This is my second long post about “weight loss tips” (you can check the first post here).and I’m so excited
I believe that this is the ONLY weight loss article you will ever need to read. This blog post is the ultimate collection of some of the best and scientifically proven weight loss techniques you will ever need to know.
In fact, this is the ultimate insider’s guide on how to lose weight and keep it off for good. This guide will take you through every aspect of weight loss possible, from exercise to diet, motivation and lifestyle.
So if you are looking to lose weight—whether it’s 5 pounds, 10 pounds, 20 pounds, you name it—then keep on reading.
It’s Gonna Be a Long Ride, So Please Take your Time…
This is a super long article (14000+ words), so feel free to wait until you have enough time to really dig in. In case you are busy right now, then make sure to bookmark this post and read it later.
I have also provided you with links to more than 70 scientific studies conducted on the subject at hand. So if you still want more information, then feel free to check the research links and do more digging.
But don’t worry. This is a not a theoretical post. Au contraire, this is most the practical and pragmatic weight loss guide you can find on the internet. You can take any of the strategies below, and apply them right now.
My main goal with writing such a long post is to provide you with the information and guidelines you need to make your own healthy choices based on a wide range of weight loss techniques.
From intermittent fasting to never skipping breakfast, inside of this post you will find a wide range of weight loss techniques you can apply right now and see results in the shortest time possible.
Note: Please share this post on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, StumbledUpon and other social media websites. Help me spread the word.
And please, as always, consult your physician before starting any diet or exercise program.
The 101 Best Weight Loss Tips of All Time
So before you embark on your weight loss journey, arm yourself with these powerful 101 weight loss strategies.
Of course, you don’t need to follow all of the 101 strategies, but do your best to incorporate a few into your life each week and watch your fitness and health change for the best.
So are you excited?
Then here we go….
1. The Foundation: Find Your Big Why
Without a “Big Why” for your weight loss resolution, you will eventually lose motivation to do the work needed to accomplish your goals—especially when you start coming across roadblocks (and it’s something that will happen, sooner or later).
Nonetheless, if you know your “Big Why” then you are in a good place. I can pretty much guarantee 100 percent that you will be able to lose weight and keep it off for good once you know deep down your “Big WHY.
In other words, if you have big enough of WHY, NOTHING will stop you.
So let me encourage you to dig deep and search your heart.
Think deep and take all the time you need to uncover your “Big Why”.
So What’s YOUR WHY? Do you even know it? Have you take the time to distil down your reason for losing weight? Or are you just going through the motions?
To uncover your “Big Why”, ask yourself questions like:
Why do I want to lose weight?
Why do I need to lose weight?
Why do I want to improve my health?
Why do I want to start exercising?
Why do I want to live a healthy lifestyle?
Why do I want to make a change in my life?
Why? Why? WHY?
Is it because you are ashamed of your body?
Is it because you are fed up with your current lifestyle?
Is it because you want to set an example for the rest of your family?
Is it because, and God forbid, losing weight it’s a matter of life or death for you?
Is it because you used to feel your best when you were younger and when you had a healthier body weight?
Is it because you want to keep up with your grandchildren (or children) and see them grow and have their own families?
Is it because you want to look your best?
Is it because you want to fit into your wedding dress?
Is it because (Fill In Your Own Reason)?
These are some of the questions you NEED to ask yourself before you embark on this journey.
So please I beg you to write down what’s motivating you to start on the healthy lifestyle path and dig as deep as possible.
After figuring out your big WHY (or WHYs), write it down and keep it somewhere you can see on a daily basis. This will serve as a constant reminder for when the going gets tough.
I know it can take you some serious soul-searching and brainstorming to figure your “Big Why”, but it’s really worth the effort.
2. Eat More Vegetables
I hate to sound like a broken record, but there is no such thing as healthy eating without veggies.
So you had better do your best to eat as much as vegetables as possible.
Not only that, vegetables are choke-full with minerals, vitamins, antioxidants and plenty of other valuable ingredients, helping get into the best shape and health of your life.
Some of the best vegetables to add to your eating menu include broccoli, watercress kale, cabbage, lettuce, cucumber, cauliflower, Swiss chard, and Brussels sprouts.
Image Credit – Robb Hammer via Flickr
3. Eat Protein with Every Meal
Protein is your friend—whether you are trying to increase muscle mass, or to lose weight.
In fact, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, people who eat some protein at each meal lost more weight than those who didn’t have the nutrient at certain meals.
Another study conducted at the University of Missouri found that people who had protein with each meal reported the most weight loss benefits.
Good protein can help keep feeling fuller for longer and also helps control blood sugar levels, reducing cravings for sugary, high-calorie, high-fat foods.
Not only that, protein is also key for muscle recovery and fat burning.
As a result, make sure to add this valuable nutrient to every one of your meals.
Some of the best sources of lean protein include lean meat, egg whites (animal based), nuts, beans and seafood (plant based).
And please limit or avoid processed meats, like ham, sausages and bacon since these contain a lot of saturated fats and a plethora of chemicals and harmful ingredients.
4. Plan Your Foods
“If you fail to plan, then you are planning to fail” this maxim still holds true whether you are the CEO of a 500-Fortune company or you are just a regular Joe (or Jane) trying to have some control over your diet and nutrition choices.
Planning your meals ahead will help you make the right choices when the time comes. This will also take the guesswork out of the equation and increase the chances of your success.
Therefore, have a plan in advance and do your best to stick to it for the remainder of the week.
As a result, spend at least an hour every Saturday or Sunday evening on planning thoroughly your meals for the upcoming week.
You can also prepare at least 10 to 12 meals you can put in Tupperware bowls and have them ready for the week ahead so you won’t have to think about what to eat for breakfast, lunch or dinner during the week.
5. Eat More Fiber
Fiber is the carbohydrates found in plant foods like vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. And eating plenty of it is one of the easiest ways to help you reach your ideal healthy weight.
Fiber, unlike other carbs, does not get easily absorbed by your body, so it will make you feel full for longer.
Not only that, fiber can also lower cholesterol and may even prevent colon cancer and other health ailments.
Shoot for at least 30 to 40 grams of fiber a day. Some of the best sources of fiber include beans, broccoli, asparagus, oats, Brussels sprouts apples, and flax seeds, to name a few.
6. Cut the Bad Carbs
Not all carbs are created equal.
So if you want to lose weight, then make sure eat the good carbs and avoid the bad ones.
As a matter of fact, cutting bad carbs might be the best thing you can right now and see results almost instantly.
Also known as the simple carbs, this type of carbs are digested quickly by the body, leading to blood sugar spikes, cravings, and a host of health troubles.
Therefore, limit your consumption of sugars, bread, pasta, bagels, candy, muffins, donuts, French fries, sugary cereals, white rice and any sugary or highly processed food.
On the other hand, the good carbs, also known as complex carbs, take longer to digest and can help you feel full for longer. Some of the best sources include vegetables, fruits, sweet potatoes, beans, brown rice and other whole grain products.
Check this link for more than 23 studies on low carb diets.
7. Eat Low GI Foods
The glycemic index was established about 30 years ago and it’s a scale that ranks foods from zero to 100 based on how much they boost blood sugar levels. And according to research, this list can come in handy when it comes to weight loss.
In fact, subjects who followed a low GI diet reported losing double their fat when compared to the high GI group, according to study.
Many thanks to LeanGainGuide.com for this awesome list.
8. Don’t Fear Fats
Fats have a bad rap in the fitness and health community, but if you are afraid of eating them, then know for sure that you are doing yourself a great disservice. Truth be told, fats—the healthy kind—are an integral part of a healthy menu.
Research shows that eating the right kinds of fats can help you lose weight and increase overall health and well-being level.
Just make sure to pick the right kind of fat.
