I hear this a lot, and from people of all shapes and sizes and ages. While there are many little pieces to the puzzle, it all basically boils down to one thing....Calories In vs Calories Out.
That's right. There is no huge secret to weight loss. It's all about how much you eat, versus how much you burn. So here ya go....short and sweet...right to the heart of the matter:
How To Lose Weight and Keep It Off
#1. Cut Calories. You typically only want to cut calories by about 250 or so, per day. If you cut back drastically, then you will send your body into starvation mode, and your metabolism will slow down to conserve energy. You will lose weight, however, as your body adapts to such a low amount of calories, when you start eating more, you will put most of that weight back on.
How To Do It: • Cut out unhealthy snacks.... A candy bar, or one small bag of chips is about 250 calories. Substitute these high calorie, nutritionally void snacks with something healthy, like an apple. • Eat smaller portions. Try eating slower. It takes 15-20 minutes for your brain to get the message that you are actually full. So, slow down, and you'll feel full, and actually eat less than you used to. By eating just a little bit less at lunch and dinner, you will easily cut back 250 calories.
#2. Exercise More. In other words, burn more calories by increasing your activity level. All activities count.
How To Do It: • Find an activity that you love to do, and add it to your weekly repertoire...tennis, bike riding, hiking, bowling, walking on the beach, etc.. The more you love it, the more you'll want to do it, the more likely you'll be to stick with it. • Add one more day per week to your workout schedule. Currently go to the gym 3 times a week? Add one more trip. To avoid boredom and burn out, on this 4th day, take a class...yoga, weights, bootcamp, dance.
#3. Increase the Intensity of Your Workouts. The harder you're working, the more calories that you're burning.
How To Do It: • Do you read a magazine or watch TV while you're on the cardio machines, and then proceed to work at a steady pace? If so, don't! Instead, focus on your workout, and do some high intensity intervals. For example, start out walking on the treadmill for 2 minutes. Then speed it up for the next 2 minutes. Then for the next minute, walk/run at the highest intensity that you're able to (increase speed or increase incline). Then take it back down a notch for a minute or two. Then hit it back up to the highest intensity. You get the idea. Constantly vary the intensities, and be sure to include your top intensity in the mix.
Of course, I can help you navigate all of this stuff. I can guide you through everything from finding out how many calories you're consuming each day, to finding ways to cut back and to eat more healthfully, to designing fun and effective calorie burning workouts for you.
And yes, if you want to add bowling to your weekly activities, and can't find anyone to bowl with, I will go bowling with you. But, I have to warn you, I come from a line of champion bowlers!
My mom. Age 7. She looks very serious and studious. She must have been studying a book about bowling, 'cause damn, she was an awesome bowler!