Members of our gym share their diet struggles with me all the time. They often tell me all about their prior diets and workouts that didn’t work, as if they were dieting and exercising perfectly. This type of failed dieter often feels defeated, hopeless and confident they are just doomed for more failure. The good news is there is hope. Most people’s failures are one of 3 following common diet mistakes millions of people fall for victim to, causing their unfortunate plateau.
Are You One of These Struggling Dieters?
#1 The Weekday Dieter
Meet the Weekday Dieter. This person eats really well most of the time; and that’s their problem. This person eats right during the week but completely blows it on the weekends. In fact, this person feels like they are on a never-ending diet, because they are. They diet 80-90% of the time but what they do in the other 10%-20% overshadows it. This is why this is probably one of the top common diet mistakes gym goers fall victim to.
A weekday dieter is perfect for someone in the maintenance mode but not a great pattern for someone actively trying to lose weight.
If this hits a little too close to home, here is what you need to do. If you want to lose weight, you need to eat right about 90 percent of the time, seven days a week, until you lose a significant amount of weight. It may take a few weeks, but it is crucial for weight loss. After you lose your first chunk of weight, you can enjoy a cheat meal, but you have to get right back on your diet until they reach your ultimate goal. Once you hit your goal, you will likely be a successful Weekday Dieter.
#2 The Clueless Dieter
Let me introduce you to common diet mistake #2, the Clueless Dieter. This dieter is basically eating blindfolded. They really believe they are eating well but are basically relying on guess work and what “looks healthy” instead of solid data.
For example, I had a woman tell me that she was on a “No-Carb” Diet. This desperate dieter couldn’t understand why she wasn’t losing weight. When she gave me an example of what she was eating, the first three things she listed were all high-carb items. She simply didn’t know any better and didn’t realize bananas and oatmeal were carbohydrates. She thought carbs looked more like cookies and french fries. In a nutshell, her knowledge was limited.
The solution for this kind of dieter is to either hire a nutrition expert or spend more time studying nutrition online. Another awesome tool is a calorie tracking app like the LoseIt calorie tracker, which also tells you how many carbohydrates, protein and fat is in each item you enter in your app.
#3 The Healthy Dieter
Lastly, say hello to my friend, the Healthy Dieter. This dieter is very health-conscious, they they may even profess to be a vegan or only eat organic foods. They easily look extra healthy because they avoid all the obvious high-calorie foods like ice cream, french fries and cream sauces. Sadly, this dieter still eats too many calories, even though they are healthy calories.
The Healthy Dieter would also greatly benefit from tracking their food. Since many of the Healthy Dieters eat a lot of high-calorie fruits, juices, smoothies and extra additives like flaxseed and nuts, they quickly discover their “healthy” eating habits add up quick after just a few days of logging. Keeping a diet journal and tracking calories with a calorie counter app is normally a big eye-opener.
Of course these 3 common diet mistakes are not the only reason why you could hit a plateau, but it is a good place to start if you feel like you hit a weight loss wall.
Scripture of the Day:
One who is wise is cautious and turns away from evil, but a fool is reckless and careless. – Proverbs 14:16
Why did I choose this verse? Because dieting requires a certain amount of wisdom, knowledge and caution. The same way we are responsible for what comes in and out of our bank account, we should have a better understanding of what we are putting in our body and do all we can to continue to gain more knowledge in order to take the best care of our body.
Mantra of the Day:
Exercise is one step forward but a poor diet is two steps back. – Bonnie Pfiester