5 Common Diet Mistakes Sabotaging Your Progress

June 23, 2021

About the Author: Eric Bach

The most frustrating thing in the world is feeling like you’re doing everything right, only to see the number on the scale taunting you every morning.

Or, to put on your favorite slacks and realize it’s going to take the jaws of life to peel them off your legs.

Here are 5 diet mistakes you need to avoid if you want to get and stay lean.

  1. Not drinking enough water.

Aim to drink at least ½ your body weight in pounds in ounces of water each day.

If you’re 200 pounds, that’s 100 ounces. This increases 50% or more on workout days or hot and humid weather.

Poor hydration impacts everything from cognitive function, skin quality, energy levels, and workout performance to hunger cravings.

Put another way, if you want to be mentally sharp, have more energy, crush your workouts, and avoid cravings then drink more water.

  1. Snacks, swipes, and handfuls.

How often have you walked by the pantry and grabbed a finger-full of peanut butter? 

I’m guilty.

These gobs of peanut butter come at a price of about 200 calories. For reference, the gobs of PB have about as many calories as a typical 4 oz serving of grilled chicken.

Whether your go-to is a handful of nuts, PB, and candy small 100-200+ calorie snacks add up.

Done daily, 100-200 calories can mean gaining a pound (or preventing the loss of a pound) each month.

  1. Out-of-control oils, sauces, and condiments.


When new clients fill out a dietary recall the number one comment is, “holy crap, I had no idea how many calories I was eating in cooking oils and salad dressings.” 

If you eyeball olive oil, butter, and salad dressings you can easily sneak 400-500 calories into your diet each day.

That’s enough to gain about a pound each week.

Start measuring how much oil, sauce, dressing, etc. you’re using and stick to the appropriate serving sizes.

Use calorie-free cooking spray, quality non-stick cast iron pans, and lower-calorie condiments like Archer Farms.

  1. Unplanned meals.

Most people fall off the diet wagon when they don’t have time to make a healthy decision and are not prepared.

The solution is to always prepare.

Here’s what I recommend if you’re racing the clock and struggling to make good nutrition choices.

  • Use intermittent fasting (IF)

By planning in large chunks of time where you don’t eat you’ll be able to have more flexibility when you do eat. If you entertain clients, eat at a ton of restaurants, or prefer bigger meals, IF is a simple way to get lean. Here’s a quick guide to get started: Intermittent Fasting


  • Automate meals.

The fewer decisions you need to make about food the better.

Pick 2-3 go-to meals and cycle through them. You no longer have to think about making a perfect choice.

You stick to the plan. If you have a restaurant you frequent for lunch find a healthy option, stick with it from here on out.

Exciting? No. Effective? Yes. And that’s the goal.

  • Use meal delivery services.

Meal delivery services make it easy to make healthy, quick decisions with your diet. Some of my clients use local meal delivery to get healthy, tasty meals delivered each week. The Vertical Diet and Trifecta Nutrition offer great plans as well.

  1. Alcohol.

I like a quality drink as much as the next person. But the most straightforward way for many people to lose fat is to cut out alcohol for a few weeks.

Diet Mistakes


  • Alcohol loosens inhibitions. This can be helpful if you have the personality of a blade of grass, but bad if it means you order meat lovers pizza after you kick back a few brews.

Alcohol is a toxin. When alcohol is in your system your body prioritizes eliminating it from your body. Your ability to burn body fat screeches to a halt. Every hour alcohol is in your system your body isn’t burning through much body fat.

  • You’ll store more food calories as fat when alcohol is present. Via the mechanism above, the food you the junk kind–is more likely to be stored as body fat.
  • Alcohol prevents restful sleep. Poor sleep compromises optimal testosterone and growth hormone function and increases cortisol, your primary stress hormone. Most times people fall of their diet bandwagon it’s due to stress and poor planning. Alcohol can be the domino that starts the diet downfall.
  • Hangovers kill workout quality and motivation the next day. Having a fun night is one thing. But if it impacts another day it’s killing your progress.


Losing fat and looking great naked isn’t about an ultra-strict diet or not having a social life. It comes down to avoiding most of the big mistakes and making good decisions most of the time.

Your success with transforming your body comes down to adjusting your lifestyle and making healthier choices. That seldom works if you eliminate all the things you enjoy.

So, if you’d like to get in the best shape of your life without living in the gym or totting Tupperware around then the Bach Performance Physique Coaching Program is the place for you.

Fill out the short application below we’ll see if we’re a good fit to work together.


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