Most adults have looked at themselves at some point and thought to themselves, “Wow, I need to start going to the gym.” Although this may be an issue for some more so than others, losing weight and keeping it off is a common struggle for Americans, and it has been for a while. Every person has their own ideal weight, and it’s important to be aware of your weight in general as it correlates highly with your health. Of course, it’s no secret that it’s important to watch your weight to make sure you’re staying healthy, but once you’re overweight and it comes time to lose weight, it can be extremely overwhelming. One of the most important things that makes losing weight a little easier is taking an educated approach to losing weight. So, below we’ve provided information regarding the three most important aspects of an effective weight loss regimen.
One of the most important parts of losing weight and keeping it off is your diet. As tempting as it may be, you should stay away from the trendy and faddy diets as they are typically designed to produce immediate results, and not much thereafter. With most of these diets, you will end up regaining the weight just as quickly as it came off. The issue with faddy diets is they focus too much on particular food groups, which leaves you tired with barely any caloric energy. The lack of energy contributes to giving up quickly on losing weight as well as failing to couple your diet with physical exercise.
The key to any effective diet is balance. Diets are most effective when they don’t cut out any food groups, but focus on cutting the proportions of your balanced diet instead. To help lose weight while maintaining a balance, dieticians recommend minimizing starches, added/artificial sugars, and animal fats found both in meat and dairy. In addition to a healthy, balanced, and proportioned diets, there are other diet tips to help lose weight including eating many vegetables as they make you full, drinking a lot of water for the same reason, removing tempting snack foods from your house, and remembering not to skip meals. It is also important to stay busy in order to prevent eating from boredom. And if you find yourself with too much free time, consider getting a gym membership!
No weight loss regimen works without consistent physical activity to compliment it. This is especially important when it comes to keeping the weight off your body. Most studies report that the best results come from individuals who do physical activity for about an hour per day, and health professionals recommend no less than 30 minutes per day. Any type of exercise is good, but obviously some types work better than others. The best two forms of exercise for weight loss are cardio and strength training. However, in the end, burning more calories than you take in is always the most important aspect of exercising for weight loss.
To begin, cardio is best as it burns the most calories the quickest. Eventually, cardio can be well complimented by a few hours per week of strength training, as building a little muscle will last much longer than just losing weight. Regardless, it is important to keep your body working for the duration of your exercise so remember to keep a good pace to your workouts in order to keep the sweat going and prevent injury. Exercise is crucial to any weight loss regimen, which is why a balanced diet is so important. If you don’t have the proper energy, you can’t work out effectively.
The last key to losing weight and keeping it off is the development of better habits! After all, many times it is the bad habits that made you overweight in the first place. Good habits will give you the discipline to stay on a healthy, balanced diet, and keep you motivated to go to the gym, so focus on developing good habits. Of course, this is easier said than done, so here’s a few tips to help practicing good habits. For your diet, it’s important to put effort into eating at the table only. Don’t float around the pantry and the refrigerator! To catch yourself from slipping, you could also keep a meal journal to record exactly what you’re eating, and how much. For the gym, set goals. An easy way to develop good habits is to give every trip to the gym a purpose. Set small goals, and as you accomplish your goals more consistently, increase them. This will give you a reason to keep going back, and it might even make your exercises a bit more fun. Regardless of how you do it, it is absolutely integral to any weight loss regimen to develop good habits!
Remember, if it were easy, everyone would do it. However, the unfortunate reality is losing weight can be very hard and keeping it off requires a lot of discipline. But, there are plenty of inspirational stories out there because it is certainly possible. Just focus on small goals that lead to bigger goals, and when the going gets tough, don’t give in! Maintaining a healthy weight is very important for both your short term health and long term health, and being healthy is always something you owe to yourself, so go out there and lose it!
Written by: Russell McBurnie