The right fats are what’s known as monounsaturated fats, AKA MUFAs. This type of fats increases good HDL cholesterol while reducing bad LDD cholesterol, thereby shielding you against the buildup of artery plaque and preventing a host of heart diseases and other health troubles, according to research.
In addition, these fats can suppress your appetite, reducing the number of calories you eat in a day while preventing heart diseases and boosting metabolism, according to study.
Some of the best sources of MUFAs include olive oil, coconuts oil, canola oil, avocados, almonds, peanuts and sesame seeds.
To get your proper daily dose of the stuff, research suggests that two to three tablespoons of olive oil per day are enough to do the trick.
9. Consume Water-Rich Foods
By eating water-rich foods, you will end up consuming fewer calories overall.
In fact, according to a study conducted at the Pennsylvania State University, consuming water-rich foods can help you decrease your overall calorie consumption since many of these foods score low on calories, but high on fiber.
Here is a list of some of the best water-rich foods:
- Iceberg lettuce
- Green peppers
10. Keep a Food Journal
According to a six-month study published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, people who kept tabs on their daily eating habits for six days a week reported losing roughly twice as much weight as those who didn’t keep written records.
Why does this work?
By keeping tabs on your daily eating habits, you will have a better idea of what goes into your mouth, and you will be able to shed more light on the darker aspects of your diet, instead of being completely in the dark about it.
As a result, get yourself a diet journal, or use the Web, or an app that you can download for free, and start monitoring the amount of foods you are eating throughout the day—snacks and treats included.
Image Credit – Jeremy Hall via Flickr
11. Take Pictures of your Food
Beside of keeping track of your daily calorie intake via a food journal, another helpful way to help keep tabs on your daily eating habit is taking photos of your meals and snacks.
This is a more effective at helping you watch what you eat than traditional written food diaries.
According to research conducted at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, taking pictures of every meal and snack you eat can encourage you to change your diet.
Plus, this can help you examine the quantity and quality of your meals and help you be accountable for every bite you eat.
12. Don’t Skip Meals
A lot of people start skipping meals as means for speeding up weight loss, but this can have a counter-productive effect.
So if you think that by skipping meals, you are saving calories, then you are wrong, and you actually are setting yourself up for over snacking and/or overeating—especially late in the evening.
On the other hand, and according to my experience, eating four to five small meals throughout the day can help you better control hunger and put a stop to unhealthy snacking, and late night binges.
13. Eat Five Times a Day
Although there is no conclusive study that proves that eating 4 to 5 mini meals a day can shed weight, I happen to like this eating method very much. And I recommend that you give it a try and see for yourself.
And I think as long as you are doing the healthy way, eating the right foods and meals, eating small meals throughout the day can help you win the battle of the bulge.
So instead of just eating three big meals, try eating four to five 350 to 500-calorie meals every three to four hours.
These small meals should include breakfast, then a mid-morning snack, then a small early lunch, then mid-afternoon snack and finally a small and light dinner.
Here is sample schedule:
10:00 am—Mid-morning snack
4:00 pm—Evening snack
14. Or Try Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is the artful form of skipping meals without hurting your weight loss efforts.
Intermittent fast, or IF for short, involves regular short-term fasts. According to research, fasting during short specific “windows” during the day can help people consume fewer calories, as well as optimizing some hormones linked to weight control.
There are several methods of IF. One of the most popular is the 16/8 method, in which you skip breakfast and eat during a limited 8-hour feeding period.
During the 16/8, you fast for 16 hours (including sleep time). Fasting from 9 pm to 1 pm—for example—equals 16 hours of fasting.
This method only requires you trading breakfast for a cup of coffee or some other non-calorie fluid and having lunch as the first meal of the day.
This method is convenient, simple and does not require counting calories. You can do the 16/8 fast twice a week, on weekends, or every single day. Therefore, you are free to do it often as you like—as long as it’s working for you.
15. Fill your Plate with Veggies First
As you already know, eating more vegetables has been shown to be one of the most vital predictors of weight loss and optimum health.
However, that’s only one part of the struggle.
Now you need to find ways to make sure you eat enough of the stuff.
One thing you can do to ensure that you eating enough vegetables is to make sure that this vital food takes up half of your plates.
Next, divide the other half into two-quarters. Fill one-quarter with good carbs, like sweet potatoes, brown rice or a slice of whole-grain bread. Fill the other quarter with lean protein such as skinless poultry, fish, lean beef or beans.
With this simple trick, you won’t even need to count your calories nor worry about portion size.
16. Spice it Up
Spicy items like hot sauce chopped jalapeno and Cajun seasonings add a lot of flavor to your meals with few calories and no fat. But that’s not the whole story.
According to research, most spicy foods contain a compound called Capsaicin, which is the source from which chilies get their heat, that can tame appetite and increase metabolism.
In fact, research shows that capsaicin has a thermogenic effect, boosting body temperature after consumption, which may lead to a higher calorie burn for 20 to 30 minutes post chow-down.
So please just say no to sugary and creamy sauces or and choose spices instead.
17. Cook with Coconut Oil
Two tablespoons per day of coconut oil can help you reduce waist circumference by an average of 1.1 inches over the course of a month, according to study.
Coconut oil scores high on the healthy medium chain saturated fatty acids fats (known Medium Chain Triglycerides, or MCTs) that increase metabolism for immediate energy and decrease appetite.
Just make sure to use virgin coconut oil because it’s usually made with no chemicals in the process, unlike the refined, or RBD, oil that’s usually chemically treated.
18. Have Breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and truth be told, skipping it as means for speeding up weight loss, is actually quite counter-productive since research have linked, over and over again, breakfast with a healthy weight.
In fact, a study conducted at Harvard revealed that obesity rates are roughly 40 to 50 percent lower in people who have breakfast on a consistent basis, compared with those who skip breakfast.
A healthy breakfast will make you less likely to be hungry and possibly overeat over the remainder of the day.
Therefore, unless you are doing intermittent fasting, and know what you are doing, you should never skip breakfast.
So have breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dine like a pauper.
Aim for a breakfast of 400 to 500 calories—depending of course on your own weight loss goals, age, fitness level, and exercise goals.
A healthy breakfast should consist of a serving of protein, a serving of whole grain carbs, and a serving of fruit—especially after a morning workout.
19. Eat Eggs for Breakfast
Eggs should be a staple in your daily eating menu, so why not start your day with eggs?
Research shows that having eggs for breakfast can speed up weight loss like nothing else.
Eating eggs for breakfast can help you feel fuller for longer than grain-based breakfasts, making you less likely to overeat at your next meal.
In fact, a study found that obese subjects lost more weight and had a higher reduction in waist circumference when they ate a breakfast of two eggs instead of bagels, even though each group’s breakfast contained the same amount of calories.
Why? Eggs are rich in protein (one egg contains about six grams of protein) and other valuable nutrients, helping you feel full for longer.
20. Have Barley for Breakfast
If you don’t like eggs for breakfast then another healthy alternative is barley.
Barley is one of the best foods you can eat. It helps control your appetite, reducing the risks of overeating in the morning.
In fact, according to Swedish researchers, having barley for breakfast can help you keep your blood sugar levels under control.
Not only that, barely scores low on the GI index, meaning it raises blood sugar level more slowly than some other high carbs foods, bagels, and donuts for instance.
However, to make the most out of it, buy minimally processed hull barely, and avoid processed forms, such as pearl barley.
21. Watch the Salad Dressing
Salads should be a big part of your eating menu. They are healthy and one of the best ways to ensure you eating enough veggies.
But, if you don’t keep an eye on those goodies on top, you can make your salads more calorie-laden than pizza or bagel.
Many salad dressings are choke-full with preservatives, trans fats, and artificial flavor, which can spell disaster on otherwise healthy green healthy dishes.
