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While working out has a plethora of benefits beyond losing weight, gaining muscle and burning fat, these areas tend to be where most people focus at first.

You may have kicked off 2020 with realistic and timely goals in place. If so, kudos to you! 

You’ve continually made it to the gym, even on the days you didn’t want to go. You feel like you’re doing all of the right things to see results, but you’re not. You feel stuck. Your goals now feel out of reach.

What else could be contributing to this plateau? While we don’t know you, your body or your exact gym regimen, we think you should consider looking into the following (perhaps surprising) factors that could be contributing to your halt in progress. Here are 9 reasons why you might not be seeing results you are looking for at the gym. 

Are You Taking Your Gym Sessions to the Extreme?

Woman performing goblet squat with a kettlebell

It can be tempting to go hard in the gym every day, hoping for fast results. Unfortunately, this is not the key to extended changes. You may see that you got results at first, but the following may be reasons you aren’t continuing to get closer to your goals.

1. Gym Sessions are too Long 

If you are in the gym for over an hour each time, you may need to reassess your programming. More time in the gym does not necessarily equate to faster results. Be mindful of the time you spend at the gym and focus that time wisely. 

2. Overworking Muscles/Not Enough Variety 

You need to vary your workouts and confuse your muscles for the greatest impact (HIIT, strength training, yoga, mobility, etc.). Muscle memory is great, but sometimes it can hinder quick results. 

3. Not Allowing for Rest and Recovery Days 

For change to occur physically, you need to allow your muscles and body to repair and recover from the work you’re putting them through. Sometimes the most impactful change you can make is to remove a workout day or two from your week.

Are You Taking Your Eating Habits to the Extreme

A fork pokes at a small piece of greenery on plate

When tackling a new gym routine, your caloric and nutrient intake is essential for achieving the gains you dream of. Often times, however, your consumption is the root of your troubles. 

Can you relate to any of the following reasons?

4. Under Consuming Calories 

This is the most common problem, especially among females. You must fuel your body appropriately and avoid forcing your body into “starvation mode,” aka fat storage. If you are working out more than usual, you may need to be eating more to sustain the gains.

Related: 5 Meal Prepping Tips (That Make your Waistline and Wallet Happier)

5. Restricting Certain Foods 

Your eating habits are essential for physical transformations in the gym, but if you are too restrictive and not allowing yourself to consume certain foods, food groups or the occasional sweet treat, you may actually be causing more stress internally - which translates to your body and results. 

Are You Trying to do it Alone?

Two women work out together

Figuring out what to do in the gym or at home can feel like a full-time job. It takes planning and understanding of basic physiology and best training practices. If you are flying completely solo, this may be stunting your growth.

6. Lacking Knowledge and Expertise on Programming

Without a basic understanding of how to structure your workouts each session and progress them week to week, you may find yourself stuck with the same set of workouts, at the same weights, and aimlessly moving in circles rather than towards your goals.

7. Lacking Knowledge and Expertise on Expectations

If you are unfamiliar on how to track or monitor your progress and/or your goals are unrealistic, your expectations for change may be out of whack. Don’t hesitate to sign up for one-on-one personal training sessions.

Are You Completely Out Of Touch?

Woman performs a bent over row with kettlebell

This is likely the most overlooked category. You must be able to listen to your body (and mind) and understand what it needs to see dramatic results.

8. Lacking Mindfulness 

If you are out of touch and unwilling to recognize chronic body aches, lack of sleep or even eating/drinking empty calories, you ignore the signs that you need to take a break or change up your routine. 

Related: 3 Ways to Practice Mindfulness

9. You’re Having Zero Fun 

Some days our workouts or healthy meals sound far from fun, but if you continue to do workouts you blatantly hate or eat foods that make you cringe, how do you expect to see changes? 

Your brain and body are connected. If you can find workout equipment or classes you enjoy and ways to make your meals yummy, your body will start to feel this shift - and then you will see the change!


Many small factors could be inhibiting you from seeing results in the gym, but they are likely based on unrealistic expectations or a disconnection between yourself and your gym regimen. 

Practice mindfulness to understand what your body needs more or less of and remember to seek out guidance from professionals if you continue to feel stuck. 

Want a total mind and body transformation? Check out this 8-week Thrive Guide packed with workouts, yoga flows, meditations, recipes and more!

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Posted 
Mar 4, 2020
 in 
Health & Wellness
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