We’ve all fallen for the fads.

The promise of a quick fix to get lean and strong overnight. But real and lasting results take time.

Quick fixes often keep us trapped in a vicious cycle, making it harder and harder to see the results we want.

I say this having made almost all the mistakes myself.

That’s why I want to share the 7 most common mistakes I see my female clients especially making to help you not waste time falling into these traps.

And I want to start with what may be the hardest change in mindset to embrace..

The struggle to take days off when we really want results yesterday…

The struggle to give ourselves permission to take it easy at times…

But this is a HUGE mistake that will sabotage your results every single time…

Mistake #1: Under recovering.

You can only train as hard as you can recover from.

End of story.

But so often we label this as “over training” instead of under recovering. 

And I feel this leads to us actually sabotaging our own success.

I’ve even seen a trend recently pushing people away from training hard. 

A fear of cortisol levels rising because of working out intensely.

But exercise is a GOOD stressor. 

It’s a stressor you not only want but NEED if you want to build muscle, be stronger and ultimately look leaner. 

We WANT to challenge ourselves with intensity and loads.

But we can only do so in a way that actually allows us to push if our recovery is on point. 

So we do need to cycle the intensity of our training.

We do need to vary how muscles are worked and even what muscles are targeted in sessions. 

However, too often we only focus on the workouts, not all that we are doing, or not doing, between our sessions to help ourselves recover.

Instead of not pushing in your training, figure out ways you can go at that 100% intensity and truly maximize each session through how you’re fueling and recovering between workouts. 

Focus on that quality of your sleep with a bedtime routine to wind down.

Focus on hydrating properly so your muscles can get the nutrients they need and repair. 

And focus on making sure you aren’t depriving your muscles of the fuel they need to repair and rebuild.

Which is the next mistake I wanted to cover as it is very easy to fall for those diets with labels that lead to us not properly fueling to see results….

But jumping on that restrictive diet with a label train leads to us not only NOT truly seeing the body recomp we want happen, but ultimately sabotages our long-term success.

This mistake is what can lead to us feeling like our metabolism is broken and that we just have to accept the middle age spread.

We need to stop jumping into these diet programs that just completely restrict whole macros or food groups. 

While yes, based on health concerns or activity level or goals, we may adjust our macros or the types of foods we include to move and feel our best…

We need to stop just DEMONIZING foods or macros because they may not be right for someone else. 

Because this can lead to us not only sabotaging our fat loss or muscle building results,

but also lead to us creating hormonal imbalances that can impact our health.

Thyroid issues, adrenal fatigue, constant inflammation, low energy…

We blame our training too often for some of these things or even our genetics.

But often it is our diet. 

We’ve cut out micronutrient diversity by eliminating whole foods groups.

Or we’ve even restricted a macro to the extent our body can’t handle based on our goals and activity level. 

If you’re super active and want to lose fat and gain muscle?

Cutting your carbs super low even if you’ve heard it is better for a women in menopause may sabotage your results. 

It may lead to you losing muscle and actually gaining fat as you see your thyroid health impacted and your energy and motivation to train severely decline.

Fear fats will make you fat?

That fear of healthy fats may be why you’re seeing chronic inflammation and constantly sore and not recovering from your sessions as well as you’d like. H

So stop just demonizing foods and realize that each of us may need different dietary preferences or macros to match our needs and goals even as our bodies change over time!

But eat to FUEL your body as you push hard in those sessions to see results and ultimately improve not only your functional strength but your cardiovascular conditioning. 

This brings me to mistake number 3, which I find we often make because we’ve been scared away from pushing “too hard” in our training, especially as we get older. 

But we NEED to challenge ourselves if we want to create change, ESPECIALLY the older we get and even as we go through menopause….

Our body doesn’t respond the same way it used to when we were younger.

That doesn’t mean we’re doomed. Or that we can’t build our leanest, strongest body ever. 

It just means we can’t fear intensity in our training.

So stop skipping those SPRINTS! 

Honestly this is a huge mistake not including sprint work often enough.

This doesn’t mean you should now start to do a bazillion sprints daily…

There is such a thing as too much of even a good thing.

But sprint work, and different sprint intervals should be included weekly. 

So much love is given to Zone 2 training, and enough can’t be said about building that aerobic foundation…

But too often we fall in love with one form of training, one piece of equipment, one move and neglect other essential components that would make our systems more successful.

You want that diversity in your programming over the course of the week. 

So include that short and killer sprint work!

Note I said SHORT and killer. Just because you have an hour to train doesn’t mean you always need to use it! 

Too often we just focus on training longer, on doing more, over designing with a purpose.

Sprint work shouldn’t be stretched out into a long workout.

It’s generally a quick session, and often no longer than 30 minutes at LONGEST. 

And honestly, the things that should impact the length of your sessions most aren’t even the length of the sprints themselves, but the rest between or the prehab work you include before and after!

