You’re not using recovery days properly
Rest days are an extremely important part of your workout schedule. For your body to change you need to be challenged in your workouts, but if you don’t allow your muscles a day to rest it’s hard for them to change. Your muscles become inflamed post workout and if you continue to beat them up, they can’t go through the process of recovery and growth. Stay active on your rest days by trying to get 10,000 steps and stretch, but don’t do much more than that!
You’re not following the right diet
Everyone’s body is different. So, following a diet that your friend swears worked for her, may not work for you. Find a way of eating that you both enjoy and see results from. The first thing you need to know to customize your diet is your maintenance calories, or the amount of food you can eat and maintain your weight. This is different for everyone! Too often the number 1200 gets thrown around as being the ideal amount of calories to eat in a day, but this is not the case for most people. Find your number and eat at, above, or below that depending on your goals.
You’re not getting enough sleep
Similar to how rest days help the body recover, so does sleep. Try to get 8 hours of sleep a night. This will keep your serotonin levels in check, which helps with weight management and stress.
You’re not on a focused workout plan
If you want to reach your fitness goals, you need a training program that will help you do that. It is great to have variety in your workout routine to keep your body challenged. But, if you’re main fitness goal is to build muscle, you probably shouldn’t speed so much time going on long runs. Decide if your fitness goals are strength based, endurance based, or cardio based and create an exercise program that will help you in that specific category. Too much endurance training can halt muscle growth and vice versa.
You’re not doing the exercise properly
Form is key. Performing and exercise incorrectly is dangerous and unproductive. Exercises are set up to work specific muscles. Let’s look at a standing shoulder press. When done properly, this exercise works the shoulders and the core. But if you arch your back and lean to the side as you attempt to press the weight over your head, you are no longer working your shoulders and your core. If you aren’t working the muscles properly, you will not change the way your muscles look.