Trying to stay on track with your health and fitness goals? Be wary of these sneaky ways you could be hurting your metabolism. 

Metabolism is known as the system in the body that converts calories into energy. Many things contribute to your metabolism — including genetics, gender, and age. But, we also have to keep track of how we are treating and fueling our bodies.

A metabolic slowdown leads to a build-up of calories. And you know what happens after that? The calories build up, they will be turned into fat, leading to weight gain, and no one wants that, sis.

You may already know that your metabolism slows as you age. I know mine has. That's why we have to be proactive. We can do that by cutting out the below habits and. I guarantee you will watch your metabolism and energy levels improve.

Eating the wrong foods for breakfast

We might not think of it much, but it does significantly affect our bodies, thus our metabolism.

It's actually about more than just eating first when you wake up. If you grab some greasy food or eat a donut in the car, you’re setting yourself up for failure, sis. Instead, find breakfast foods with filling protein and fiber — like eggs, or oatmeal and berries, or whole-wheat toast topped with avocado for some good, healthy fat.

Skipping breakfast all together

Eating a fueling breakfast is always a good thing because our metabolism slows down during sleep, while eating can rev it up and help you get the ultimate calorie burn throughout the day. 

Going from your office to your car to your bed can lead to a very dull, sedentary life, sis. Also, sitting for extended periods puts your body into energy-conservation mode, which means your metabolism can suffer. That's why if you can, take the stairs when you leave your apartment, go on a walk on your lunch break, or park far enough away that you have to put a little cardio between you and your office.

Not Enough Weight Training 

Like I said above, cardio is great, and it can quickly burn calories, but you also need to have a little bit of weight training thrown into the mix. When you do HIIT and resistance-based workouts, your calorie burn stays elevated for longer as your muscles repair themselves. As the American Council on Exercise (ACE): reports, "strength training is a key component of metabolism because it is directly linked to muscle mass. The more active muscle tissue you have, the higher your metabolic rate.” 

You are not feeding your body enough protein

Everyone knows that protein is the thing that feeds your muscles.

If you are eating too little, you might have trouble building or maintaining muscle mass — and that is never good. Make sure you are consuming good proteins like eggs, lentils, and lean meats like turkey and chicken.

Not consuming enough H20

Research has shown that drinking roughly about 2 cups increases metabolic rate by up to 30 percent. So, drink water throughout the day to stay hydrated, and that will help keep your body hydrated, as well as help your metabolism.

You are not getting enough rest

A rough nights sleep is enough to leave you feeling sluggish and impair your cognitive actions. This can lead to decreased metabolism and hormonal imbalances, so make sure you are getting the proper amount of sleep at night.

Stressors in life

When stress skyrockets, your body produces a hormone called cortisol. Cortisol can lead to an increase in appetite, as well as decrease the desire to exercise and reduce sleep quality — all things that negatively impact our metabolism. So, while you can’t always control what happens in life, managing stress can go a long way toward protecting your body. You can start by practicing meditation, as well as exercise and finding balance in your life where you need it.

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