In order to achieve your goal of losing those pounds you will need to motivate yourself and think positively. The first step to getting into the right mindset is to dig deep and ask yourself what is holding you back and preventing you from losing weight. Everybody has some excuses buried within them that are preventing them from starting their weight loss plan. Once you know what these are you can easily stop procrastinating and get active. All you have to do is to tell yourself that you will start your weight loss plan today itself, not tomorrow and definitely not next week.
Eliminating common excuses
“But I have too many cravings for sweets and junk food; I am never going to be able to keep to any diet.” Everyone has cravings and you are not alone, when you feel like something sweet just eats some fruit. It will satisfy your urges for sweets and not give you all those calories.
“I will get hungry if I reduce my calories:” Yes everyone has these feelings, but there is a solution to this excuse as well. Drink more water and eat more fiber. This will fill you up and stop you from feeling so hungry. We will go into this in more detail as we discuss your weight loss plan.
“I have tried so many diets and keep on failing:” Many people are afraid of failure but you do not have to have this defeatist attitude. Think positive and realize this weight loss plan is not just another fancy diet but a full program to help you lose weight.
These are just a couple of excuses that you will find yourself using. Now you really need to motivate yourself with a reality check. Wear as few clothes as possible and look into the mirror. Now admit that you are fat and need to lose weight today. Let’s get started on your weight loss plan.
Step one: set yourself some goals with milestones. You will be able to lose 10lb a month that is just 2lb a day. Not hard if you just keep working and thinking positively.
Step two: give yourself a reward when you achieve these goals, but make sure it is not food. It should be something nice like new clothes if you are a woman or something you have really been wanting.
Step three: Take care of your nutrition. In chapter one we will discuss how to do this how to plan your meals
Step four: Exercise and make an exercise régime for yourself. We will discuss this in chapter two.
Step five: Do not give up and keep yourself motivated.
Nutrition is one of the keys to success when it comes to weight loss. You will probably be surprised about the fact that the vast majority of people really do not know the meaning of a healthy diet. Basically the foods we eat should simply be used for getting energy for our bodies, so that we can function well and keep healthy. However most of us do not eat the correct foods and tend to overindulge. This leads to the body storing energy from excess foods in the form of fat.
There are 5 basic categories of foods
Proteins: are found in meats, fish and poultry. They are also found in eggs, soy beans, legumes of all sorts like beans and peas and of course lentils. Whole grain rice and grains also have some protein. Proteins are used by the body to repair and build muscles.
Carbohydrates are found in many foods, such as grains like bread, rice and pasta. Some vegetables like potatoes, peas and corn will also contain carbohydrates. Some fruits like bananas are also high in carbohydrates. Carbohydrates give the body essential sugars in the form of glyconutrients, which have multiple functions in the body, including cell communication. They also are a main source of energy for the body. This is why it is important not to completely cut carbohydrates from your diet. However excess of carbohydrates are easily stored by the body in the form of fat cells.
Dairy foods: As well as protein these foods are valuable sources of calcium, some vitamins, like A and D and minerals. Calcium and vitamin D help with the creation and maintenance of healthy bones and teeth. Calcium is also important for the nervous system. It helps in the contraction of blood vessels and is an important factor in communication between the cells.
Vitamins and minerals: these can be found in most foods but are found in greater quantities in vegetables and fruits. In order to get the most out of these foods it is best to cook them as little as possible and if possible eat them raw. Grains also contain vitamin B complex. Vitamins and minerals are also added to a variety of foods, especially children’s food. These substances are used for a variety of functions in the body, ranging from the nervous system to the protection of skin and functioning of the eyes.
Fats and oils: there are good fats and bad fats but even the god ones should be eaten in moderation. The ones to avoid are transfats, as these are made up of processed fats like hydrolyzed coconut and cottonseed oil and are very bad for you. Saturated fats should be reduced if possible, but are not as bad. Good fats like monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats should be eaten sparingly but on a daily basis. Avocadoes, nuts and oils such as olive oil (virgin) canola oil and peanut butter are all rich in these good fats and oils. These good fats and oils help to insulate the body from the cold, promote blood clotting and play an important part in controlling inflammation. They also help with brain development.
Change your diet: The average person eats a lot of refined food and foods that are high in fats, sugar and salt. Additionally sweetened drinks contain a sugar called fructose. The body does not metabolize this properly which leads to extra fat cells and the production of toxins. Leptin, an important substance in your body, will be inhibited due to the fructose not being metabolized properly. Leptin is the substance that tells your body when to stop eating, so if it is not doing its job you will find that you do not know when to stop and can mistakenly overeat.
