Quick question for you; if you only did some of the things you already know how to do to lose weight, do you think you might be able to lose a couple of pounds?

I asked this question at a fat loss seminar recently and 100% of attendees raised their hand. My conclusion? Maybe knowing what to do is only part of the weight loss deal. Actually doing it… well, that’s a completely different ball game.

And that’s what I want to share with you in this article; some of the mistakes that people typically make when trying to lose weight and improve their body and how to get yourself doing the stuff that’ll help you lose weight for good.

Mistake 1: Gathering too much information

Look at the thousands of diet books available. Makes you think the topic of weight loss is a complicated affair. In reality, if we could just do some of the things we already know how to do to lose weight we’d be on the right track.

A few of the diet books from a quick google search

So watch out for the biggest preventor of getting started; information overload. Resist the temptation to go buy a new diet book thinking it’ll hold the secret to your success. It won’t. If anything it’ll just give you a load more stuff to add to your list of things you feel you should do but aren’t. And that’s not good for any one’s self esteem, right?

So my suggestion is to keep it simple. It’s much easier to act on one or two simple ideas that trying to implement a whole new scientific way of eating from the latest diet book. Improve the meal you’re already eating rather than trying a completely new way of eating.

(Need some idea’s on how to improve your current meals for fat loss? check out the 5 questions for making your next meal good for fat loss)

Mistake 2: Waiting for the perfect time to start

Ever said one of these?:

“We’re away over summer, I’ll start when we get back”

“The kids are back at school next week… I’ll start then”

“I’ve got kids open evenings next week, I’ll start when I’ve got all those done”

“I’m moving house next month, I’ll have a whole new kitchen then so it’ll be easier then “

“It’s Christmas, and I like my food too much. I’ll get started in the new year…”

NEWSFLASH – you’ll still be exactly the same person when you get back from holiday, get the kids back to school or any other of the thousand reasons (ahem, excuses) why you’re not starting today.

Maybe you think you need a massive overhaul of your whole lifestyle and diet. Big mistake. Don’t make getting started a bigger event than it needs to be. You could start right now by just by eating 3 slices of pizza instead of 4. Does that sound doable? Would that make it just a little easier to ‘get started?’

Overthrowing a lifetime of habits is no small feat. Getting started should be as simple and minimal change as possible. Get the ball rolling with some quick wins and build from there.

Mistake 3: Doing too much too soon

Ever noticed how people who lose a lot of weight quickly seem to have the same talent for gaining that weight back at the same rate? Well, when we try to change everything at once in a moment of mad motivation we forget that we have a life, family commitments, emotions, moods and whims.

We don’t really change our habits, we just take on someone else’s diet for a month or two. Then our life kicks back in. Motivation drops a little, family commitments take over, a new job saps our time.

And because we’ve not made the changes to our daily habits (like what we buy in the supermarket, what we eat for breakfast, how much exercise we do each day) we can’t sustain the huge changes we made

Mistake 4: Focusing on taking away instead of focusing on adding in

One member explained that her problem was snacking late in the day when energy levels and motivation are at a low point. She wanted secret ninja-like ways to re-program her brain to not want to snack.

I suggested that rather than trying to stop snacking, she focus on making the meals she ate earlier in the day more substantial. More specifically by eat a serving of lean protein (meat, fish, eggs, yogurt, tofu, protein shake etc) at each of the meals she ate before the slump. I went on to explain that protein keeps you fuller for longer – thus reducing the need to snack later in the day.

Here’s ninja brain tactics for you – focus on doing good stuff instead of not doing stuff. Your brain can only focus on one thing at a time. And if all you’re thinking of is ‘don’t snack on that chocolate bar’ what do you think you’ll be thinking of for the next couple of hours?

And as Mike Craig (a member whose lost over 24lbs so far and kept it off) reminded me – when you focus on eating more protein and veggies, you automatically reduce the amount of other stuff (like starchy carbs and sugary snacks) without feeling like you’re missing out.

Sneak up on yourself. Put in so much good stuff that there’s simply no room or desire to put the less desirables in your mouth.


Mistake 5: Going it alone

This is the biggest factor that’ll determine whether you succeed or not. The statistics don’t lie on this one. And self directed weight loss efforts fail 98% of the time.

Perhaps because when left to our own devices as humans we tend to give up just a little too easily. It’s easy to fall at the first hurdle, and if no-one’s watching we might just look around and decide to call it a day.

But when you’ve got a coach behind you, encouraging you, helping guide and direct you you’ll get up and continue on. And without a guide it’s too easy to major in the minor (Think mowing the lawn when your house is on fire).

If this is your house maybe mowing the lawn isn't the priority right now


Chances are there’s a simpler, but more significant area to work on. And having someone help you realise that can be worth it’s weight in gold.

Wrap Up

So if you only do one thing as a result of reading this article – and you want to lose weight and keep it off then get some help. Find a coach or mentor. Someone whose either successfully lost weight themselves, or has a track record of helping people lose weight.

And remember, a good coach will:

  • Control information transfer – not overloading you with a information that’s irrelevant to what you need to do today to get the job done
  • Help you start now rather than falling into the trap of waiting for the perfect time
  • Keep it simple, so you’ll be working on less but doing it for longer.
  • Keep you focused on doing the things that really matter


If you’d like us in your corner to help you lose weight without dieting check out the 12in12 fat loss coaching programme

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