1. Develop a reasonable goal I always recommend beginning with small changes and gradually working up to the overall goal. These small changes help develop good habits. The overall goal should be reasonable and achievable within the time frame set. An example of an unreasonable goal is to lose 15 lbs. in 2 weeks. A reasonable goal is to lose 15 lbs. in two months. While the second goal will not lead to a quick result, it is something more easily accomplished and something that can be sustained. This will help prevent yo-yo dieting of losing weight and then gaining it all back.
2. Ensuring enough caloric intake A common mistake when trying to lose weight is exercising more frequently and eating less throughout the day. This is not a good idea because the more exercise a person does, the more food the body needs. If the body is not getting enough fuel throughout the day, the body will react to make sure it can survive. The body does this by hanging onto the food given to it and storing it as fat. This will prevent weight loss and can lead to discouragement. Make sure to eat enough throughout the day. If unsure of how much to eat, ask a Registered Dietitian for assistance.
3. Don’t cut out carbs A common mistake when trying to lose weight or to be healthier is cutting out carbohydrates. Carbohydrates include breads, pasta, potatoes, rice, vegetables, fruits and sweets. While it is okay to reduce the intake of sweets like cake or cookies; it is not okay to cut out all carbohydrates completely. The brain and the nervous system rely on carbohydrates to function appropriately. Carbohydrates are also the body’s preferred source of energy and promote digestive health while preserving muscle when working out. If there are not enough carbohydrates consumed, it can lead to being irritated or being short tempered. Weight changes can be made while still consuming carbohydrates.
4. Include more fruits & vegetables Fruits and vegetables are a great change to make to everyday life. They are more filling and are lower in calories than other foods. They are a great way to get micronutrients, flavor and color onto your plate. Fruits and vegetables are also a great source of fiber which helps support digestive health.
5. Cook more meals at home. Cooking at home allows for healthier ingredients, portion control, saving money and time overall. The consumer is more cognizant of what is being put into the body. Cooking can be a family event as well and can allow time to socialize with family members. Cooking at home can help reduce the intake of sugar and more processed foods.
6. Shop smart Smart shopping is key to stay focused on the overall goal. Smart shopping includes going to the store on a full stomach rather than an empty one. Shopping on an empty stomach leads to hungry decisions instead of reasonable ones. It also makes it harder to stick to any planned changes in the diet. It is also recommended to make a list of things needed and stick to it. This will help with cutting costs and preventing quick trips to the store that may lead to getting off track. Another way to shop smart is to shop during slow times to help avoid crowds.
7. Throw away the scale Another common mistake with weight loss is determining success by the scale. The scale varies greatly depending on the clothing worn, body composition, time of day and whether bowels have been emptied. Success should be based on having more energy, sleeping better and feeling better during a workout rather than a number on the scale.
8. Drink more water This cannot be emphasized enough; the body needs water! Water makes up 70% of the body and utilizes it to function. Dehydration can lead to increased strain on the heart, decreased focus, fatigue and dry skin. In more serious conditions (outside in the Texas heat), it can lead to kidney and urinary problems, heat injury or electrolyte imbalances. A result of increased water intake is emptying the bladder more frequently, but the body will adapt. Restroom usage will become less frequent and the body will start to crave water. Buy a reusable bottle, fill it up and get drinking!
9. Move the body in a joyful way If becoming more physically active is a goal, be sure to do something that is enjoyable. There are so many options available for exercising such as boxing, Jiu jitsu, self-defense classes, personal training sessions, work out classes or just hiking at the various parks in the area. Grind House Training Facility offers a wide variety of these classes to help reach the desired goals. COVID-19 has even made it possible for some of these resources to be available at home. So, choose to move your body in a way that will make exercising enjoyable and not a hassle.
10. Make sleep priority Sleep plays a huge role in normal day-to-day functions such as helping support a healthy immune system, regulate body temperature, maintain hormone levels, digestion and it provides the body time for recovery. Recovery can include a stressful day or a difficult work out. Overall, the body needs that time to get back on track for the next day. Aim for 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night.
11. Ask for help from the professionals. That’s what they are there for. If you are unsure where to start with desired goals it is best to ask a professional. These professionals can help with accountability and assist with understanding why things did not work out in the past. This includes personal trainers and Registered Dietitians. At Grind House Training Facility there are plenty of professionals to help someone reach their goals whether that is to become stronger, to learn a new skill or to have a better relationship with food. Head over to Grind House Training Facility to find the right fit for you!