There’s a theme in the diet industry that bothers me because it's so easily misinterpreted by people trying to lose weight. And that is: “If you want it, you gotta work for it.”
You see lots of words like “commitment” and “dedication” and “work”. Don't these words just make ya wanna cringe?
One thing I made the mistake of doing -and you might, too - was exercising too much. I felt like if I wasn't dripping in sweat by the end of the workout, that I wasn’t working hard enough towards my goal of losing weight.
And I felt frustrated because it seemed like my friends could eat whatever they wanted and not exercise yet look slim. And here I was, probably going to have to live the rest of my life killing myself at the gym just to maintain the physique that I wasn’t happy with.
But then something changed. I went on vacation and wasn’t able to go to the gym for a few weeks. I was staying in a city and the only exercise I was getting was walking around town. And to my surprise, my body started to slim down. What I always wanted was starting to happen, and I was doing less. Whaaa?
Here are 2 reasons why the harder you workout, the less results you'll see:
1) Working out when you're calm is good stress; working out when you're frantic is bad stress
The reason why walking instead of doing all of those spin classes and kickboxing and high intensity training works is because of the different kinds of stress you’re putting on your body. If you are exercising while you are in a calm, relaxed state, then your body thinks that everything is fine and it starts to target the stored fat on your body for fuel.
But if you’re doing exercise that makes you feel like you’re hyperventilating and pushing yourself too hard, then your body feels like something is wrong (like it’s running away from a bear, for example) and it will start using quick energy in the form of sugars, or from the most recent meal you ate.
2) You're more likely to feel ravenous post-workout, and treat yourself to desserts.
It’s super easy to feel ravenous or to want to treat yourself after a harder workout (because you worked so hard…). And you'll build a strong body with more stamina, but the fat will still be there, covering your muscles.
Your body is a reflection of how you have been eating and exercising. So if you feel like you’ve been doing everything but you’re not getting results, it doesn’t mean something is wrong with you - it just means you need to change the formula. And that might not mean you need to be more strict - it might mean you need to do less, in a more strategic fashion.
How have you been working out thus far? What changes can you make to take stress off of your body and start leaning out the way you dream? Leave a comment!