You'll never guess which habits make it harder to drop pounds.
Published: April 29, 2014 | By POPSUGAR Fitness
By Jenny Sugar for POPSUGAR Fitness
If you're trying to lose weight, burning calories through exercise is key. But if you're not burning enough, then you won't see the scale budge. If this sounds familiar, keep reading to learn what you might be doing wrong when it comes to burning calories.
1. You Skip Breakfast Before Morning Workouts
Many women work out on an empty stomach to save calories or
to prevent digestive upset. But as it happens, it's one of the worst
things you can do. That's because eating first thing in the
morning not only boosts your metabolism, but it also gives you
energy to get through your solid calorie-burning workout.
Without the proper fuel, you could end up with a headache or a
dizzy spell. You're also less likely to push yourself as hard and
more likely to throw in the towel before your workout is
Since devouring an enormous plate of scrambled eggs, bacon,
pancakes, and hash browns is also a bad idea, fuel your workout
with something small that contains easily digestible carbs and
protein, like these pre-workout snacks.
2. You Sip Post-Workout Smoothies
You just finished a kick-butt workout and burned more than 400
calories, and now you're ready to refuel with a post-workout
snack. But even healthy snacks (like this chocolate-banana-
cashew smoothie) can be high in calories. To prevent taking in
more calories than you just burned, go for one of these 10 low-
calorie post-workout snacks.
Here are some ideas for post-workout snacks, all under 150
1. Four ounces low-fat cottage cheese (82 calories) mixed with three-quarters cup
fresh blueberries (63 calories): 145 calories
2. One extra small apple (53 calories) with one tablespoon peanut butter (94 calories):
3. 20 baby carrots (70 calories) with two tablespoons hummus (70 calories):
4. One organic mozzarella cheese stick (80 calories) and 20 grapes (68 calories):
5. 5.3-ounce container organic vanilla Greek yogurt (110 calories) and 7 cherries
(36 calories): 146 calories.
6. One small banana (89 calories) with eight raw almonds (55 calories): 144 calories.
7. 8 ounces organic low-fat chocolate milk (150 calories) or eight ounces Silk
Chocolate Soymilk (120 calories).
8. Half a Kind Dark Chocolate Nuts and Sea Salt Bar (100 calories) and 8 medium
strawberries (31 calories): 131 calories.
9. Trail mix made with 18 peanuts (97 calories) and a mini box of raisins (45 calories):
10. Three-quarters cup shelled edamame: 150 calories.
3. You Head Straight to the Weight Room
Muscle tissue burns more calories than body fat, so it’s
extremely important to build muscle with strength training if you
want to lose weight. That said, cardio helps burn calories to
decrease your overall body fat and reveal the toned muscles
underneath. Keep up with the strength-training sessions, but be
sure to incorporate heart-pounding cardio into your routine, as
4. Walking Is Your Thing
Taking a brisk walk is a great way to lift your mood and improve
your circulation, but unfortunately, it's not a huge calorie burner.
If weight loss is your goal, you must exercise for at least an hour
a day, and it must be the heart-pumping kind that burns tons of
calories. Jogging, hiking, biking, jumping rope, swimming, or
taking a cardio class at your gym are all excellent options.
5. You Stop at Twice a Week
Go ahead and pat yourself on the back for your two awesome
workouts, but that doesn't mean you can plop yourself on the
couch for the week. Not exercising often enough is one reason
you're not seeing the slimming results you're after. To make that
scale budge, kick it up a notch and exercise five days a week.