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19 Quick and Easy Weight Loss Tips!
Do you dream of pain-free weight loss? For many people the very idea of trying to lose weight has become synonymous with depriving themselves of what they enjoy most in life and suffering through the entire process. It's difficult to stay upbeat and enjoy getting fit if all you can think about is how much you are going to miss your favorite foods and how intensely you'll have to exercise to begin seeing even a slight difference in your figure.
With this type of approach to weight loss it's a real wonder that people even attempt the whole thing! Attempting to lose weight this way is painful, boring and requires you to exercise a great deal of will power for months on end. You don't have to put forth such a heroic effort - The good news is that you can shed those pounds quickly, easily and painlessly by just slipping in a few simple lifestyle changes that add up over time.
Think about it. Wouldn't it be fun to lose weight without trying too hard? All you need to do is to make a few slight changes here and there in the way you do things to lose weight naturally and gradually. The tips you'll discover here don't require you to deny yourself or engage in grueling workouts. Instead you'll learn how to get to where you want to go in the quickest and most pain-free manner. So are you ready to get started? Here are the best tips that I've discovered and applied that will truly help you to get the body of your dreams fast!
Tip#1: Lighten Your Favorite Foods:
Most people are destined to fail at restrictive diets even before they begin. Do you know why? It's because they believe they need to cut down on all their favorite foods when they are on a diet and they use their will power to do that. However will power will only take you so far. At the end your imagination will always triumph over any will power you might have.
If you keep dreaming about that 'Death By Chocolate' cake or your favorite cheese stuffed crust pizza, eventually you will give in to the urgings of your imagination. Once you do, you'll feel lousy about slipping up and then begin the downward spiral into no-diet land. Instead of torturing yourself by denying your favorite foods, I'd advise you to lighten them. Eat the foods you love, but switch to low-calorie versions of all the foods you crave. Choose grilled chicken instead of deep-fried chicken, top pizza's with low fat cheese, go for low-fat ice cream, diet soda, whole-grain bread, low-fat mayonnaise, unsweetened fruit etc. Choosing healthier versions of all your favorite foods is easy to do and doesn't leave you feeling deprived.
Tip#2: Add new foods:
Instead of contemplating the foods you need to cut down on, think about foods that you can add to your diet. I'm sure there are lots of exciting unfamiliar foods out there that you would enjoy trying out. Purple broccoli, arracacha, fiddleheads, tamaraillos etc. are some vegetables that come to mind. There are plenty of exotic fruit you can sample too such as jackfruit, rambutans, passion fruit, star fruits, lychees, mangosteens, durian etc.
Think about this as an exciting time where you get to sample and try out new fruits and vegetables to add to your list of favorite foods. You can make purees, sauces and stews out of these new vegetables and add the fruits you like to your breakfast, lunch and dinner menus. You may find yourself naturally cutting down on junk food and eating these new delicious foods more often as a matter of course!
Tip#3: Get Busy:
Think it's a coincidence that you feel like munching popcorn or going through bags of chips while watching TV? It's easy to reach for food when you get bored or are at a loss for things to do. Take a break from TV shows and magazines and get busy doing things that you are passionate about or would like to learn more of. This might take the form of enrolling in a sculpture class, volunteering, going trekking, sailing etc.
While losing weight might be your major focus, you need to have a life outside of it. This helps you to not only stay mentally and emotionally balanced and fresh but also gets rid of unhealthy habits in an indirect way. If you are spending less time in front of the TV you'll also be snacking less. You'll not only feel great about doing something productive and new, but you'll also be cutting down on your junk food consumption by default. Now, isn't that exciting?
Tip#4: Go Dutch With Your Food:
If you've seen the movie 'Supersize Me' you'll be aware of how fast food joints push or promote bigger portions just to make higher profit margins. Unfortunately most of that excess food lands directly on your waist line. So how can you avoid eating massive meals whenever you dine out?
The solution is to go 'Dutch' with your food, whenever you are faced with more food than you need. Split pizza, dessert and drinks. If you have a friend or partner who is interested in fitness, you can share other things in addition to your meals - Share the cost of a tandem bicycle and go cycling together, or hire a personal trainer who'll help design personalized exercises to suit your body types. Many gyms these days offer 2 for 1 membership deals that you can take advantage of. You'll find it a lot easier to get on track and stay motivated with someone who shares your fitness goals.
Tip#5: Never Think About The Word 'Exercise':
Lots of people think about exercise in the following manner-
Exercise = Sweaty, painful workouts = (Leading up to) Endless creative excuses to avoid it altogether and justifying their actions under the banner of 'no time', 'work overload' etc.
