Lose Weight By Avoiding These 4 BIG Workout Mistakes

By: Yuri Elkaim, BPHE, CK, RHN

If you’re like the hundreds of millions of people who want (and need) to lose weight and having been working out without results, then this article might be of interest to you.

I’d like to highlight the 4 biggest weight loss workout mistakes that I see on a daily basis. These observations come from over 12 years in the fitness industry and having helped 1000s of clients lose weight and get in great shape.

1. Too much cardio

Most people (especially women) spend far too much time on the cardio machines. I think that they believe that doing 45-60 minutes of cardio is actually going to help them lose weight. After all, the machine usually tells you that you may have burned anywhere from 500-1000 calories. Not bad. Not really. Long, slow cardio is not the ticket to losing weight in the long run. It actually compromises your lean muscle mass, which is truly the most important factor to burning calories throughout the day (not just during your workout).

2. Turn off the damn TV!

One thing that really annoys is that it seems that every single gym in the world now has TVs covering every square foot of space! You can’t get away from them. On the walls, on the machines, in the locker rooms.

Ok, so what’s my beef with TV? Well, aside from being a waste of time, it detracts from the intensity of your workouts. The same goes for reading magazines or books during workouts. Let’s get real – if you want to read go to the library or a café. If you want to workout, then workout. Don’t distract yourself with non-sense that takes away your focus. Where focus goes, energy flows, and results show!

3. Easy does it…NOT!

This ties in nicely the previous point. If you’re going to workout, then please commit to spending 30-45 minutes to kicking your butt. If you want to lose weight, then you need to workout at an intensity that is going to make you sweat. An intensity that is going to make you “huff an puff”. You should be so disgustingly sweaty when you finish so that leaving the gym without a shower would embarrass you.

So, while people are coasting through their workouts without breaking a sweat, you need to go against the flow. After all, not everyone achieves their fitness and weight loss goals. There’s a reason for it. But now you know a little bit than they do.

4. Light weights, high reps

The belief that many people have is that to lose weight or to tone up, they need to lift very light weights for a lot of reps. What?!

Where on earth did that ever come from? Oh, I think I know. The aerobics craze in the 1980s, which is still very prevalent today as is seen in the vast number of “cardio pump” classes in most health clubs.

If you go to these classes, then that’s fine. It’s definitely better than sitting on the couch. But please remember that doing 50 squats with a 10 lb bar over your back is not doing anything for your muscles or your ability to lose weight. It’s probably even making you weaker.

Here’s what you need to do instead…

Choose a weight that you can only lift 6-8 times. That’s it? Yup! By selecting a heavier weight, you automatically increase the intensity of your workout. You (and your muscles) will find it much more challenging and that’s what you want.

Ladies don’t worry – you won’t be building big bulky muscles. You don’t have enough testosterone do so. However, you will shed fat and you will notice significant muscle definition appear where you once thought impossible to do so.

Men – you will gain a bit of size but you will definitely notice an increase in strength. You too will lose weight fairly easily and keep it off because with more muscle comes more calories burned throughout the day.

There you have it. The 4 workout mistakes that I notice on a daily basis that you need to avoid if you want to lose weight. Avoid them and you will reap your rewards.


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