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17 Things That Can Sabotage Weight Loss

17 Things That Can Sabotage Weight Loss


If you’ve ever started a weight loss program and failed to meet your goal, then you know how things can sabotage weight loss. Whether it’s outside forces or even our own head getting in the way, there are many ways our weight loss goal can be thwarted. Some of us feel defeated before we’ve even started! Knowing some of the pitfalls can help you avoid them. Or at least pull yourself back towards your goals if you start to slide off track.

Thank you Jenny Craig for sponsoring this post. Tried other weight loss programs? It’s time for Jenny Craig! Mom Rewritten uses affiliate links which means I may earn a small commission if you purchase through the links in these posts. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more information, see the Privacy Policy and Disclosures tab.

Why We Sabotage Weight Loss

There are so many reasons why we sabotage weight loss. Maybe we think we don’t deserve it? Or we get too comfortable and slip into old habits? Maybe there are outside reasons, like work and travel commitments. Or even friends and family that push you away from your goals. Before you go off the deep end, these tricks and tips will get you back on your program and moving forward towards weight loss.

If you haven’t begun or are just getting back into goal setting, be sure to read these tips before starting a weight loss program.

6 weeks on the Jenny Craig Program with 8 lbs lost. *

*Avg. weight loss 1-2 lbs/week for members following the program

Family and Friends Sabotage Weight Loss

I’ve tried to meet my weight loss goals in the past and failed. Several times I’ve started and stopped on the journey. And my husband has been there, watching me do my workouts and portion my foods. Has he always been 100% supportive? Nah. But that’s not his thing, it’s mine. He loves me and wants me to succeed but he might not always know how to do that. There have been times he’ll ask me to skip my workout because he can’t watch the kids. Or question why I’m eating my program meal when there’s dinner already prepared for the family.

So when I say that’s his thing, it’s because I aim not to let the actions and/or words of those around me to sway me from my goal. There might be times when I have to delay a workout so it’s convenient for my family. Or when I eat an off-program meal because we’ve been invited to someone’s house for dinner. But I don’t let these unintentional (or even intentional) sabotages drive me completely off track or use that as an excuse to give up.

My teenage son is one of my biggest supporters!

If you feel that your family or friends are trying to sabotage weight loss, you can ask why. You can request support and ask for the subtle (and maybe not-so-subtle) sabotage to stop. The heart-to-heart conversation about the reasoning behind your weight loss goals might help them understand how to better support you.

Seek those that support your goals and tune out the rest. The Jenny Craig personal support has been a cornerstone of the program for over 35 years. Whether in the center, over the phone, through video chat or the 24/7 access through the app, there’s always someone there to help and discuss. It’s full support on your journey that you might not be getting at home.

Skipping Meals and Snacks

Falling below your proper daily calorie count can prevent weight loss. Your body will essentially go into “starvation mode”, holding on to calories and halting weight loss. During your 12-hour nutrition period, be sure to divide up your meals and snacks so you’re eating every 2.5 to 3 hours. 

Metabolism is Lagging

Exercise at least 5 times a week, 30 minutes a day is the standard for better health. Yes, walking is good. It’s definitely better than not exercising at all. But don’t neglect to build lean muscle, which is going to burn more calories even while resting. Pick up the weights and you’ll see better results. You’ll not only sculpt your body, but you’ll be improving your resting metabolism. 

Too Much of a Good Thing

Avocados, almonds and carrots are good for you, right? But even too much of a good thing can sabotage weight loss. For instance the serving size of these dry roasted almonds is 1/4 cup. Not too many almonds but they still pack a 180 calorie punch with 16 grams of fat! If you’re still hungry, refer to the Fresh & Free items in the back of your Jenny Craig Getting Started Guide. These non-starchy vegetables and sugar-free sweets can fill you up without impeding upon your program.

Comparing Our Journey to Another

My body is different from your body. And the way that my body reacts to a weight loss program is going to be different than how your body reacts. Just knowing this fact can go a long way. It’s when we start comparing ourselves to others that we fall down the hole of self-doubt. Knowing how your body processes food can set up what will work best for you in regards to a meal plan. And that leads into genetics.

Woman standing in kitchen with plate of food, with text overlay "17 things that can sabotage weight loss"

Your Genetics Play a Huge Part of Weight Loss

Every body needs carbohydrates, fats and proteins. These macronutrients are required on a healthy eating plan. But while everyone needs them, not everyone processes them in the same way. On the Jenny Craig weight loss program, I’ve had the chance to try the DNA Decoder Plan. This scientifically proven program is the best kick start to beginning the Jenny Craig program. Once my DNA results arrived, I was able to know more about how my body processes food, responds to exercise, my personal eating behaviors and more. It was an eye-opener for sure! 

So yes, your genetics absolutely play a role in your weight loss. But they aren’t a reason to quit or to not try and reach your goals. Knowledge is power, especially when the DNA evidence is laid out for you in regards to strengths and potential weaknesses.