The only way to avoid this issue is to never think of exercise as working out while finding fun and innovative ways to incorporate more movement into your daily life. If you dislike walking, how about combing the beach for treasure with a metal detector? Perhaps throwing frisbees, playing volleyball or going for nature walks is more your cup of tea? Sex is a great calorie burner too. Instead of 'exercising' think about physical activities that allow you to have more fun and include that in your everyday routine. For instance you don't need to take half an hour out to exercise every day, if you are taking many 5 minute breaks throughout your day to just dance a little.
You can extend this habit of 'more movement' in any situation. Engage in a little dance when watching your favorite music shows or do a little kickboxing or bicep curls during TV commercial breaks. Go window shopping through all levels of that mall and walk up and down the stairs instead of taking the escalator. Park your car further away to walk a bit longer to get to your destination.
What's the point of all this? The single number one cause for weight gain is inactivity. When you incorporate more movement you speed up your metabolism, build muscle and burn excess calories. The more you build muscle, the more your body's metabolism rises naturally and you'll be burning more calories even if you are just sitting still. So just get in as much physical activity as you can as often as you can and make it fun for yourself!
Tip#6: Soup It Up:
One of the best tips I have to share with you is to eat a bowl of soup every day. Eating a nutritious bowl of low-salt soup daily is not only nourishing but it'll help you lose more weight steadily. Try to avoid canned soups that are chock full of chemicals and salt and make your own instead. You can easily whip up a large batch of delicious soup at one go and deep-freeze portions to eat during the week. When eating out choose clear soups as opposed to the more creamy ones; the latter normally have more fat and calories.
Tip#7: Set Realistic Mini-Goals:
Which one sounds easier to you - moving a mountain in a day or shifting pebbles over a period of months? It's a lot easier to make small changes that add up over time. Instead of setting a goal like - 'I will lose 8 inches around my waist over the next one year', set a smaller goal like 'I'll be thrilled if I lose half an inch around my waistline every month' and then measure your progress on a monthly basis.
This way you won't get depressed about or be sighing over your waistline if you've only lost 2 inches over 4 months because you haven't lost 8 inches yet. Instead you'll be quite justly celebrating your success!
Set mini-goals on a weekly basis too. Decide on the lifestyle changes you want to incorporate and choose to incorporate just one change every week. For instance, you can decide to switch to low fat diary the first week, eliminate deep fried foods the second week and so on. You won't be biting off more than you can chew and you will find it easy to make long lasting, permanent and healthier changes that help you to lose weight quickly over time. Remember that you are in this for the long haul and setting realistic mini-goals will help you to create healthy new habits that stick.
It's also important to review your goals weekly, evaluate your progress and figure out what worked and what didn't! Reassess and adjust your goals accordingly and don't hesitate to take on larger challenges over time.
Tip#8: Substitute & Swap:
Quite a few people are unaware of just how many calories they consume in the form of creamy sauces, butter, margarine etc. If you are cooking substitute low calorie ingredients for high calorie ones and you'll be cutting down significantly on your calorie intake. For example you can use evaporated skimmed milk for soups and sauces to get the texture and flavor of cream sans the fat. Use low fat yogurt instead of sour cream, fruit purees instead of butter, applesauce instead of shortening and unsweetened cocoa powder instead of chocolate. Using healthier substitutes in your cooking allows you to still eat the delicious dishes you like without sacrificing on taste and piling on more pounds.
Swap vegetables for starches on your plate. You'll consume around 100-200 calories less by increasing the amount of vegetables on your plate and reducing the amount of bread, rice or pasta you may eat. Following this one simple tip can help you lose a dress or pant size in a year's time
Tip#9: Spice It All:
Eating spicy foods will help curb your appetite. Food that has a lot of flavor stimulates your taste buds and you'll be more satisfied with a smaller amount of food. It's easy to feel bored eating low fat foods because your tongue is used to the flavor that fat adds to certain foods. However when you add spices like garlic, ginger, aniseed, cinnamon, allspice, oregano, paprika, tarragon, basil etc. you'll find that they really enhance the flavor of any food you prepare. Experiment with different types of spices and come up with your own special combinations.
Tip#10: Experiment With Healthier Alternative Methods Of Cooking:
Try preparing your favorite foods in different more nutritious ways. Instead of deep frying food, pan-fry or stir-fry it with the help of a non-stick pan and a low fat oil spray. Poach your eggs instead of frying them, steam veggies instead of boiling them and grill meat or fish. You don't have to cut down on potatoes either. Just bake them. A baked potato has around 160 calories and no fat. Just don't snack on fries. When you are cooking avoid sampling or nibbling on foods incessantly. You may end up eating an entire porting without even sitting at the table!
