It’s easy to pack on a few pounds over the winter. It’s cold outside and you basically don’t want to move. Plus, who can resist a second slice of granny’s homemade pecan pie? Sure, a lot of people make their New Year’s Resolution to “get in shape,” but who is still sticking to their routine? To help boost your motivation, we’ve decided to gather a few fitness and dieting tips to help make getting in shape a little easier. If you have any tips of your own, please feel free to share them in a comment!
1. Eat Breakfast
Skipping breakfast is probably one of the worst choices you can make. You are never running too late to grab a granola bar and some orange juice at least. Studies show people who regularly eat breakfast are of a healthier weight than those who go without. It provides the necessary energy to get your body started in the morning and keeps your metabolism running all day long.
2. Drink Water
Choosing water over other beverages helps keep your calorie count down, and helps keep you hydrated. Hydrating your body is important to maintaining energy levels. When you’re dehydrated, you are tired and are likely to have more headaches. Drinking water helps flush toxins out of your body, leaving you feeling energized. Also, that hungry feeling you get isn’t always a need for food. It can be your body saying it needs more water.
3. Stay Reasonable
If you are trying to lose weight, setting a goal of losing fifteen pounds a week isn’t reasonable, nor is it healthy. You want to set goals that are manageable for you. Take baby steps. If you’re just starting to exercise, set a goal of exercising twenty minutes every other day. Then work your way up as your endurance grows. The same goes for food. Don’t consider any food completely off limits. Instead, decrease proportions of unhealthy foods and increase your intake of healthy foods. Try using your favorite dessert as a reward at the end of a week of eating healthy. Every little change you make matters!
4. Walk More
Take the stairs. Park at the back of the parking lot. Stand up and walk around the office when you can. Every extra bit of movement will help burn calories. Try walking two out of every 30 minutes. It may not seem like much, but over time you will notice the difference. Walking can help you feel more energized. Instead of grabbing a soda or cup of coffee, just walk for a few minutes. Walking is good for your cardiovascular system. Doing so regularly can decrease your chances of having a heart attack.
5. Find a Weight Loss Partner
Working towards a mutual goal with another individual can be motivating. You have someone to discuss your results with and to go to when you are feeling discouraged. Studies show people who exercise with a friend lose three times the weight than those who go it alone. Think about it. Those days you really don’t feel like working out, someone is going to be there motivating you to do it anyways.
6. Enjoy Your Food
You may think that enjoying food is your problem to begin with. Overeating can be easy. However, there are ways to prevent it. Eating with friends can help you model good eating habits. There are social and emotional benefits to eating with others. Sitting in front of a computer or television can make you less aware of how much you are eating. This increases your chances of overeating. Listen to your body and eat slowly. Enjoy each bite one at a time. It takes your body a few minutes to register when it is full. If you eat slower, your body will have a chance to recognize being full before you have eaten that entire tub of ice cream.
7. Find What Works for You
Figure out a routine that fits your schedule. Work them in comfortably. Choose days you know you will have time to exercise. If you know you can’t make it to a gym, don’t join one. There are exercise programs that you can do from home. If you aren’t a morning person, don’t make up your mind to work out in the morning. Choose the time and days that work for you.
8. Getting Fit isn’t Easy
Advertisements showing lean, fit models standing on a beach claiming a pill sheds pounds instantly can be very appealing. The before and after pictures fail to report the effort that went beyond taking that diet pill. Getting fit isn’t easy, there’s no magic wand that can be waved to instantly cause the weight to fall off. The truth is, it takes a lifestyle change. You have to be sincerely motivated and dedicated. You have to always eat healthy and exercise regularly to keep the weight off. Yeah, their pill might speed up your metabolism. The latest diet fad might help you lose those extra fifteen pounds, but if you don’t continue to diet and exercise, the weight will come back.