With the summer upon us, many of us are committing to dropping those extra pounds once and for all. But we want it to happen quickly, as swimsuit season is here and who doesn’t want to look their best on the beach?
However, the simple fact is that while we wait in vain for that miracle instant diet pill to be discovered shedding those unwanted pounds is going to take time, hard work and some lifestyle changes. Losing weight quickly almost never happens but there are effective ways to steadily lose pounds and inches and reach your goal weight sooner rather than later.
Here are some fast weight loss do’s and don’ts to get you started.
Don’t Starve Yourself!
The general rule of thumb to weight loss does depend on taking in less calories and expending the more of the calories that we do consume. However too many people wrongly resort to starving themselves and in the process they sabotage their weight loss goals.
Starving yourself does serious damage to your body and is counter-productive in any weight loss efforts. Although you may shed a few pounds in the beginning, the pounds are nothing more than water weight that will quickly return the moment you begin eating again.
Additionally, our bodies need calories to burn in order to remain fueled and to keep our metabolisms in high gear. It is the increased metabolism that burns off the weight in a safe and manageable way.
Once your body is starved it goes into what is known as ‘starvation mode’ in an effort to protect itself; what that means is it will steadfastly hang on to any fat you have so that it can sustain itself.
Fat is what you are trying to lose, so using this method is not going to be helpful. Most importantly however, when we deprive our bodies of essential nutrients, fats and vitamins our organs are not able to function properly and the end result is that we are doing irrevocable damage to the organs that keep us alive.
Don’t Follow Fad Diets!
Many of the diets (especially celebrity diets) out there dangerously restrict one or more food groups promising to help us lose weight quickly. Few of these diets have supporting scientific evidence to back up their claims and they are also ineffective.
Our bodies need all of the food groups including some fats and carbohydrates which many of the fad diets ban altogether. Not only should you eat good carbohydrates and fats in moderation, they have numerous health benefits and will actually help you lose weight faster.
No one can sustain a diet that negates particular food groups for long periods of time and those who try often succumb to binge eating or become unhealthy because they aren’t eating vital foods that the body needs as fuel. A healthy diet will include some fats, carbohydrates, grains and proteins.
Do Sit Down and Revamp Your Current Diet Plan
Eliminating things like refined sugars and processed foods will help you consume fewer calories and help you to be healthier.
Include 3-5 servings of fruits and vegetables each day as well as increase your servings of proteins, grains and fibers. Foods with protein will help to give you energy while grains and fibrous foods aid in digestion and increase metabolism, all of which are important for faster weight loss.
Cut out sugary drinks and some caffeine based ones and replace them with water. Everyone needs to drink at least 64 ounces of water per day to lose weight and keep the body hydrated.
Do Increase Your Activity Level Continuously
If you currently don’t get any exercise to speak of at all, begin the by walking at a brisk pace at least 3-5 times per day for at least 20 minutes each session. For those who already do a minimal amount of exercise, it is time to pick up the pace. Join a local gym and take a fun fitness class. Zumba is a great option for a newbie and it’s a very social activity as well.
You can also take up a summer sport. Tennis, volleyball, golf and swimming are all great forms of exercise, relatively easy and as they are also fun you are more likely to stick with them. Plus it will get you out of the house, or out of the office and allow your body to soak up some of that Vitamin D it desperately needs (just remember the sunscreen)
Finally, to tone up some of those ‘jiggly bits’ that you are not so fond of, some basic weights work can do wonders even for a beginner. No, you are not going to end up looking like Arnold Schwarzenegger (we promise, unless you want to) which is one reason women especially tend to shy away from weight training, just a leaner, maybe even meaner version of yourself.
Do Be Patient!
Permanent, lasting, weight loss should happen in moderation and continuously. A healthy goal to set, according to experts is to lose an average of a pound – or maybe two – a week.