Therefore, for more flavor, opt for low-calorie and healthier alternatives instead: try avocado oil, refined olive oil, homemade Paleo mayonnaise, a squeeze of lemon juice, tomato juice, macadamia, balsamic vinegar or even some home-made salsa.
Image Credit – Ivan Clow via Flickr
22. Eat light at Night
People who skip breakfast and lunch are more prone to heavy late evening eating as they tend to eat their largest meals later in the day.
So please eat light at night. You won’t only prevent weight gain, but you will also sleep much better, and have a better appetite for a healthy breakfast in the morning.
First of all, aim to consume at least three-quarters of your calories before dinner.
Next, make sure to leave at least a gap of two to three hours between your meal and bedtime, hence giving sufficient time for your body to digest the food before you sleep.
And if you feel super famished just before going to bed, then eat a small serving of protein, such as a piece of cheese, or a hard-boiled egg.
23. Eat More Slowly
It takes roughly 20 minutes for leptin, the body’s satiety hormone, to kick in for your brain to get the signal of “fullness” from your stomach.
In other words, your brain doesn’t register when your stomach is full right away.
In fact, you might well still feel hunger after you have finished your meal, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you haven’t consumed enough food. It just takes time for the signal, that’s all.
As a result, give it at least 20 minutes. If you are still feeling hungry, then go back and have a healthy snack.
To help you eat slow, you can also use a set of chopsticks, or have your meal with your less dominated hand.
24. Chew your food
Next time you sit for a meal, make sure to take your time to chew your food rather than slugging it down as fast as you can.
Eating your meals more slowly and mindfully can help drastically decrease the amount of calories consumed during a meal, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Chewing and eating slowly your food helps you feel full faster, and this is the point at which you should stop eating.
Plus, this also can help you have a better eating experience as you are giving yourself time to enjoy every bite you take.
25. Sit Down to Eat
If you are in the habit of eating on the go, then you are heading in the wrong direction.
According to research published in the Journal of Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, taking a seat at the table while eating can help you eat at a slower pace, and the slower you eat the better.
If you sit down and consciously enjoy your meals, then you will wind up eating less and enjoying the experience more.
Therefore, make sure to eat your food while sitting down, preferably from a plate.
26. Mind your Portion Sizes
Learn how to gauge portion size correctly, so you know for sure the amount of calories you are taking in and how they are affecting your weight loss efforts.
In fact, according to a study, subjects who practiced portion control for two years lost 5 percent more weight than those who didn’t.
Therefore, do your best to limit your portions so you can lose weight and keep it off for good.
Here is a simple infographic to help you understand portion sizes.
Photo courtesy of GuardYourHealth.Com
27. Use Smaller Plates
Research shows that having your meals in a smaller plate can help you eat less and have better control over portion size.
In fact, even a simple change from a 12-inch to the 10-inch plate can reduce the amount of food you eat by up to 20 percent, according to the Cornell and Brand Lab’s Small Plate Movement.
Therefore, make sure to have your meals in a 10-inch plate instead of the larger ones —that’s roughly the size of your grandmother’s china.
Photo courtesy of SkinnyRules.com
28. Change your plate color
It may sound weird, but did you know that certain colors have an impact on your appetite?
As a matter of fact, you can reduce your serving size down to 20 percent when you opt for contrasting plate color then when opting for colors which blend in with the meal’s color, according to a study conducted at the Cornell University.
So next time you sit for a meal, have it on a blue plate.
Many experts recommend blue because most foods are not blue. Or at least, do your best to make sure your plate doesn’t match the color of your meal.
29. Turn off the TV
When you are busy watching TV, you are more likely to be so distracted that you just devour an entire plate within a matter of minutes, so you’d better turn it off and get rid of other sources of distraction while eating.
In fact, according to a study from the University of Massachusetts, eating in front of the TV leads to consuming more than 300 extra calories.
Therefore, create a distraction-free eating environment.
Turn off the TV, throw away the phone, shut down Facebook, and put your mind on the task at hand and enjoy your meal.
30. Find a Healthy Meal and Eat it Over and Over Again
Come up with a list of low-calorie foods that you love and satisfies your daily energy and nutrition needs, then mix and match and eat the same meals over and over again.
By planning your healthy meals over and over again, you will be less likely to make unhealthy last-minute food choices.
Plus, you will also make the task of planning much easier and you will take a lot of guesswork out of the equation.
This method will also help you spend less time fretting about the right foods you need to eat.
31. Never Shop Hungry
According to a study conducted at Cornell University, eating something healthy before going to the grocery store makes shoppers less prone to purchase junk food.
Going shopping while feeling full strengthens your willpower and makes you immune to junk food temptations.
Therefore, never go shopping when you are hungry. Instead, have a healthy and filling meal and then go shopping.
Or at least, have some produce or a healthy snack before you hit the grocery aisle.
32. Read Labels
Not only learning this skill will give you a better idea on the amount of calories you are consuming, but it will also help you know all there is to know about the food’s nutritional value.
So take the time to read the labels, making sure you know how to interpret the different meanings and ingredients.
Here is a quick and easy guide to get you started. An infographic.
33. Make a Weekly Grocery List
To make sure you are putting the right kind of foods into your shopping cart, write a detailed and thorough grocery list so you know exactly what you need without much second-guessing.
This will not only help you get in and out of the store as quickly as possible, but it can also help you decrease impulse purchases and stick to your healthy eating plan.
Use this simple list to stock your kitchen up with healthy food all week (or month) long.
Here is the infographic you need.
Infographic courtesy of Greatist.
35. Banish Emotional Eating
If you more likely to eat due to depression, anxiety or loneliness, then maybe it means that you are more prone to emotional eating and you need to do something about it.
In fact, according to research, emotional eating is one the main causes of bad eating choices. Emotional eating can compromise your weight loss efforts—especially since most of the food we tend to crave tend to be sweet, high-calorie and fatty foods.
So do your best not to turn to food for comfort or as a way to release your negative emotions.
Instead, reevaluate your relationship with the food you eat and learn how to differentiate between real hunger (physical hunger) and fake hunger (head hunger).
36. Say No to the Bread Basket
White bread adds a lot of empty calories to your meals and it doesn’t have the ability to keep you feeling full, leading to hunger pangs, unhealthy snacking, and overeating.
Bread is also high in carbs, and eating it in bulk will prevent stored body fat from being used as fuel, hindering the fat burning process.
And the real bad news is that white bread is a staple in most pantries.
So what should you do here?
It’s really simple: replace your white bread with whole grain or whole wheat bread whenever you can, period.
37. Banish the Junk Food
Another thing you can do to ensure the right weight loss environment is to get rid of all types of junk and unhealthy food and declare your house a junk food free zone.
When you don’t have any unhealthy food around, then you will be more likely to stick to your healthy eating plan, and not succumbing to unhealthy eating/binging.
In other words, practice the “out of sight, out of mind” mantra.
So please do yourself a favor and stop keeping the foods you shouldn’t be eating in the house.
Purge your kitchen and throw out all of the sugar-filled, highly processed junk food, such as cookies, cakes, pies, candy, sugary drinks, biscuits, crisps pretzels, pastries and other sugary and highly processed treats.
38. Stock Up on Healthy Foods
Instead of letting junk food take shelter in your home, fill your kitchen cupboards with healthier foods and snacks so when the hunger pangs strike, you will be at least reaching for something healthy.
Doing this will make it for you much easier to make the right decision when you are busy, tired, famished or just cravings something to eat.
Therefore, stock up on healthy snacks, such as fruits, unsweetened or unsalted popcorn, baby carrots, nuts and seeds, hardboiled eggs, and the like.
39. Stop Drinking Soda
Stop drinking soda, and other forms of sugary drinks, forever.
In fact, study after study has linked soda to a host of health troubles, including obesity, diabetes, and a plethora of other trouble.
And if you believe that diet soda is a good alternative, then you are WRONG.
In fact, diet soda is a bad as the regular type.
