Many of the questions I received via my Instagram account @dearfitkris when I reached out for topic ideas for this series pertained to weight loss.
I’m not an expert, or even an authority in the fields of weight loss, nutrition, or metabolic processes as I have stated many times throughout my site. But, I have gleaned a fair amount of knowledge about these subjects through my own personal research.
Fat loss in particular is a topic that a lot of women are interested in.
It’s very important to distinguish fat loss from weight loss in general.
Building muscle, incorporating cardio, and proper NUTRITION NUTRITION NUTRITION, are all what is going to help give you the lean look you’re probably striving for when you say you want to look “toned.”
I said nutrition 3 times, in case you didn’t notice, because whenever you are looking to lose fat you need to make sure you are getting enough nutrients.
It’s widely recommended to get 0.8-1 gram of protein per pound of LEAN body mass per day. This is optimal if you’re looking to build muscle, burn fat, and stay satiated.
However, this isn’t universal and depending on your goals that number could vary. It’s important to talk to you doctor, in addition to a nutritionist or health coach whenever you are going to be making changes in your diet.
Changes in your diet have a domino affect.
They influence your hormone levels, your mental health, and most obviously your gut flora. That being said, I especially advise you to discuss any issues you may be having with your healthcare provider before you go ahead and make changes blindly.
If you’re struggling with indigestion, bloating, or general symptoms of IBS and think cutting out a certain food group might help, you should hold off before you have all the facts.
If you eliminate something from your diet completely many allergy tests won’t be able to pick up whether or not you have a sensitivity to that specific food.
Make sure you get the advice of a doctor or dietician who specializes in digestive health. Not all allergy tests are created equal. It also doesn’t hurt to get a blood panel of your hormones and metabolic levels.
Women tend to lose weight at a slower pace than men become of their differing hormone levels. In general, men have faster metabolisms due to their body compositions and their ability to retain muscle more easily than women.
For more information about weight loss for women, and how it differs from weight loss for men, check out the sites I’ve linked below.
But, before you do, stick around to dig a little bit deeper into WHY you want to change your body.
You know those women who have perfectly beautiful and healthy bodies but are always talking about some new diet fad or how they’re trying to get “back in shape?”
Take a step back and ask yourself: Am I one of these women?
Sometimes we get into a habit of constantly trying to change our bodies, whether that be through dieting or exercising, because we think that’s what we should be doing. When in reality, we’re doing more harm than good.
It’s been shown that yo-yo dieting (meaning losing weight, then regaining weight repeatedly) and excessive exercising that goes beyond hitting the gym a couple times a week (I’m talking the kind that gives you hypothalamic amenorrhea) have serious health implications.
That’s not to say you shouldn’t go the gym regularly, prepare more nutrient dense food, or strive to drink more water. Because you absolutely should!
But where weight loss is concerned, ask yourself these few questions before you embark on another potentially treacherous weight loss journey:
Why do I want to lose weight?
Am I in a healthy BMI range?
Are there other things I could do to feel more balanced and healthy that don’t involve the number on the scale? What are they?
Is my consumption of health magazines, pictures of women on the internet, or depictions of women in my favorite TV shows influencing what I believe I should look like?
How do I feel when I look in the mirror?
How do I feel when someone compliments me?
Meditate on these answers and make sure you’re not practicing self-deprecating behaviors by constantly comparing yourself to others and tearing yourself down.
If you do make the decision to change your body, make sure you’re doing it for YOU and not for anyone else.
Don’t forget that when you make the decision to FEEL better, love yourself at any weight, and practice self acceptance daily, weight-loss can be an unintended byproduct of these things.
Check-in with yourself regularly. Be aware of how you’re talking to yourself. Take mental notes on the beliefs you have about your body, who you are, and how these things affect your habits.
Thanks for reading!
Be well xx.