Last week, I told you 10 Pitfalls to weight loss. I had so funny twitter comments. From the Writing Wenches: chocolate, wine, and beer. I agree! We all have our splurge items. But I’m going to tell you, splurge items aren’t that bad if you have them in moderation. And speaking of moderation, did anyone see the news the WHO came out with yesterday about processed meat being carcinogenic. I found a great article about how it’s still okay to eat meat in moderation. People have been saying for years that Americans eat too much meat. I’ve been a vegetarian and a meat-eater, and right now I’m a moderate meat-eater. We have meat at home maybe once or twice a week, and I order it when I go out to eat sometimes. I’m thinking about reducing it further.
But I digress, because I’m not supposed to be writing about the horrors of meat consumption. I’m giving you TEN ways to lose weight.
You might not like the first one, but it works for me:
- Weigh Every Day: Studies have been done, and people who weigh every day lose more weight and keep it off. Don’t stress over the number, but if you have a target weight, weighing every day can let you know if you backslid or help you pinpoint what foods you ate that may not be helping you lose weight. Once the weights off, weighing every day can help you stay at the weight you want to be. (Disclaimer: If you have body image issues or an eating disorder this is not the path for you)
- Buddy Up: Having someone to take the journey to weight loss with you is great. Accountability when you have a buddy in your journey helps. You can buddy up with someone you know IRL like your husband or your best friend. Or you can join a site like MyFitnessPal and participate in forums of people, just like you, who are trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy lifestyle.
- Add Foods to Your Diet: Say what? Ever had an avocado? What about cherries, blueberries, kale? Add healthy foods to your diet. Find out what you like. Adding more fruits and veggies gives your body vitamins and minerals it needs, plus it naturally adds fiber. Fiber helps you to feel more full, is great for your intestinal system, and helps you lose weight.
- Make Small Changes: When I decided to do something about my weight four years ago, I was overwhelmed by all the changes I needed to make. Make one small change a week or every two weeks. Wait for it to kick in, and then make the next change. If you’re drinking five sodas a day, drop down to three, then to one, until eventually you’ve knocked sodas out of your diet. Small changes stick and add up to big changes which will help you lead a healthy lifestyle.
- Exercise: Can’t afford a gym membership? Walk your dog, 15 minutes a day. Next week up it to 20 minutes. Dance in front of MTV (do they even play music anymore?). Do chores. Run around the back yard kicking a ball with your kids. Do anything except sit on your bottom.
- Use Smaller Plates: I said this last week, but using smaller dinnerware helps you to reduce your portion size. Let those big dinner plates in your cabinet collect dust. Pull out your salad plates and cereal bowls, and eat out of them instead of the larger version. When the salad plate looks full, you’ll stop eating once the plate is clean, and you’ve naturally and easily reduced the amount you’re eating!
- Drink Water: I can’t say this enough. People are constantly confusing thirst for hunger. If you’re hungry, drink a glass of water, wait ten minutes, and if you’re still hungry dig in!
- Plan Ahead: Plan ahead. Decide what meals you’re going to eat on Sunday. Grocery shop, do a meal calendar, and stick to it. If you’re going out to eat, pull up the menu on line, look at the nutritional information and pick a food you like that won’t blow your calories out of the water. Bring high protein or fiber snacks to work (i.e., nuts, fruits, roasted chickpeas).
- Go Whole Food Instead of Processed: Stick to the outside aisles of the grocery store to stock up on leafy greens, lean meats, and dairy. Stay away from the middle aisles and the boxed and processed food-like-products stuffed with salt, chemicals, and things your body doesn’t know how to process.
- Sleep: Sleep is so important to your body and mind. Get your 6-8 hours a day and you’ll reach for the right foods and make healthier choices the next morning.
The thing I learned most on my continuing weight loss journey, is you’re going for a sustainable lifestyle change. If you think about it that way, then you’ll make necessary changes you need and you’ll be able to keep them. The other thing to remember, is it’s okay to splurge! Eat a piece of chocolate cake every once in awhile. Let yourself have that candy bar. Just don’t do it every day.
What are some changes you’re making to your lifestyle to become healthier? What’s worked for you? What hasn’t?
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