In fact, a study conducted by the University of Texas Health Science Center showed that subjects who drank two cans of diet soda are more likely to gain, not lose, weight, compared to those who didn’t drink the stuff.
So please don’t drink your calories. That’s even worse than eating junk food. Drink water instead of the habitual soda and you will be thinner and way healthier for it.
40. Reduce Alcohol Intake
Not only that, according to a UK survey, drinking alcohol weakens will power and inhibits healthy eating decisions, making you more likely to indulge in high-fat high-calories foods, such as pizza, burgers, and chips.
Therefore, if alcohol is your diet downfall, then you need to eliminate, or, at least, cut on, your alcohol consumption.
41. Drink More Water
Water is key for flushing out toxins and you will feel fitter and healthier when your body is well hydrated. This in itself will dampen any penchant for gorging.
Your body uses water to metabolize fat stores, and it’s key to every other process.
Plus, water has no calories at all, and can help you feel full without actually having to fill yourself with more food.
So instead of drinking juices and soft drinks, I urge to start drinking more water.
Shoot for at least 10 to 12 cups of water per day. Drink plenty of water before your workouts, during your workouts, and immediately afterward.
In other words, make sure that your body is well hydrated throughout the day.
42. Drink Water Before a Meal
By chugging a glass of water before a meal, you will be able to control hunger and reduce appetite since the water will take up room in your stomach, making you feel full.
In fact, you can lose up to 30 percent more weight by only downing two cups of water before each meal, according to research.
Another study from the University of Birmingham in the U.K. found that drinking roughly 16 ounces of H2O 30 minutes before meals can aid with weight loss for obese people—without making significant other changes to the diet.
43. Drink Green Tea
I believe that green tea, just after water, is the healthiest drink on the planet.
This awesome beverage is rich in antioxidants, anti-cancer and brain-healthy compounds and a host of other helpful and vital nutrients for health.
As a result, make sure to add green tea to your menu.
Stick to two to three cups a day and make sure to opt for brewed varieties over bottled to avoid added calories and artificial chemicals and sweeteners.
Adding sugar and cream to your tea will wipe out any weight loss benefits. So please, get used to drinking your tea without any sweeteners or adornment.
44. Snack Smart
There is no doubt, “Dumb” snacking—especially when snacking on high-sugar, highly processed foods with little or no nutritional value, especially during the night time, can compromise your weight loss goals.
Smart snacking between meals can reduce hunger and control appetite, helping you prevent overeating and making bad food choices when the meal comes.
Therefore, if you snack often, then, at least, make sure to snack the smart way. Some of the best healthy snacks ideas include hard-boiled eggs, apples, a handful of nuts, seed or dried fruits.
45. Don’t be a perfectionist
Instead, practice the 90/10 rule.
What do I mean by the 90/10 rule? Well, this means that 90 percent of your diet should be focused exclusively on healthy food (vegetables, lean protein, and the healthy fats) while the remaining 10 percent can be devoted to “cheat meals”.
By adhering to this simple rule, you will be able to indulge your sweet tooth and satisfy your cravings without throwing your whole intake out of balance and compromising your weight loss efforts.
Cheat meals are vital for a healthy diet—as long as you are doing them right.
So feel free to cheat every now and then. That’s how you will be able to stay sane since the whole process of dieting and weight loss can be a real fickle beast.
Just keep in mind that I’m talking about a cheat meal, not a cheat day. So keep it for one meal, not for the entire day.
Image Credit – NxtheHealthTv via Flickr
46. Start Slow
Therefore, once you decide on a workout program, you have to start slow stay within your fitness level at all times.
As a result, start slow, and go slow. Keep that on your mind and use it as your default mantra and training principle. And please don’t just jump right and start working out at full effort six days a week—that’s the recipe for injury and overtraining.
If you are a beginner and you haven’t done much exercise in the last months (or years), then start with two to three workouts per week, for least 30 minutes per session.
As you get fitter and stronger, aim to slowly and gradually ramp it up until you reach your challenging point.
47. Start Running
This whole blog is about running and the many ways you can incorporate it into your life.
So why wait?
In fact, since you ended up on this blog (whether by accident or intention), then this is your perfect opportunity to get into the sport of running.
Here are the resources you need to get started running without risking injury or burnout.
48. Lift weights
Strength training builds muscles, and the more muscles you have, the more you increase your resting metabolic rate, meaning that you will be burning more calories even when you are not working out. Isn’t that a good thing? Duh.
Therefore, make sure to add at least two strength workouts into your training program.
For the highest calorie burn, make sure to train your entire body on each workout. Focus on total-body exercises that challenge the large muscle groups, like push-ups, squats, deadlifts, planks, lunges, and pull-ups.
Image Credit – WODchop via Flickr
49. Go Swimming
If you are looking for a low-impact workout option that burns mad calories without putting a lot of pressure on your body, then look no further than swimming.
In fact, a 160-pound person can burn up to 520 calories by swimming laps for an hour—of course, the exact amount of calories burned depends, mostly, on a wide range of factors, such as weight, age, fitness level, and training intensity.
Keep in mind that swimming uses all of the body’s muscles, so with each kick, push, and pull, you are performing a mini strength workout for your entire body—especially your glutes, core, hips, arms, and shoulders.
So dive in.
50. Do Yoga 2X Per Week
Yoga is another low-impact exercise that can help you melt fat without breaking a sweat.
In fact, according to study, overweight subjects who rolled out their yoga mat at least once a week for 4 years lost more weight than those who didn’t take the time to practice.
Not only that, yoga can also help you become more flexible, reduce stress and promote a general sense of health and well-being.
I can go and on about the benefits of yoga.
So make sure to add at least a couple of yoga sessions into your training program, by either following a yoga DVD program or enrolling in a yoga class.
Nevertheless, please make sure to practice it regularly and with good form. You are always better off doing it under the guidance of a certified professional. And once you nail the form, you can practice it in the comfort of your home.
Here are four yoga routines to try out:
51. Shoot for 10000+ Steps Every Day
Join the “10,000 step” initiative to ensure that you keep active and walk enough each day to stay fit.
According to research conducted at the Arizona State University, people leading an active lifestyle usually take more than 10,000 steps per day.
This is very helpful if you can’t currently afford to go to a gym, or are looking for more ways to be active that doesn’t involve hitting the gym or going for an outdoor cardio workout.
10000 steps a day may seem like a lot of walking, but it’s not much. There are always opportunities to squeeze in more walks during everyday life situation. You just have to aware enough to seize them.
Be creative with your walks.
It doesn’t have to be a chore.
Meet up with a friend and walk around the neighborhood or park. Go to museums. Talk a walk during your lunch break. Instead of taking a car or public transport to work, choose instead to walk, or run if possible.
Use a pedometer or fitness tracker to keep tabs on your daily steps. There are plenty of apps you can download for free and use to automatically count your steps.
52. Challenge Yourself
Real growth happens when you’re outside of your comfort zone.
If you stick to the same exercise routine—whether it’s weight lifting, running, swimming, you name it—you will invite boredom and training plateaus to your life.
On the other hand, if you are going forward and challenging yourself with every workout you do, you’ll find yourself improving in ways you didn’t expect, climbing up the fitness ladder faster and more efficiently.
Therefore, I encourage you to challenge yourself and try to break a record with your workouts. Push yourself and aim to perform better than before.
Keep a training journal here and have clear and concise fitness goals that push you without pushing you too much.
Image Credit – Robb Hammer via Flickr
53. HIIT it Hard
High-intensity interval training is, by far, the ideal training method to help you burn mad calories and improve fitness level like nothing else. This type of training is all about mixing high-intensity exercise with low to moderate intensity exercises.
I have used it. I have done it. And I love it, and I bet you will love it too—once you get used to it and learn how to do it right.
