Why Am I Gaining Weight?

Why am I gaining weightI get questions like this quiet often and see this posted on message boards all the time.  It will go something like this, “I’m doing the workouts every day and putting my all into them, so why am I gaining weight?”  People tend to get very frustrated and often times are at the brink of giving up when they post this, because they feel like they are putting in a lot of hard work but not seeing any results.  So if you’re asking the same question, “why am I gaining weight?”, then I wanted to address a few things that you might want to change about your strategy so you can get on the right track and start losing weight if that’s your goal.

Why Am I Gaining Weight? – Nutrition

When people ask me “why am I gaining weight?” or “why can’t I lose weight?”  the first thing I always ask is about their nutrition.  The reason I ask, is because I know from experience how important nutrition is.  My first Beachbody program was Insanity, and I jumped right into it without changing my diet.  I figured that if I was working out super hard I should lose a few pounds.  But I was wrong!  I put in my all to the workouts, and after 1 month I had lost 0 lbs.  I hadn’t gained weight, but I hadn’t lost any either, all because I wasn’t following a nutrition plan.  So if you’ve found that your recently started a program, but you’re gaining weight or not losing weight then you have to look at your nutrition.  The key here is to :

  • Pick a nutrition plan
  •  Actually track your calories.  Once you start tracking what you eat I think you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to overeat, even when you’re trying to just “eat healthy”
  • Don’t let yourself have too many cheat meals.  One cheat meal can take 2-3 days to recover from, so too many of those and you’re not going to be heading in the right direction.
  • Watch your sodium intake, as too much sodium can cause you to hold onto water weight
  • Consider adding Shakeology to your daily routine.  I began to see great results when I added Shakeology to my diet and felt great knowing I was giving my body everything it needed.

Why Am I Gaining Weight? – Sleep & Stress Levels

My second most popular question back when I get asked “why am I gaining weight?” is around people’s sleep and stress levels.  It can be incredibly hard to lose weight when you don’t get adequate sleep every night because your body does not have time to recover and repair itself.  And your body raises hormone levels that actually increase your appetite.  When you’re stressed out your body also releases hormones, this time it’s cortisol, which can cause you to put on weight and pack on the fat.  I strongly suggest you push play and exercise, as that is a great way to handle and manage stress.  Exercising regularly can also really help you sleep better at night, so it can be an effective treatment for both of these issues.

Why Am I Gaining Weight? – Medications

It could be a good idea to look in the medicine cabinet if you’re asking “why am I gaining weight?“.  There are several drugs that can make it very hard to lose weight including antidepressants and steroids.  Hypothyroidism is another condition that can make it incredibly hard to lose weight.  So if you’ve recently changed up your medications or think you might have a medical condition that is making it difficult, it would be a good idea to have a conversation with your doctor about how your medications or medical condition could be making it hard to lose weight.

Why Am I Gaining Weight? – Ditch the scale!

My last piece of advice to people asking “why am I gaining weight?” is to ditch the scale, and focus on measuring your body fat percentage.  I’m sure you’ve heard it before, but muscle weighs more than fat.  So if you’re doing a program with strength training, like P90X, the muscle you’re building could cause the scale to go up initially.  This is a very good thing, though, because muscle will burn more calories throughout the day so it will increase your metabolism and help you lose weight in the long run.  I naturally fluctuate 3-5 lbs. every day on the scale depending on when I measure myself, too.  So if you’re seeing a 3-5 lb difference it could be really just due to the time of day you’re stepping on the scale.  That’s why I think it is much more important to take progress pictures and measure your body fat with calipers than to step on the scale to measure progress.  So if you’re asking “why am I gaining weight?” I’m going to suggest you stay off the scale for a little while and measure your progress with pictures and calipers.

So if you’ve been asking, “why am I gaining weight?“, I hope this has been helpful in shedding some light on several reasons that may be causing you to gain weight or stay constant at your current weight.  I know it’s frustrating, and I have been there myself, but I don’t want you to give up!  Take that frustration and use that energy to figure out what you can change.  I would say about 75% of the time people just need to dial in their nutrition and actually track what they eat.  I also think it’s incredibly important to have a support structure when you’re starting a weight loss journey.  So if you have been struggling and wondering “why am I gaining weight?”, join my team, and I along with the rest of our members will help you out!

 

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