Weight loss should not be the goal of an exercise program or the end result for improving one’s eating habits. Weight loss should not be used as a measure of fitness or as a way to measure improvement, because losing weight does not, cannot, improve performance.
Focusing on weight loss is a massive waste of time and effort and sets up negative associations between exercise, eating and health. Without a concern for improving performance or increasing capability, weight loss is meaningless and certainly not a measure of success and certainly not a measure of fitness.
Everywhere you look there are health, fitness and diet experts saying that losing weight is a must in order to live as long and as healthy as possible. Rarely, if ever, is there a mention of any other kind of improvement besides the weight loss.
As a fitness development coach (formerly known as a personal trainer) if I let clients focus on weight loss as a goal I would be in big trouble. Any fitness professional that let’s their clients use weight loss as the main goal of their program must fight a constant, impossible to win battle against nature and the forces of genetics.
People cannot continue to lose weight and they cannot consistently lose weight over a period of time. When the weight stops coming off, a weight loss oriented program is deemed a failure and clients lose interest. However, they can continue to improve performance and work to increase their capability level.
I have clients who in their sixties are continually working on getting better; performing a pull-up, improving balance, learning how to sprint and how to perform complex Olympic-style lifts. If these clients had been focused on weight loss they would have never been able to make the massive progress that has allowed them to achieve quite extraordinary things, which has improved their quality of life in ways that losing a few pounds never could.