Spread the love We have all been there. Sooner or later we all hit a weight loss plateau. No matter how hard you diet or train the scale is stuck. Those pounds of fat that were once falling off effortlessly are now clinging to your body for dear…
Where to Start With Weight Loss
You decided to start your weight loss journey. Where should you start? You have heard all sorts of things about healthy/unhealthy, good/bad foods, but which ones are true? How do you start your weight loss? There are things you need to know before you start your journey. There are a lot of articles on the internet, including this one, which can provide good and true information. The primary goal you want to focus on at this point is weight loss. You might have some desire to also work on building your muscular strength, but that will come down the road once you have stripped off the extra layers you have packed on over the years and are starting to feel leaner. Possibly the most intimidating thing for any beginner is simply getting started onto the path of healthy eating and proper exercise. Once you see results, it becomes an addiction.
Firstly, you need to understand what eating healthy really means: Eating Healthy – Explained Simply & Benefits of Healthy Diet
Tips on Starting Your Weight Loss
Limit Your Calorie Intake
A calorie is a unit to measure energy. We use them to measure the energy content of foods and beverages. In order to lose weight, you need to eat fewer calories than you burn throughout the day. If you want to lose one pound of weight per week, you need to cut out or burn 3500 calories throughout that week. That breaks down to 500 calories per day, over the course of seven days. First, use a caloric intake calculator and see how many calories you need for maintenance. From that number subtract 500 and you have you daily calorie intake goal.
Because dieting can only get you so far, you must include some physical activity. Without working out it is even harder to lose weight. You are just starting out and it is hard to do hard core workouts. As we said, you need to burn through or cut out 3500 calories in 7 days to lose 1 pound per week. Because you are starting out, to make it easier, you can combine. Cut out 250 calories by dieting and burn though 250 calories by working out.
That combination is great for starting out. If you start too hard, you will give up faster. The trick is to start. As I said in the beginning, when you see results, you will want more and it will become easier. After some time you will have to increase the calorie deficit from dieting and increase the volume and intensity of your workouts.
Eat Fresh Unprocessed Foods
The closer you get to the natural form of the fruit or veggie the better. Maybe you are not eating junk food anymore, but there are still seemingly healthy processed foods. If you cannot pronounce an ingredient on the label, you probably should not eat the food.Fresh foods will help you maintain energy levels, promote healthy sleeping habits and provide ample amount of fuel for all of your workouts. Eating a serving of fruits and veggies 5-7 times a day is very important in your weight loss. They are low on calories. Also, they contain lots of water and have lots of fiber in them. Both of them help in keeping you fuller for longer.
Be careful when making salads out of fruits and vegetables. Adding too much dressing, cheese, or other unhealthy items can turn a salad into a worse choice than a Big Mac. Also, most foods taste better and contain higher amounts of nutrients when they are eaten during peak season.The better foods taste naturally, the less you have to manipulate them with added sugar, fat, and salt, which means fewer calories and less bloat.
Do Not Skip Breakfast
If you think that you can ingest fewer calories by skipping a meal. Think again. After 8 hours of sleep your body is deprived of much needed nutrients. If you do not consume breakfast, you will only overeat at your next meal or you will give in to your cravings. With a good, well balanced meal, you will kick start your metabolic rate and get your body ready for weight loss throughout the day. For best results, go for a well-balanced, sizable breakfast that includes high-fibre grains, fruit and protein. And the earlier in the day you eat, the better. Do not wait three hours, or until you get to work. Have it when you get up.
Studies have shown that people who skip breakfast are associated with lower diet quality and consumption of unhealthy snacks higher in energy and carbohydrates in the afternoon and evening. Study 1; study 2
Eat Fiber in the Morning
Important part of any weight loss is to eat foods that keep you full for longer. Studies have shown that fiber (especially viscous fiber) can help keep you full for longer. To start you day off right, make sure your breakfast includes at least eight grams of fiber. Also, when you eat foods high in fiber, such as beans and whole grains, the sugar in those foods is absorbed slower, which keeps your blood glucose levels from rising too fast. Rapid ups and downs in your glucose levels will make you feel hungry soon after eating and lead to overeating or make you reach for unhealthy snacks.