Above all, begin cooking well before the time you actually start feeling hungry. Otherwise you may find yourself contemplating those burgers, fries and other junk food at the last minute, just because it's so convenient. Also remember to trim all fat from your meats before cooking them.
Tip#11: Stock your kitchen Right:
It's easy to be successful in the right environment. You can set yourself up for success by having healthy snacks and meals on hand. You can easily put together a nutritious meal in ten minutes or less with the right ingredients. Here are few foods to stock up on - Pre-cut fresh veggies, tomatoes, whole-grain pasta, whole grain bread, tortillas or pitas, reduced fat cheese, pre-grilled fish or chicken, salad greens, herbs and spices etc. Also keep lots of fresh fruit around.
It's easy to give in to temptation if it is lying around! Make it a point to remove all the undesirable foods from your kitchen. Get rid of all 'empty calorie' foods such as chips, cookies, crackers, colas, pies, cakes etc. Remember to replace every unhealthy snack with a healthier version. For instance if you have a habit of munching on cookies, or something sweet at five in the evening then you can either replace them with healthier versions or have pieces of melon or strawberries instead.
Create your own 'goodie bag' or survival kit. You can pack it with protein bars, fruit, low-fat snacks etc. Not only will you be able to reach for a healthy snack at any moment but it will also save you from popping over to the nearest pizza joint out of desperation.
Tip#12: Trick Your Perception:
The President of the American Institute for Preventive Medicine, Don R. Powell recently stated that a lot of eating was psychological. If you are served a small portion of food on a big plate you'll get the feeling that you haven't gotten enough food even if that's not true. Conversely a small portion of food served on a big plate looks totally generous. So how can you use that fact to your advantage?
You can trick yourself into being satisfied with less if you are served food on a smaller plate. Keep a set of small plates, bowls, cups and spoons on hand. Try serving yourself foods and treats in these smaller containers for a month and see what difference it makes. Remember the trick here is to use this tip to eat less, not go back for doubles and triple servings just because you know you are using smaller containers!
Use the same psychology when dining out. Eat off smaller plates or the salad plates and order children's portions if you aren't particularly hungry.
Tip#13: Avoid All Fad Diets & Magic Pills:
Don't attempt any 'fad diets' that advocate an unbalanced intake of food. Lots of the new-fangled diets out there are quite extreme in their approach, depriving the body of the nutrients it needs. While you may get results you will see them at the expense of your metabolism and they typically won't last for a long time either.
If you are going to take up any diet make sure that you get a balanced intake of complex carbohydrates, lean protein along with leafy green vegetables. Remember the goal here is to eat right and lose weight easily safely and permanently.
You should also know better than to believe that the solution to your problems lies in some sort of 'magic pill.' Don't fall victim to all the latest fat-burning miracle cures that promise to melt the pounds away! There is really no substitute to eating and exercising right. Would you believe any car salesman who tried to sell you a pill instead of petrol? You don't need the hassle of coping with the side effects of these drugs and most of them are supposed to work only in combination with a proper diet and exercise... (Duh!...)
Tip#14: Adopt The Right Mental Attitude:
Instead of being focused on the outcome, develop a mental attitude of following a process. If your goal is to lose 20 pounds (an outcome) then you'll be measuring your success in terms of how close you get to losing those 20 pounds. However if you make your goals all about the process of losing weight, such as getting 15 minutes of any cardio activity every other day and doing yoga in between then you'll be a success every day! As long as you make your process goals really specific and have both short-term and long-term terms that dovetail together you'll make fantastic progress.
Just remember to create the type of process goals that you'll find personally interesting enough to maintain. There's no point signing up for a new gym membership if you hate going to the gym. If you love being outdoors, then your process goal could be 30 minutes of roller skating, cycling, hiking, power walking, kickboxing etc. Don't try to do anything you intensely dislike just because you think it's good for you - you'll lose interest in it eventually. The key word here is sustainability. Start with small, easy processes or habits and pretty soon you'll have a track record of successes that will boost your confidence and have you aiming higher.
Tip#15: Have A Bounce Back Plan:
We are all human. You'll probably slip up sometime or be discouraged when you don't see results as fast. That's all part of the process of change. Everyone experiences setbacks from time to time. Don't be harsh or berate yourself for not being perfect. Slipping up or missing your workouts doesn't mean that you'll never reach your goals or that you are a failure. Losing weight is all about making smarter choices more often than poor ones. Think about why you slipped up and come up with specific strategies to overcome the issue.
You may find yourself making poor food choices in the company of friends, when snacking at home or faced with buffet tables at restaurants. Have a plan in place for how you will deal with these events and stick to your plan when you find yourself in these situations.
