Ate too much during the festive season, and now need to lose weight fast? There’s no need to rush into a highly intensive workout and diet plan just yet.
Studies show that making just ONE small but sustained change in your choice of food or activity can help you lose up to four times more weight than if you were to follow a traditional diet and workout programme. What this means is that you’re aiming for a ‘slow burn’, rather than starting off super ambitious, but eventually running out of steam.
What are these small changes, you ask? Check out our list of 7 easy-peasy changes that anyone can make to lose weight fast!
#1: Keep a food journal
We’re constantly underestimating the amount of food we consume in a single day – and if you don’t believe this, keep a food journal and religiously write down every single item of food that you’ve eaten. Chances are, you’ll find yourself surprised at the many times you’re snacking within a day.
Once you DO have a better idea of how much you’re actually eating, you can then start to cut out one or two snacks if needed (or replace them with healthier alternatives!)
#2: Drink more water
We’ve heard people say countless times that they can’t possibly drink water all day long, because it’s bland and tasteless. But here’s the deal – soda contains a ton of sugar, and if you want to lose weight fast, your best bet is to eliminate soda from your diet.
Instead of soda, try fruit-infused water. It’s refreshing, it’s delicious, and the options are literally endless – meaning that you can keep coming up with new fruit combinations to keep things fun!
#3: Take the stairs
If your legs are burning, that’s a good sign. Stair climbing has great aerobic benefits and will help you reduce cardio risk by up to 30%. You’ll also be toning your legs and butt at the same time and hey, who doesn’t want that?
#4: Track your daily steps using a pedometer
Many people don’t know that almost all phone models today come with a built in pedometer. (The one on an iPhone, for example, can be located in the Health app under the ‘Fitness’ section).
With your pedometer enabled, log in daily to track your number of steps walked per day. You’ll also be able to access data about your average step count per week, month, and year – so make sure that your daily count doesn’t fall below any of the averages, and you’re good to go!
#5: Savour your dessert
For many, asking them to give up on dessert altogether is akin to asking them for their first newborn. It’s hard to quit – we get that. So what we’re asking you to do, instead, is to savour your dessert and spend a longer time eating your desserts instead.
Sounds strange? Here’s how it works. When you gobble down your food, it reduces your satisfaction because you’re barely giving your brain any time to process the information and send signals to your dopaminergic neurons (where feelings of pleasure are triggered). The bottom line – you end up eating more than is really necessary.
So the next time you have dessert, luxuriate in it. Be mindful, chew it slowly, take your time to really taste the flavour and the texture of whatever it is you’re having. Chances are, you’ll find that you’re satisfied with a much smaller portion than you would have expected!
#6: Have an accountability partner
It’s hard to slide back into your old habits of drinking soda, eating whatever you want to and sitting on the couch all day if you have someone who will give you some tough love. Make sure your closest friends and family know that you’re trying to lose weight, so they can help to watch out for you and keep you in line when (or if!) your self-control starts wavering.
#7: Read fitness blogs
Studies have shown that people who receive fitness newsletters and read fitness blogs on a regular basis are more likely to follow through with their exercise and diet plans, and also more likely to lose weight fast. Here are a few great blogs to get you started: