If you’re on a mission to tone up and stay strong through the Holiday season, then it’s really important to try and hone your fat loss and minimize potential fat storage. And we all know, there’s a whole lot of “potential” lurking around us. Losing pounds feels good, but if those pounds are precious muscle, then you’re actually hurting your overall ability to achieve your desired results. In order to maximize healthy weight loss, let’s try and manage our calories more effectively, to avoid those massive ebbs and flows that inevitably come around this time of year.
Weight Management Tip #1: Keep Track
Your willingness to track your food intake is equal to your desire to lose weight. Being serious about losing weight means taking note of every meal you consume, making sure these calories contain enough protein, and stopping when you meet your daily allowance.
Weight Management Tip #2: Always Eat Breakfast
Possibly the most fundamental eating tip of all time, a healthy breakfast with a good protein source will help your body utilize good calories throughout the a.m. hours, letting you get to lunch without being tempted by that mid-morning office treat.
Weight Management Tip #3: Avoid Getting Too Hungry
Dieters often fast until they can’t take it any longer. Unfortunately, many poor choices are made in the heat of the hunger moment. Keep healthy (high protein and low carb) snacks nearby to stave off hunger and drink plenty of water to avoid eating when you should be drinking.
Weight Management Tip #4: Underestimate Your Routine
Yes, you just worked your butt off in the gym for an hour… But you probably didn’t burn as many calories as you think. To keep from overeating immediately after a workout, grab a bite within 30 minutes, but make it a small bite. And drink plenty of water. Then wait. Your brain needs time to tell your body it’s full.
Weight Management Tip #5: Stay Home
Your favorite restaurant may be calling your name, but don’t listen! By cooking your own dinner at home, you’ll sidestep a variety of pitfalls that occur while eating out.
Weight Management Tip #6: Reduce Alcohol Intake
It helps you relax and—if you drink red wine—can offer health benefits. But alcohol also comes with a lot of useless calories. To avoid having more calories to burn than necessary, skip the bar and grab another glass of water. You can notice the theme here! Most people do not drink nearly enough water this time of year, because it’s not hot. Our bodies still need that consistent intake, regardless.
Weight Management Tip #7: Redirect
Sticking with any sort of plan gets hard, even one as simple as this. The next time it gets unbearable, grab your phone and walk out of the danger zone (your kitchen) and call a friend or loved one. Ask how life is going or plan a movie night—just talk about whatever will take your mind off that temptation that will ultimately ruin your efforts.
Weight Management Tip #8: Hit the Hay
Remember when your parents gave you a curfew because “Nothing good happens after midnight”? Well, it still applies. Get to bed to avoid late-night snacking and help your body function its best!
Weight Management Tip #9: Go Green (First)
There are lots of good foods out there that you need—lean meats, dairy, etc. But don’t let these be the bulk of your diet. Start your meals with something healthy and green to keep your carb count low, and belly full.
Weight Management Tip #10: Weigh Yourself
You might not like the idea of jumping on the scale, but if you don’t weigh yourself, you may not recognize your progress. Just as you should keep an eye on your calories, you should also count your pounds and make adjustments to your eating and exercise routines as needed, based on how your body responds. Listen to it!
Weight Management Tip #11: Disconnect Diet from Life
Life, in general, comes with those ups and downs. Your diet should not. When stressed, don’t go to the vending machine. Put on your walking shoes and get going.
Weight Management Tip #12: Keep the Burn Going
Working out is not supposed to be a walk in the park. To push your body to its true potential and to burn more calories, don’t take long breaks between lower weight and body weight exercises. Rest no more than 30 seconds after each exercise to keep your heart rate up.
Weight Management Tip #13: Goodbye Sugary Sweet
Everyone needs a quick sweet on occasion. Make sure yours is natural, whole fruit rather than regular old sugar. Every day, it seems more research is showing that refined sugars and high-fructose corn syrup increase your likelihood of weight gain more than anything else.
Weight Management Tip #14: Move Now!
Maintaining a consistent, challenging exercise program is essential for your overall health and well-being, but don’t let that be your only exercise. Build 15-minute windows throughout your day during which you can take a brisk walk, stretch, or just generally move around a bit. You’ll be more alert at work, energetic, and motivated.
Weight Management Tip #15: Don’t Give Up
You may think it’s too easy a tip to list, but very few people have the will power necessary to keep with a program long enough to see the desired results. Commit yourself today to being one of those few. If you’re not yet a personal training client, it may be the perfect time to really experience the difference when you decide to finally put yourself first.