It’s Thursday, already? Not that I am complaining, I am welcoming the weekend with open arms.
Before jumping into the Top 10 (which is a REALLY good one), I wanted to share this picture, taken of one of my amazing boot campers.
As a participant of the What’s Beautiful Campaign with Under Armour, this picture struck me as just that… beautiful.
Cindy busted her butt during an extremely tough workout and yet, still had a smile on her face and pride to flex her muscles.
If you’re interested in participating in the Whats Beautiful campaign (and winning a trip to Costa Rica), check it out my page and join my team!
Top 10 Weight Loss Questions… Finally Get Answered
I am not one to beat around the bush or give “fluff” to my readers and clients. If you have a question, I’ll do my best to give you the answer. No bull, just the facts.
Of course being a trainer I get asked questions ALL THE TIME about weight loss, and if my clients ask these questions I am sure other women are wondering about them as well.
But only read these if you really want to know the truth… it may not be what you necessarily want to hear but it’s what you need to hear to make results happen.
1. Can I lose weight with diet alone… do I have to exercise?
No, you don’t have to exercise to lose weight, however to lose the right kind of weight (aka fat) you need to exercise. The whole idea of losing weight is to take in less energy (calories) than you burn… so if you eat less then you’ll see the number go down.
However, your body will feel starved and as a way to handle it, will burn off muscle mass to decrease your overall metabolism. You’ll end up “skinny fat”!
This isn’t the case when you add in a balanced regiment of exercise (strength training and cardio).
2. How many calories do I need to burn from exercise to lose weight?
This is a great question, according to NASM, to have an effective workout program to help you burn the most fat, it’s best to aim for a program that has you burning 2000 calories/week from exercise.
Now of course there are exceptions because the #1 rule of thumb is that must burn more calories than you take in.
But for people that love numbers and goals, go with 2,000. This can happen from just 30-45 minutes of exercise most days of the week.
3. Is it true that it’s harder to lose weight as you get older?
Unfortunately, yes it is.
As you get older, hormones shift and fluctuate and for some women, especially those that are pre-menopausal and on, will find it more difficult to drop the fat than when they were in their 20s-30s. You might find this helpful:
It doesn’t mean it’s not possible, it very much is! It just means paying a bit more attention to a balanced diet and a workout regiment.
4. Why does metabolism slow down as you get older?
There are a few reason for this, of course as mentioned above, hormones have something to do with it. But, the most common problem is a decrease in muscle mass.
After the age of 35, women may lose 3-8% of their muscle mass per decade. Less muscle, means a slower metabolism. Why does this happen? Because at this point, it appears that women start to decrease the intensity of their workouts and muscles that don’t get used, get broken down.
Keep strength training and you can avoid this problem all together!
5. Is it true that men lose weight faster/easier than women?
Unfortunately, yes, men do lose weight faster. Don’t get mad at your husband/boyfriend. It’s not his fault that you’re dieting the same yet he’s dropped 10 pounds and you’ve only lost 2.
Blame it on genetics, hormones, and their ability to say no to chocolate.
I’ve actually written an entire post on just this issue… get all the details here.
6. How fast can I see results when I start a weight loss diet & exercise plan?
We all want to see results over night.
Not. Going. To. Happen.
You didn’t gain the weight overnight and it’s not going to come off that fast either. Especially, if you want to keep it off. Slow and steady wins the race.
In general, losing 1-3 pounds is what’s considered healthy and normal. With that, after about 2-3 weeks you will likely begin to see some results in the mirror.
After about 4-6 weeks, others will likely start commenting and asking “have you done something different with your hair?” or “You look fabulous, what’s going on?”
Don’t give up if you’re not down 2 dress sizes in 4 weeks.
7. Can I drink alcohol when losing weight?
I don’t know can you? In all seriousness, alcohol is one of the biggest reasons why people don’t see faster results. We don’t want to give it up. If you drink just 1 glass of wine each night with dinner… that comes out to over 800 calories by the end of the week.
Since there is 3500 calories in 1 pound of fat, that can make quite an impact!
It’s not just the calories though, alcohol is packed with sugar, affecting blood sugar/insulin levels (promoting fat storage) and can wreck havoc on hormone regulation… again, promoting fat storage instead of breakdown.
I recommend cutting back at least 1/2 of what you’re drinking now. Or even allowing yourself just 1 night of week to enjoy 1-2 cocktails.
8. I don’t cook, is it possible to eat out and still lose weight?
Of course! And you don’t have to eat salads all the time.
The trick to eating out while cutting back on calories, is to not be shy. Ask the waiter/waitress how the food is prepared and ask for subsitutions. Dan makes fun of me regularly because I change menu items so drastically.
But, you’re paying for the food so get it the way you want.
1. Opt for grilled, baked or broiled meat.
2. Ask that vegetables be cooked without butter or oil.
3. Go ahead and half the server bag up 1/2 of your meal so you don’t over indulge (we all do if it’s on the plate).
4. Ask for no cheese (that’s just extra calories)
5. Go with a side salad in place of fries
6. To avoid the bread/chip basket, ask for it not to be placed on the table at all.
7. Research places to go before hand. Dan does this and I am so thankful!
9. I’ve heard protein shakes are good, but will they bulk me up?
No. NO. NO!! Protein shakes are awesome when trying to lose weight for several reasons.
For one, they make great on the go snacks, and you’ll have it on hand when hunger strikes. Therefore avoiding trips to the coffee shop or snack machine.
Because of the high protein, they will keep you full for a longer time than most carb heavy snack options that surround us.
The idea that protein shakes add bulk is a wive’s tale. To bulk up, you need a serious weight training program along with a diet of increased diet. Since you’re cutting back on calories, your body won’t be able to add much muscle mass to your frame.
Protein doesn’t add bulk, it simply helps muscle recovery post workout as well as to keep you full and satisfied!
I use several protein brands right now, but my favorites are Vega & SunWarrior… both vegan and neither of them causes bloating/gas like whey used to do.
10. Once I hit my ideal weight, can I stop exercising?
Only if you want to gain fat again.
Even when you hit your goal, keeping up with clean eating and exercise should be apart of your lifestyle. The exercise will help maintain your healthy metabolism while also keeping you toned and amazing when you look in the mirror.
Give it up and your muscle will breakdown and though you might stay thin, you’ll lose tone, increase fat storage, and feel out of shape and tired.
But who wants to stop working out? Love it and embrace the strength and figure that comes with it.
There you go! I do want to stress on VERY important thing… remember, it’s not the number on the scale the dictates your success. Look at your measurements, pictures and the way you feel in your own skin to see if your hard work is paying off.
The number on the scale is worthless at the end of the day.
- Did I answer your questions? If not, please feel free to leave them below and I promise to answer them!
- Do you drink protein shakes? What is your favorite protein?
Other important reads:
- Putting The Pieces Together: How To Start A Diet
- Diet & Exercise Have A Far Reaching Affect Outside Of Calories
- Why Is Losing Weight So Hard For Women… Or Is It?