3 Reasons Why You Can’t Get Lean

3 Reasons Why You Can’t Get Lean

So you’ve been consistent with your workouts and tried to watch your calories, but you still aren’t seeing results. It seems like you’re doing everything right, so what’s the holdup? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. In fact, this used to be us! We were so frustrated putting in so time and effort into our training but not seeing the scale budge or any significant change to our body composition. Why were our muscles hiding under a squishy layer? If you’re working out 5 times a week then you should look and feel good naked right?!

Achieving a lean body composition requires hard work and dedication in many areas of your life. Focusing on your fitness alone is unlikely to get you the results you’re looking for. Honestly, there may be a variety of reasons why you haven’t gotten the results you want. But aside from a medical condition, chronic stress, or long-term sleep deprivation, if you’re putting in effort at the gym, then here’s a few reasons why you’re probably not seeing results.

1. Using Exercise As An Excuse

I’m sure most of us are guilty of this. After all, if you’ve just done a super intense workout it makes sense that you deserve that chocolate cake, right? Well that’s not really the case. Our brains often work on a rewards based system, and that’s okay!

But rewarding yourself with food can become a pretty dangerous habit. Think about it, if you’ve run three miles then splurge on an unhealthy meal, you are essentially doing all that hard work for nothing! So stop using exercise as an excuse to eat poorly.

2. Not Tracking Your Food

This is another major mistake I see people make time and time again. It’s easy to claim that you’re eating healthy, but how can you know for sure if you aren’t tracking what you eat? Without tracking, there’s really no way to tell whether you’ve been eating the right amount of food.

If you counted calories before didn’t gain much progress, don’t worry you’re not alone. Counting your macros is a much more effective way to ensure results as you’re giving your body the right balance of carbohydrates, fat, and protein. But if you don’t stay consistent, then it doesn’t really mean much. Again, consistency is key, so if you’re tracking during the week, but on the weekends you drop the ball, then you aren’t going to get the results you want.

If you’re tracking your macros but not seeing any changes, then it’s possible that you’re following the wrong balance of macronutrients. If you set up your macros by yourself, overestimating your TDEE (Total Daily Energy Expenditure) is one of the most common mistakes out there.

3. Valuing Weight Over Other Results

I know how frustrating it can be when you’re working hard and the scale doesn’t budge. But at the end of the day, the scale can only account for one thing – you’re weight. This includes your bones, muscles, organs as well as what you had to eat or drink before you stepped on the scale. There are plenty other factors that influence the scale too.

The scale can’t account for feeling stronger, faster, more energized, and looking better. It can’t even measure how much fat you’ve lost, or how much muscle you’ve gained! So don’t get too caught up with the number on the scale. Instead, make sure you’re keeping track of other metrics. Use progress pictures, girth measurements and keep track of your performance at the gym.

The Takeaway

So no it’s not your thyroid, and you’re not some medical mystery worthy of a diagnosis from House. I know people on instagram with 100k followers make getting lean look easy but the truth is, it’s not. It takes training with intensity and a serious commitment to your nutrition. We would honestly choose to give up exercise if we had to choose what was more important between that and focusing on our nutrition, because we know that nutrition provides the best results for eliciting weight loss and body composition change. 


The single most important aspect of achieving long-term success is consistency, but doing that on your own isn’t always easy! That’s why we developed a way to keep you consistent, motivated and accountable, whatever life throws your way. Together, Jason and I have tailored a unique and inspiring program to accelerate you towards achieving your goals. The Own Your Eating Lifestyle Membership will transform you into the strongest, fittest and healthiest version of you, you’ve ever been.

To learn more about flexible eating and the nutrition principles we teach people at Own Your Eating, contact us or visit our FAQ page for any questions!

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