They say that patience is a virtue. But, one area people exhibit impatience is when it comes to weight loss. The truth is: as an obese or overweight individual, it took you quite a long time to accumulate those extra pounds that pushed you into the next larger clothing size. But with each weigh-in, you want a lower number on the scale. Not just want, you want it fast!
I want to assure you that with a few changes to your diet, exercise routine and lifestyle, you can help yourself lose weight fast, naturally and safely.
Here are 5 tips to help you in this natural weight loss journey.
(1) Physical Activity Strategy
Is Your Doctor Aware You Want to Do This?
To lose weight fast and in a natural way, you have to speed-up your regular exercises – cardiovascular and strength training exercises. Remember that to lose weight, you need to burn fat and build muscles.
Aerobic exercises, such as running, walking, swimming and cycling, help you raise your heart rate and burn calories immediately. Strength training, like weight lifting, helps boost your metabolism thereby increasing your lean muscles; helping your muscles burn more calories even when you are at rest.
Physical lifestyle changes are also important in the bid for fast weight loss. Think through your daily lifestyle activities and find areas where you can scale up. Consider the following:
– Parking your car farther away so you can take a walk to and from your destination
– Walking the dog
– Taking the stairs rather than using the elevator.
In all, try to alternate your exercises, which not only eliminates boredom but also, challenges different muscles and ensures your metabolic rate remains high throughout your weight loss efforts.
(2) Eating Strategy
Basically, if you consume more calories than you can burn, it translates to excess body fat. Remember, one pound of body fat is equivalent to 3,500 calories.
Eat servings – not portions – of healthy foods in order to lose weight fast. A healthy diet that gives you all your essential nutrients comprises foods from all food groups including vegetables, fruits, lean sources of protein, whole grains, nuts and seeds.
A higher protein diet helps you burn more calories naturally through a process called thermogenesis (the amount of calories your body burns digesting foods). Because proteins – seafood, eggs, lean beef, etc – take longer time than carbohydrates or fats to digest, they help you feel full longer thereby reducing your daily calorie intake.
Make 50% of your meals fruits and vegetables. These foods, high in fiber and water content, are rich in nutrients that you need for a well-balanced, healthy diet. They make you full longer thereby helping you reduce the amount of calories you take.
Your body needs carbohydrates to function and operate normally. Choose whole grains that are higher in fiber and other nutrients which may help you lose weight faster. Keep your total intake between 1 – 2 servings a day.
If you must eat snacks in between meals, ensure they are healthy. Spinach salad + raw vegetables; berries + grilled chicken; yogurt + fruits & nuts; etc, for example.
Water is also part of this because it’s all about ingesting. Drinking lots of fresh, pure water each day helps your body flush out excess toxins and wastes. You can drink a glass of water before each meal which helps your stomach feel full faster thereby helping you consume few calories to satisfy your hunger.
For variety, you can jazz your water up by adding some real lemon or orange or pineapple or cucumber, etc juice.
(3) Rest Strategy
The best form of rest is sleep. Adequate sleep (7-9 hours every night) is important for you to lose weight fast and for your overall health ultimately.
Research indicates that inadequate sleep can lead to metabolism issues which can cause weight gain or weight loss difficulties.
(4) Support Group Strategy
A support group should consist of individuals struggling to lose weight as you do or those who are in support of your cause. This could be members of your family, friends or even coworkers who share your weight loss goals. Support could also be in the form of sharing recipes or other lifestyle changes that can support your weight loss.
In this regard, studies have shown that support groups may help you lose weight and maintain your weight loss long-term.
(5) Measure Your Progress
Measuring your weight loss progress can encourage or discourage you.
I recommend you weigh yourself at a particular time, first thing in the morning when you wake up and in a particular clothing or preferably naked, two times in a week – in the beginning and at the end of the week.