- Diet & Weight Loss
Six Basic Weight Loss Tips
Sometimes it seems like everybody you know is on a diet. Your sister is on a diet, your boss is on a diet, sometimes even your own kids are on a diet. Considering the health benefits that are attached to being slim and trim, not to mention the benefits to your self esteem, then all of these diets are understandable. Losing weight can not only be better for your health, but can improve brain function, leading to increased memory retention and better sleep. What you may not understand, though, is why some people seem to have great success with their diets while you just can’t seem to lose weight. What are the secrets other people seem to know that you can’t figure out?
Below are a couple of the most important weight loss tips that have been shown to be effective in a whole range of people. Read on to discover how you can finally start to lose some weight. Please note that if you are pregnant, diet and exercise during pregnancy should be double checked with your doctor.
Tip 1: Increase Your Metabolism
Some people believe that the best way to lose weight is to eat less. And if you are a person who eats many high calorie foods or who eats a lot all throughout the day, then this makes sense. But cutting back on your calorie intake is really only half the equation. The other half is speeding up your metabolism.
Your body has its own rate of metabolism, the engine of your body. This is akin to the way an automobile engine works. You put in the fuel—the food you eat—and your body burns that fuel like your car burns gas. As the food is burned, it gives off energy that your cells need to do their work, all the processes that go into making your body function in the ways that it should.
Many people have their metabolism set too low; they aren’t burning enough calories to match the number that they bring in. The result is weight gain.
Get your metabolism up to burn more fuel. And how do you do this? First of all, through exercise. Exercise not only burns off calories as you are running or walking or doing aerobics, it also sets your metabolism to a higher rate so that you burn more calories even when you aren’t exercising.
Second, you can increase your metabolism through the foods you eat. Certain kinds of foods, for example grapefruit, speed up your metabolism and help you lose weight. Did you know that you actually burn more calories in digesting carrots than you take in by eating them?
Tip 2: Don’t Crash Diet!
This tip is actually related to Tip 1 above, and has some other important benefits as well. To start, you will have to get it out of your head that suddenly cutting your diet in half will help you lose weight. This can be good if you need to know how to lose weight in a week, but you might see the weight come back in a few weeks or months.
One of the most important problems with crash diets is that they lead to a slow down of the metabolism, that all-important engine we talked about above. What happens is that when you suddenly stop eating, your body thinks you are starving, that you have entered a period of famine. In order to protect itself, the body slows down its metabolism, leading to a much reduced burning of calories.
The other thing that occurs with crash diets is that your will power has a hard time holding out. Sure, you can starve yourself for a while, but when you aren’t getting enough to eat, and your energy is reduced and you don’t feel active and alert, it’s easy to start slipping. You go back to your old habits of eating too much, or binge eating, or eating calorie rich foods. When you take it easier on yourself though, and reduce your calorie intake sensibly, you are much more likely to stick to your diet plan.
Tip 3: Choose an Exercise You Love
Everyone hates exercising. Well, almost everyone. The reason it can be so hard to follow an exercise plan is that you're just not interested in doing the same thing day after day after day. The shine and luster of a new exercise program starts with the motivation to lose weight and feel good. The only thing that will keep you coming back to it is to actually enjoy what you're doing.
The best exercise to lose weight with is the one that you enjoy doing. It doesn't even have to be one - cross training is excellent for getting in shape!
Let's say you love dancing, and you decide to take a course on jazz dance at your local community college. You might want to take a yoga class before that to get your muscles pre-stretched before you even go into your dance class. The yoga class is not necessarily what you love, but you love that it stretches you well and helps to prevent injury for your dance class. And learning technical dance moves and putting it together into choreography is what really gets you moving. Before you know it, the class is over, and you will have gotten a good sweat in your hour long class!
Tip 4: Switch Up Your Exercise Routine
If you can't afford classes or to do the things you love, or you love to do an activity that depends on the season, you may need to resort to tapes at home, on Youtube, strength training regiments. Strength training is probably the best way to tone and how to lose fat in specific areas, so you'll want to add it anyways.
To keep things fresh and new, switch up your exercise program bi-weekly to monthly. If you wanted to know how to lose body fat and keep loosing, many experts recommend this method! It keeps your muscles working in new ways so you are sure to hit every muscle in many ways imaginable.
Tip 5: Keep Up the Mind Set
With all these losing weight tips you are thrown every day and currently reading, you might be feeling pumped and motivated to lose weight. But once you get into about a week of watching your food intake and exercising, you'll probably start to either feel burn out or the need to reward yourself. You'll want to remind yourself that you need to keep to your goals.
One way is to let your goal be public. When it's publicly accountable, you are less likely to want to slip, lest someone get on your case about it. Post up pictures, keep a running blog, write a daily journal about how you feel - all that jazz!
Another good way to try and keep your mind in the weight loss journey is through hypnosis. A lot of people think hypnosis for weight loss is a whole bunch of hooey, but evidence keeps piling up that what you tell yourself and take in subconsciously can make a huge impact on your mind set and how you live your life. Even just talking to yourself with motivational sayings and empowering phrases can work because you are hearing and registering those ideas for later. Hypnosis, however, is specifically designed to allow your subconscious mind to store important information that will help you in times a weakness.
So much of the weight loss battle is mental, so remember that you need to take care of your mind as well in order to overcome your desire for yummy food rather than healthy food.
Last, but Not Least
Don't beat yourself up if you slip up. Unless you have a real addiction to food, one day is not going to derail you as long as you don't allow that day to seep into your week, and onto other days. You might want to keep your careful, structured health loss program for weeks, and make a conscious decision that "Tomorrow, I will allow myself one cookie," rather than finding a cake staring you in the face at the counter at your favorite diner, and suddenly finding yourself in sweet oblivion.
Better yet, allow yourself something sweet, but give yourself more options. Instead of only going for the cookie, consider the 100 calorie pudding cup. Instead of the creamy ice cream, try the fruit popsicle. You won't always be able to plan for a slip up, but you might be less tempted if you schedule a break.
Losing weight is not an easy task. We are programmed to eat what we see because our ancestors never knew when they would have to count on their fat to get them through a time of famine. When in a society with an abundance of food, our instincts to survive can be very hard to control - even when we don't actually need those instincts to kick in! So keep it simple and easy to follow, and don't think of losing weight as a punishment. It should be a journey which will have you coming out at the end a person who is more aware of themselves than they were before!
How much weight would you like to lose?
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