Happy Friday! I hope you are having an awesome day!
Today I wanted to talk to you all about how you may be under eating and what are some signs and triggers that you may want to look out for. I see a lot of clients that I work with, when they start with me they almost immediately will say, “Sarah, this is way too much food. I can’t eat this much.” Once they get in the habit of it though, then they realize, “I was totally under eating.” A very common misconception is that when you start to diet, you immediately should slash calories. I’ve been guilty of this to before I began learning more about nutrition and training. The question to ask yourself is are you truly eating enough to facilitate weight loss and fuel your workouts?
I want to share with you three signs that you can look for to see if you are under eating. First, what may be surprising to a lot of people is that I would say ninety percent of the women I work with grossly under ate when I took them on as clients. They weren’t bingers and they weren’t over eaters, they just didn’t know how much fuel they needed for their bodies and their workouts. They would track their food intake for a couple of days and report back, “I only ate nine hundred calories on Tuesday,” or even a thousand or twelve hundred. When they see it in black and white and stop and think about it, they realize that they often didn’t stop in the middle of the day to eat a meal. I can help you with getting back those calories in without messing up your metabolism.
With not eating enough, what happens is your body goes into conservation mode and will hold onto any energy that it takes in, in the form of calories. Going into conservation mode slows down your metabolism which means you may not see those scale changes that you would like or changes in your measurements. If you are grinding it out, doing your workouts and eating the way you’re supposed to and not seeing changes on the scale, taking a look at your calorie intake should be the first thing you do. You can ask any of the women I work with and they will tell you that I push them to eat more food. Be prepared because for the first couple of days, the scale might tick up for a little bit but then it levels out and then we start to see the weight decrease because we’re finally fueling those workouts. We are finally giving them enough calories to facilitate that weight loss and get a good dynamic going. When we drastically cut calories to lose weight, it affects our hormones in the long term. It affects our thyroid and cortisol, stress hormones and it can lead to an emotional state that keeps our body weight up. If your weight hasn’t budged in two to three weeks and you are eating right and doing your workouts, think about increasing your calories even if it’s just by a hundred or two hundred calories.
The second thing to look out for is if your workouts routinely suck. If you are tired before you even start or all of your workouts are taxing to you, even a recovery workout. If you don’t look forward to them and you feel like you don’t want to do it and everything is heavy, that is another sign that you may be under eating. If you wait too long before you start your workout after a meal, your metabolism is already going and thinking, “Okay, it’s time now to eat again.” You start working out and your body goes, “Nope. Time to burn some calories.” Again, your body is then wanting to save that energy and not let you have a good workout or get your metabolism firing.
The third thing and this is going to sound blatantly obvious but honestly, some people don’t know, is if you are constantly hungry. You should not feel constantly hungry. I would say on average, most pepole are hungry between the three or four hour mark between meals. If you practice intermittent fasting, that’s a whole other thing but for most people, three to four hours is a good general rule.
If you finish a meal and then within thirty minutes of that, you are starving then that may be an indication that you are under eating or that maybe that particular meal was too small calorie wise.
Maybe you can increase those calories in that particular meal to help you get some calories back in in a smaller way as opposed to adding a whole other meal in. Hunger means that your body is sending you a signal. There are hormones at play that help our bodies tell our brains that it’s time to eat and so not eating enough, those hormones will not shut up. They are going to continue to stay active, continue to prompt your brain to ask for more food.
I really encourage you, even if you don’t count calories or macros, to write down for two to three days this week what you eat on a daily basis and gauge how you feel with that intake. Write it down and check how many calories it equates to on a daily basis and I think you will be pretty surprised by you finding that you are probably not eating enough to fuel your workouts and see weight loss results.
Remember, three signs that you aren’t eating enough are, one, your weight hasn’t budged in two to three weeks and you are doing your workouts and eat right. Two, your workouts suck and you are tired and just not feeling it constantly and third, if you are constantly hungry. If you have any of those symptoms, look into increasing your calories per meal if possible. If you want to learn how to eat more effectively for workouts and for weight loss, I would love for you to join my live training on Tuesday, October 18th. It’s going to be at 8pm central time and I’m going to share with you how you can finally master your macros and make all of this stuff easier for you.
Register for your FREE Master Your Macros Training on Tuesday, October 18th HERE.