Blog Post By Kayli Montoya-Huston
NASM Certified Personal Trainer & NCI Certified Nutrition Coach L1 and Mindset Coach
Embarking on a weight loss journey can be challenging, especially when you're committed to shedding those stubborn pounds but see minimal results. If you're wondering why your body fat isn't budging, you're not alone. In this blog post, we'll explore the top 10 reasons that might be hindering your fat loss progress and provide practical solutions to overcome these obstacles.
Inadequate Caloric Deficit:
Identifying and addressing these roadblocks can pave the way for successful fat loss. Remember, patience and consistency are key. Consult with a qualified nutrition coach or personal trainer to personalize your approach and maximize your results. Your fitness journey is unique, and understanding these reasons can help you overcome obstacles and achieve your body fat loss goals.
Blog Post by Coach Julie
NCI Certified Nutrition Coach Level 1 and Certified Mindset Coach
Fitness and nutrition are absolute staples to being your happiest, healthiest self. The problem is, some people take it too far. Coach Kayli and I have seen people lose a significant amount of weight and find themselves obsessing over their food, weight, fitness, clothes, etc. This really isn’t that uncommon. We usually see this when a person has struggled with emotional eating or binge eating. They lose body fat, but they never treated the root cause of the emotional eating. As with health, you have to treat the root cause or the issue doesn’t go away. Usually emotional eating is caused by unhealed trauma. When a person loses weight but doesn’t work on healing old trauma, they simply replace the old unhealthy coping mechanism with a new unhealthy coping mechanism. We see them go from binging food to not eating, obsessively weighing themselves, or overexercising. These habits can be just as dangerous for people as overeating. The key to being successful is obtaining and maintaining a healthy relationship with food. Here are some signs that you may have an unhealthy relationship with food:
If you recognize any of these traits, it may be time for you to reach out to a mental health professional to help you work through any issues you may have with food. Disordered eating is a legitimate issue that you should address. You shouldn’t live your life chained by food or fitness. Food and fitness should be things you enjoy and tools to help you live healthy.
Welcome to 2024!
As we dive into the new year, let's focus on what really matters for fat-loss. I'm not about quick fixes or fads. It's all about practical steps you can actually stick to. This is my 9th January working in fitness, and I'm often inspired and rejuvenated by the new year too. Many people bash "resolutions," making it feel vulnerable to admit having big health goals for the new year. But you aren't alone. There are plenty of others watching this who want to improve how they look, move, and feel.
The number one thing I hear from people at the beginning of each new year is their desire to lose weight, closely followed by wishes to eat "better" and "exercise more."
Let’s tackle two out of these three: losing weight and eating better. These are the two things (besides maybe better sleep) that will help you feel better.
So here is Tip #1 of the 10 no-nonsense strategies to help you lose fat more easily this year.
Stay strong, Coach Kayli!
Blog Post by Coach Julie
NCI Certified Nutrition Coach L1 and Certified Mindset Coach
Many people embark on a weight loss journey and find themselves quickly shutting down their own progress because they are overwhelmed. Ambitious goals are fantastic, but if you’re overwhelming yourself with monumental goals, chances are you are going to experience paralysis by analysis.
While I agree that having a goal and having a plan to reach that goal is integral, if we are at the starting line and using binoculars to view the finish line, without looking at the path, you’re setting yourself up for failure.
Set your goal. Create a plan. Then . . . Solve for Thursday. I know that sounds crazy right?
So here’s the deal . . . I borrowed this principle from one of my mentors, Dr. John Delony. He actually said, “solve for Tuesday.” He was referring to marriage and how to make your home feel the way you want it to. He stated that rather than looking so far down the road, look at how you want the average Tuesday to look. When you come home from work on a typical day, how do you picture that? What’s your ideal evening look like when you walk in the door? How’s it feel? When you have that “average Tuesday” figured out, all you have to do is create that, day after day.
I believe the same principle applies to weight loss. Once you have your goal set, you will start working on the path that leads you to that goal. This path should include small daily goals. Basically, what do you want a typical day to look like on the way to your goal?
Do you want to wake up every day and go on a walk?
