Often we try to get in shape in the summer, and then we tend to get lax about our diet and exercise as fall and the cooler weather move in, then we want to get in shape for summer again. This is a frustrating roller-coaster. If your weight loss program was working and has now tapered off, this is normal. No matter how faithful you are, from time to time you'll fall off the wagon.
Here are some strategies for you to try.
Have a vision of success. The mind is a strong tool -- use it to achieve what you want.
While you're imagining, remind yourself of reality: excess weight and yo-yo dieting is unhealthy. Make sure this is a lifetime commitment not a temporary plan to drop 10 pounds.
To stay with your weight loss program, only keep healthy foods in the house.
2. Understand Your Weight Loss Personality
Personality plays a role in our attitude towards food. You should know your tendencies and tailor your weight loss plan to conquer your unproductive inclinations.
3. Write Down Everything You Eat or Drink
A common mistake is underestimating how much food you've eaten. This can lead to a weight loss plateau or weight gain. Keep a diary of your daily food intake (every bite, taste, or lick) can help you see where you're going wrong.
4. Beware of 'Calorie Creep'
A key reason for a gaining weight is eating more than you think. It's easy for portion sizes to increase. It is important to weigh and measure your food to understand proper portions. Try cutting your daily calorie intake by 100 or 200 to move beyond the weight loss plateau.
5. Watch Restaurant Overeating
At restaurants, rich foods and supersized portions can sway even the most determined dieter. Especially if you eat out often, look at restaurant eating as a chance to practice good portion control.
6. Eat Protein to Manage Hunger
A high protein diet can help squelch hunger. Protein foods work by suppressing a hormone secreted by the stomach that stimulates appetite. Foods high in fat actually raised levels of that hormone and increased hunger. Carbohydrates make people hungrier than they were before they had eaten.
7. Eat More Fruits and Vegetables
Fill up on produce. Eating lots of low-calorie, high-volume fruits and vegetables crowds out other foods that are higher in fat and calories. The U.S. government's dietary guidelines suggest that we get 7-13 cups of produce daily.
8. Push your Exercise Routine
Using the treadmill every day for 30-minutes or walking the neighborhood with friends is good, but your body gets used to it too. After a while, your muscles get used to the routine and become very efficient at doing the task at hand.
To keep your muscles guessing and burning calories, vary your physical activity and exercise routine.
Also make sure your routine includes strength-training exercises which help counteract muscle loss due to aging. Building and preserving muscle mass is a key factor in reaching a healthy weight, as muscle requires more calories to maintain than fat.
10. Try Yoga to Avoid Stress Eating
Stress eating is bingeing on food to soothe your inner emotional turmoil. You are not really hungry. Yoga lowers levels of stress hormones.
For more information on maintaining a healthy lifestyle, contact The FieldHouse in Sudbury.