Why Can't I Lose Weight

You work out five or more times a week, eat a healthy diet, but no matter how hard you try, you just can’t shift any weight? Claudia Beyer, personal trainer from BareVitality and Author of “Your Holistic Metabolism“, says that diet and exercise are just the beginning.

Many female clients come to me feeling like they’re at a dead end. They are exhausted from their efforts and don’t know what to do.

So why isn’t it working? First of all, you need to understand that your body is a holistic system. If one area of your health or lifestyle is out of balance, it affects all the other systems. For example, If your hormones are playing up, this can affect your metabolism and your ability to lose or maintain your “ideal” weight.

There are five areas you need to assess in order to rebalance your body and start seeing results.

1. Stress

You’ve probably heard plenty of times that stress can have a negative impact on your health. But did you know that stress could be one of the most important factors why you can’t lose weight?

why am I not losing weight

When we’re stressed we release the hormone, cortisol, which is responsible for the “fight or flight response”. It’s highly unlikely you’re stressed because a lion is chasing you. You are probably running late to a meeting or stressing over your overwhelming to-do list. Your body, however, doesn’t know the difference between a lion and a list so it prepares you for a life or death situation.

Now think about all the tiny things you have stressed about in the last three hours:

  • “Where are my shoes?”
  • “Remember to pick up the dry-cleaning.”
  • “What does that person think of me?”
  • “I have to ace this presentation.”

Cortisol is being released into your system every single time you stress. Your body is reserving as much energy as it possibly can for this “life threatening” event.

Now throw exercise into the mix. It’s no wonder you are exhausted and receiving no results for all your hard work.

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2. Diet

Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as energy in = energy out.

First, you need to consider if you have any special dietary needs. Consuming food that you’re intolerant to puts huge pressure on your body and can negatively affect your results. You should also aim to avoid refined sugars in order to maintain a balanced system.

Second, the digestive system is largely responsible for governing your body’s functionality. Eat lots of fermented and alkaline foods and drinks which are your gut’s best friend, take a high-quality probiotic daily and limit alcohol and caffeine intake.

Finally, make sure you drink lots of filtered water.

3. Toxic exposure

Any foreign substances that you add to your body will affect the way it functions. Toxins can be found in many everyday products including medications, hygiene and beauty products, cleaning products and plastic containers. There are also environmental toxins that you need to watch out for such as pollution and mould. While we can’t always avoid toxic exposure, we can reduce it where possible by choosing natural and organic products.

4. Exercise

Exercise to lose weight

It’s all about smart movement. As a holistic personal trainer, I can not emphasise enough the importance of finding movement that works for your individual body and needs.

Try to enjoy a range of movement such as resistance based workouts, high intensity interval training (HIIT), cardio workouts, yoga and “soul movement”. Soul movement, as I like to call it, is whatever sets your soul on fire. This may be trail walking, cycling, paddleboarding, dancing and so on. The main thing is to keep it light and have fun.

A balance of different types of movement at different intensities is the key to effective results and a happy, healthy body. Listen to your body and provide it with what it needs at any given time. Some weeks when you’re feeling run down you may need to put the HIIT on pause and nourish your body with some yin yoga. The most important thing it to listen to your body and work with it, not against it.

5. Sleep

Without sufficient sleep the body can’t repair. And if the body can’t repair how can you expect it to be balanced? Lack of sleep affects everything from your hormonal system, stress response, digestion, metabolism, immunity to toxins and workout results. So knock off before 10.30pm and wake up before 6.30am for the most restorative hours of sleep.

Next step

Assess all areas of your lifestyle, environment, diet and workout routine and bring balance back wherever possible!

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Always speak to your doctor before changing your diet, taking any supplements or undertaking any exercise program. The information on this site is for reference only and is not medical advice and should not be treated as such, and is not intended in any way as a substitute for professional medical advice.