Weight loss can be challenging for many people. It can be confusing in terms of what you should and shouldn’t do. Eating healthy and working out are a great start, but it’s important to understand how to do that safely. Sometimes, it’s a matter of changing just a few simple things. These easy tips can help get you going in the right direction.
1. Know How Many Calories You Need. Knowing how much you should be taking in is important information. In order to calculate the number of calories for you to take in, it is necessary for you to calculate your Basal Metabolic Rate. An easy way to calculate this is to search for Basal Metabolic Rate in a search engine such as Google. We suggest the Harris Benedict Formula for Basal Metabolic Rate. Once this is calculated based on your activity level, you can adjust the number of calories towards weight loss. While calories aren’t something to obsess over, it is very handy to know how much energy you should be taking in.
2. Portion Size Is Your Friend. You may not like counting calories and portion size can be an equally great way to control what you’re taking in. Taking in too many calories, consuming more than you are burning off, causes the body to store the excess calories as fat instead of being used for energy. This is why eating appropriate portion sizes can help you. Try measuring your food by using your hand. Meals can be structured by the “Eyeball Method”. Choose a protein source that is equal to the size of the palm of your hand, carbohydrate source equal to the size of your clenched fist and fat portion equal to the tip of your thumb. The Eyeball Method can also help you choose portions when eating out or at eating at parties and friendly gatherings.
3. Burn More Than You Take In. In order to lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you are taking in. This should be done by creating a calorie deficit of 500-1000 calories per day or a combination of a calorie deficit and deficit through exercise, such as a 500 calorie deficit and burning 500 calories through exercise. A 500 calorie deficit per day would equal a 1 pound weight loss per week (500 x 7 days in a week = 3500 calories. 3500 calories = 1 pound).
4. Safe Weight Loss Is Important. A weight loss of 1-2 pounds per week is the safest way to lose weight and maintain it. Any more than 2 pounds per week creates an unrealistic caloric deficit that cannot be sustained. This deficit sends the body into starvation mode because you are not taking in an adequate amount of calories to fuel the body properly. Starvation mode does not allow you to lose weight. Instead, the body holds on to everything you consume because it is trying to store the calories that come in for later as there is insufficient fuel coming in.
5. Pre And Post Workout Fuel. It is essential to take in enough calories to fuel your workouts to get the most out of them. This means eating 1-2 hours before you workout so that you have enough fuel and replenishing your body with a balanced snack within a half an hour after you workout.
6. Make Your Workouts Count. Why workout if you’re not going to give it 100% and get as much as you can out of that workout? Going through the motions won’t get you anywhere. When working out, it is critical to put in all of your effort and push yourself as hard as you can. This will ensure that you will get the most out of your workouts and the highest calorie burn. Working out at 50% will only burn 50% of the calories you want to burn.