In fact, study after study has shown HIIT to be effective for weight loss and improving fitness level like nothing else.
54. Sprint it out
When it comes to high-intensity interval training, sprints are some of the best and most convenient ways of making the most out of HIIT. Sprints are simple, intense, and scalable so you can always readjust them to fit with your own needs and training goals.
During sprint intervals, you alternate between running as fast as possible for a set distance and brief periods of slow jogging for recovery.
Here is how to proceed with your next sprint session.
After a thorough warm-up of 10 minutes of slow jogging followed by dynamic warm-up moves, such as inchworms, squats, and lunges, perform 8 to 10 30-seconds full-efforts sprints at you maximum speed.
Take one-minute recovery between each sprint, then finish off your session with a 5-minute cool down.
55. Run Some Hills
Hill sprints are the next level of the track sprints, maximizing fat burning and fitness gains, without the need for any special equipment or expensive gym.
Not only that, hill sprints are also safer on your legs and take less time to perform.
Plus, they are also one of the best resistance exercises for the lower body, helping build strength and speed in your glutes, hamstrings, quads, and calves.
Here is how to proceed:
Find a steep gradient hill that can take up to 20 to 30 seconds to run up to it., then sprint up it as fast as you can, then slowly jog back down to recover.
Perform enough reps so the session lasts between 20 to 25 minutes, then end your workout with a 5-minute cool-down jog.
Here are five more hill workouts to try.
Image Credit – Gregor via Flickr
56. Rope Training
In my opinion, rope training is one of the most under-utilized but yet most effective training tools you can have to boost cardiovascular fitness, speed up weight loss and improve muscle endurance
For starters, this training system is a fat burning machine. In fact, according to a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, battling the ropes for one minute can burn up to 10.3 calories per minute.
So you can burn up anywhere in the range of 400 to 500 calories in a simple 30-minute workout.
Not only that, battle ropes exercises target the almost every muscle in the body—especially the core, including the glutes, lower, obliques and abs, while pushing cardio power and stamina to the breaking point.
Here is a battle rope workout routine to try out.
57. Use the Kettlebells
The kettlebells, the cannonball-like weight with a handle, are one of the best training tools you need to add to your workouts if you want to get a leaner, stronger body without spending endless hours in the gym.
The typical kettlebell exercises tend to be full-body moves that can sculpt your whole body while burning mad calories.
According to research conducted at the University of Wisconsin, kettlebell training burns as much as calories per minute as 6-minute mile—amounting to 400 to 500 calories for a 20-minute workout.
Not only that, other research found that kettlebell training can drastically reduce shoulder, neck and back pain by strengthening upper body and core muscles.
Here is a simple workout routine to try:
After a thorough 10-minute warm-up, do 12 reps of kettlebell squat thrusts, followed immediately by 16 reps of the kettlebell swings, then do 12 kettlebell snatches. Rest for one to two minutes, then repeat the whole circuit three to four times.
Here is another kettlebell workout to try.
Image Credit – David Aloiso via Flickr
58. Stop Doing Crunches
Truth be told, crunches, sit-ups, and other traditional ab exercises are, really, a waste of time and energy.
In fact, these sit-ups and crunches can damage your spine and lead to lower back pain and cause herniated discs. Moreover, they are super boring and not that effective—especially when performed with bad form.
So instead do planks (with all of its variations), or perform total-body exercises, such as deadlifts, squats, floor wipes, where you get to fire up your core muscles in every exercise you do.
Here are 13 variations of the standard plank to try out.
59. Do Tempo Runs on the Treadmill
I understand why people don’t like the treadmill so much. It’s boring. It’s tedious. It’s repetitive. We get it.
Therefore, today I’m sharing with you a couple of my favorite treadmill workouts to help you get the best out of this awesome machine.
The first treadmill workout is a tempo run workout. Also known as lactate threshold, LT, or threshold run, this is a faster-paced workout that’s vital for improving metabolic fitness and maximizing the number of calories burned on the treadmill.
Not only that, tempo runs can also help you build up a fairly high volume of intensity that improves both aerobic and anaerobic systems.
Here is how to proceed:
First step: Warm up with five minutes of easy jogging,
Second step: Run a mile at 20 to 30 seconds slower than your half-marathon pace—a pace that feels comfortably easy.
Third step: Pick up the pace every mile by 5 to 10 seconds until you’re running the final mile 20 seconds faster than your half marathon pace.
Fourth step: Finish the workout by a slow five-minute jog and some light stretching.
60. Hill Treadmill Intervals
The second treadmill workout is a hill interval routine.
Performing indoor hill intervals can help you get more out of your treadmill workout by simulating outside hill running, vital for increasing endurance and building killer lower-body strength.
Here is the hill treadmill workout to try out:
First step: Warm-up
Second step: Raise the incline to three or five percent and run for 90-second at 15 seconds slower than your 10K pace—a pace that feels moderately challenging.
Third step: Recover by jogging slowly for one full minute with no incline.
Fourth step: Raise the incline to five or seven percent and run for another 90-second at 15 seconds slower than your 10K pace. Recover for one minute
Fifth step: Repeat “Fourth Step” three to six times, depending on your fitness level and goals. You could also opt for a steeper incline.
Sixth step: Cool-down
61. Embrace Free Weights
In my opinion, free weights, like dumbbells and barbells, are far superior to any training equipment or any kind of machine you could possibly find.
With free weights, you can target every muscle groups in your body without wasting costly time moving from machine to machine or going back and forth between different pieces of equipment.
In addition, free weights can also you achieve better balance and symmetry between both sides of the body by forcing the weak side to work unaided by the dominant side.
According to a study published in the journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, exercising with free weights instead of machines leads to greater muscle activation, thus better fitness gains.
They are also convenient, scalable and easy to learn.
Image Credit – Marta Orlawska via Flickr
62. Start Crossfit
I love CrossFit and I believe it’s one of the best workout programs out there that can help you push yourself and keep improving on a consistent basis.
Therefore, I think you should give it a try.
There are basically 9 fundamental exercises to master to become a fluent CrossFitter that includes: deadlifts, sumo deadlift high pull, shoulder press, push press, push jerk, air squat (without the weights), front squat, overhead squat, and medicine ball clean.
As you get stronger, you’ll be doing other exercises as well, such as sprints, pull-ups, burpees, sit-ups, box jumps, rowing, gymnastics ring work and other moves.
63. The Tabata Protocol
Dubbed as the fat burning miracle training routine, Tabata training is a form of high-intensity training that has been scientifically proven to improve aerobic and anaerobic threshold, as well as burning mad calories and helping trainees build a lean physique.
The typical Tabata workout routine can burn up to 12 to 15 calories per minute, according to a study.
Performs the following exercises for as many reps as possible in 20 seconds, rests for 10 seconds, then moves to the next exercise as fast as possible for 20 seconds.
Perform six to eight total rounds, resting one minute between each round.
20 seconds of squat jumps, 10 seconds of rest.
20 seconds of burpees, 10 seconds of rest.
20 seconds of jumping lunges, 10 seconds of rest.
20 seconds of push-ups, 10 seconds of rest.
20 seconds of kettlebell swings, 10 seconds of rest.
Here is another Tabata workout routine to try out.
64. Med Ball Training
Med balls are powerful and can be a great addition to your training arsenal. In fact, they can the exact thing you need—especially if you are looking to spice your strength workouts.
What I love about med ball exercises is that they are some of the best and most challenging core exercises you can ever do, building both muscular power and endurance while pushing the cardiovascular system to the breaking point.
Here is a medicine ball workout to try out.
Squat to chest pass
Lunge to rotation
Here is another medicine ball workout to try.
65. Add Short Cardio After Each Weight Workout
Or what’s usually referred to as a workout finishers, doing this will ensure that you make the most out of every hour you spend in the gym.