Do you want to have a certain breakfast?
Do you want to pack your lunch for work everyday?
Do you want to allow yourself a small treat at the end of every day so you’re making progress but don’t hate your life?
If you “solve for Thursday” and repeat that solution, you remove the guesswork and the distractions that could throw you off plan. Keep it simple. The military uses the acronym, KISS, for a reason. There is no reason to over complicate and over think things. Break it down to daily goals and hit those 80% or more of the time, and you will hit your goals.
Here's what everyone gets wrong about losing fat quickly...
You might have two pre-conceived notions when you hear words like "rapid fat loss."
For the first notion, I get it. The media sucks in almost all ways.
For the second notion, I think that's generally sound advice ⏤ it's advice I give all the time.
But that doesn't mean there's not a right way to lose fat, fast.
If you do it correctly, it can be an excellent way to kickstart your fat loss and ramp up motivation from quick results.
I've seen it work time and time again with my 1:1 fat loss clients, along with the other 50+ people who've gone through the Fat Loss Accelerator Phase of my program in the past.
The key, however, is to avoid these critical mistakes.
7 Rapid Fat Loss Mistakes (& How To Avoid Them)
Mistake #1: You don't do an honest self-audit.
Mistake #2: You mindlessly cut too many calories too quickly.
How many calories you take away and where those calories come from are what separates successful rapid fat loss from straight-up "crash-dieting." When your approach is to simply eat way less and move a lot more, it's a recipe to ramp up cravings, lose muscle and strength, and slow your metabolism too quickly. You need a "smart" calorie deficit and just enough of the right cardio to lose pure body fat, fast, without "crashing" your metabolic rate.
Mistake #3: Focusing on losing weight, instead of fat.
Traditional diets focus on total weight loss with no regard to the composition of those pounds lost. Losing 5 lbs sounds great! But what if it was 2 lbs of fat and 3 lbs of muscle? And what if you could improve that ratio to 4.5 lbs of pure fat and only 0.5 lb of muscle? That should be the goal, assuming you want to actually LOOK noticeably leaner, more muscular, and defined. (Not just see an arbitrary number on the scale go down.) How you do that is by avoiding these next two mistakes.
Mistake #4: Not eating enough protein.
This piggy-backs off the last two points. Eating a higher-protein diet, especially when in a large calorie deficit, is crucial for retaining muscle mass AND keeping those cravings away. You probably know protein builds muscle, but lesser known is that protein is the most satiating macronutrient (more than carbs and fats). So it's great for staying fuller, longer. Aka, you don't feel like you're starving every day, and you can stick to your diet much easier.
Mistake #5: Not having a smart strength training plan to work synergistically with rapid fat loss.
To avoid having the "skinny-fat" and "deflated" look from losing weight quickly, you have to take your workouts seriously. A smart program for rapid fat loss is designed to 1) retain/build as much muscle and strength as possible and 2) maximize recovery and minimize fatigue. You want to use your diet to lose fat and your strength workouts to retain muscle, which is exactly how I designed the Accelerator Diet Phase and Accelerator Workouts.
Mistake #6: Not having education, support, and professional guidance to guide you to the finish line.
Rapid fat loss is not for the weak-hearted, nor something to take lightly. It's even harder to go at it alone. The best approach is to use rapid fat loss to "jumpstart" your long-term weight loss journey and NOT as a sustainable, long-term approach. Use it to build healthier habits and learn new skills to use once the rapid fat loss period is over. Ideally, with a coach or expert guiding you every step of the way. Which brings me to the last, and possibly most important point.
Mistake #7: Not having a plan to transition out of the rapid fat loss period without rebounding.
Rapid fat loss is pointless if you just end up gaining all the weight back. Which, if done incorrectly, you're prone to gain back even more than traditional diets. This isn't to scare you, because it's not irreversible and you won't "damage" your metabolism, but it's the truth. A slower, calculated transition is key. (Again, hopefully with someone who knows their stuff.)
As you could've guessed, this is the part where I pitch my Phoenix Rising Method as the solution ⏤ and, you're right. I created the Rise Method which includes the (Fat Loss Accelerator) Phase with every one of these mistakes in mind so you can safely lose lots of fat, fast.
