I’m sure you’ve heard or possibly even tried the theory of eating less and working out more…so here’s the question, how did that end up for you?
Probably not so great right?
Maybe you lost a little weight but got so burned out on not eating enough that you returned to your old eating ways.
Or maybe even binged because you had been depriving yourself and the weight came back and maybe even increased.
Doesn’t work out so well.
And if you think you can eat what you like and work off your diet, I’m here to tell you, you’re mistaken.
Instead of simply working off enough calories, there are a number of other factors going on in your body that prevent you from burning off the fat.
*Ready to get your body into fat-burning mode? Download our fat-burning guide here.*
Eating less but still not losing weight
It would make sense that if you eat less and workout more, you would lose weight when you go by the numbers alone, right? This is what we are told over and over again.
Calories in vs calories out….but our bodies aren’t math equations. We are way more complex than that with muscle, fat, bone density, metabolism and hormones involved, not to mention environmental factors and stressors.
Here are 8 reasons why the eat less work out more myth is actually hurting you instead of helping you.
Let’s take apart the eat less workout more myth and take a look at what really happens.
1. Starvation mode
It’s a real thing.
When you eat less, your body holds onto everything it has. It begins to use stored energy instead of fat to burn because your brain begins to go into famine mode.
When your body isn’t sure when you will feed it again or how much, it will hold everything for as long as possible. This is why when you go on low cal diets, you typically yo-yo and go back to gaining weight and more fat in the end.
2. Slower metabolism
Your metabolism slows down when you aren’t fueling it enough.
Your metabolism doesn’t start running high again just because you start eating more food.
Once you no longer live in that calorie deficit day in and day out, your metabolism stays halted and you gain fat back quickly.
You want your metabolism to stay high all the time and for that to happen you need to fuel it properly.
3. Food Obsession
Depriving yourself for weeks and months of calories, macros, and micronutrients will do a number on you psychologically.
You start to focus on all the food you aren’t supposed to have and then start to want it more.
The end result is becoming a slave to food which leads to food obsession and often times binging.
4. Lack of fuel
When you don’t fuel your body the way it was made to be fueled, it simply cannot perform optimally.
I’m not even talking about physically, I’m talking about your brain, gut health, hormone regulation, and metabolism.
Placing less focus on your calories and small portion sizes and more emphasis on your macros (protein, fats, and carbs) each day will arm your body with the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals to signal to your body that it is safe and OK to start burning fat.
Bottom line is that we need macros and nutrients in general to lose fat.
If you are working out to hopefully burn off that extra vacation food or your overindulging weekend, it’s time to change your mindset.
Overtraining leads to a surge in the stress hormone cortisol, which wreaks havoc on your metabolism, immune system, and mood.
Studies show that elevated cortisol levels cause your body to break down muscle and store more body fat around your midsection…so those long, super intense workouts, are actually counterproductive to burning fat.
Working out super intense 6-7 days a week will only lead to burnout and injuries, especially as you age.
You will not be able to continually work out hard 6-7 days a week and will get burned out from your workouts.
It is not sustainable.
You also have more chances to get hurt and if you try to work out past those injuries, it makes it harder for your body to recover.
Working out smarter and effectively, for 30 minutes, doing the right exercises will do more for you than trying to kill it in the gym every day of the week.
7. Increased stress
When you undereat and overtrain, your stress hormone cortisol stays high.
It was meant to come down, but when it doesn’t, it’s similar to starvation mode, in that it will hold on to your fat stores.
It’s ok and natural even for our cortisol to raise during our workouts, but it needs to come back down again.
Not to mention when you are stressed, you typically aren’t sleeping 8 hours at night which leads to excess fat.
8. Hormone imbalances
Living in a constant state of stress throws hormones out of whack which as an aging woman, we certainly don’t want to mess around with.
The best thing we can do is fuel our bodies with the macro and micronutrients it needs plus learn how to do smart workouts.
This will keep our body from being constantly stressed or going into starvation mode and throwing all of our other systems into chaos.
Eating less and working out more isn’t the answer for weight-loss.
Unfortunately, the equation of calories in/calories out just doesn’t work even though we want it to.
It’s simple but our bodies are anything but simple. In order for our bodies to work correctly, we need to fuel them correctly.
To be at our optimum health, we have to do the right things for our body. This means eating our macros, getting plenty of rest, and working out the smart way, not killing ourselves in the gym.
Burn Fat and Feast goes into much greater detail about macros, how much you need on a daily basis, and the right workouts to do to see the biggest results.
Make sure you grab our Fat-Burning Guide to help you lose fat the right way.Download Now!
I was on Facebook Live talking about the eating less/ working out more myth. Check it out:
Now that you know eating less and workout more isn’t the path you want to take to losing fat (because it won’t work long-term), what is one thing can you can do to start to better your health?