Not only that, engaging in an intense exercise after 45 minutes to an hour of weight training, guarantees that the activity right after immediately uses up fat as the main source of energy.
In other words, the window right after your weight workout session is prime fat-burning time. So make the most out of it.
Here are three workout finishers to try out:
Workout finisher One
Do three rounds of:
Plate push for 30 seconds
kettlebell swings, 15 reps
Med-ball thrusters, 15 reps
Workout finisher Two
Perform three rounds of the following:
Lunge jumps, 20 reps
Burpee, 15 reps
Jump rope for one full minute.
Workout finisher Three
The 300-yard shuttle sprints.
Place two cones or water bottles roughly 25 yards apart, then sprint as fast as you can back and forth between the cones for eight to ten times. Aim to touch the cones each time.
66. Try a Group Fitness Class
If you are more of an extrovert and enjoy the company of others, then you might consider joining a group fitness class.
These group fitness classes are a great way to stay on track, up the ante with your workouts, and meet active and like-minded people. Plus, group support and peer pressure can do wonders for your weight loss journey.
The good news is that there a wide range of classes, and you are definitely going to find something that fits within your budget, fitness level, and training goals.
Different classes offer different exercises and workout routines gear around building strength, endurance, and flexibility.
So try Crossfit, join an MMA class, try a spinning class, or enroll in fitness boot camps. Just find the class you like and stay consistent with for the long haul.
Image Credit – CrossFit Auckland via Flickr
67. Try an Outdoor Activity
In fact, study shows that outdoor exercising is linked to plenty of health benefits, like vitality, self-esteem, enthusiasm and lower levels of stress hormone cortisol. Working out outdoor can help you reduce tension, fatigue and depression, according to study.
Here is a list of outdoor activities and sports that will put your gym workouts to shame:
- Stand-up paddle boarding
- Beach volleyball
- Rock climbing
68. Follow a Workout Plan
If you a have a good, even a mediocre, plan, then you are more likely to lose weight and achieve your fitness goals than if you don’t.
In my experience, the best workout plan involves working out three to four times—depending on your current fitness level, and training goals of course.
Start your workouts with a proper warm-up, do the workout, then finish off with a cool-down and a few stretches.
If you have never been to a gym, then make sure to ask a trainer for some advice—or hire them if you have the budget for it. It’s important that you start off on the right foot, and build it up the right way.
69. Start a Workout Journal
One of the best ways I know of—in addition to taking regular fitness tests—to measure your fitness progress (or lack thereof) is keeping track of your training routines and cycles in a workout journal.
Truth be told, I will go as far as to claim that keeping a workout journal is as important as the training itself—especially if you are serious about reaching your full potential.
So please get workout diary and start keeping tabs on all of your training sessions, workout routines, daily miles, weights used, reps performed, the number of sets, energy levels, performance numbers and everything else.
70. Schedule Your Workout
The best way to make sure that you are going to do your workouts is to schedule them the same way you schedule an important work meeting or family event.
By giving your workouts the same attention and urgency you give to your school deadlines, work meeting, social events and grocery lists, and due taxes, you will increase the odds of following through and staying consistent with your training program—especially if you are running a hectic life schedule.
Therefore, spend at least 10 minutes on Sunday evenings to schedule your workouts for the week the same way you would with other obligations.
Take at least two workouts and schedule them like an appointment that you don’t miss—these will be the most important workouts of the week—preferably a total-body strength workout and an intense cardio session.
Jut down on your daily calendar the exact time you are going to exercise and treat your workouts like unbreakable commitment.
71. Exercise First Thing in the Morning
According to research, people who work out first thing in the morning are more likely to stay consistent with their training program than those who skip the morning workouts.
When you get your session done first thing in the morning, you won’t have to worry about doing it later in the day.
Plus, you are more likely to get your workout done when the rest of the world is still asleep.
Exercising in the morning is also a great way to help you wake up, boost your energy levels and increase your brainpower and productivity for the rest of the day.
So go to bed 60 to 90 minutes earlier than usual so you could wake up a bit earlier to either go for a run, hit the gym or do an at-home workout before going to work.
72. Peer Up with a Training Buddy
Truth be told is the more you rub shoulders with people who support your goals and your vision, the more likely you are going to succeed.
Not only that, chances are that you are going to be more consistent with your workouts when you got a training buddy to motivate you and hold you accountable for your actions and progress (or lack thereof).
As a result, whether you are trying to get into a better shape or simply want to shed a few extra pounds, you need to schedule your workouts (or, at least, some of them) with a workout partner.
Image Credit – Claus Hojberg via Flickr
73. Hire a Personal Trainer
If you are looking to get the most out of every hour you spend working out, then you might consider hiring a personal trainer—especially if you have the budget for it.
A personal trainer can help learn proper form, hold you accountable to your goals, devise a smart workout strategy, overcome physical and emotional obstacles, and teach how to safely progress your workouts so you can keep on getting real results without hurting yourself in the process.
Once you find one, ask them to take you through a fitness assessment to identify your weaknesses and muscular imbalances, which can help come up with a well-rounded workout routine that fits with your current fitness needs and goals.
74. Do What you Love
In opinion, the best workout program in the world is the activity you already love doing
When you opt for an exercise you love to do, you will definitely have more fun while doing it, hence, you will be more likely to keep doing it over the long haul.
Therefore, if you like running, then run.
If you like swimming, then swim.
If you like skating, then skate.
If you like boxing, then box.
If you prefer lifting weights, then pump it hard.
If you like them all, then feel free to alternate between them as often as you like—for at least 30 to 40 minutes a day.
Do whatever you want. You are the boss. You are in charge.
The list of workout options is long and varied, and you just have to find something you love doing. And that’s it.
75. Practice Proper Recovery
Spending endless hours working will eventually lead to diminishing returns. In fact, if your current workout routine doesn’t allow for proper rest, then you are flirting with disaster.
If you don’t plan recovery into your workout routine, you actually hinder your ability to train, and might be setting the stage for injury, burnout, and serious trouble.
In other words, becoming a workout addict will only get you in trouble.
Therefore, to make sure that you are instilling good recovery practices.
For starters, space out your hard workouts—especially intervals and intense strength sessions—with at least two days of rest. And take as many recovery days as you need—especially if you have overtraining symptoms, such as an elevated heart rate and chronic soreness and fatigue.
Sleep is also of paramount importance when it comes to proper recovery. Ample sleep is key for creating an optimal hormonal environment for muscle growth and recovery.
Therefore, aim for at least eight hours of high quality and uninterrupted sleep during the night’s time.
Furthermore, you can also plan a recovery week by decreasing your training volume 50 to 60 percent every four to five weeks of training.
76. Manufacture Motivation
Motivation is of paramount importance…maybe the most important thing here.
You will need as much inspiration as possible to keep your inner fire burning and you going about making your goals real.
Therefore, you need to learn how to manufacture motivation on demand; otherwise, you will be severely hampered in your progress.
You need to keep yourself motivated for as long as needed—weight loss, as you already know, does not happen overnight.
So do what you have to do to keep your motivation going strong.
Read real life success stories, read fitness blogs and magazines and books, use the reward system and the buddy system, take before and after pictures, set weight loss goals and make them public, use mantras and motivation quotes, etc.
Just be open and try them all.
For some of my favorite techniques, check the following 5 to 6 bullet tips.
77. Set S.M.A.R.T goals
This is a good checklist to consider when you are about to set your goals.
Standing for specific, measurable, achievable, results-focused and time bound, SMART goals are the way to go about setting goals whether you are trying to lose weight or are about to start your own business.
I bet that you have already heard about this method of goal setting—but now you need to put it into practice because success depends on the speed of implementation, period.
In fact, setting smart goals can mean the difference between success and failure. This kind of goals will help keep you focused and motivated.
So come up with one weight loss goal and one performance goal and keep these two goals somewhere visible so you are reminded of them every day.