If you've decided you want to learn more, you can apply here for a free discovery call.
- Coach Kayli
Blog Post by Coach Kayli
NCI Certified Level 1 Nutrition Coach, NASM Certified Personal Trainer, Woman's and Gut Health Specialist
Calculating your calorie needs can be a bit complicated because you have to factor in a number of variables, including your weight, height, age, gender and activity level. But you can get a ballpark estimate using this simple formula:
And of course, the type of calories you’ll be eating matters, too. Focus on plenty of produce and lean protein (fish and seafood, skinless chicken, lean meat, beans, and lentils), and enjoy moderate amounts of whole grains and healthy fats.
Now if you are seeking to build muscle your simple formula would look like this:
You can do this!
. . . Motivation Is NOT one of them. I know that may come as a huge shock to you. Motivation ebbs and flows and relying on it will lead to failure.
Now, let’s get right to the top qualities:
1. Open Mindset – Having an open mindset and the will to learn and try new things is a must. If you keep repeating that same ol' diet and training routine, yet never see lasting results, why do you keep going back to it??
2. Consistency – Consistency trumps perfection any day of the week! I can’t preach this enough to my clients. Strive to build great habits and make small changes you can stick with. Don’t try to eat perfect, I promise you, no one can keep that up. This used to be me. I wanted every little thing to be absolutely perfect and some days were, but when one thing went wrong my whole plan would come crumbling down around me.
3. Pain – Now, let me explain. Everyone who reaches out to me for help is dealing with some form of pain. Some physically but others are struggling with pain, both mentally & emotionally as well, from all the years of trying to change their bodies and failing.
When they come to me they have finally realized the pain of staying the same is worse than the pain of change.
Is your pain great enough to make some sacrifices?
Are you ready to change?
If so, apply for a free, no pressure coaching call and we can evaluate your goals and see if my methods are a fit for you.
I want to teach you where you should put the majority of your focus on if you're wanting to lose fat, build some muscle and just care about your overall health.
This Hierarchy was explained very well to me by my Coach Jeremiah Bair.
I would love to share with you what I have learned from him.
To the right, you will see The Fitness Hierarchy
Ranked from most-least important:
Most people are surprised by this, expecting cardio to be the number one focus, followed by stepping into the gym a few times, and dieting hard for a couple weeks every January.
Now why doesn’t this work?
In order to lose fat we must eat fewer calories than we burn in a day.
It is impossible to erase a poor diet with exercise. Why? Because you just don’t burn very many calories when you exercise (about 5% of your total daily calorie burn comes from exercise.)
Calories in < Calories out = Fat Loss. This is called Energy Balance
Main takeaway here is watching your diet to control the “calories in” side of the energy balance equation is much easier than trying to lose fat by ramping up the “calories out” side of the equation.
This is why Nutrition is the most important factor to pay attention to.
Lifting weights actually burns fewer calories than cardio. But, resistance training has many more benefits for you than cardio:
It’s a huge psychological boost
Find a plan you can see yourself sticking to for a really long time.
Cardio is still helpful. We just don’t want to put the majority of our focus in it.
Cardio has obvious cardiovascular health benefits-it’s good for your heart.
Cardio has carryover to your resistance training. It allows you to recover quicker - both between sets and between training sessions.
Now the biggest issue with cardio is that your body adapts very quickly to it.
When you adapt to something, you become more efficient at it. Becoming efficient means you’re burning less calories.
So take this for example:
If you were to run 1 mile you might burn 100 calories. As the adaptation occurs, the calorie burn decreases. So after running a mile every day this week and burning a 100 calories each time you may end up only burning 90 calories the next week, and then 80 the next. The only way to keep burning 100 calories is to increase the distance and/or time spent running. The problem is - who has the time or desire in our busy lives to keep adding miles forever?
Email me: email@example.com
Have you ever gone to your doctor asking about ways to lose weight, and the first thing they tell you is that they have a “magic” pill that will help you lose weight fast? All you have to do is take this pill and eat 1,200 calories a day.
