Consistency isn’t enough – 3 reasons your fat loss progress has stalled
You’re ready to see changes in your body but don’t wanna get obsessive or stressed about fat loss. #ConsistentlyLean Coaching could be the perfect fit for you.
So many online coaches tout the importance of consistency to seeing results. And to be real, it’s a HUGE part of the fat loss equation, because without consistency, results will be impossible.
But, truth is, we need more than consistency to see lasting results.
I chat with women every single day who are exercising multiple times a week, eating *mostly* healthily, and just SO frustrated that they are not seeing results. So, I’m writing this post for these ladies.
If your fat loss journey has stalled, check yourself and one of these three mistakes could be why.
3 reasons your fat loss progress has stalled
You’re not mixing it up
Our bodies are incredibly smart, and they adapt pretty dang quickly to our exercise and nutrition routines. If we don’t continually change things, progress will stop.
One of the most frustrating things is when we are already working out, trying our best on our own to make our body change, but not seeing results.
This happened to me for YEARS as I slogged my way through 60+ minute BodyRock.tv workouts every day. I thought I was doing everything right, training correctly, and doing what mattered to results. Still, week after week, my body remained unchanged. This left me looking in the mirror, thinking that I would never be able to see changes.
If you’ve been training for a while and results have stalled, that does not mean that you’ll never reach your goals. It just means that you need to make a change to your workout routine. To determine if changes might be necessary, ask these two questions:
- Are my workouts still challenging me? If you’ve been doing the same thing for a while, your body knows and has adapted. This is why it’s so important to follow a periodized training program that changes things up often and keeps your body guessing. You can try to do this alone (this post may help) or you can join a program like #ConsistentlyLean where a coach does it for you.
- Am I getting enough rest? Often, we are working too hard AND under-recovered, leading to elevated stress levels and stalled results. So, if you’re feeling a bit worn down, that could be playing into your stalled results. Check this out if you’re wondering how many rest days you *actually* need.
Your nutrition isn’t supporting your goals
If our workouts are consistent and changing every few weeks, our exercise routine might not be the problem and we may need to take a look at our nutrition.
When clients come to me with stalled results and their workout routine has been variable and consistent, I tend to see two main issues – maybe you’re struggling with one of these?
Not enough protein
So many ladies are deficient in protein, and this is incredibly problematic when we’re also trying to lose body fat or gain lean muscle.
Having a high protein diet is one of the best tools that we have to preserve a high metabolic rate and reduce hunger while we’re limiting our overall caloric intake. Lovely, this is why protein is a key component of the #ConsistentlyLean nutrition curriculum (grab your spot before February 4 to take advantage of the program’s lowest price of the year!).
Protein (1) takes more energy to digest, (2) keeps us fuller longer, and (3) helps manage cravings.
So, if your workouts aren’t the issue, try bulking up your protein intake using one of my top protein foods (see here).
Too much restriction, leading to over-indulgence
We often believe that the only way to see results is to severely restrict what we eat on a day-to-day basis. And while being in a calorie deficit is necessary to losing body fat, when we restrict too much, our willpower is depleted, we get frustrated, and we end up in what I call “fuck-it moments.”
These are the times when we are so depleted/exhausted/worn out by our diets that we swing the complete opposite way, eating or drinking everything in sight.
Instead, I encourage my #ConsistentlyLean ladies to indulge every single day, using #myconsciousindulgence framework every single day.
Consciously indulging helps us stop switching between depriving ourselves and binging by indulging, mindfully, daily.
A conscious indulgence is anything that makes us feel satisfied and indulged but not overstuffed or guilty. It should be a component of a meal or snack-not an entire plate of food.
By incorporating indulgences into our daily eating, we do two things:
1) Reduce the likelihood of overindulging because we feel deprived
2) Normalize indulgences so we do not feel guilty about them
Wanna try it out?
Every day, we review the day ahead and plan where we’ll need an indulgence. If we know that we have a work dinner, plan to indulge at the restaurant. Maybe nighttime eating is a challenge, so we plan to have some Halo Top ice cream or a sweet protein bar before bed. The key is CONSCIOUSLY choosing our indulgence every day so eating doesn’t become mindless AND we become more comfortable with treating ourselves without guilt.
Your workouts aren’t intense enough
Maybe you’re working out 3+ times a week. You’re mixing up your routine and trying new things constantly. But as consistent as you are, the results in the mirror have completely stopped.
If that’s the case, we’ve gotta be sure that the actual workouts we’re doing are preserving or building lean muscle mass, because lean muscle is what keeps our metabolic rate high, even at rest.
Not sure if your workouts fit the bill? Try out these three tips to making your workouts (appropriately) intense.
Focus on full body workouts
One of the biggest mistakes I see is focusing waaaay too much on small muscle groups. I blame this on Pinterest and all of the workout pins promising tone our flabby arms or spot reduce belly fat. We find a pin promising to get rid of bat wings, so we do an hour of triceps extensions and wonder why we still have fat on our arms. Yikes.
While there is some benefit in doing upper/lower body split workouts (example), when we’re aiming for a short effective workout routine, we gotta get efficient.
And full body workouts are efficient (see my full body workout archives here) because by working both your upper and lower body, you force your body to work harder during your workout. Working harder = more calories burned = more results
How to implement:
Instead of doing workouts that focus on a single muscle group, work your entire body. Alternate between upper and lower body exercises within a single workout.
Combine cardio and weight training
When it comes to an effective workout routine, we want to find ways to get our cardio and strength training in a single workout. This saves time and can help speed up our results/push through plateaus.
How to implement:
Do not read this tip as: add some strength training to your long cardio workout. That was the mistake I made that kept me struggling. Instead, you can do one of two things.
- Add a cardio finisher or primer to your strength workout. Think 5-10 minutes of super intense cardio intervals (like sprints) that you add to the beginning or end of your workout.
- Incorporate cardio exercises into your strength routine. Here is a workout where I do exactly that. You’ll notice it works your full body, uses compound movements, and combines cardio and strength.
Lift heavy for you
Doing strength training with weights that are too light for us is not gonna help us achieve any of our goals. In order to force our bodies to change (and show us the results we’re waiting for), we have to challenge them (AKA lift heavy).
How to implement:
Grab heavy weights for YOU in that SPECIFIC exercise. It should be difficult to complete the last 2-3 reps of any exercise, and yes, that means you will ideally have multiple sets of weights.
I wrote an entire article on the topic, if you’d like more information on choosing the appropriate weight.
I know. Fat loss is hard. We can try to do absolutely everything right and STILL not see the results we’re hoping for. With awareness around these four lies, you can start trying to implement all of these changes on your own and make progress towards your goals.
But, if you want a done-for-you exercise and nutrition program, designed to help you lose fat and change the shape of your body without restriction or obsession, #ConsistentlyLean Coaching is for you. Obsession over the details is what’s keeping us from reaching our goals, so Consistently Lean will teach you how to move, eat, and think in a way that gets you the results you’re looking for, without stress. Get on the waitlist now!