"If the wind will not serve, take to the oars"
Latin proverb

Natural Health

Attempting to lose weight and get fit for the first time in your life can be quite daunting. Luckily, there really isn’t much to it once you know a few simple, yet key, rules to succeeding. A lean, trim you is just around the corner, and once you get there you will feel better than ever about the way you look and the way you live your life.

 

Stay Motivated

Starting out on a new journey to fitness is often easier than maintaining it; staying motivated is crucial. Make sure to set a very clear goal for yourself, and keep reminders of this goal around you in your everyday life. You may feel a little silly, but it really does help to say your goals aloud or have them written on post-its around the house. Try not to worry about what others think; sometimes keeping your goals to yourself is a bonus, others cannot interfere this way or discourage you from achieving. Once you start to show results, people will notice, and the compliments will make you feel fantastic.

Losing weight cannot be achieved in any short amount of time; it takes dedication and very small steps, but it is important to congratulate yourself at every victory, however small it may seem. Note down your weight and body measurements at the start of the journey, and then as the inches and pounds decrease you will be able to see the difference very clearly and thus stay motivated to continue. Inches decrease much faster than pounds do, so measuring your body is just as important and beneficial as weighing yourself.

Motivation is key to keeping trim
Motivation is key to keeping trim

A massive part of staying motivated is to plan your meals ahead of time, this way you will be less likely to stray away from your regime, or to be tempted by outside influences to grab something quick, convenient (i.e. junk food) Write down a list of low calories, healthy meals for each and every day of the week. Cross them off when you have consumed them, as strange as it may sound this too will appear as a physical victory on paper; this sense of accomplishment will help you stay all the more motivated as time passes.

If you have been out of shape for a large part of your life, weight loss may understandably seem like a distant and somewhat impossible goal. If you are only focusing on the loss, you will find it difficult. Remember to also focus on how you look, and how you feel; as you exercise more you will notice that you are able to workout more vigorously and for longer, without becoming tired. You will also notice clothes fitting better, and people may even compliment you on your appearance if you are naturally more leaner looking now, even if you feel you haven’t physically lost very much weight. Don’t rely purely on the scales to measure your success!

 

Eat Right

It can be tempting, and seem like an obvious choice when trying to losing weight, to cut fat entirely from your diet. Fat is extremely valuable nutritionally, so a little of it can go a long way. ‘Baked’ crisps for example, are still crisps at the end of the day, but because there is no fat you may be tempted to eat twice as much to get that same feeling of satisfaction. Instead it may be wise to simply have the odd treat, but not go overboard, and always stop eating when you feel that you are full. Better yet, if you’re sweet tooth is craving a treat, try opting for dark chocolate – it’s packed full of antioxidants and although still fattening is a much healthier option than most regular milk chocolate snacks. This will leave you feeling far more satisfied than turning down treats completely and feeling like you’re missing out.

If you find you’ve been eating right and exercising more but still haven’t seen any results after quite some time, it is always worth taking a closer look at the labels on your food. Some supposed ‘diet’ or ‘healthy’ foods are cram packed with trans-fats and/or sugar. The best choice you can make is to completely avoid processed foods, in most cases there really is little to no nutritional value in these. Always read the label.

 

Keep At It

All effective weight loss plans will repeat the fact that losing weight must be done slowly in order to reach and maintain a healthy goal. It is extremely detrimental to your health to lose weight very suddenly or too quickly. Mentally you will feel you have succeeding, and thus, craving the food and lifestyle of the past, you will slip back into old habits in no time, and you will regain the weight just as quickly. The important thing to remember is that successful weight loss is a complete lifestyle change which not only lowers your weight, but keeps it low. This has to take time.

Throw out all your old junk food, clear out the cupboards and only stock good healthy carbs and proteins and unprocessed foods – this way even when craving a snack you will only have healthy choices available to you. Choose foods that taste good and are healthy at the same time; make sure you embrace and enjoy the new lifestyle, not loathe and resent it.

Hopefully these few tips will help you feel a little more relaxed at the concept of losing weight. Remember that anybody can achieve a lean, trim and healthy body, and in doing so you will feel a great sense of empowerment in the ability to take care of yourself and show your body the respect it deserves. The rewards really will come flooding in with just a few positive changes to your lifestyle.


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