Cutting out junk foods: Your first step will be to list all the junk food you are eating. These include cookies, candies, sodas, cake, ice cream, chips and sugar products. Junk foods are simply empty calorie foods that have quite a large amount of calories but little or no nutrition.
Once you have your list made up you can then start to eliminate all these foods from your shelves. When you have done this you will have quite a pile of foods that you will need to give away or just throw them. Your next step will be to replace those unhealthy snacks and deserts with healthy ones like fruits, vegetables and protein snacks. This is the toughest thing you will have to do in this whole weight loss plan. However it will be worth it when you see the new you.
Replace refined foods with whole grain foods: For example white bread can be exchanged for brown and white refined rice replaced by brown rice. You can also eat whole grain pasta. These whole grain foods will give you more fiber and nutrition. Fiber will fill you up and make your digestive system work better. It will also help to increase metabolism. We will discuss more about metabolism in chapter three.
Eat more fruits and vegetables: These foods are high in fiber, vitamins and minerals. They are low in calories, especially vegetables. This means you can get full without consuming all those calories. They are also high in water content so will make you feel full without having to consume a lot of them. Fiber will help your digestive system work better and faster.
Drink more water: Water is the source of life and ideally you should drink at least eight pints a day or roughly eight glasses per day. If you want to lose weight you should replace sweet drinks and sodas with water. This will save you a lot of calories and help your digestion. Drinking water with your meals will also help to digest your food and make you feel fuller. Water will also flush out toxins from your body which will improve your health. It helps to prevent constipation and improve your digestion. This in turn will speed up your metabolism.
Control fats: Try to avoid frying foods in deep oil and always avoid over browning and scorching as this will change the food nutrition and make the food less digestible and nutritious. In fact the foods can become unhealthy for you if they get overcooked. If you want to cut calories, fry your omelets or fish with a minimum of good oil like olive oil and do not overcook.
Planning your meals
Create a menu: Make a weekly menu which will give you varieties every day. This will prevent you from getting bored with the food and tempted to eat the wrong foods. Remember that half your plate should be made up of vegetables and the rest proteins and a few carbohydrates.
Keep a food journal: This is a good idea as it will help you to keep track of what you eat and how much weight you are losing. Some weeks you will find that you have lost more pounds than others. Keeping a food journal will help you to know why this is. Different people have various metabolisms and will be able to handle foods and calories in different ways. Keeping a food journal will allow you to understand how your body handles various foods and which foods work best for your weight loss plan.
Balancing the calories: Balancing your nutrition is all about calories, you need to take in fewer calories than you use. By this means you will automatically lose weight. Firstly what is a calorie? It is simply a measurement of energy. For example 100 calories will give your body 100 units of energy. Different foods will equal a different amount of calories. I gram of oil will be equal to 9 calories and I gram of carbohydrate is equal to 4 calories. You can find calorie counters online that will tell you how many calories foods have. This will help you to calculate and plan your meals.
At first this will be easy and you will find that you lose weight on a regular basis. However after a few weeks you will find that this rate will drop off and you may find that you are not losing those last few pounds. This is normal and just means that you have reached a plateau. Your body has adjusted itself to your new calorie regime and you are not losing pounds anymore. All you have to do is to adjust your calorie intake again and you will find that you are losing pounds in a regular way again.
It is wise to only weigh yourself once a week not daily so that you really notice how much you have lost. It is also good to get a weighing machine that shows fat percentage, because more important than weight loss is actual fat loss.
Smaller portions: Eat little and often, instead of 3 meals per day eat 6 small ones. This will stop you from feeling hungry and getting those cravings. Eating more frequently will speed up your metabolism. Using smaller plates will also help you to feel that you are eating more. Try to choose smaller portions when eating out and cut your dressings and sauces to a minimum.
Balancing your meals and distributing carbohydrates: When you plan your meals you should consider how to balance your meals to utilize the most calories. It is wise to eat a bigger breakfast, moderate lunch and small evening meal. Most of us do the opposite. Your maximum amount of carbohydrates should be taken at breakfast and fewer at your evening meal. This is because you will burn more calories as you work during the day and less when you sleep at night. You will then have 3 small snacks in between the meals. These usually consist of protein and vitamins. By this means you will find that your body will be less inclined to store fat and you will burn more of those calories.
Resource Diet To go: This is a program that will help you to plan your meals better. They have 3 different meal plans to choose from. The Traditional Low-Fat plan gives you 5 weeks’ worth of meals and menu plans. They are low fat meals that will provide you with 1200, 1500 calories per day. The average working woman should consume around 1500 calories per day and the average man 2000.
