We’ve all done some ridiculous things on our journey to build a better physique. While it’s expected you’re going to make mistakes along the way, you don’t have to let them set you back. Here’s 3 common fitness mistakes you may have done or are still doing that you’ll never do again.
Mistake #1 – Changing Your Diet All At Once
This is one of the biggest reasons why diets fail and people relapse to the foods they crave. If you’re used to eating certain foods that taste great, but are unhealthy; you’re going to have a hard time switching cold turkey to a clean diet.
This is a big mistake many people make when first starting out on a new diet. They tend to think they need to eat nothing but healthy, tasteless food to see results. They decide to cut out 100% of the junk food out of their diet overnight and eat only healthy food. What usually happens is it’ll work for a few days, or even a few weeks depending on how strong willed someone is. But eventually, you’re going to be eyeing up junk food like a lion looks at its prey just before it pounces. Your willpower will give way to your cravings and you’re going to binge eat all that junk food and relapse. Anyone who’s been on a diet has experienced this at some point and believe me, it sucks.
Instead of setting yourself up for a failed diet, gradually change your diet in steps. Start out by identifying some of your most unhealthy eating habits and slowly work on changing them one by one. Then keep eliminating them until you have no more. This process should take a few weeks. Once you go a period of time without them, your diet will become easier and you’re going to have to deal with fewer cravings.
One other important thing to note is that you don’t have to completely eliminate junk food from your life. It’s okay to indulge in pizza, cookies, and cake once in a while. I actually encourage it! It keeps us sane and able to stick with a diet for the long haul. I like to follow an 80/20 rule where I eat clean 80% of the time and indulge 20% of the time. When indulging, you just have to pay attention to your daily calories and macro ratios. Plan those cheat meals in so they don’t ruin your diet and you can still enjoy your favorite tasting food.
Mistake #2 – You Think Cardio Is The Holy Grail For Fat Loss
There are a lot of beginners out there that think cardio is essential to cutting down body fat. That you need to do cardio to get abs. This is simply not true.
You don’t need to do cardio to burn off fat. Don’t get me wrong, if you do cardio you will burn calories which will cause a reduction in body fat. However, cardio’s role is not as significant as some people perceive when it comes to burning fat. A proper diet and weight lifting routine will burn off significantly more fat than running on a treadmill.
The only thing that matters when it comes to losing weight is if you burn more calories than you consume. Proper nutrition assists in making sure that the weight lost is fat and not muscle. Your diet should take precedence over cardio. After all, that slice of cake you decide to indulge in will take 45 minutes on the treadmill to burn off. Is it worth it?
Weight lifting plays a critical role in fat loss. When you add more muscle to your body through anaerobic training, you increase the amount of energy your body needs to use. Calories are what your body uses as an energy source when it breaks it down. By packing on more muscle, you’re actually increasing the amount of calories you burn 24/7. Cardio can’t do that.
That’s why you need to think of cardio as a “supplement exercise” when it comes to fat loss. It’s something that can assist in fat loss, but shouldn’t be the primary driving force. A balanced healthy diet and a smart anaerobic workout plan should be your primary tools to combat stubborn body fat.
Mistake #3 – Giving Up Before You See Results
This is probably the BIGGEST mistake of them all. A lot of people who start a body transformation expect it to happen overnight. These are the same people who are Googling “how to lose 20 pounds in 2 weeks”. They are the ones that are starting a diet and exercise plan in May and expect to get ripped by July. Transitioning from an unhealthy lifestyle to a healthy lifestyle takes time. It’s not a sprint, but a marathon.
You need to be realistic with your goals. The truth is that getting a lean and ripped physique takes time and hard work. Anyone else who tells you differently is only fooling them self. There are no “shortcuts”. You have to put forth time and hard work. That time, sweat, and hard work are what makes a lean and ripped physique so desirable. Understanding and coming to terms with this will allow you to be prepared mentally for the journey you are embarking on. You’ll be preparing in the winter for what’s to come in the summer, you’ll prepare this year to reap the rewards next year. You’ll make progress each day towards the physique you desire. NEVER give up and keep pushing, and I promise you that you’ll get there.
Now you have 3 fewer mistakes to worry about and can focus more on your progress, rather than setbacks. If you’re looking to prepare yourself more so you have a better shot at reaching your fitness goals then check out my completely free eBook, the Top 8 Mistakes That Are Holding You Back From Building Your Lean Ripped Physique. In it I outline what I think are the top 8 mistakes most people make working towards their fitness goals and how you can overcome them.
The founder of Limitlessly Fit, Bobby started Limitlessly Fit to share his lifelong passion of fitness to help guys build lean and ripped physiques. Bobby is well educated in many fields, holding a Bachelors degree, two Masters degrees, and several certifications. He also has over 10 years of experience and university-based education in fitness and nutrition.