You know the drill when it comes to losing weight: take in fewer calories, burn more calories. You also know that most diets and quick weight-loss plans don’t work as promised. But when you focus on just a couple of small changes at a time, you begin to ingrain some healthy habits that last for a lifetime, rather than trying an all-or-nothing approach that more often than not fail because it’s too hard to follow.
If you’re trying to drop a few pounds today, then these tips will make it simple for you to lose the weight quickly. Good Luck and Enjoy.
1. Keep a food journal
Mindlessly munching on a bag of chips could result in easily polishing off the whole thing; write down how much you’ve eaten and you’re more likely to practice portion control—and see how to lose weight fast. Keeping a food log helps control extra calories in two ways: the combination of plain old reality check and awareness that what you’re putting in your mouth will soon be recorded for posterity.
In a recent study, people who kept a food journal lost twice as much weight as those who didn’t. When they combined it with a moderate diet and exercise plan, they lost an average of 13 pounds in 6 months. Journaling also gives you insight on your eating habits – why you skip meals, what your eat during the weekday compared to the weekend, etc. – just knowing your routine helps you figure out what changes are right for you.
2. Exercise during commercials
Get moving during your favorite TV shows. Skip, dance, go up and down some stairs, run in place—anything that gets your heart rate up so you feel somewhat breathless. Do it for each 2-minute break during a typical 2-hour TV night and you’ll burn an extra 270 calories a day—which can translate to a 28-pound weight loss in a year. Now, doesn’t that sound awesome?
3. Limit high-fat foods
Tag the high-fat/high-calorie foods that are typically your favorites (my top five: cookies, candy, ice cream, potato chips, and fries) and gradually downshift. If you’re eating six of these foods a week, try to go down to five. Each week, drop another until you’re at no more than one or two; at the same time, add in a good- for-you choices like baby carrots, sautéed broccoli, oranges, and other fresh fruits and veggies.
4. Walk 5 minutes more a day
Increasing daily activity levels by just a few minutes at a time will help you lose weight faster. Your goal should be to do at least 30 minutes of physical activity a day (burning off about 120 extra calories daily, or 12½ pounds a year), but it doesn’t have to be all at once.
5. Include basic strength training exercises to your day
Basic body-weight exercises like squats and push-ups are a simple way to build more metabolism-revving muscle in minutes (helping you lose weight faster), and research shows they’re just as effective as hitting the gym. Your muscles don’t know the difference between working against your body’s own resistance and on a fancy piece of equipment. The one rule to follow is that each exercise should fatigue your muscles within 60 to 90 seconds. For extra burn, you can add an exercise band or resistance tubes to basic moves.
Try this mini-workout: Do 10 reps each of knee push-ups, squats, crunches, lunges, and chair dips. Then gradually increase the number of reps it takes for your muscles to feel fully fatigued.