There is a Vegetarian Low-Fat meal program available for vegetarians. Sometimes it is very difficult to find foods that are truly vegetarian, when you are trying to lose weight. DietToGo takes the hassle out of trying to find these foods by providing you with pure vegetarian low fat foods.
The third type of meal plan is the Low Carb Meal. This plan helps you to cut down carbs and takes the worry out of finding good quality low carb foods that taste good. They also offer 5 weeks’ worth of meals. All these meal plans are delivered to your door and are fresh great tasting good quality foods.
Exercise is the second part of your weight loss plan. This is how you will burn more calories and maintain your weight once you have reached your optimum weight. Exercise goes hand in hand with nutrition when you are making your weight loss plan.
To make your exercise plan successful you will need to be motivated and disciplined, but above all you must have a workout plan. a good plan will ensure that you will be able to burn the maximum amount of calories. There are many ways to exercise and you can easily find the right ones to fit your lifestyle. Remember to take into consideration your age, health and how much exercise you have been used to doing. There are three categories of exercise, passive, no weights and weights.
Passive exercise: These exercises are good to start off with, especially if you have not been doing much exercise and you are a little out of shape. It is not good to suddenly rush into exercise if you are not used to it. This will shock your body and will not be good for your health. Instead you should always start gradually and work your way up to a regular work out régime.
Walking: One of the best ways to commence exercising is walking. This should be done as a daily régime. You can choose to walk outside, if the weather is good, or inside using a treadmill if the weather or neighborhood is not suitable for walking. The goal of this exercise is to work up to a brisk 5 mile walk.
Bike riding: It is a great way to exercise but again be sure that you are able to do this. Once you know how, you can start using your bicycle to get to nearby places instead of your car. You can also join bike clubs and go on cycling trips with the group. Mountain bikes are good for this type of exercise if you want to go on more rugged terrain.
Dancing: It is another way to exercise. You can either dance in a group or have a partner. You will use all your muscles and will lose weight guaranteed. This is a demanding form of exercise but can also be a lot of fun.
Yoga: It is a great way to exercise and work on every muscle. Again this should be done every day. At first you should take some lessons to learn the basic positions, once you have learnt these you can use videos to practice more demanding positions. Yoga will improve your digestion and your overall health.
Standing and Sitting: Another good passive exercise is standing up and sitting. This is good if you have a sitting job, remember to do this at a rapid pace if possible. Also remember to do it quite a few times a day for a few minutes, each time.
Swimming: It is another good way to exercise. You can use an outside pool, the sea, or an indoor pool depending on the weather and where you live. The important thing about swimming is to be sure that you swim briskly for a certain amount of time to be sure that you are achieving your goal of losing weight. Jogging and gardening are also good forms of exercise. Remember to start gently and work your way up to your goal with jogging.
Exercising without weights: This is when you use machines that do not involve weights, like tread mills, exercise bikes etc. The nice part of exercising like this is the fact that it can be done at home with just one of these machines. It can also be fun and is a great way to relax and work off stress as well as pounds. Something like an exercise bike is portable so you can place it in your garage, room or even outside to do your exercises. You can also watch your favorite TV show or movie while exercising on a bike.
For exercising without weights you can either buy your own equipment or take out a monthly subscription to a gym. This will depend on how much you can discipline yourself. Exercising without weights requires a daily schedule, but when you exercise with weights you need to do 20 minutes a day three times a week. This is because your body will need a day’s rest in between your workouts when you use weights as this is quite a strenuous form of exercise and your muscles need this resting time to build.
If you are working on equipment without weights like tread mills and exercise bikes etc. you can just use them until you are tired but if you are working with weights you will need some training, otherwise you can hurt yourself. Always get some training from a professional before you do weight training.
There are lots of fun ways to exercise at home without using weights, but you do need to have an exercise plan and the discipline to work out every day. You should work up to about 20 minute’s everyday for your workout régime. You can use a rowing machine, an exercise bike or a treadmill or an exercise ball, it really does not matter as long as you start exercising as soon as possible.
Belly fat exercises: If your primary problem is belly fat then there are a few simple ways to concentrate on getting rid of those love handles and unsightly belly fat. Here are a number of exercises that will help you get rid of fat in this area.
Climbing stairs: This is the easiest way to lose that tummy and you will be able to get your legs and thighs looking good as well. Walk up and down stairs for around 30 minutes every day and see the results in 2 to 4 weeks. At first you may have to do this slowly but work up to a brisk walk.
