I’m not a doctor or medical professional of any kind. I am just a guy who has lost 25 pounds in a year, from 195 to 170 (I am 5′10″). Not bad. Not exciting, either. But with this small success of mine, I discovered something unexpected. The diet is not the path to weight loss.
A healthy low-calorie diet, if executed correctly, can help you lose a lot of weight in a short amount of time.
However, you may have found that they can be difficult to follow correctly day in and day out. You, me and millions of others! What I’ve found that works are that the little things you do day in and day out are the things that make a significant difference. If you develop these little things into habits, then you are on auto-pilot for losing weight. That’s the best. Using as little psychic energy and willpower as possible to get to your weight loss goals yields the most success in the long run. In other words, adopting small habits will help you lose weight and keep it off.
- Write down what you eat
This one is straightforward, but has incredible side effects. Simply keep a list of what you eat for the day, and write it down at the time you eat it. Try to estimate the amount of each food you eat, too. That’s all there is to it. Your only goal is to capture what you eat.
Two things tend to occur with this discipline. First, you might spontaneously examine your list and identify things you had eaten that you could have easily done without. Second, you might avoid grabbing a handful of snacks just so you don’t have to go to the trouble of writing it down. Both are wins.
The more you treat eating as if it were a ritual, the more your body will benefit. You will eat only what you need to feel full, and you feel more satisfied. The following will guide you to treat your body and the act of eating with respect and appreciation.
Keep your mind on your meal. Don’t eat over the sink, don’t eat in front of the TV or computer or newspaper or book, and don’t eat in the car while driving.
Put what you are going to eat on a plate or in a bowl, place your meal on a table, and sit down.
When ready to eat, don’t start yet. Take about 30 seconds and do some sort of ritual demonstrating appreciation.
Whether you like prayer or simply giving thanks, appreciation goes a long way for your mental health and guides you toward treating your body as a temple instead of a garbage can.
Next is straight ahead common sense, but needs to be said:
- Chew your food thoroughly before swallowing.
- Don’t put an uncomfortable amount of food in your mouth.
- Do not take another bite until you have swallowed and the food is inside your stomach.
- Do not talk while you eat. You can have conversations with others at the table; just shut up for a minute when food is in your mouth please!
Many believe that staying hungry is a necessary part of dieting. In my experience, the last thing you want to do is ever feel pangs of hunger. Trying to stay hungry flat out fails. Even if you have superb willpower, it takes energy to ignore the fact that you’re hungry. Then later in the day, you’re more tired than usual from that expended energy. Your willpower is shot and you will most likely wind up eating more than you would have had you never been hungry. You pay a psychological debt by starving yourself, and your psyche makes you pay it later by gorging yourself.
A better strategy that seems to work for many is to eat many times during the day. The goal is to never be hungry, so that you are constantly satisfied, and therefor conserve your psychological energy.
- Eat everything you want, just smaller portions
Hand in hand with denying yourself food altogether is denying yourself certain kinds of foods like ice cream, steak and fried foods. Using willpower to avoid the foods you love may just end up in a binge further down the road. A more satisfying strategy may be to allow yourself to have any food you want, just limit the portions.
Find times in your day when you are doing something, or nothing, and stand up instead of sitting or laying down. This burns just a few more calories per day. 10 extra calories over a year add up to over a pound of lost weight for (almost) free. At 50 calories per hour, just standing 10 to 15 extra minutes a day gets you that free pound loss.
Similar to standing more often, walk more often. If you drive, park further from the building than usual. Walk the long way to your bus stop, office, school or work. Burning 10 extra calories per day doing this discipline is another pound for the year.
Take the stairs instead of the elevator, even if only part way up or down. Don’t overwhelm yourself here. To start, just walk one flight of stairs at a time. For example, if you are going to the 12th floor, start by taking the elevator to the 11th floor, then walk up one flight. Increase the amount of stairs only as you feel comfortable doing so. Also, consider that there is no law against going up and down the same flight of stairs twice!
- One less soda or coffee a day
This only works if you drink soda or coffee with cream and sugar. Just drink one less a day. That’s up to 140 calories savings. If you can’t give up a whole soda a day, then once a day drink only half a can and then throw it away. This saves you 70 calories, but is somewhat of a waste of money. However, this “wasted” money translates to self-discipline and saved calories that you will much better appreciate in the long run.
Everyone knows that drinking water is great for your body. It makes you look and feel and even smell better. Being full of water also can make you less hungry. It’s true that in the first few days after increasing your water intake, you will go to the bathroom more. This, however, is actually a positive; walking to and from the bathroom is more exercise without exercising! It’s almost impossible to drink too much water, so just drink it whenever you can, rather than trying to hit a goal every day.
Treat this like an experiment. You are looking for somewhat lower calorie foods that fill you up and make you feel less hungry. For me, black coffee is great because it only has 9 calories per cup and makes me feel less hungry, if not all the way full. Cereal for me is terrible; with milk, it can be over 200 calories for the serving size listed on the box, and I still feel almost as hungry as before I ate it, so I wind up eating three bowls.
This tip cannot be dictated exactly; is a personal one based on how you feel. I believe everyone is different in terms of what exactly satisfies hunger. Use experimentation and curiosity to find the foods that are not too caloric while making you forget hunger.
- Keep hi-cal foods out of reach
Don’t leave bags of chips and boxes of cookies out on the kitchen counter, ready to be picked at. Always wrap your foods and put them away behind some kind of cabinet door or drawer out of sight. What I’m saying is allow yourself to eat these things whenever you feel like it, just put them on a dish, put the rest of the box away, then sit down in peace and enjoy your food.
Yeah I know you can do great on just five hours of sleep. Luckily for me, I can’t. I need eight hours of sleep to be at my best. My belief is that everyone needs eight hours for great health, and for me I just cannot get by with less because I feel and perform terribly the next day. But there’s even more to it. The less sleep I get, the more I eat. Also, the less energy I have and I expend less energy. Try it yourself. Weigh yourself first thing in the morning after you wake up from a 7-or-less hour sleep. Then, after a night where you get eight or more hours sleep, weigh yourself right after you wake up. You’ll see what I’m talking about. Getting enough sleep allows your digestive system to fully process food and integrate it properly throughout your body.
After going through these 12 tips, you have probably figured out that by following this advice you will not lose 12 pounds in just one week. But that’s OK. Slow and steady, especially steady, wins this race. And the best way to be steady is to implement small habits that add up to big wins over time.
Well, on a final note, eating healthy food is well and good but another important thing to practice is yoga and that too every morning so that you can keep both the body and mind relaxed without feeling any stress that would lead to bad thoughts and we all know that they won’t do any good during exercises for losing weight and the same is given on the website https://www.jewelshealinggarden.com/yoga-burn-12-week-challenge-review/ where you can become a yoga expert in 12 weeks.