“To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art.” ~~ La Rochefoucauld
The proper nutrition will not only give you energy, it will reduce risk of injury and; therefore, help you reach your goal. The true secret to weight loss is–make small changes each and every day and you will slowly (but surely) lose those extra pounds. The key is to forget about instant results and settle in for the long run. Another way to do this is to focus less on a target weight and more on making healthy choices each day to reduce your calories.
Understanding exactly what you need to do is your first step. Learn basic steps to lose weight, know how to set realistic goals and follow simple tips for making healthy lifestyle changes. Your goals need to be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and tangible. Your first step is determining if you really need to lose weight.
A candidate for weight loss may have the following characteristics:
- A BMI of more than 25
- A Waist-Hip ratio of higher than .8 for women and higher than 1.0 men
- An Abdominal Girth measurement of more than 35 inches in women and 40 inches in men
Other indications of why you may feel you may need to lose weight is the annoying feelings of tight clothes, being out of breath while doing simple activities, or stepping on a scale for the first time in a while.
Make a Plan:
Record your goal and then make a plan to reach it.
Example: Assuming you are 5’7″ tall and weigh 160 pounds. According to the calculators above, your BMI is 25.1, which falls under the ‘overweight’ category. If you lose just 10 pounds, your BMI will be at a healthier 23.5.
Lose 10 pounds in 12 weeks. Cut out calories each day by 300-500 through both diet and exercise.
To Reach This Goal You Will:
Replace the morning Egg McMuffin (300 calories) with a bowl of oatmeal (about 180 calories).
Replace one Coke (150 calories) with Fresca (0 calories).
Walk at least 30 minutes at 3.5-4.0 mph 3 days a week (approx. 180-240 calories burned).
Strength train 2 days a week for 30 minutes (approx. 140-280 calories burned)
Total Calories burned each day: 270 – 550.
This example shows you how breaking down your goal into specific steps can help you focus on your daily tasks. Just remember to adjust your goal to increase your loss in calories. Your goal needs to be attainable, so be willing to set new goals if the old ones are not working for you.