Weight loss: 5 proven strategies for success
Weight loss: 5 proven strategies for success
Let's start off this blog by saying this:
The aim is to be healthy. Not skinny, slim or sexy. But healthy.
There are currently hundreds of fad diets, weight-loss programs and blatant scams that promise quick and easy weight loss. However, the foundation of successful weight loss for the long term cannot happen overnight. Permanent changes in our lifestyle and health habits must be made.
Here are proven strategies to reduce your weight and more importantly, to boost your health.
#1 Discover and define your inner motivation
This is the ‘why’ to help you undertake the diet and exercise changes. Let’s face it, no one else can make you do anything. We all need to take on a personal responsibility to lose weight in the first place.
So, dig deeper. What's the real, burning drive for starting your weight-loss plan? Make a list! This list will help you stay motivated and focused, regardless if the motivation is an upcoming vacation or for better health.
• Always ensure your motivational list is readily available during moments of temptation.
• It helps to have support — pick the right kind. Pick people to support you who will encourage you in positive ways, without shame, embarrassment or sabotage. Better yet, spend time with people who have the same health goals and are able to spend time exercising with you, while creating healthy menus together.
• If you prefer to keep your weight-loss plans private, keep track of your diet and exercise progress with regular weigh ins in a journal or use digital tools. Here are some digital tools to help you along:
Seriously, just how insanely cool is this Apple Watch? Drool-worthy.
An Apple Watch the truly the ultimate device for a healthy life. When you wear it, you get a fitness partner that measures all the ways you move, meaningful health insights and a connection to the people and things you care about most.
The regular Apple Watches retail at way less, but there is something about this stainless steel mesh finish that would motivate anyone to up their ante to achieve their fitness goals. Check it out here.
#2 Set realistic goals
What’s realistic? Progressive and sustainable weight loss for the longer term. There are no quick or instant fixes here. Perhaps aim for 0.5kg to 1kg per week, generally burning between 500 to 1,000 calories more than you consume each day, through a lower calorie diet and regular physical activity.
Depending on your weight, 5% of your current weight may be a realistic goal to start with. So if you weigh 82kg, aim to lose 4kg. This level of weight loss can help lower your risk of chronic health problems such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Set both process and outcome goals too.
• An example of a process goal: "Walk every day for 30 minutes"
• "Lose 4kg" is an example of an outcome goal.
It is essential to set process goals because changing your habits is a key to long term weight loss.
#3 Choose healthier foods
You are what you eat. Adopting a new eating style that promotes weight loss does not mean giving up taste, satisfaction or even ease of meal preparation.
I’m sure you’ve heard this a million times, and will hear it once again - eat more plant-based foods. Fruits, vegetables and whole grains are your new best friends. Strive for variety to help you achieve your goals without giving up taste or nutrition.
Get your weight loss started with these tips:
• Have about four servings of vegetables and three servings of fruits daily.
• Choose refined grains over whole grains.
• Use modest amounts of healthy fats, such as olive oil, vegetable oils, avocados, nuts, nut butters and nut oils.
• Cut back on dairy products and sugar, except for natural sugars in fruit.
• Choose lean meat and poultry in limited amounts.
• Cut down on alcohol and drop fast foods altogether!
#4 Get active, stay active
Studies show that people who maintain their weight loss over the long term get regular physical activity.
While you can lose weight with the right food choices alone, regular physical activity and calorie restrictions can help give you an extra edge in weight loss. Regular exercise can help burn off the excess calories you can't cut through diet alone.
Other than weight-loss, regular exercise also offers numerous health benefits such as boosting your mood, strengthening your cardiovascular system and reducing your blood pressure.
One of the best ways to lose body fat is through steady aerobic exercise — such as brisk walking or swimming— for at least 30 minutes most days of the week.
Any extra movement helps burn calories. Think about ways you can increase your physical activity throughout the day if you can't fit in formal exercise on a given day. Park further away to walk to your destination, make several trips up and down the stairs instead of using an elevator or core exercises while watching TV.
Top picks of devices to help you enjoy your workouts daily, include:
Sony WS623 Waterproof and Dustproof Walkman®
with BLUETOOTH® Wireless Technology
- Durable and tough
- Great for swimming and sweating it out daily
- Stream music and audio files wirelessly from your phone
- Up to 16GB for audio storage
Kingsmith Xiaomi Treadmill WalkingPad Foldable Treadmill R2
- Two modes - running & walking
- Brushless motor to reduce noise
- Very easy to operate
- Maximum load 110kg
This is great for keeping your heart rate up while watching YouTube marathons. Also great for days to have a long walk, without worrying about the sun or rain. Lastly, it's way smaller than conventional treadmills that you find in gyms so it fits any cozy apartment or room easily.
More info, click here.
Invest in a great pair of trainers to stay motivated! Top pick:
Nike Women's Downshifter 11 Running Shoes
- Lightweight, flexible support with more support around the midfoot for added comfort
- Cushioned comfort underfoot and in the heel to keep you going for longer
- Durable and flexible rubber sole with grooves for traction, curving up to the outside to cushion and add durability
More info, click here.
#5 Change your perspective
If you want long-term, successful weight management, eating right and regular exercise habits must become a new way of life.
• Lifestyle changes start with taking an honest look at your eating patterns and daily routine.
• Assess your personal challenges to weight loss and work out a strategy to gradually change habits and attitudes that have sabotaged your past efforts. Plan for how you'll deal with them if you're going to succeed in losing weight once and for all.
Remember that you're planning to change your life, so long term weight loss won't happen all at once. Setbacks are likely to happen, but keep going and just start fresh the next day.
Do be kind to yourself and the results will be worth it.
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