1. Weight vs. fat: know the difference!
Remember that while a pound of fat and a pound of muscle weigh the same, muscle takes up a lot less room in your clothes. Don’t be afraid to gain muscle weight. Adding more muscle will also raise your metabolism and keep your body fat percentage low.
2. Throw out the scales.
Don’t be so attached to a number. Instead, measure your BMI and take measurements with measuring tape. Scales can often be deceiving. For example, if you are dehydrated, you may see the numbers drop, but you haven’t really lost any fat. Instead, base your success on measurements and how well your clothes fit.
3.Check progress weekly rather than daily.
Weekly check-ins provide a more accurate picture of your actual progress. If you check your weight or measurements daily, you may become discouraged at the lack of progress. Set weekly instead of daily weight-loss goals to keep on track.
4. Not all calories are created equal.
You will lose more weight if you eat three 70-calorie eggs instead of a candy bar, even if the calorie count is the same. The eggs will regulate insulin and not cause your blood sugar to spike. The extra protein will also help keep you feel full longer. The candy bar will do the exact opposite and can cause you to pack on the pounds. It’s not just calories in and calories out, it’s the kind of calories you put in and how your body processes them that helps you reach your weight-loss goals.
Realize that our BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) and your RMR (Resting Metabolic Rate) are different when it comes down to the numbers. Your BMR is truly your metabolic rate if you just slept all day. Your RMR is your metabolic rate if you laid in bed, but ate meals, and had small activities like moving around your home. Calculating your RMR is probably a more realistic base platform when you’re trying to look at calories burned. Once you have this information, you can better calculate your total caloric loss when adding in exercise and meal plan information.
6. Apps can help you keep track of food intake.
Many apps help you manage your meal plans and exercise. These apps also help you network with other people and create accountability. My personal favorite is my fitness pal, simply due to its ease of use. Also, the fact that you can scan the UPC codes of items that you are eating to automatically pull them up is quite handy. However, there are many apps out there. Just find one that works best for you, and use it as a tool to manage your diet.
7. Buddy up!
Having someone else keep you on track is key. It can be a trainer, family, or friends. Just knowing that someone else is going to ask you about your meal plan or exercise goals often help you to resist temptations and procrastination. Even better, having a workout partner who will meet and work out with you will further ensure success.
Slogging away on that treadmill for an hour at an easy walk may not be your best option for losing weight. One study found that obesity odds decreased by 5% for women and 2% for men for every additional minute of high-intensity exertion.
9. Eat whole foods over processed food.
Your body understands the chemistry of real food and utilizes it much better. However, when you add processed foods into the mix, you usually are adding more sugar, sodium, chemicals, and refined carbohydrates. Keep your diet to whole, unprocessed foods, and you should see a huge difference in your waistline.
10. Reduce your sugar intake.
Eating too much sugar impacts upon your insulin levels. Insulin unlocks your cells to allow sugar to enter. However, if more sugar enters your cells than is needed, the excess energy accumulates as fat.