1. You're cutting too many calories
We know that eating more calories makes us fatter, faster - right? But sadly, it doesn't work quite the same in reverse - in fact, cutting out too many calories can actually aid weight gain.
Why? Your body has a natural protective mechanism built in designed to preserve your life whilst you're trying to diet. So, if you cut too many calories your body will begin to slow down your metabolism to conserve energy and then when you eventually break your diet and head to all-you-can-eat-town, you'll stack the weight back on like never before.
2. You're too busy checking in and checking yourself out to get a decent workout
A recent study from the University of Common Sense shows that you can still get great results without 'checking in' at the gym. News flash: Training shouldn't be sexy - it should be effective. And sometimes these effective workouts make you look less than perfect. Deal with it, or leave your phone at home.
3. You're overeating
We've ALL done this before, but here's the thing: knowing is one thing, doing something about it is the only thing that matters. Just remember: you don't need a new year, new month, new week or even a new day to make a fresh start, you just need a moment and a decision.
Related story: Are you eating too much avocado?
4. You think alcohol doesn't count
Sorry to burst your champagne bubble - but booze counts. In fact, one gram of alcohol contains seven calories - and that's not even taking into account the calories from carbohydrates in the syrups, liqueurs and mixers.
In all honesty, alcohol is a gateway drug that opens up the door to ruining all your training and nutrition goals. After all, no one craves a gluten-free salad sandwich at 3am, right?
5. You're not training enough
If you're the person whining (while also drinking wine) about not having the sculpted body of an athlete, yet you're doing Pilates once every new moon, you're kidding yourself.
Good things take time, hard work, dedication and discipline. If you want more, do more.
Related story: How to overcome your biggest health obstacle: motivation
5. You're not training hard enough
Step 1: Read #2
Step 2: Don't be that person.
I believe that everyone has untapped potential to achieve more. I promise that you're stronger than you could imagine, all I'm asking is that you believe me.
6. You're training too much and too hard
If doing "something" is good, then more must be better, right? Wrong! The magic happens when you're recovering.
In fact, there's a natural cycle that your body should go through where you end up in a state of overcompensation - getting stronger, fitter and healthier each week should be the goal. If you're constantly tired, sick, sore or injured - then you're doing something wrong. Listen to your body and learn what it's trying to tell you.
Related story: Man up: should women be lifting heavy weights?
7. You're overdoing the clean eating and/or Paleo
When it comes to body composition change, I don't care whether your calories come from avocado, chocolate or cornflakes - if you overeat, you'll put weight on - it's that simple.
Now, before you get all high and mighty, I whole-grain-heartedly believe that fuelling your body with quality produce is the key to healthy living. But I promise you one thing, if you eat too much avocado - you'll start looking like one.
8. You're majoring in minor things
Wow, those 1kg dumbbell tricep kickbacks are doing wonders for... absolutely nothing. If you're like me and your time is valuable, then make sure you're not wasting 90 per cent of the workout on tuck-shop kickbacks and flab crunches when there's a squat rack right there in front of you. Muscle is metabolic, meaning it burns calories.
Focus on the bang for your buck exercises that work as much muscle as possible, like squats, deadlifts, lunges, pushes, presses, pull-downs and pull ups. You'll be leaner in weeks.
Related story: 8 reasons clean eating could be making you fat
9. You're measuring wrong
Read my article Fat or fiction and you'll quickly realise that measuring success by simply weighing yourself is often the worst thing you can do.
The only thing the scales are good for is how badly you can start your day. Take photos and measurements of your arms, chest, waist, hips and thighs. This data will reap rewards when it comes to increasing your motivation.
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