There is definitely no shortcut or easy way out when it comes to losing weight - the golden strategy is more energy out than in. But there are some small and not so small things we can do to help ourselves stay on track with the sometimes endlessly impossible task of losing those few extra Christmas puddings.
1. Sleep - you may be thinking yeah yeah duh! But really sleep is the best possible recharger for our bodies. Our bodies heal the most when we are completely relaxed and if you are exercising more don't doubt the ability for your body to recoup it's energy to give you another day full of radiance after a good night's sleep.
2. Exercise - Yes dreaded exercise for most! Some people love the gym - good on them! I wish I was one - but I'm not. I don't mind because there are other things I like doing that's classed as exercise (quote; dance workouts on YouTube) Don't give up there is something out there that you enjoy doing that is burning calories at the same time. What hobbies do you enjoy that get your body moving? Exercise doesn't have to be forced if you find something fun - not everyone has to do the same weights and cardio circuit. What about skipping, swimming, yoga, bike riding through a forest, tag with the kids?
3. Food- Good old food. Look at what you are making and putting into your body on the daily. Most of the time it's not what we are consuming but how much. I love food and tend to not have a 'Stop I'm Full Button'. If you look at replacing some ingredients in your recipes you are able to convert good old favourites into healthier options without even realizing. Meal prep for your week so you aren't left hungry in the afternoon and have some pre-made healthy snacks in the cupboard or fridge for when you are craving that 3pm sugar boost. Also don't underestimate the fat fighting ability of coconut oil!
4. Water - We are literally made mostly of water. H2O helps us detox our insides and outsides by removing toxins. Filtered water is the best possible thing to drink especially when working out. When you are trying to lose weight you are sweating a hell of a lot more while your body tries to cool itself so replenishing your water supply is a must so you don't dehydrate. Sports drinks and such are full of sugar and preservatives. If you want an extra health kick in your drink try adding a couple of tablespoons of Apple Cider Vinegar.
5. Second to the top four obvious points above is - Mood. Our biggest motivator and de-motivator is ourselves. When we are in a great mood we want to jump around and kick our goals but when we have rough days or just want to stay in bed this can have a huge effect on our weight loss journey. Simply because it is when we are feeling down and out we reach for the snuggly pillow and watch TV and reach also for the sugary or salty snacks. Find and know what sets your bad moods off and find out simple ways to turn that frown around so you are once again your own best motivator. Have bad days that's fine! But don't let a bad day turn into two or three because that's when we give up on our goals.
6. Addictions - don't just have to be ciggies and alcohol. A lot of people are addicted to food. Sugar greatly. This is no simple matter, they say sugar is on the basis if not worse than cocaine addiction. It takes time to get it out of your system. But once the cravings have passed you are good to go! Try creating healthy alternatives to your craving of choice. Or find something to take your mind off it when the moment strikes. Also addictions of other sorts can contribute to emotional eating so keep an eye on yourself and take note of your own eating patterns.
7. Mindfulness - When we live mindfully everything we do we are mentally observing. Every action, thought and feeling is noted. This can be a great way to tap into a weight loss journey as we are observing with clarity all that is happening. It may be a good idea for you to keep a diary through this process. Meditation can help clear your mind. Think about all the actions you do, every mouthful of food is tasted and reflected upon. Living mindfully will stop you from putting toxic food into your body by habit and will create a new perspective and responsibility of viewing and taking hold of your actions.
8. Holistic Medicine - Natural herbs, essential oils and different crystals can help you on your path to a healthier you. (See blogs this month for more in depth information on each) Not only do certain smells help control your mood there are plenty of organic ways to add herbs and spices to your meals to assist with appetite suppressing and fat loss, metabolic rate rising, fat absorption and blood sugar reduction. Crystals can help alter your energy to do the same just by carrying them on your person or by meditating with them daily.
9. Attainable Goals - We all set goals when we start a weight loss journey but let's be honest most of them are unattainable and way above the amount of effort we actually want to put in after about two weeks right? So you need to make a goal - and then break it down into something more achievable for each week or month. Do this for diet, exercise and mental health. The reason for this is even if the smaller goals seem silly and quite easy, the days or weeks when you are having a crappy time at it and you reach those silly goals still you wont want to give up. So what if you don't lose 10kg in the first month of your diet - you will eventually get there if that's what you want and you can reap the rewards for the rest of your life OK!
10. Me time - Yes you all know I'm about the self love. This is no exception. It is crucial. If you are not rewarding yourself in some way along this weight loss journey why would you want to continue? You will become a downer, with no energy and no one will want to be around you. That was a bit far but you see what I mean? You need to continue to do the things that make you smile and feel good while losing weight so it doesn't seem like a negative chore. That's why I love to do dance workouts - it's actually really fun! If your not into that then treat yo'self! Go shopping, have a massage, have a treat meal once a week. What ever is your jam fam. Life is fun! Just because you are enhancing your wellness doesn't mean life has to change.
Please consult a licensed doctor about any medical concerns you may have before starting any health and well being changes.
Good luck to you on this holistically improved weight loss!