Have you ever been in a situation where no matter what you do, you just can’t seem to lose any of those excess pounds that materialized out of nowhere during the holidays?
Diets may work, albeit temporarily. But there are tremendous gaps in the common person’s understanding of what it means to lose weight and the steps they must take to achieve their weight goals.
We are here to shed some light (and help you shed that extra weight) on some of the lesser-known facts about weight loss.
Being ignorant of how the body works and responds to nutrition and activity leads to blind and often misguided attempts at losing weight. These often fail, or worse yet, backfire, eventually resulting in a return to unhealthy habits and reciprocal weight gain.
1. Weight loss is not synonymous with fat loss
People swooning over dashing celebrities and their picture perfect bodies may promise to achieve similar levels of physique by losing weight.
These people, however, tend to overlook the fact that weight loss does not necessarily mean fat loss, and it is usually fat loss that most desire.
Isn’t losing one directly dependent on losing the other? Yes, and no.
While some amount of fat loss will always accompany any loss of weight, going on fad diets or restricting calories without exercise causes the undesirable loss of valuable muscle instead of fat. So, while this gives the outward appearance of having lost weight, what has actually happened is that your muscle mass (which is imperative for strength and a shapely looking body) has decreased, leaving you weaker, but with quite a bit of ‘hidden’ fat still hanging around.
2. Neither weight training not carbs are your enemy
You can avoid losing muscle instead of fat by eating a controlled diet, high in protein, but with healthy amounts of fats and carbs. There should be no drastic or sudden reductions in your calorie intake. Balance is key.
Exercise should be planned to incorporate a combination of strength and cardio workouts throughout the week to focus on losing body fat while maintaining or building muscles mass.
You must have heard fitness gurus say that the best way to approach any change in your lifestyle, whether fitness or diet related or both, is to have a long term vision and goal. The underlying reasoning for this is based on one simple truth: long term planning helps build sustainable, healthy habits and an even healthier relationship with your body that will be beneficial to you for the rest of your life. Let alone achieving that fit, trim body you’ve always wanted, with this approach you will be stronger and happier to boot.
3. Don’t be a slave to the scale
It is unfortunately extremely easy to get hung up on what we see on the scale. We judge our success according to the numbers, and not by how we feel.
When you begin weight training, you might gain a couple of pounds from water weight or new muscle before you lose any weight. This is normal and should not cause panic or worse, abandoning your pursuit.
It is important to note that when losing body fat through weight training, the loss might not manifest on the scale because you are simultaneously building muscle. You might also notice that although your weight is constant, you are losing inches. This is a sign that you are moving in the right direction, so try not to be too focused on the numbers, and use measurements as an additional gauge for weight loss.
4. Weight loss is not a steady road
A weight loss journey is by no means smooth sailing. When you embark on your fitness journey, it is imperative to be in the correct mindset: be clear about what you aim to achieve because you will need that focus when things don’t go your way.
There will be peaks and troughs in your weight loss process as you progress.
This means that there will be periods during which you will experience a loss of weight or some reduction in size, interspersed with weeks of stagnation. What is more, there might be fluctuations in your weight depending on several lifestyle factors like stress, hormones or holidays. These standstills are normal, but that doesn’t make them any less demotivating.
5. Weight loss treatments are not a substitute for diet and exercise
It will feel like you’re doing everything right but still not losing a pound. During plateaus, the best thing to do is keep the faith, and realize that this is proof of how far your body has come. The human body is highly adaptive, the key to sustained weight loss is to keep it guessing. Try different iterations of exercises, or up your weights, or even mix up your diet to jump start your body into weight loss mode once again.
This is a terrible misconception, and it does more harm than good.
A nutritious diet plan and effective fitness routine are essential to losing weight with or without supplemental treatments. What’s more, weight loss treatments are only meant for a particular category of people.
Those who are obese with BMI over 30 and those who are overweight with pre-existing conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes are recommended to take weight loss medications like Orlistat. However, even among these, it is only prescribed for those who are unable to lose weight after repeated attempts at lifestyle and behavioural changes and can prove they will comply with dietary changes and physical activity plans.
If you come under these categories, then go ahead and book an online consultation with the medical experts at Click Pharmacy. You can receive an online prescription and order the medication you require through their excellent online services.
As with every aspect of life, there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution to weight loss. People have different body types, metabolisms and food preferences. Bodies hold on to fat in different ways and have different reactions to exercise. But that is precisely the beauty of it. When you have the correct mindset, you will realize that there is no greater adventure than that of self-discovery and learning to appreciate your body for showing you what you are truly capable of, both in weight loss and in life.