How to keep the weight off?
Weight loss doesn’t begin in the gym with a dumbbell; it starts in your head with a decision. -Toni Sorenson-
So you’ve lost the weight. Well done! So, what now? How can you keep it off? Let me tell you about my group of friends who lost and kept the weight off. How do they do it?
What is the 80/20 rule?
When it comes to getting the body you want, the well-known formula is 80/20 - 80 percent diet and 20 percent exercise. Whether you believe in it or not - this formula is proven to be correct.
Why? Well, that's because it takes a ton of activity to create a 500 to 700 calorie deficit through working out. What does it mean? Well, according to Holly Lofton, M.D., an assistant professor of medicine and director of the weight management program at New York University's Langone Medical Center - it means that you’d have to run about 12 to 16km daily to lose 0.5kg. Can you keep that up? I surely can not!
You can lose weight without exercise, but you cannot out-train a bad diet!
What's the secret to not gaining weight again?
We have to understand that calorie is not a calorie. My friends and I use the portion containers that help us determine the right amount of food (aka calories) that we can consume per day.
Calories do count, but me personally I don’t like to count them (I suck in math and all math-related). What does count is the quality of the calories. That’s why 100 calories of fiber-filled apple slices will help you feel fuller longer than 100 calories of candy.
Balanced diet includes:
- whole grains
- lean proteins
- and... healthy fat
Why should we eat 5-6 times a day?
Yep, that’s correct. Five times a day means three meals and two or three snacks. If you’ve read my previous blog about a healthy relationship with food, you know that you should listen to your body and see food as fuel.
Some of you might ask yourself, “Doesn’t eat often mean that I will over-eat?” Well, not if you have your meals planned out (and prepared). You can choose to nibble on healthy snacks like fresh fruits, veggies, greek yogurt, and hummus. Just remind yourself that there is a thin line between a snack and a meal!
Why stick to our eating habits no matter what?
We’ve all been there! Holidays, vacation, house warming, wedding, birthday... Many events are filled with fantastic food (and booze)! The “we live only once” mentality is very tempting.
Although I do believe that “try before you die” is a thing, my friends and I stick to reasonably consistent eating habits. I would never say no to a slice of Mille Crepe cake, but I would adjust my carb and fruit intake for that day (or indulge fully during my treat-day)
Why we should never skip breakfast?
I know what you think! “But what about intermittent fasting?” Well, I’ll discuss that later….
Ok, breakfast... Is it really the most important meal of the day? Hmmm, it depends. But look at the word ‘breakfast.’ The importance of it is in its name - ‘break - fast’ Simply put, eat to break your overnight fast!
The body uses a lot of energy supplies for growth and repair through the night. So you should eat to up your energy, as well as protein and calcium used throughout the night.
Why should we exercise daily (well, six days a week)
Yep, my friend and I do it! Anywhere between 30 to 60min. Strength training, as well as HIIT. Exercising helps you not only rock that LBD but also improves your mood, productivity, and sleep.
And when you exercise in the morning - hello! Endorphin rush!
Why you shouldn't weigh yourself every day
Your weight fluctuates every day between 0.5 to 2kg. So why would you weigh yourself every day and stress about the number? It’s just a number; it doesn’t define you.
What’s important is that you are losing body fat (cm) and you are feeling good! Saying that occasional weigh-in is a good idea, just to see you are going the right direction (guilt-tripping is out of the question though!)
Why you should refuse to be a ‘couch potato’?
Nowadays, everything seems to be in the ‘fast-forward’ mode. Some me-time is very precious and very challenging to find. Watching your favorite series usually leads to mindless eating.
And let's be honest, what kind of progress are you making while sitting on the couch? None!
I'm not saying that you shouldn’t watch TV or play your games. But you should limit the screen time. By setting a limit on your screen time, you are consciously making more time for other activities like exercise (or spending quality and electronic free time with your family)
The bottom line is - there are no secrets to keeping the weight off. No magical pills, potions, creams, or drinks. It takes consistency, hard work, patience, and self-love and a plan to achieve lasting results.