Squatting: You will need to place your hands on the ground and crouch down, then stand up. Do this 100 times and then take a rest. You can also do the vacuum exercise. You will just need to suck your stomach muscles in as much as you can. Hold for one minute, relax and repeat. Do this for 20 minutes every day. Using a Hula Hoop and doing bicycle crunches will also help get rid of belly fat.
Aerobic exercise: If you like being really active and need some rhythm to your exercises then these exercises might be just what you need. You can either do this in a group at the gym, with friends or alone with videos and some rhythm music.
Workout plan: In order to get the most out of your exercises you should create a work out plan. Basically it should consist of a number of different exercises. This will help you to ensure that your régime does not get boring and will give different muscles a workout. Of course you will be burning calories and getting read of that weight.
Your workout plan should include:
Warm up exercises
Your actual exercises
Cool down exercises
You can add or replace exercises but do not do this all at once. Do everything gradually to avoid any strain.
Exercising should always be done safely: In order to ensure this you should always do some warm up exercises before starting your workout, even if you are walking. When doing passive exercises, like walking, always start slowly for the first 10 minutes to get your body into rhythm then continue on with a brisk pace. For other more rigorous workouts start with some gentle exercises and stretching before starting on your regular exercises. Then when you have finished do the warm up exercises again as cool down exercises. This ensures that you do not strain yourself, especially your heart and that you will experience less cramps and stiffness.
Always remember to keep yourself well hydrated with water. Take some before after and if necessary during your workout. This will allow your body to get rid of oxidants that are created when you exercise vigorously and ensure that you do not get any cramps. Also remember to take rests in between exercises to ensure that you do not get over tired. Try to wear appropriate clothing and shoes. They should be light, loose and practical. It is wise not to wear dangling jewelry or anything that will impede your exercises.
It is not wise to exercise on an empty stomach, try to refrain from doing a workout before meals, as you will not have enough energy to do your exercises. On the other hand do not have a heavy meal before exercising, or eat foods that are high in fat or sugar. A better alternative will be to take a nutrition bar that has complex carbohydrates. Energy will be released slowly from this type of food and sustain you while you workout.
Fit Orbit: This program is a good resource for helping you to keep to a workout plan. It also provides you with a trainer who can help you choose the exercises that are best for your lifestyle. Fit Orbit provides you with an experienced trainer who will advise you about meals, a workout plan and help you to maintain a complete weight loss plan.
You choose the exercises that you want to do and select the meals with the help of the trainer and the trainer will help you set up a plan. Additionally you will be able to contact the trainer online if you are having any difficulty in keeping up with the plan or meals and they will be able to help you to succeed in your goals.
There is a tracking system to help you monitor your progress and ensure success. You will also find that it is much lower in price than the usual price for a trainer and work out advice.
Metabolism is another key to your weight loss plan. This is the function of the body that converts your food into energy. People have different metabolism speeds, which is a factor in how much weight they are capable of loosing. There are several reasons for this and in order for your weight loss plan to be successful it is very important to understand the variables.
Age: As we age our metabolism slows down. You will find that a person in their 30’s and certainly in their 40’s does not have such a fast metabolism as someone in their teens or 20’s.
Gender: Metabolism slows down especially in women who are post menopausal. This is why you will see the dreaded “middle age spread” appearing in women over 40 to 50. Women tend to have more fat cells than men and so have a tendency to put on weight faster than men.
Constipation: Some foods will produce more constipation than others. Refined foods and those that are lacking in fiber will tend to give you constipation. When a person is constipated as much as 5 to 8 meals may be waiting in the intestines, this produces toxins due to all the waste piled up and these can be reabsorbed back into the blood stream through the intestinal walls. Constipation will also slow down your metabolism making your whole digestion system work less efficiently.
Exercise: The more exercise you take the more fat you will burn and the better your metabolism will be. Lack of exercise will also help to slow down metabolism and make your digestion slow. It can also be one of the causes of constipation.
Genetics: Have you ever seen a family who are all overweight? This is not just poor eating habits; it is also in the genes. These genes are part of a weight regulating set of genes that will predetermine if a person will be on the heavy side or skinny. These genes will decide that if a person loses too much weight fast that the body needs to eat and will stimulate hunger. That is why you should never go on one of these “lose weight fast “diets. Your body will work against you. Slow and surely wins the race!
Another important hormone in the weight controls of your body is Leptin. This substance will tell your body if it is hungry or not. Too little of this hormone will signal to your body that you should keep on eating. This will lead to serious weight problems. When you do not eat a proper diet this hormone can get out of balance and you will not know when to stop eating. Excess of sugar will also trigger this hormone to get out of balance.
