5 Common Weight Loss Mistakes

Making mistakes during your weight loss journey is as inevitable as the sun rising in the morning.

But you’re reading the right article. We will teach you how to identify these mistakes and take corrective action where possible. 

We’ll include real-life situations and examples, with plenty of actionable advice.

Let’s begin:

1. Expecting quick results

One of the most common mistakes people make is expecting quick results. So, they take what they imagine as “action”.

Don’t get me wrong; there’s nothing intrinsically bad with taking action if you’re doing it smartly.

But most people buy expensive gym memberships and eat just a salad leaf for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Working towards quick results will only push you back because it’s not sustainable.

Also, you’ve built massive expectations in your head that are not based on reality. And that can set you to failure, which, in turn, leads to disappointment and fear of trying.

So, instead of crash dieting and working out every day in the gym, maybe take a more sustainable approach that works for you.

Simply increasing your daily steps by 2000 and decreasing your caloric intake by 200 calories per day is enough to help you lose weight.

2. Crash dieting

I’ve already mentioned crash dieting in the previous section, but it’s essential to remember that fad diets are a bane for weight loss.

Sure, they can help you get rid of 10 pounds fast before a wedding or a holiday.


  • They give you a distorted view of weight loss.
  • They prevent you from maintaining a healthy weight because you’re always yo-yo-ing.
  • They slow down your metabolism, thus making you more prone to quick weight gain.
  • They decrease your motivation to lose weight in the long run.

Here’s what you can do instead of crash dieting:

  • Eat three meals a day and include healthy snacks in between.
  • Reduce your portion sizes gradually.
  • Increase your daily physical activity levels.
  • Introduce mindful eating techniques like chewing slowly and taking pauses between bites.
  • Invest in healthy, nutrient-dense foods containing adequate proteins and healthy fats.

3. Working out too much

We all know those people who take a strength class at the gym and then jump on the treadmill for another 30 minutes of cardio, followed by a 30-minute swim.

Sure, we know you’re time-challenged and may not have time to work out at the gym daily. Or maybe you do have time to visit your gym daily.

But is working out for hours the best strategy?

Probably not.

Studies show that only 5-10% of your daily calories are burnt through exercise. 

The bulk of that caloric expenditure is down to:

  • The energy your organs consume
  • Your diet
  • Daily activity, from washing your car to fidgeting at the dinner table

But if you work out 2 hours per day, you will get incredibly sore muscles. You may also get cranky, hungry, and exhausted.

And that means you will:

a) Eat more calories, especially from saturated fats and carbs. After all, you may feel entitled to your pizza, doughnuts, and soda after a tough workout.

b) Move less throughout the day. 

And all that will affect the other 90% of your calorie expenditure.

Does that mean you shouldn’t work out?

No. Exercise to train your muscles, strengthen your bones, and be healthier overall. You can also do it because it’s fun.

But you should train smartly, not punish yourself.

4. Not having a strategy

Weight loss needs a good strategy based on your health, age, lifestyle, and goals. You should know what you’ll eat and plan your training to maximize your results.

Besides, having this plan can help you:

  • Stay motivated
  • Keep on track with the right daily workouts and meals
  • Stay accountable
  • Have a good measure of your progress

So, build a well-thought and realistic plan that you can stick with. Don’t just copy someone else’s approach blindly. Find the one that fits your lifestyle and needs best. 

For example, let’s assume you work a sedentary desk job. You also have two small kids and little time to work out.

In that case, try to:

  • Increase your daily steps: Maybe walk for 15 minutes during your lunch break. Get up to talk to your colleagues instead of emailing them. Take five active breaks throughout the day.
  • Involve your kids: If you don’t have time to go to the gym, find something you can do with your toddlers. Run in the park with them, have a family dance night, or use them as human barbells for your home workouts.
  • Prepare more healthy, home-cooked meals:  Meal prepping might be a great solution if you’re always pressed for time. Cook in batches and freeze your meals so you can grab them quickly. And involve your little ones, too – they’ll love it, and you can spend more quality time together.

5. Giving up when you’ve side-tracked

Having a plan is great, but what if you fall off the tracks? Most people give up after they’ve made a mistake or two. 

But here’s the thing: mistakes can be great teachers. They can show you what works and what doesn’t and help you adjust your plan accordingly.

For example, bingeing at night is a sign that you may be eating too little during the day.

Eating too much chocolate and pizza during the weekends means you are restricting yourself too much during the week.

So don’t give up on yourself when things don’t work out straight away. Instead, use the mistakes as learning opportunities to make better decisions in the future.

That’s it; five common weight loss mistakes to avoid. If you work on these, you’ll be well on your way to achieving your fitness goals. 

Good luck! And remember – it takes time and dedication, but with the right strategy, anything is possible. So don’t give up, and stay focused!

Mary D. Brown

Leave a Comment