I'm sure it's no surprise to most of you that weight loss is the number one New Year's resolution. If you've included weight loss as one of your New Year's resolutions then we have some great tips for you.
Weight loss isn't easy, as anyone who's tried it can tell you. But it really isn't rocket science and a lot of folks make it tougher than it really is. The bottom line is this: Calories in must be burned, if they are not burned then they go to your hips. Too many calories equal big hips, along with a lot of other problems, including increased risk for diabetes, heart disease and some forms of cancer. But I don't have to tell you this. Most of you reading this are nurses and already know the drill.
One thing I know about nurses, is they can EAT. Although nurses are very busy we can definitely put away some food, especially the "mindless eating" we do at work. This is the kind that happens when you are running into the bathroom, through the lunchroom and grab whatever may be on the table as you walk by. We've all done it, but this is the kind of eating that gets you in trouble. You have no idea how many calories you can put away with this type of indulgence. There is really no heroic effort needed to lose weight. Just a few small lifestyle tweaks and you will be back to the new skinny you in no time.
We've compiled a list of ten tips for weight loss success in the New Year. Here we go:
1. Don't Diet
Dieting does NOT work...period. Sure you may lose a few pounds starving yourself, but you will wind up feeling deprived before long and eat your way into oblivion. Look at your goal of weight loss, more like a lifestyle change. A new healthier you! Instead of subtracting foods from your diet, add them instead. Don't be afraid to add fruits and vegetables that you really enjoy to your lunch box and munch on them whenever you feel like it. Just keep a mindful eye on your total daily calories.
2. Don't Work-Out
If you cringe at the thought of "working-out" then call it something else. Call it walking the dog, or strolling in the park, or even chasing the kids around the yard. The words "working-out" can really put a lot of people off and cause you to call it quits pretty early on. Not every one is a born athlete. Pick something you enjoy doing and make it fun. The more fun it is for you, the more chance you have of sticking with it!
3. Go For A Walk
Walking is great exercise and your body will thank you for it. It's a great way to see the outdoors, breath some fresh air and get back in-tune with your body. Walking is something you can do to help you lose weight and you can do it at your own pace. If you take the dogs and the kids with you that's a bonus. Spending quality time with them and getting some exercise...What could be better?
Exercise is great for the mind and the soul and can help fight depression by increasing endorphins in the brain.
If you don't have the type of neighborhood for walking, try these tips to get your steps in for the day:
Always park your car at the back of the lot.
Walk during your lunch hour
Always take the steps
Walk around the mall
Walk to work, if it's close.
Sign up for charity walking.
Jazz up your housecleaning routine with a little music to get the blood pumping
Get a pedometer to keep track of your steps, (they have plenty of free phone apps now).
Just 30 minutes of walking a day can make a huge difference in the way you look and feel. If 30 minutes scares the heck out of you, then divide it up into 10 minute increments, throughout the day,
Try Yoga. I could write a book on yoga. It's one of the best things you can do for your body and your soul. If you have never tried it, you owe it to yourself to give it a chance. There are tons of books out there about yoga, and all the different levels and types.
4. Lighten up on the portions
It's no secret that most of us eat portions that are way too big. Try eating smaller portions, but more often. Eat 5 or 6 times a day, but keep your portions small. You"ll be amazed at how full you feel and you will never be hungry, or feel deprived. Using smaller plates will also help you feel less deprived. Eat with a smaller spoon and savor your food.
Add plenty of fiber to your diet and you will feel very satisfied. Also, try switching to low calorie drinks. Sugary drinks are such a waste of calories, with no nutritional value. If you have not yet tried Stevia, give it a go. It can be found in most grocery stores now and has the least amount of after-taste of all the sugar substitutes. It's been around for hundreds of years and is a natural product produced from the Stevia leaf.
If you hate low a calorie substitutes, try soda water mixed with your favorite drink. If you mix it half-and-half, you will still get the flavor, with only half the calories. I like to mix soda water with orange juice and grapefruit juice.
5. Drink Water
Water is your best friend. Always drink a glass of water before meals and you will feel fuller, sooner. Adding in some lemon juice it a great way to curb your appetite. Lemon is a great appetite suppressant.
6. Slow Down
Take your time when you're eating. It's not a race. It takes about 20 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain you're full. Taking your time with help you digest your food and feel fuller quicker.
7. Share your Food
When eating out, most portions are huge. You can share your food with a friend, or request a to-go box with your order and split the food in half, once it arrives at your table. I have even heard of some people pouring tons of salt over half their food, so they won't be tempted to eat it. I think that's a bit extreme, but if it works for you, then go for it.
8. Skip the Commercials for a Bike Ride
Do you love TV? Well, take the commercial breaks as an opportunity to hop on the treadmill or your stationary bike and get a quick five minute exercise in. Believe me, they add up.
9. Reward Yourself
Set weekly goals and when you're successful, reward yourself. Get a massage, a new dress or something that makes you happy. Keep a journal. Begin by writing down the date, your weight and measurements, along with your target weight.
Some people even like to take before pictures and put them on the fridge, so when that urge to munch comes along, you will be greeted with a "not so great" picture of yourself every time. Be reasonable about your body image. Don't be too hard on yourself. We can't all be a size 2, so know what your ideal weight is and don't go overboard.
Weigh yourself at the same time every day. It's best to weigh yourself with your clothes off, that way you don't have to calculate in what your clothes may weigh, on any given day.
10. Try Again
"If at first you don't succeed then try again." Don't beat yourself up. One slip up, doesn't mean failure. Just try to do better the next time and learn your triggers. If you know that you do well all day, until you are sitting on the couch watching your favorite show, then buy some healthy snacks just for that time.
Above all, remember that weight loss can be fun, if you allow it to be. It usually takes about 30 days for an activity to become a habit. Pretty soon, you'll love the new-you and all your effort will pay off.
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