If you want to lose weight, it can be tempting to try extreme methods to get there fast.
I can tell you from experience, many extreme methods will place you right back where you started. They might work initially, but the likelihood of you burning out and giving up is high.
To lose weight and keep it off, you need to implement methods that will stay with you for life.
The following are ten simple weight loss tips that you can sustain for the long haul:
1. Eat only when hungry and stop when “politely” full
I took this very seriously when I was first married and ended up weighing only 105 lbs! I ate whatever I wanted, but only when hungry and I stopped as soon as I was full (that’s hard!). I even ate Pumpkin pie for breakfast!
While I don’t recommend eating pumpkin pie for breakfast on a regular basis, this showed me that the amount we eat has a lot to do with gaining or losing weight. It’s not just about what we eat.
If you eat a large and filing meal, you will most likely not be hungry for a while. Listening to your hunger signals will help you eat only what you need and not what you want.
2. Keep a food journal
Write down everything you eat. It will help you see what is actually going in your mouth.
This is good because it’s easy to forget that we ate a candy bar this morning and now we are going to eat a huge piece of cake in the afternoon. More than one treat a day is usually too much.
I don’t like to count calories, it makes me feel obsessed. A food journal is enough. If you need some extra accountability, send your food journal to a friend. Yeah, that stops you from eating the extra bowl of ice cream (it does me anyway).
3. Address emotional eating
Emotional eating is very common among women and it can be a tough habit to break. Really tough.
My best recommendation for dealing with emotional eating is to add a spot in your food journal for writing about the way you feel.
If you really want to eat, but you are not hungry, write down what is bothering you.
If you overeat, then feel horrible afterward, write that down to so you can read it next time you are tempted.
If you resist eating when you are not hungry, write about that victory.
Try to get into the habit of asking yourself the question, “Am I really hungry?” before eating. If you are not, do something else.
Dropping to the floor and doing a few push ups, holding a plank, or going for a walk can do wonders to get you over the, “I must devour everything in the kitchen right now” feeling.
4. Plan ahead
A menu plan will mean you are not grabbing something at the last minute. When you are hungry it is harder to make good choices.
Prepare as much food ahead of time as you can. Cut up veggies and boil eggs for snacks, make salads, cook meat, and so on.
5. Put a curfew on the kitchen
Stop eating around 2 to 3 hours before bed. This actually makes a big difference. You will wake up feeling lighter and start losing weight.
6. Limit carbs at night
If you are going to eat a carb heavy meal, like pasta, make it lunch instead of dinner. They seem to hang around and get stuck to your hips when you sleep on them.
Exercise helps get the weight off faster. But you have to be careful about eating extra because you exercised.
Shoot for at least 3 sessions of exercise a week. Interval training is a great way to burn lots of calories in a short amount of time. (The Turbo Jam DVDs have some intervals in them.)
It’s also important to lift weights. Building muscle helps you burn extra calories all day long. Muscle eats fat.
8. Get a big enough WHY
Why do you want to lose weight? Think about it hard and remember that reason when you don’t feel like exercising or want to eat a plate of cookies. Finding your why will help carry you through when motivation has gone out the window.
9. Think ahead
Think ahead about the obstacles you need to overcome and work on a plan for dealing with those. Decide when you will exercise and what you will do. Get everything into place. Write it on the calender. Treat it like an appointment.
10. Get support
It’s hard to do this alone. Find people who will support you and encourage you. Real life friends or online buddies make a world of difference.
Don’t forget to check in on our Facebook page for support. We love to cheer you on.