secondary priority because they don’t want to be huge and instead want to get lean.”
Relying predominantly on cardio and neglecting the weight room, can lead to a breakdown of muscle mass over time. As more muscle is lost, the body will burn fewer calories throughout the day – leading to a much lower caloric intake and a more difficult time losing fat. “Your calorie intake is based on how much muscle you have, so you’ll want to hold onto as much muscle as possible,” explains Abiad. “If you don’t, you’ll end up eating like a bird to lose weight.”
He recommends that you prioritize weight lifting and use cardio as a secondary tool for fat loss. “Doing this while eating healthy foods will allow you to hold onto most, if not all, of your muscle while burning fat, giving you the desired look you want – a lean, hard, muscular body, not that of a marathon runner.”
If you’ve already started your fat loss journey, take a look at your current approach. Are you making any of these mistakes? If so, make some changes today so they don’t derail your progress. If you’re planning on starting soon, remember these common problems to ensure you don’t make them.