Starting a weight loss program can be completely new and scary for some people. If you haven’t previously worked out a lot, or had good eating habits, then how do you know where to start? Rather than scouring through the wealth of information online – much of which is wrong – read the following tips and tricks which will help you get started on your weight-loss journey.
Don’t diet: That’s right, no “dieting”. The word itself is full of negative connotations. Short term diets may take the weight off temporarily, but do nothing to keep it off. Rather, you should make healthy lifestyle changes which you can live with long-term. Instead of simply reducing your calorie intake, which is the purpose of most diets and which can burn both fat and muscle, you should try to increase your metabolism and burn only fat.
Modify your eating habits to include at least 3 to 4 meals per day – or whatever fits your lifestyle patterns. Decrease your simple sugar and fat intake by eating less highly processed or fast foods. Focus on eating a lot of protein, complex carbs, and healthy fats (such as avocado or fatty fish).
Do cardio AND weight training: While it is possible to lose weight through simple diet changes, exercising will speed up the process a lot. Not only will exercising make you burn more calories, it will also increase your metabolic rate. A higher metabolic rate means that you are burning more calories while doing nothing – going for a simple run in the morning can translate to extra calories being burnt all day long. Cardio training is one of the best exercise types for getting Kcals burnt and for general “weight loss”, because it allows you to maintain a high level of activity over a long period of time. Training with resistance or using weights is a great way to elevate your metabolic rate and increase lean muscle mass!
Don’t go hungry: There are absolutely zero benefits to starving your body and suffering through hunger pangs all day. As someone once said, “a hungry man is not a happy man”. Not only will starving yourself for too long make your day miserable, it will also reduce your body’s ability to drop weight by slowing your metabolic rate if sustained over more than 24hrs.
Set goals: Setting small goals and then reaching them can do a world of good to anyone’s weight loss journey. Here are some examples of small goals which you could set:
- ‘complete five workouts this week’
- ‘don’t eat any fast food for ten days’
Goal setting can increase your motivation to follow a weight loss program and reduce any bad habits which you might still be hiding.
The most important tip to lose weight is to simply get out there and try – clean up your diet, start to incorporate some exercise into your lifestyle, and watch those pounds run away!