Tip#16: Shop With Colors In Mind:
The key to losing weight easily is to shop right! After all, you can't binge on unhealthy foods if you don't buy them in the first place. Make a list of all the items you need before going to the grocery shop. Once you get there, move on to the fruit and vegetable aisles and fill your shopping cart with them first.
Shopping with colors in mind is not only fun, but it also ensures that you get proper nutrition. Shop for greens and purples on one day (kale, spinach, zucchini, broccoli, cabbage, eggplants, kohlrabi) and go for oranges and yellows the next (carrots, pumpkin, summer squash, sweet corn, sweet potatoes) etc. Head over to local farmer markets if there are any nearby to get tasty organic fresh produce.
Avoid making multiple trips to the grocery store and stick to your list. That way you won't be tempted to stock up on junk foods.
Tip#17: Eat At The Right Time:
The body processes foods differently depending upon when they are eaten. Proteins and fats eaten at breakfast help to give you more energy. However when they are consumed for dinner, they tend to increase the tendency towards weight gain. Try to eat dinner at around 7 pm or earlier.
Many people sabotage their weight loss efforts at the end of the day. You may be tempted to snack or indulge in a luscious dessert or drink your favorite beverages. If you must eat really late then try to stick to fruit, low-calorie cereal bars or low-fat sugarless ice cream. Don't overload your system with extra calories right before you hit the sack.
Tip#18: Eat Lots of Fiber and Drink More Water:
Many people find that themselves experiencing constipation when they begin to lose fat. It's important to keep your metabolism in order by eating lots of fiber and drinking more liquids. Eat lots of whole-grain foods and more vegetables and fruits like pears, plums, apples, oranges etc.
Drink whenever you are thirsty. The amount of water you need varies depending upon your body type and activity levels. Keep a water bottle on hand and monitor the amount of water you drink. You can discover how many liters of water your body needs on a daily basis with a little experimentation. Cut out all sugary drinks from your diet and just drink water or more green tea. If you've been a fan of sodas and were used to drinking them often, you'll find yourself losing around 5 pounds or more fast by following this one single tip.
Follow these tips and you'll be well on your way towards achieving your weight loss goals easily and quickly.
Tip#19: However in my personal experience I've discovered that knowing what you need to do and actually doing them are two different things entirely. You've made your health top priority and that's quite laudable! How do you stay on track and make sure that you follow these tips long enough to see real change though? That's why I've included the following four power tips to turbo boost your weight loss efforts:
a) Create A Contract/Covenant With Yourself:
It's important to give your weight loss efforts some tangible form. I'd suggest getting clear on your weight loss goals and formulating certain processes or habits to begin with. Write down your long-term goal and the short-term processes that help you get there first in a sheet of paper. Then rewrite all these points in the form of a contract to yourself and sign it. Place it somewhere where it will catch your eye frequently. Place it on your desktop or on your fridge or kitchen table. I'd also include a non-food reward for meeting short-term process goals and a fabulous prize or reward for meeting your overall weight loss goal.
b) Keep A Food Journal:
This one tip has helped people thousands of people to lose weight super fast. Noting down what you eat, when and where will not only help you become more aware of your eating habits but you'll also be identify why you eat and the feelings that you associate with eating certain foods.
You'll quickly discover your problem areas, discover whether you are an emotional eater or not and can take laser-targeted action towards eliminating the root causes of any eating issues you might have.
c) Keep Track Of Milestones:
It's not enough to say that you'll start soon or sometime within the next few months. Instead mark definite dates on your calendar for each process, habit or lifestyle you change you plan to incorporate. If you have dates marked off on your calendar for the day you stop drinking sugary sodas, the day you switch from high-fat diary to low-fat diary etc. you'll be able to see how wonderfully well you are doing with changing your habits by just glancing at the calendar!
You'll find it immensely motivating to keep such a visual track record of your success in plain sight. You'll also find that it gives you a much needed emotional boost whenever you thumb through your calendar. In case you ever begin to doubt your success, you can inspire yourself immediately by looking at your track record of achievements.
d) Create a Photo Record Or Maintain Your Own Blog:
Photographs tell it like it is! Take pictures of yourself before you begin your weight loss program. Make sure that you take pictures of yourself from the front, rear and also include a profile. You can track your progress by taking pictures weekly and pasting them in your own journal or by maintaining an online blog!
The latter is an excellent way to express your thoughts on the whole subject and connect with other people who may be making the same journey. You'll either gain more friends or more fans and we all could use more of both!
I hope these tips help you to begin and stay on track. Your body is a miracle and instead of viewing it in an unflattering light, love yourself for who and what you are and what you are becoming. Make your end goal more real to you than what you are living right now, feel it and live now as if you were already that beautiful lighter you. This will help you get there faster and will also help you to enjoy the journey. Good Luck!