If your diet is failing to produce results, Emmet Rushe has some explanations to help you refocus:

This is 2nd part of a 2 part article on progress and why you might not be seeing any.

The 1st part can be seen on Donegal Daily here and it’s on training.

One question that tends to re-occur time and time again is “Why am I not seeing any progress?”

If you have previously been having results with your nutrition and it has stalled, there can be a few reasons for this to happen.

I am looking solely at nutrition here and you can find the training part on Donegal Daily through the link above.

    This is as basic as it gets.Barring a medical condition, if you are not losing weight you are consuming too many calories.Many diet ‘systems’ tell people that calories do not matter and that their system will show them how to lose weight without counting calories.This system works for the person up until it doesn’t.When the weight loss stalls or stops, the person doesn’t know what to do and won’t think about counting calories because they have been lead to believe that calories don’t matter for weight loss.

    So, the one route that can help the person is seen as useless, when it’s actually what’s needed.

Photo by Monika Grabkowska on Unsplash

    This is one of the reasons you may not be losing weight when your calories are too low.
    It is NOT because the body is in ‘starvation mode’ and is storing fat, that’s a myth.

Starvation mode as it’s called doesn’t exist.

What it comes down to is energy conservation.

Most of your calories are burned through daily activity (NEAT) and only a small amount of these are burned through exercise.

If you drop calories too extremely low levels, your body will slow down everything you do to conserve the little calories you have.

You will be more tired, you won’t move as much as normal, you’ll slouch more, you will be lethargic in training.

All this means your body won’t use as many daily calories as normal, so your daily calorie burn will drop with it.

Less calories + Less calories burned = less weight loss

Photo by Artur Łuczka on Unsplash

    When you are in an extreme calorie deficit, your ability to adhere to it will be extremely difficult.Your chances of binging will be higher, and weekends and evenings will be disaster zones.If you have a 3500-calorie deficit for weight loss per week,
    but you cannot stick to it and eat 4000-calories of a binge over the weekend.You are actually in a 500-calorie surplus at the end of the week.

    You may be killing yourself on an extreme diet from Monday to Friday, but if you are binging Saturday and Sunday, you could end up not losing weight.

    Try and more modest calorie deficit instead so you have more food choices and could adhere to the plan better.

    You want to improve the shape of your body. Build some muscle, get some abs and have a nice physique like some of the people on Instagram you follow.But, you refuse to eat more calories.You need to be in a calorie surplus to build muscle.
    You need to eat more protein, carbs and fat.

    But you can’t get out of the diet mindset and are still afraid that carbs will make you fat.

    Your training is suffering and you can’t make any strength progress and you aren’t seeing any visual changes in the mirror.

    You need to be in a modest surplus to begin with (200-300 calories above maintenance calories)
    You should be eating 1g of protein per pound of bodyweight.
    15-35% of your calories should be fat
    Carbs can make up the rest to fuel your training and your muscles.

    Photo by Kendal James on Unsplash

    If you have been on every diet under the sun and you have been on a diet for as long as you can remember, it is time to STOP!If a ‘diet’ was going to work, it would have worked by now.The reason you cannot lose weight isn’t because of the diet, it is because of your relationship with food and how you feel about yourself.

Photo Dan Gold Unsplash

Until you manage these and get to a place where you don’t allow food to dictate your moods and self-worth, it will be very difficult to succeed.

Going on another diet won’t do it.

Building better habits with food and the types of food you eat will.

Allowing yourself to fail without self-punishment will.

Changing your mindset to one that supports and loves you will.


If you aren’t seeing results with your nutrition, try addressing one or more of the points above.
Then check out my article on Donegal daily from Saturday for tips on training for progress.

DD Fitness: 5 reasons why you aren’t seeing enough progress in the gym