Workout in the Morning
Research has shown that people in their morning workouts tend to work harder and longer. It is because people feel fresher and are more energetic and alert at the beginning of the day. Also, you will get it out of the way and lower the chances of skipping your workout. By working out in the morning, you will not have to think about dragging gym bags to and from work or figuring out a time to shower before dinner plans. Additionally, there is no real reason to reschedule. You will finish your workout before your day starts and planning is easier for the rest of the day.
Eat More Protein
As I explained above, foods that keep you full for longer are very important in weight loss. Well, protein is one of those foods and has high satiating effect, which means it will keep you full for longer. Also, protein his high thermic effect, which means that protein uses more energy for digestion than the other two macronutrients. Plus, gaining some muscle can help you burn fat. Most studies and experts suggest that between 0.7 and 1 gram per pound of lean mass is sufficient. Studies have shown that by eating protein you will boost your metabolism by 80 to 100 calories per day.
Shorten Your Workouts
Start with shorter workouts. If you start with long, excruciating, one hour-hour and a half long workouts there is a big chance you will quit your weight loss journey. Plus, your body is not used to exercising so, when you are starting slow you will have less muscle soreness. A lot of people quit exercising because of muscle soreness. Start with 30 minute workouts and progress from that point. When you finish a workout and you are not sore tomorrow, increase the duration and intensity of your workouts. Additionally, because your workouts are shorter you will look forward to your next workout and you will stick to your healthy habits easier.
Drink More Water
Aside from keeping you hydrated, drinking water can help you in weight loss, recent studies found. Drinking water before every meal will lower your appetite and cravings. Sometimes you think you are hungry, but really, you are just dehydrated. Plus, water has zero calories. It replaces other sneaky beverages full of calories and artificial sugar. Aim for a glass of water with every meal and snack. Also, drink one or two glasses in-between your snacks and meals. Additionally, eating foods that are high in water content will fill you up faster and you will end up eating less. One sigh that you are drinking too much water is too soft excrement. If you encounter such a problem, lower one two glasses of water a day until you get it right.
Be More Active
Weight loss and healthy lifestyle is all about trying to build healthy habits. Whenever you can, add some light physical activities. Go for a walk around your neighborhood, play basketball, baseball, soccer etc. with your friends. We all love to watch Netflix. But, if you watch one episode of your favorite show instead of two, you will have more time. Along the way I have realized that TV is just a waste of time. Now, I barely turn it on anymore. If you want you can even do a workout in your home. Light 10-20 minute workout may not seem to much, but in the long run it pays off.
Stop Scaling Too Much
Bodyweight fluctuates a lot. It goes up and down like crazy. Time of day when you are scaling, what you ate, how much you ate, how much you drank, even clothes you are wearing while scaling can influence the scale. It does not mean that if the scale says that you have not lost any weight, that you are not losing fat. Maybe you are gaining muscle. The best way to measure is with clothing. See how they fit, if they are getting smaller or are getting big for you. Do not discourage yourself so easily. Instead of weighing yourself, try and take measurements of your hips, arms, chest etc. and write it down. Repeat this process every few weeks and see how it goes.
Believe me, if you schedule your time, when to eat, when to exercise, when to go to dinner with someone, it is that much easier. A lot of people quit their weight loss journey because they get overwhelmed by things that need to get done. You do not have time to think everyday what to eat, when to eat it and how to squeeze in time for your workout. Out of 168 hours every week, choose 30 to 40 minutes and schedule and plan your time.
Also, meal preparation will help you to stick to your healthy habits. When you have some free time prepare meals for the busy days. That way, your busy days will not get more complicated by thinking what to eat.
Be Realistic About Your Goals
Do not set yourself up for disappointment before you even start. Losing 1-2 pounds (3 pounds if you are on the heavier side) per week is a reasonable goal. That adds up to 4-8 pounds (12 pounds if you are heavier) per month. That is, if you are aiming for healthy weight loss. If you just want to shed off fat, thinking that it will not come back to haunt you, that is a different story.
On the other hand, remember that this is not exact science and it will not always have the same results. Our bodies are one complex piece of machinery. Sometimes you see good results, sometimes not so good. Remember not to give up.
Take it one step at a time. Do not start too hard, because you will increase the chance of quitting. It is not easy to get from couch potato to fitness or sport enthusiast. It does not happen overnight. Sometimes it is easier, sometimes it is not. Reward comes to those who go out and make it happen. I said it in the beginning, once you see results it becomes an addiction. People will say that you became obsessed with trying to lose weight. Remember, obsessed is a word invited by the lazies to describe the dedicated.
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