Week 6 on the Jenny Craig weight loss program

Details of the Jenny Craig DNA Decoder Plan

What is the Jenny Craig DNA Decoder Plan?

The Jenny Craig DNA Decoder Plan is a valuable tool that helps you to better understand how your own body will work on your weight loss journey. These are the 15 genetic markers that you’ll receive details about:

  • How your body processes carbohydrates
  • How your body processes fats
  • How your body processes protein
  • Your tendency to overeat
  • Your impulse to crave high-calorie foods
  • Your tendency to crave sweet foods
  • Your satisfaction level
  • Natural motivation to exercise
  • How your body responds to cardiovascular exercise
  • How your body responds to strength training exercise
  • Sleep quality
  • Your resting metabolic rate
  • Your tendency to regain weight
  • Overweight risk
  • Your body’s weight loss efficiency

Jenny Craig DNA Decoder results

How can I use the Jenny Craig DNA Decoder Plan towards more successful weight loss?

Knowing certain elements about your body can help you understand your personal strengths and weaknesses in regards to weight loss. Analyzing your DNA results truly personalizes the plan for you. Each member will also have access to a private Facebook group just for those who have used the DNA Decoder.

How does the DNA Decoder work?

Your DNA is obtained with a few super-simple mouth swabs. You’ll mail them off and in about 10 days, receive your results to discuss with your consultant. All samples are anonymous and destroyed after analysis. Your consultant will talk to you about the 15 genetic markers and tailor your meal plan to work best for you, based on the results. Keep reading this post for more details, including what I discovered about my results!

Jenny Craig DNA Decoder sample swab return envelope

Returning my DNA sample

BLT – “Bites, Licks and Tastes”

Something I learned in my Jenny Craig DNA Decoder results is that my satisfaction level is below average. The description explains that my “hunger and appetite-regulating hormones…may not work as efficiently to signal feelings of fullness, and…less likely to feel satisfied following a meal”. This was a huge eye-opener to me and explained why (even after eating a big lunch), I tend to seek out something sweet (my tendency to crave sweet foods is above average). 

Those BLT – “Bites, Licks and Tastes” that I’m having throughout the day to fill the urge still add up calorie-wise. Fortunately my DNA Decoder results offer Pro Tips on how to use this scientific research to your benefit. Following the meal plan and spacing out my meals and snacks to keep blood sugar levels in check will keep me on track. Now that I know this is a genetic issue for me, I’m finding ways to distract myself from needing those extra nibbles. Drinking water, busying myself with a household chore, staying out of the kitchen or having a conversation pulls me away from craving those extra bites.

Jenny Craig bagged snacks

A variety of my Jenny Craig snacks ready to go!


As a travel blogger, this has obviously been an issue for me. Several days away from home, restaurant dining and busy itineraries that prevent regular exercise can take a hit to my weight loss journey. There are some ways to avoid letting travel sabotage weight loss. 

  • Portion control. Restaurant portions are huge. Try to share when you can, order off the kid’s menu or order a dish that you can take leftovers to-go.
  • Eat something similar to what’s on your menu program for the day.
  • Say no thank you. There’s no reason you have to indulge in all the things. It’s okay to pass or just to take a taste. When you see me in photos with foods at the theme parks, I’m usually only taking a small bite and then passing it to the kids!
  • Pack your Jenny Craig snacks, fruit and veggies.

Removed skin from chicken, ate small portions & shared this platter.

Not Breaking Old Patterns

One of my old patterns was to indulge after everyone had gone to bed. It might have been a few scoops of ice cream or some chocolate. Not only was the food unhealthy, I was also eating late at night, often right before I laid down in bed. The challenge is to replace unhealthy habits with new ones. Tracking my nutrition period on the Jenny Craig app and only eating within a 12 hour window has helped me break my old pattern of late night eating.

Your Jenny Craig DNA Decoder results can supply insight into unhealthy patterns. If your sleep quality is below average you might aim to head for bed earlier. If you see that your body response to cardio exercise is enhanced, you may want to incorporate these exercises instead of your usual slow-paced stroll.

Forgetting About Liquid Calories

If a glass of wine, cocktail or a beer is your evening drink of choice, this might be another way you personally sabotage weight loss. It’s easy to forget about sips of juice and milk poured over cereal. Don’t forget that additions to your morning coffee are also boosting calories. 

Cocktails at Disney California Adventure park Lamplight Lounge

Feeling Left Out

You’ve just made a fantastic 3-course dinner for your family. And then you sit down at the table with your much smaller proportioned weight loss program meal. You’re out to eat but need to review the caloric chart of the menu to make sure you’re meeting your dining requirements. I get it, you don’t want to be “that person” on a girl’s night out, sipping water while everyone else drinks cocktails. It’s an unwelcome spotlight sometimes.

