Sunday, 10 January 2016

Simple (and Healthy) Ways to Speed Up Your Weight Loss*

We all know that carrying excess weight is bad for us in so many ways; from increasing your risk diabetes and heart disease to making it more difficult for you to exercise, there are few good things about being more than few pounds over your optimum weight, and that’s why it’s not surprising that so many people put themselves on a range of strange and unusual, not to mention often unhealthy, crash diets. They reason that the sooner they lose the weight, the healthier they’ll be, and they’re willing to go to extreme lengths to achieve those aims ( the cabbage soup diet anyone?).

However, crash diets can not only be dangerous, and very miserable, but they don’t work, Sure, you may lose some weight initially, but when you stop (and you will stop because those diets are not sustainable) there is a very high chance that you will put it all on and then some.

It’s madness when you consider that there are plenty of simple, and healthy things you can do to speed up your weight loss without resorting to extremes…

Understand the Process of Weight Loss

The reason why so many people fail to lose weight, or why they take longer than necessary to do so, is because they simply do not understand how weight loss works, They do not realise that you tend to lose a lot of weight in the first week or two because your body is shedding excess water and that once that has gone, weight loss will slow down to one or two pounds a week (people who are very overweight may lose a bit more). This leads to disappointment, which leads to binges, which lead to crash diets and it’s a neverending cycle. If you know that eating less, moving more and getting more high-quality nutrition into you does work if you do it consistently, and you know that the scales won’t always show you a huge loss, you will be in a far better frame of mind to do what needs to be done and see the weight drop off.

Sort Out Your  Sleep Schedule

If you're doing everything right - eating lots of fruits, vegetables and whole grains, maintaining a calorie deficit, doing a little exercise - and your weight loss has slowed down beyond what is normal, it might be worth examining the quality and quantity of your sleep. If you don’t get a full night’s sleep on a regular basis, the hormones that control your metabolism are likely to be affected and cortisol will be released, encouraging you to eat to excess and store those calories on your belly. So, make sure that you go to bed and get up at the same time, and if you need to, take some sleep supplements to ensure that you drift off with ease. Sleep is much more important to successful weight loss than most of us realise.

Switch to Green Tea

Green tea, or green tea supplements, are thought to give the body a boost when it comes to burning fat, So, if you swap your usual cup(s) of tea for the green variety, it may well give you a little boost that will see your losses speed up a little. Not only that but green tea is packed with anti-ageing antioxidants that will work wonders for your skin too. What’s not to love?

Shorten Your Workouts

Have you been spending hours at the gym working out like your life depends on it, only to find that the scales aren’t moving as swiftly as you would like? It could be that you are building muscle, and although you haven’t lost any weight you have lost inches, or it could be that despite spending so much time on them, your workouts aren’t exactly optimum for fat loss. A study by the University of Copenhagen discovered that people who worked out for just half an hour every day lost the same amount as people who worked out for an hour and they believe this is because the people who worked out for a shorter period had more energy left to be a bit more active during the rest of the day. Not only that, but high-intensity interval training, which takes far less time (a few minutes in some cases) is known to burn more fat too. Try it and see if you notice an improvement.

Eat Almonds Before Activity

There is some evidence to suggest that, because almonds contain the amino acid L-arginine, they can help you to burn more calories when you exercise. So, instead of eating a banana or rice cakes before you hit the gym or pound the pavements, eat a few delicious almonds instead ( they’re great in smoothies).

Drink More Water

How much water do you drink? If you aren’t sipping water throughout the day, chances are that you might succumb to cravings because it’s so easy to get dehydrated and when that happens, you can mistake the signals your body is sending you for hunger. Not only that but drinking more water can help you to feel a little fuller between meals too.

Stop Drinking Your Calories

While we’re on the subject of water, it’s worth considering how much of it you drink compared to tea, soda, alcohol and other beverage that contain often empty, calories. If you’re drinking lots of beverages throughout the day, you could be mindlessly adding lots of calories to your diet too, and by replacing most of this drinks with water, or if you must diet versions, you should be able to speed up your weight loss further.

Calculate Your BMR

It’s all well and good cutting your calorie limit, but if you don’t actually know how many calories you burn in the first place, you might not be getting it right and your weight loss results might not be as good as they could be. So, use a good BMR calculator to work out how many calories you need to lose 1-2 pounds each week and try your best to stick to that number.

Good luck with your weight loss efforts!

*Disclaimer: Collaborative content.

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