Other factors that will affect your weight
Stress: stress is an insidious destroyer of your health and the weight factor is no exception. When you get stressed several things happen but one of them is the body producing stress hormones that put you in a flight and fight mode. These stress hormones will not allow your body to lose fat and will encourage it to store fat around your belly area. This results in that nasty belly fat.
Sleep: when you are short on sleep your body gets stressed and will not allow you to lose fat.
There are a number of ways to increase the speed of your metabolism: There are a number of foods that will speed up your metabolism. Cocoa is one of them, you can have a cup of hot chocolate but remember to use estevia to sweeten it and use low fat milk to cut down calories.
You can increase your metabolism by eating these vegetables, Lima beans spinach, brussel sprouts, chick peas, beans, tomatoes and avacados.
Some fruits will also help you to increase metabolism, apples blueberries and lemons are just a few. Grapefruits are also considered good for speeding up metabolism.
Almonds are good but should be eaten in moderation as they are fairly high in calories.
If you like a little spice with your food you will be glad to know that cinnamon, garlic and ginger are good for speeding up your metabolism.
A number of other foods will also help your metabolism. They are egg whites Oats, fish, cottage cheese, flax, olive oil and yogurt
Remember your body will take longer to digest protein than carbohydrate so try to eat more proteins and less carbohydrate.
There are a number of other things that you can do to improve your metabolism.
Putting on muscle: This can help you to burn more calories if you put on only 5 to 10 pounds of muscle your body will need to burn 100 calories extra.
Keep active: people who do not let age slow them down and keep active will not experience as much slowing down of their metabolism when they age.
Sprinting: When you work out you should do 3 minutes of regular exercise and then do 30 seconds of intense exercise. You will be able to burn 100 to 200 more calories after you work out by doing this.
Fish oil: Omega 3 can boost your metabolism. It can be found in fish oil and can help you to burn up to 400 calories extra per day. You can get this in capsule supplements.
Keep air conditioning and heating to a minimum: The body will burn more when it has to use energy to cool or heat your body.
Sleep: One of the first things is to make sure that you get enough sleep. When you are well rested you can think more clearly and will feel better both physically and mentally. When you get enough sleep you will have more energy to move around and burn those calories. You will also be less stressed out. Plus you will automatically burn more calories.
Stress: As mentioned above stress is bad for your health and will make you retain fat. In order to do this you should try to manage your stress. This may involve group therapy where you will meet others with similar problems. Sometimes it is good to talk over your problems with others and not feel so alone. Other stress relievers are listening to your favorite music, reading and yoga, especially meditation. When you are relaxed and stress free your digestion will work better and your metabolism will speed up.
Keep active: Remember even if you have a sitting job try to keep active and keep your metabolism rate from slowing.
Drink iced water: Your body will burn calories warming the water to your body temperature.
Eat a good breakfast: This will stimulate your metabolism in the morning and jump starts your system.
Eat breakfast near a sunny window: The sunlight will boost your metabolism and is also good for your bones and overall health.
Resource e-Diets: E-Diets is a program that will help you to manage your diet when you make your weight loss plan. There are a number of advantages in using this diet. Meals are customizable and created to suit your needs, likes and dislikes. This means that you will never have to put up with a boring meal again.
Tracking is available. This works like a food diary you can track what you have eaten and how much weight you have lost. You can see which foods have been most effective in your diet and which ones are holding you back. This “progress report” will motivate you to lose weight and encourage you. You can also see where you went wrong and rectify your mistakes before too much harm is done.
Support: you can have the support of your own personal dietitian. They will advise you about what foods will work best for you and help you with your diet plan. They will also advice you about maintaining your weight once you have reached your goals.
Exercise program: There is a free fitness schedule available to all who join e-Diets. This will help you to create an exercise plan to compliment your diet plan.
Recommendations for restaurants: This program has a number of helpful articles among them are recommendations for restaurants that will serve you healthy food. This means that you can enjoy a meal with your family and not have to worry about breaking your diet.
As you can see losing weight is not as hard as you might think. If you just understand the main keys to success, motivation, action plan, (meal and exercise) and maintenance, you will be able to succeed. Losing weight does not have to involve diets and expensive exercise equipment. Just take care of your nutrition with a great diet plan. Have a good exercise plan and understand how your unique metabolism works.
If you use these simple steps mentioned above you WILL lose weight and once you do you will never look back. Try the resources mentioned to make planning your diet and exercise easier and you will succeed.
However you need to not only dream about losing weight but get motivated and above all TAKE ACTION. This is the real key to success in weight loss, taking action and keeping you motivated. So do not put off your weight loss plan a single minute more. Take action today and enjoy the real you.