There can definitely be a lonely feeling when you’re on a weight loss program and everyone else is just living their life. Those feelings are valid but can still sabotage weight loss if you cave each time. You want to join in but if you think about it, indulging each time is probably why you’re on a weight loss program in the first place! If you’re at home, serve your meal program dish on a regular plate just like the rest of the family. Eating out? Choose a dish similar to your program menu item. Divide the food on your plate into a proper portion size and ask for a to-go box right away. This will help minimize overeating. Ask for your sparkling water in a wine glass.

Being a Slave to the Scale

Before I started the Jenny Craig program, I didn’t own a scale. If I wanted to weigh myself, I needed to do it at my mom’s house on her scale. So I didn’t weigh in very often (maybe once a week). I’d just base my success on how well my clothes fit. Pants too tight? Time to cut back on the portion sizes!

Now that I own a scale I’ve gotten a teensy bit obsessed with weighing in. I’m hopping on several times a day, which hasn’t been so great for my self esteem. I might be feeling awesome about how loose my clothes are fitting! But then I get on the scale and see that I’ve gone up 2 lbs. In fact, my weight on the scale can fluctuate several pounds in a single day, just due to water retention. Your womanly cycle can certainly be a factor.

In the long scheme of things, it’s not the number on the scale that matters. It’s how you feel about your overall health. Now that I know my weight can change over the course of a few hours, I’m feeling less defeated. So long as I’m staying on track the scale number should drop. And if it doesn’t budge, that’s okay too. I’m feeling changes physically and seeing the numbers on the tape measure changing, which is an even better barometer of weight loss!

Photo Credit: Pixabay

Holidays and Special Events

The holiday season can be difficult because there are constant opportunities to sabotage weight loss. There have been several times for me that I’ve had an event scheduled. That meant I wasn’t eating on my program. Keep in mind that with the holidays or a special event, only one meal on one day is off program. This means you have the entire rest of the day to stick to the plan.

Just because you know you’re going to a party that evening isn’t the reason to fall off the wagon all day. It’s just one meal substitution, so stay on track the rest of the day. Do your exercise. Have a plan going in. Stay away from the appetizers. Portion control is key.

I ate one tiny treat and took the rest home to the kids!

My Jenny Craig counselor talked through my Thanksgiving day meal in advance so I could have a plan: One plate with small portions. No seconds. No leftovers. Back on plan the next day. It totally worked for me and that’s exactly what I did. And I still lost weight that week!

Another good thought that my counselor Cheryl brought up. During the holidays and parties shift your focus from food to people. Engage in conversations and make the event about connecting with others, not just stuffing your face.

Not Getting Back on Track

Yesterday was rough and you indulged. Get over it and get back on track. Too often we beat ourselves up over the mistake and continue on that path. But one overindulgence or even a full bad day isn’t enough to sabotage weight loss long term. Review your Jenny Craig DNA Decoder results again and see where you can step it up. Forget the past and move forward, get back on track and stick to the program as soon as possible!

How do you stay motivated to workout when you just don't feel like exercising? I share 9 tips for staying on a routine when you feel lazy!

“Good Enough” Before Reaching Goal

I’ll admit, I’m currently 8 lbs down* in my weight loss goal and there have been times I’ve gotten too comfortable in the journey. The larger-than-I-should-have-eaten dessert during a special event. A sneak of chocolate from my kid’s Halloween candy stash.

When we get too casual and start to slip, it can be easy to develop an “I deserve this _____” (fill-in-the-blank) attitude. As in “I worked out this morning. I deserve this frappacchino”. Or “I’ve been sooooo good, I deserve these cookies”.

You know what you deserve? To meet your weight loss goals. And that’s not going to happen if you treat yourself and figure things are “good enough” before you’ve met your goal. Remind yourself why you started in the first place. Then start setting up your next goal.

Failing to Challenge Yourself

When you find yourself “coasting” on the weight loss journey, find new ways to challenge yourself. When you find yourself stagnant or scheming ways to sabotage weight loss, you’ll need to create new goals. Maybe that looks like adding extra weight into your workout or switching up the routine so it’s more difficult. Perhaps it’s setting aside your regular television time to journal instead. 

Forgetting to Look Back to Where You Started

Whether you’ve been on your weight loss program for a month or a year, don’t forget to glance back to where you started. If you’ve committed yourself to the program, no doubt you look and feel different than you did at the beginning. Your mind set has most certainly changed. Take a look at those pictures you took before you started. Then take a real look at where you are now. You should be proud about the improvements, both internal and external!

* Avg. weight loss 1-2 lbs/week for members following the program

This post was sponsored by Jenny Craig but the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Want to Save on the Jenny Craig Weight Loss Program?

Save 20% off your first order on the Jenny Craig weight loss program. Order through this Jenny Craig link and use discount code JBIG20.

New members only. Valid for online purchase at, first order only. No cash value. Not valid with any other offer. Valid with purchase of full menu bundle only. Ends 12/31/19


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