For example, “lose 15 pounds in three months” and “Run three times per week for the upcoming three months”.
Over the long term, the best weight loss goal is to aim for losing one to two pounds a week. That may not seem like much, but if you keep doing it on a consistent basis, then it adds up.
Do it for a month and you could shed about 4 to 8 pounds.
Do it for three months and you could shed up to 12 to 20 pounds.
You get the picture here.
Sure, it might not be as fast as you would like it to be, but long and steady is what will help you win the flab race.
If you are looking for more tips on how to set fitness goals, then check this post.
78. Go Public With your Goals
Research shows that if you make your goals public, you will be more likely to stick with your healthy lifestyle plan.
Going public with your weight loss goals will surely keep you accountable for your action and working hard on achieving your vision.
So please if you want to lose weight, then tell someone about it.
Your social circle can encourage you, and push you to do your best, never giving up in the process.
Plus, we all have this instinct and drive inside of us that doesn’t want to let people down—especially people we care about.
As a result, I encourage you to make your weight loss goals public and commit to giving regular updates to your family members, friends or social circle every week or month.
Share them also on Facebook, Twitter and social media. You can also start your own blog to journal about your journey.
79. Enlist your Friends and Family Support
The weight loss journey is not an easy ride, and you need to get all the support you need. Truth be told, a strong support system can be the difference between success and failure.
In fact, a study revealed that people who had the support of their social circle lost more weight than those who didn’t.
So let your family and friends keep you motivated, and hold you accountable for your actions, making sure you never deviate from your weight loss journey.
And please, please, please, make sure to purge negative people from your life. This type of people will only bring you down and hamper your progress, and you are better off rubbing shoulders with people who believe and support your goals.
80. Get your Partner on Board
When you go on a weight loss journey, your entire life has to change in order to make the necessary changes you need. And if you are married, or live with a partner, then your decision will affect them too, for better and worse.
Therefore, you need to get them on board and have their support. Tell your partner the exact things you need and why you need it.
This kind of support can sometimes make the difference between reverting to the old ways and accomplishing the fitness goals you have set for yourself.
You can also make the decision to start the weight loss journey together and keep each other on track.
So start preparing healthier dishes together. Eat more at home. Keep each other accountable. Go running together. Join a gym class. Build a home gym, etc.
Make it fun.
And keep in mind that the couples that work out together, stay together.
81. Use Online Support Networks
A study conducted by Britain’s Medical Research Council (MRC) found that people who had a weight loss support group lost more weight than those who didn’t join a support group.
These support groups can help you talk through your troubles, provide you with practical solutions to your problems, and most importantly, remind you that you are not alone in this.
These support groups are a great place to find encouragement and meet new friends with similar goals.
So look for these online message boards, open up, talk about your struggles and victories, and share your healthy lifestyle goals and spend as much time as you can interacting with them.
Here is a list of websites to check out:
82. Weigh Yourself Once a Week
Keeping track of your weight is a good strategy but obsessing over it is not the way to go about it. In fact, your weight isn’t everything and it does not tell the whole story.
Stepping on the scale every day can have a negative impact on you. Your weight will tend to fluctuate from day to day, and you will find yourself in a constant battle of ups and downs.
Most experts recommend that you weigh yourself once a week under the same conditions—preferably at the same time and on the same weekday. The best time is the morning, shortly after finishing your morning ritual and just before you have eaten.
83. Take Progress Pictures
As I have already said, the scale only tells one side of the story. To get a full picture of your progress, you need to start taking pictures of your journey on a weekly basis.
Taking before and after pictures is not only great for keeping track of your progress, the “before” pictures can also be a huge wake-up call—the exact motivation kick you need to make your weight loss vision a concrete reality.
Here is a short video to show you how to take progress pictures the right way:
84. Track Other Body Stats
I believe that weekly weigh-ins and photo shoots are enough, but if you want to delve deeper and get a fuller understanding of where you are on your weight loss journey, then you can start tracking other body stats.
Here are other body stats to keep track of:
- Take weekly measurements of your hips, chest and waist, upper arms, thighs and write it down.
- Measure your starting body fat percent, and then check on it on a monthly basis. You can use a body fat caliper for this.
- Ask another person, preferably a trusted friend or family member. Look for honest critique and feedback.
- Check how your clothes fit. Are they looser than before?
85. Reward Yourself
Rewarding yourself for your progress can help reinforce your new habits and provide you with the motivation you need to continue with your journey.
So after reaching a performance or weight loss goal, treat yourself to something nice.
Some of the best things you can do to reward yourself include shopping, going to the movies, taking a surfing lesson, taking a vacation to your dream destiny, spending a weekend at the spa, reading a book, binge watching your favorite show, or just sleeping in.
And please do yourself a favor and don’t make your rewards about foods—unless it’s a cheat meal.
86. Sign Up for a race
Signing up for a 5K race is one of the best things you can to set a new fitness goal for yourself and keep running and exercising on a regular basis so you can burn more calories and shed more pounds.
In fact, this is perfect if you are beginner runner and looking to build your cardio power and fitness on the right way.
The good news is that you can find plenty of 5K races in your city or in cities near you by just checking out websites like Runners World or Running in the USA for local races and dates.
After signing up for a 5K race, find a training program to help you get you ready and fit to cross the finish line. As a general guideline, most 5K training plans usually last 8 to 12 weeks, so you will have a good plan to follow to get you in shape.
Lifestyle & Mindset Tips
87. Take Responsibility for Unhealthy Habits
Yes. You are in charge.
You choose the scripts by which you live your life.
You are the king or queen of your actions, and no one is responsible for them but you.
Bad habit or not, it’s yours. And you are in charge of it—whether you like to admit it or not.
And you responsible for changing it. No one else is.
It’s just a habit that you built by repetition, and by repetition, you can break from it.
So admit to your bad habits and binging practices, then have the resolve to go about changing your life around.
So please take conscious responsibility for your everyday action—the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Next, develop the ability to consciously choose how to respond to any situation, then and only, you will have the power you need to make the right decisions on consistent basis—even when everything around you is a complete mess.
Taking responsibility for your actions is really empowering because you realize that you are the master of your own destiny.
88. Get Enough Sleep
Lack of sleep will not only make your life miserable, but it will also make your waistline bigger.
In fact, study found that people who were sleep-deprived are more likely to be overweight and suffer from a plethora of health troubles.
Sleep deprivation can boost hunger, muscle loss and unwanted weight gain.
Therefore, sleep is one of the most important habits to help you lose weight and keep it off for good.
The good news is that getting enough sleep every night is good for your health and your weight loss goals.
As a result, make sure to log in at least 8 hours of high quality, uninterrupted sleep during the nighttime.
When we are stressed out, we tend to seek comfort and emotional release in food, and usually reaching for high-calorie and unhealthy food.
Not only that, stress also increases the release of a hormone known as cortisol.
Therefore, do your best to tame your stress.
Meditate, take long walks in nature, talk your problems out with a friend, sleep enough, get rid of friction in your life, do yoga, or consider therapy.
Bottom line, as long as you are dealing with your stress in a positive and constructive manner, you are in a good place.
90. Try Meditation
Of course, sitting blissfully on a cushion for endless hours does not burn a lot of calories, but as research shows that mindfulness—one the many benefits brought about by meditation—is key for weight loss and overall health and well-being levels.
Not only that, people who practice meditation on a regular basis are less likely to give in to emotional eating or unhealthy bingeing, according to a study.
Plus, study shows that people who meditate regularly have more activity in their left prefrontal cortexes, key for staying happy and calm.
Not only that, this practice can also help you lower high blood pressure level and help you better manage stress, one of the main root causes some people overeat and take bad food choices.
So what you are waiting for? The science backing up meditation is IRREFUTABLE.