Sprints really should be between 8-20 seconds, 30 seconds at longest. 

Depending on what you’re working on you may do a work to rest set up of 2:1 up to 1:12 work to rest as intervals based on how much you’re working on true explosive speed.

And this variety of options can be used to your advantage.

Two amazing sprint protocols for women that are focused on body recomp while improving their cardiovascular health are…

20 seconds on, 10 seconds off or even 20 seconds on, 40 seconds off for 4-8 rounds. 

The different work to rest intervals will help you target different energy systems over the week!

However, going back again to the biggest mistake I see people making, under recovering…

The harder you train, the more you need to make sure you’re truly getting your body what it needs. 

So don’t make the mistake of NOT EATING ENOUGH to lose fat and gain muscle! 

I know this was a mistake I made multiple times over the years.

Eating less to try to see faster results on the scale is a hard mindset to shift.

But as much as a calorie deficit is needed to lose fat, eating less will NOT yield better results faster and is often why we get stuck on that yo-yo dieting cycle never actually seeing the definition we want. 

It’s what leads to metabolic adaptations and hormonal imbalances, especially as we restrict whole food groups or macronutrients.

If you want to see your hard work in the gym paying off, you need to fuel well. 

And often that means eating more to ultimately lose fat and look leaner!

When you want to lose fat, you want to create a very small calorie deficit of only 100-200 calories off of what you’re eating to maintain your weight. 

More than that and you do cause your body to find ways to conserve energy.

Our workouts can suffer, we can stop fidgeting or moving as much naturally. 

Our body will even adjust other bodily processes to account for the reduction in energy coming in.

That’s why we don’t want to cut calories too low.

And if we’re training hard, we need to make sure we’re getting our body the fuel it needs to repair and rebuild. 

Muscle requires more energy to be maintained.

So if you want to retain your lean muscle and even build more, you’ve got to eat enough to support the process to do that. 

And the more muscle you then keep on, the more you then may find your calorie requirements increasing.

This is why you want to be conscious not to just cut your calories lower and lower, even if you do hit a weight loss plateau. 

It’s also why you need to focus not just on calories but also on this essential macro everyone always wants to avoid prioritizing…


This is a big mistake we often make…Not prioritizing protein. 

And while many of us hate being told we should eat more protein…

We should.

Especially if you’re a woman.

Especially if you’re feeling like your age is causing you to struggle to lose fat and gain muscle. 

Especially if you train hard and “eat well” and aren’t seeing the results you want. 

High protein diets are the only ones shown to help you build and retain lean muscle in a deficit and avoid gaining fat in a calorie surplus. 

This gives you more wiggle room on your calorie intake and can help you make sure your hard work in the gym pays off.

And because we don’t use protein as efficiently as we get older, we need to make sure we’re getting bigger portions of protein in every meal to stimulate the same muscle building response.

So as much as you may hate being reminded of this tip, it’s a big mistake if you keep running from making this change in your diet. 

And yes…It can be a challenge to start.

But instead of just saying it isn’t possible to eat more protein,

take one meal and your current protein source and just add one ounce. BOOM! More protein!

And if you’re still thinking “But I’m not a body builder. I don’t want to get bulky.”

Protein won’t make you bulky.

It can actually be key for seeing better fat loss because it raises your metabolic rate, aka requires more calories, to digest protein. 

Which brings me to mistake number 6…and something too often also feared for making us bulky…

Heavy weights!

We need to stop fearing and avoiding low rep, heavy weight lifting. 

And on top of this, which is mistake number 7, we also need to stop turning to doing more cardio when we want to lose fat. 

This prioritization of steady state cardio or even only high rep, lighter load weight work is what can hold us back from truly gaining muscle or even losing fat.

Metabolic health, especially as we get older is key.

And while we may see a higher calorie burn on our fitness trackers from cardio workout, strength workouts may be more essential for our metabolism and body recomp goals. 

Not to mention strength workouts can improve our cardiovascular health.

Workouts really don’t have to be only cardio or strength.

They can work a variety of energy systems while helping us build muscle. 

But we can’t fear those heavy weights that challenge us for lower rep work. 

Because the more we build that strength, the more we can lift to see better muscle gains and even then improve our strength endurance for any cardio endurance sports we do love!

But heavy weights are what help us truly challenge ourselves so our muscles are forced to repair and rebuild stronger.

And no, your age isn’t an excuse to skip those heavy weights. You honestly need them even more.

Use it or lose it!

We need to keep pushing ourselves to optimize our results. 

So if you’ve been struggling to see the results you want, assess if you’re making one of these mistakes and focus on even a small habit adjustment you can make this week to start correcting your course!

Dial in your diet and your workouts to build your leanest, strongest body at any and every age!

If you’re looking for that custom program and coaching to help, check out my 1:1 Private Coaching.

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