Whether you want to be healthier overall, have a weight loss goal in mind, or just want to feel better about yourself and have more confidence, these are all valid reasons to want to make a change and do something about it. Here are some tips to keep in mind as you get started
Be Honest with Yourself
.First of all, it’s important to be realistic about what you want and why you are doing it. Do you actually need to lose weight or have you been affected by a nasty comment somebody made to you?
Are you battling bigger issues like body dysmorphia that might need to be tackled first before you are able to change your habits in a healthy way?
Making any big lifestyle change always requires you to be completely honest with yourself.
You might find it useful to speak to a doctor or a therapist if you suspect that your issues run deeper than simply being a little overweight or unhealthy.
However, that being said, healthier lifestyle habits can benefit anybody, so the sooner you start to make the change, the better.
Set a Realistic Goal
Unrealistic weight loss goals are perhaps the most counterproductive thing that you can do at the start of the journey.
If you want to lose a stone in a month or fit into clothes two sizes smaller within a few weeks, you’re probably going to leave yourself disappointed because our bodies simply don’t work like that.
And, while it would be great if we could click our fingers and lose all the extra fat, fast weight loss is never usually safe and it never usually lasts very long either.
Slow and steady certainly wins the race here; aim to lose around 1-kg per week for optimal results and a better chance of maintaining your goal when you reach it.
Don’t Restrict Yourself Completely
Suddenly banning yourself from eating all the foods that you enjoy and living on fruits and vegetables alone will probably make you lose weight, but it’s not going to be very pleasant for you either.
In fact, restricting yourself too much can actually have the opposite effect because after a few days, you’re going to be desperate for a taste of all those foods that you’ve forbidden yourself, and you could end up completely falling off the wagon. Instead, allow yourself some treats in moderation and be healthy the majority of the time.
Don’t make anything completely off-limits, but only allow yourself a small amount when you do have something unhealthy.
Don’t Make It All About Weight Loss
The number on the scales is somewhat important, but there are more important things – like your overall health.
If you make it all about weight loss and forget about your health, it’s going to be counterproductive.
And, you could end up falling into very unhealthy habits like weighing yourself all the time and obsessing over any small amounts of weight that you might put back on or if you don’t lose any weight after just a couple of days.
The truth is that everybody loses weight differently, and everybody carries it differently, too. Make your overall health and wellness the top priority and don’t give the number on the scales so much power.
Consider Meal Replacement Shakes
Meal replacement shakes can be an ideal way to kick-start your weight loss journey as they are an easy way to restrict your calories while still feeling full.
If you are notorious for skipping breakfast, you might want to consider having a meal replacement shake to ensure that you are getting that most important meal of the day.
More importantly, if you decide to go with meal replacement shakes, ensure that you are taking them alongside a healthy and balanced diet otherwise, they simply won’t work as well as they should.
Eat More Protein
Nobody is saying that you should cut carbs out of your diet altogether, but most people find that they lose weight if they cut down on carbs and eat more protein instead.
Carbs should be the last priority when you are making a meal and instead fill up on healthy sources of protein like lean meat, fish, eggs and tofu.
Protein is absolutely essential to weight loss, and if you are working out with weights, you’ll be able to see better results if you have a protein-rich diet as this nutrient is essential for helping your muscles repair and recover after a workout.
Drink More Water
There’s no doubting that your body needs water, and if you want to lose weight, staying hydrated is absolutely key for detoxing your body and ensuring that all the nutrients from your diet get to the right places.
In addition, dehydration can also make it harder for you to lose weight, so make sure that you are getting around two litres of water per day.
To make it easier, why not invest in a nice reusable water bottle for yourself?
You can even get water bottles with a compartment down the middle that you can fill with fruit to make the water taste nicer if you’re not a fan of drinking it plain. Try and include more water-rich foods in your diet, too.
While you can and will see weight loss results simply from changing your diet alone, exercising can help to speed it up and help you get even better results. Moving your body is key to getting the weight loss results that you want alongside your new healthy diet.
The key to exercising more is finding something that you like doing; if you’re going to be exercising several times per week, you might as well make sure that you enjoy it!
Everybody is different – some people love weight lifting in the gym while others would prefer to hike in the hills, so try a wide range of different exercises until you find one that you feel you could stick with.
There’s no right or wrong way to exercise as long as you’re doing the exercises correctly, getting your heart rate up and having fun.
Change Your Mindset
Finally, changing your mindset can really help you get the results that you want. Many people ‘go on a diet’ because they think they are ‘fat’ and it ends up being a way to punish themselves for their perceived physical flaws.
On the other hand, when you are eating healthily and practicing good lifestyle habits because you – and your body – only deserve the best, you’re going to be much happier and much better able to stick at what you started for good.
Deciding to make a change in your life and kick-start a healthy eating and weight loss journey is a massive step! As you get started, keep these tips in mind to help you get the best results.
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