I always have people asking me how they can lose weight. It is just the nature of the business. As a personal trainer and nutrition coach, weight loss is my main area of focus.Because I talk with people about this day in and day out I thought I'd share with you the five most common things that I tell those who ask me how they can reach their goal weight and stay there.
1) Journal your food
- First things first. Most people think that their lack of exercise is the reason they aren't losing weight. Yes, it is a contributing factor, that is true. Habitual inactivity is killing Americans. HOWEVER, I can confidently say that your diet is %80 of the battle. Think of it this way: You could burn from 500-600 calories by working out for an hour. You can eat 500 calories in about 30 seconds. Journaling your food will help you to be more accountable for what you are eating.
2) Lift Weights
- Cardio is important as well, but if you want to increase your metabolism and lose weight you have to engage in strength training. Strength training will increase your muscle mass which will increase the amount of calories your body burns per minute. The more calories you are burning per minute the more calories you burn overall. The more calories burned the less calories stored and the less fat you will have on your body. You WILL NOT get bulky. You WILL lose inches, and you WILL get toned. All good things come from lifting weights.
3) Cut out sugar
- If you REALLY want to see a change in your weight and your body composition, cut out the sugar. Sugar doesn't have much to offer you in the form of positive nutrition, and unless you are carb loading for a marathon you don't have any need to worry about your glucose stores. In fact, you will be doing your blood sugar levels a favor by cutting out the sugar. To read more on why cutting sugar out of your diet will help your health and your weight loss read HERE.
4) Drink Water
- Not only does water help you to feel full it flushes your system and helps keep you cleansed. If you have eaten too much salt, water can help you to flush that sodium out. Your body is made up primarily of water, so it only makes sense that we need to keep ourselves hydrated, right? I tell my clients to aim to drink 100 oz of water a day. Try it. I dare you.
5) Don't give your body a reason to gain weight.
- This is fairly self explanatory. If you are eating unhealthy foods or over-eating in general, and not exercising, you shouldn't be surprised when you step on the scale and the numbers climb. Eat in a way that you can confidently say you know will help you to get your body to look and feel the way you want it to. Remember your goal is to be eating with a purpose.
There you have it. Fairly basic, but it might do you well to read over that list and do a self evaluation on how you are really doing. Don't find yourself being naive about the limitations you may be placing on yourself. If you want to see changes, you're going to have to change something. It is just that simple.
What has worked for you when it comes to weight loss and staying in shape? Have you applied any of these principles and seen results?
P.S. If you want to win some sweet new workout tunes click HERE to enter October's Sickeningly Sweet Music Mix Giveaway!