Attempting to lose weight with a deadline over your head is stressful for many women. A ticking clock pushes us to extreme measures, like crash diets and harmful diet pills. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could lose weight, without having to think about it all day and without sitting with a calorie counter at mealtimes? Losing weight can be sustainable. You need to relax, pace yourself, and slowly weave new habits into your life. Slimming, toning, and most importantly health, will follow.
1. Drink 2 to 3 cups of green tea every day to Lose weight
We can’t really ignore the fact that green tea is a must for weight loss goals. There’s enough evidence and too many research reports to keep reminding us the same. Drink 2 to 3 cups through the day and your metabolism will speed up (plus all the polyphenols and antioxidants will help to repair your damaged skin!) You’ll likely burn around 3 to 4% more calories, and every calorie you burn counts.
2. Get yourself a fitness app
Get yourself a fitness app – There’s nothing like an app (or watch) that shows you all the workouts you can do, tracks your steps wherever you go, tells you how many calories you’ve lost walking or running, and eggs you on to get that milestone completion badge for walking 100 kilometers or staying active for three weeks in a row. Fitness apps are great motivational tools. You’re competing against yourself, so things are within your control. Depending on the app, you can set goals, choose the kind of workout you want to do, keep track of calories and achievements and more. Plus, you don’t need a gym membership or specialized equipment for many!
3. Pick reasonable goals
Set realistic weight-loss goals. That’s what they all say. But you’re probably thinking – what’s realistic? Let’s make it easy for you. Rather than setting your sights on a dramatic weight loss, you can aim to lose half kg a week. 1/2 kg/week is a sensible goal that won’t stress you out. To lose that much, you’ll need to burn around 500 calories more than you get from your meals each day. Just to put it in perspective – 100 grams of chicken breast has around 165 calories. One gulab jamun contains around 125 calories – so if you’ve got a sweet-tooth, your work’s going to be a bit harder!
Of course, you don’t have to calculate every meal, but you’ll be better off if you plan some set meals for yourself. Keep in mind that you should restrict your calorie-intake to about approx. 1500-1800 calories a day. That’s a sensible, sustainable number, that won’t starve you like some low-calorie diets do or make you hungry and cranky. However you’ll also be likely to stop and think before putting things in your mouth.
4. Never skip a meal to Lose weight
Never skip a meal or diet & if you must fast, be cautious with intermittent fasting (IF).
Cutting down on calories never means you should skip a meal. Women are vulnerable to hormonal imbalances if they skip breakfast, so even if you decide to try intermittent fasting, you should do your research and adopt a schedule that won’t stress your body and result in unwanted side effects. Mapping your IF schedule to eat only in the eight hours of daylight – so you’re effectively fasting for 16 hours – may work for you and it can be sustainable.
5. Start swimming to Lose weight
Swimming for 45 minutes is fun, relaxing, and you can burn anywhere between 300-400 calories in that time. If swimming is not possible for some reason, try out any other kind of physical activity. Your first task to lose weight is to restrict calories; it’s the most important factor to achieve weight loss. But exercise can also help. One study showed that aerobic exercise can help you lose weight, even if it’s as simple as walking/jogging on a treadmill. But for exercise to be effective, you should push yourself to achieve exertion of around 70% to 80% of your heart rate maximum and to lose around 400kcal to 600kcal a day, five days a week.
On the treadmill, it may take women around 50 to 60 minutes to lose that kind of calories. You may not have an hour every day to run on the treadmill, or maybe you find it boring. You’re welcome to switch things up. Try out some HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) and you’ll be done in half the time. There are plenty of body-weight workouts for you to lose as much in half an hour.
6. Banish refined carbs from the table
One of the easiest things you can do is to give up one or two of your favourite refined carbs and replace them with no less delicious whole foods. You’ll immediately see results. For instance, if you enjoy a few slices of white bread for breakfast, switch to one or two slices of whole-wheat bread instead. Instead of cornflakes, switch to rolled oats and dress your porridge up with some blueberries and flax seeds for a filling, delicious breakfast. Even starchy potatoes can be replaced with equally delicious but healthier sweet potatoes for lunch. Try to soothe your craving for sweets or refined carbs with a spoonful of unsalted peanut butter, which Harvard says is good for your heart health as well.
7. Choose your drinks wisely
What you drink is crucial. It should be water for hydration all the way but what’s life without some variety? You can mix up delicious spinach, banana and milkshakes in the mornings for some variety. When you’re shopping for groceries, stop yourself from reaching for the packaged orange juice and get a kilo of oranges instead. If you really like your milkshake but can’t take the dairy, switch to almond milk or soy milk, and sweeten with fruits like banana, mangoes and strawberries rather than sugar.
These are a few relatively simple tips you can adopt into your life right from today. With small steps and changes, you can slowly develop a lifestyle that you enjoy, that is healthy and as a bonus, helps you lose weight. Weight loss doesn’t have to be a painful process of abstinence and gloom. Good luck!