Start with short meditation sessions lasting no more than 10 minutes. Sit comfortably, close your eyes, and focus on your breathing. And whenever your mind wanders—and it has the tendency to do so—just bring it back and keep focusing on each exhale and inhale.
Image Credit – Irina Shorokh via Flickr
91. Brush your Teeth More Often
By brushing and flossing your teeth right after dinner, you will be less likely to crave snacks or sweet desserts late night, thus setting environment right for preventing late night snacking.
Not only that, this will also help keep you gums healthy and teeth clean.
For more, brush your teeth after every meal, breakfast lunch, and dinner, and this will make you less likely to snack between meals.
92. Check your Hormones with a Blood Panel
If you have been living an active lifestyle and paying your dues in the kitchen but the scale just won’t budge, then it’s time to consider the possibility that hormonal imbalances are the root cause of your current struggle.
A blood panel can help you assess your levels of the stress hormone cortisol if your adrenals are insufficient, low in vitamin D3, or whether your cholesterol and blood sugar levels are within the normal healthy range.
By learning more about your hormonal situation, you can have a better idea of the type of nutrition and lifestyle changes you need to make to speed up your weight loss and increase your energy and health.
93. Embrace the Cold
According to research, turning down the thermostat and spending time in relative chill temperatures can help you burn more calories, even if you are just sitting around doing nothing.
In fact, spending time in the cold can increase calorie burn by up to 30 percent, according to a study published in the journal Trends in Endocrinology and Metabolism.
Another study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigations found that people who spend a couple of hours a day in mild cold—approximately 63 degrees F—for a period of six weeks burned more energy than those who spent the time in warmer temperatures.
Research also reveals that the cold fires up a substance in our bodies known as brown fat.
Also known as the good fat, this type of fat works like a furnace and helps the body burn more calories in the form of heat, according to the current theory.
So next time you are thinking about skipping an outdoor workout because it’s “too cold” then keep in mind the cold is actually your friend and can help you shed more calories.
94. Handle the Social Festivities the Right Way
According to study, most people tend to gain two to ten pounds during the winter months, and one of the main causes of this weight gain is, of course, the eating festivities during the holidays.
The best measure you can take here is to eat before going to a party. Doing this will help curb your hunger and take the edge off your appetite beforehand.
In addition, you can also bring your own healthy plate to make sure that you will have something healthy to snack on without over doing it.
95. Watch your Weekends
Sure, you are able to stick with a pretty healthy diet and exercise during the week, but once the freedom of the weekend arrives, you decide to take a break from your resolution, WRONG, doing this will only set you back and undo your hard efforts
Therefore, you need to be conscious of the happy hour of work on Friday, the restaurant dinner on Saturday, and the home-cooked large meals on Sunday.
If you are not paying attention here, your weekends can turn into diet landmines that can undo a week’s worth of healthy dieting and exercising.
Keep in mind that eating poorly and skipping workouts on Friday to Sunday every week comes out to a whopping 12 days off a month.
So focus on creating healthy eating and exercise habits that are sustainable all month along.
96. Be Patient
Patience is really a virtue and something you sorely need to get your weight loss plan where you want it to be.
The more patient you are with this whole thing, the greater the odds of your success.
Patience will help you reduce stress, control cravings, plan things right, set the right goals, and most importantly, keep you consistent and going—especially when all the odds are stacked up against you.
Patience will allow you to see beyond the current (unpleasant) moment to a future in which you have already achieved what you are after.
So take your time to learn about what type of exercise works the best for you, take also your time and learn about the various foods with the best nutrition.
97. Take Action
“Nothing happens until something moves”—Albert Einstein. And until you start taking action, you won’t achieve anything.
So stop thinking about it and take action now.
Every minute you are sitting around thinking, surfing the net, checking Facebook, you are not doing what you need to get closer to achieving your weight loss goals.
Regardless of how much you to change your life around and lead a healthier lifestyle, nothing will happen until you DO something.
You can talk about starting a workout program and developing healthier eating habits all you want, but nothing will change until you start taking action.
So you had better get moving NOW.
Therefore, your next move here is simple and straightforward: Come up with a list of the lifestyle changes you want to see happen, then give yourself time to make them a part of your life.
98. Practice Kaizen
The philosophy of Kaizen is all about going after small, continuous improvement. It’s the kind of small improvement that builds up over time, over week, months and years of regular practice.
This is surely the best way to help you banish short-term and silver bullet thinking.
Achieving a healthy lifestyle is, after all, more of a marathon than sprint—meaning slow and steady wins the race.
As a result, embrace the small, continuous improvement philosophy and aim to get 1 percent better each day.
Begin every morning by asking yourself: what’s one thing I can do today that would improve my fitness and health? Then, start super small and go about achieving it.
Look for hundreds of small things you can improve and keep building them up.
99. Stick to your New Lifestyle After you Lose the Weight
According to research, most people gain back most of the weight they lost in less than two years after losing it. And this is really bad.
Losing weight is hard enough. And then gaining it all back really sucks.
So once you reach your target weight, keep in mind that it’s just half of the battle, and do your best not to revert to your old ways.
I hate to sound like a broken record, but the real secret to reaching your ideal weight and keeping it for life is making a life-long commitment to the above diet, and exercise habits.
In fact, the moment you go back to your old ways is the moment all of the pounds will start creeping back.
In the end, if you are serious about losing weight and never gaining it again, then you need to understand that it doesn’t stop.
All of it. The healthy eating. The sleeping. The running…it doesn’t stop.
You need to keep things going, prevent slip-ups and come up with creative ways to spice your workouts and cope with whatever life throws at you.
Make the commitment to stick with the changes for life.
So please you need to practice the above guidelines on a regular basis. Of course, you don’t have to perfect, but at least, be persistent 80 to 90 percent of the time.
100. Remember: It’s all About Creating a Calorie Deficit
Weight loss is all about creating a calorie deficit.
Unless you have been living under a rock for the last decades, then you surely know that weight loss is a numbers game. Nothing more. Nothing else.
If you eat more calories than you burn, you will gain weight.
If you burn more calories than you eat, you will lose weight.
The healthy goal is to aim for a 500 calories deficit per day.
The best approach here is to do a mix of healthy eating and smart exercise to reach at a 500 calories deficit each day.
That’s it. Weight loss, at its basic form, is a numbers game
101. Find What Works the Best For You
Please keep in mind that weight loss topics—whether it’s diet, exercise or lifestyle related—are some of the most controversial topics out there, therefore, most of the tips and strategies I’m sharing with you today are based on my personal experience and research.
So of course, there are some contradictory tips—intermittent fasting Vs eating breakfast for instance—but there are some great one here.
Therefore, nothing is written in stone here. Take the tips with a grain of salt and remember that everyone is different and responds differently to different diets and exercise methods.
So please keep in mind that each strategy might not be right for every individual. Just because a weight loss tactic works for someone else, it might not work for you.
In other words, feel free to experiment in order to find what works the best for you.
Bonus Tip: Never Give up
And this is, really, where the rubber meets the road when it comes to losing weight and keeping off for good.
Weight loss resolutions fail because people give up way often and way early on their journey.
Therefore, whatever you do, please don’t give up.
Don’t give up.
Don’t ever give up.
Of course, you are going to go through bad days, weeks, even months. But don’t give up.
Shit happens and it’s part of life.
If you fail, then start over. Get up and do it again. Change your approach, find how to do things differently.
And please, please, please don’t let your past mistakes and past failures define who you are. You are much more than that.
Welcome failure, and let it shape your approach and course of action—but never give in to it.
Boy, that was a long post, and you if you’ve made it so far, then I applaud you for your courage and commitment.
You are the best..
You rock for taking the time to invest in yourself…
Now stop wasting time and take action on what you have just learned.
In the meantime, thank you for reading my post.
Feel free to leave your questions and comment below.
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Featured Image Credit – Byong Wook via Flickr