Does this sound familiar to you?
Unfortunately, this seems to be common practice. Did you know that on average, U.S. medical schools only offer on average 2.8 hours of instruction on obesity, nutrition and physical activity counseling.
That sure doesn’t seem like much time dedicated to nutrition to me, but then again, this isn’t normally why we see our family doctors. They are great at many other things but sustainable fat loss isn’t one of them.
I have been training and coaching for almost 5 years now and I have had many clients seek my help after having gone through extreme dieting and pills prescribed by their doctor. They dropped a lot of weight fast, but then gained it all back and then some after stopping the pills!
For 99% of people, 1,200 calories is way too little to be consuming. Our bodies need that much energy intake just for basic needs, things like breathing and to operate our internal organs. Our bodies are extremely capable of adapting though. This is what has kept us alive for so long. We have survived countless famines throughout history. We used to be hunters/gatherers and only ate when we made a kill or forged and found food. There would be a feast followed by many days of not eating while searching for more food. How did we survive??? We survived because of our bodies ability to adapt. Our metabolisms would “learn” how to run off lower calories and would “slow” down our metabolisms. Meaning we could survive off less food and when we did find food again it would store it as body fat in case of emergencies when there would be no food.
Nowadays we rarely have a problem finding food, in fact, we have the complete opposite problem. You can find something to eat on every street corner! We are constantly tempted.
Okay, back to why eating 1,200 calories is “wrecking” your metabolism. As described above, our bodies don’t understand that you want to look better in the mirror or drop a couple pant sizes. Your body only knows it isn't receiving enough nutrition to survive long term. So it does its job and lowers your metabolism to keep you alive! I’d say a thanks is in order haha. So rather quickly after eating only 1,200 calories you will notice you are no longer losing weight like you were in the beginning. At first it just slows, then weight loss all together stops. You’ll notice other signs too: constant hunger, cravings, moodiness, poor sleep, skin issues, and women can lose their cycle. This is our body's way of saying, “Hey! I need some nutrition, damn it!”
So most of us cave. We go back to eating just like we were before and gain every single pound back. We have to find something sustainable to lose weight, because we will have to continue it to keep that weight off.
Enough of the negative. Now, let me share some ways I help my clients lose body fat and keep it off!
First, we want to do as little as possible to elicit the most amount of change. Stay with me here. I want my clients to keep eating as much as possible during their fat loss phase.
During the first week, we will figure out what their maintenance calories are (what they need to eat to stay at their current weight.) Once we find this number, we will lower their intake by just 250-500 calories max. You will start to see fat loss from this amount. A sustainable fat loss rate is around 1-2 pounds per week. If you are losing more than 2 pounds per week you are not eating enough to keep your metabolism in a healthy place. After a few weeks, their calories may need to be lowered again to keep seeing results but this is why we start high so we have room to make adjustments along the way.
Next, I will have them incorporate resistance training 1-2 days per week. Resistance training is proven to build and preserve muscle on our bodies. The more muscle we have on our bodies, the more calories our bodies will burn at rest. It will keep our metabolism “higher.” Plus, I believe you may find yourself to look more aesthetically pleasing with the added muscle.
Last, and definitely not the least. . . We program in periodization. This simply means we don’t want to stay in this fat loss phase for longer than 8-24 weeks depending on their size and how much fat they want/need to lose. There needs to be times where you go back to eating at maintenance again or even in a surplus to get your body back to a healthier place. Yes, you may put a few pounds back on but if done properly, it won't be much.
If you try to rush the process and stay in a fat loss phase for a long amount of time you will end up “slowing” down your metabolism and end up gaining all the weight you just lost and sometimes more!
If you still have weight to lose, you can always go back into a fat loss phase after spending some time in a maintenance phase.
The key takeaways here are:
I hope this helps you in your fat loss journey and if you would like even more guidance, I have a few spots opening up soon in my online coaching.
Shoot me a DM and let’s talk about what you are struggling with the most right now and see if I can help.
Kayli is a certified personal trainer and online coach that specializes in fitness, wellness, nutrition, mindset, mobility and everything in between.