Everyone knows what you need to do to lose weight; expend more calories than you consume. But shedding pounds for good is not just about fewer calories in, and more calories out; effective weight loss requires you to keep on track.
There are several ways to lose weight, and tricks to help you stay motivated. But these slimming secrets are not your ordinary tips. If you’ve tried to lose weight before and failed, it’s time to try something new. Check out these 12 awesome weight loss tips you probably haven’t tried.
12 Think of a Positive Mantra
Repeat a motivational mantra several times a day. This slogan will remind you of your weight loss journey. Mantras build confidence and keep your thoughts positive.
Think of a phrase that will motivate and encourage you. Make up a phrase, or choose one such as, “Yes, I will” or our personal favorite, “I am ___ lbs/kg and I love myself.” Once you’ve decided on a symbolic message, display it on a sticky note. Or, type the phrase and create a custom-made desktop background on your personal computer.
They say it takes about 21 days before an action becomes a habit. After repeating this mantra for about three weeks, you will believe it.
11 Practice Free-Association Writing
Free-association writing is the act of writing down anything that comes into your head. All you have to do is start writing. Put pen to paper and let your thoughts fly.
Set aside 10 minutes to a write a paper. Call it “What’s Important to Me.” Write the first thing that comes to your head; just don’t stop writing. Eventually, what is important to you will flow out of your head onto the paper.
To lose weight long-term, you’ll need to understand why you want to lose weight. Slimming down is just one of your goals. Explore the real reasons why losing weight is so important. Instead of internalizing your thoughts, get it all out on paper.
10 Exercise for Minutes, Not
There are quick aerobic sessions that allow you to exercise for as little as eight minutes. Many others have a running time of 20 and 30 minutes. Yet, research shows 45 minutes is the magic number.
If you are maintaining the same diet, 30 minutes of aerobic exercise three times a week will only maintain your current weight. But exercising for 45 minutes will burn calories long after your workout. A 45-minute workout will also help suppress your appetite.
9 Weigh Yourself Daily
This tip is probably the opposite of what you’ve heard all of your life. There’s a reason why some fitness experts and medical professionals advise that people weigh themselves weekly instead of daily. Some people become obsessed with the number on the scale instead of focusing on healthy weight loss. But weighing yourself only once a week is now considered old-school, conventional wisdom.
David Levitsky, a professor at Cornell University, agrees that you should step on the scale as often as you brush your teeth. One of Levitsky’s studies found that people who didn’t weigh themselves gained weight. On the other hand, people who weighed themselves daily either maintained their weight or lost weight. Daily weighing leads to weight control.
8 Take an SOTD
Don't worry about appearing too vain. This selfie-of-the-day is just for you. A daily picture is the best way to see weight loss. Day to day, you may not notice radical changes. Over time, however, you’ll be able to make a virtual flipbook that will encourage you to keep losing.
Take a full-length picture in a mirror once a week. You’ll want to wear a revealing outfit, such as a bikini, to show your belly, thighs, and arms. Spread your legs shoulder width apart, and don’t suck in your gut.
7 Find an Online Weight Loss Buddy
Gyms and weight loss gurus usually advise you to share your weight loss journey with others to gain support. But, how many times have you told a friend, relative or co-worker about your weight loss plan, and then fallen off the wagon? After that, those “how’s the weight loss going?” questions become a bit embarrassing. Instead, find an online buddy who has a similar goal. Who better to offer support than someone who is also trying to lose weight?
Changing your diet and increasing your physical activity can be stressful. There may be a bump or two along the way. Sharing the path with someone else can make the road a little smoother. So, invest time in finding an online weight loss buddy because a lack of support can make or break your plan.
6 De-motorize Your Day
After a long day, an escalator looks like salvation compared to a flight of stairs. Taking the escalator might save you a few seconds, but at what cost? Here’s food for thought: if you did nothing except de-motorize your day, you would burn an extra 111 calories every day; that’s 10 pounds in a year.
De-motorizing your life means choosing the stairs over the escalator. It means washing your dishes by hand instead of using the dishwasher. It’s not always possible to walk instead of drive, but do what you can. Take an extra minute and choose the manual option. Your body will thank you.
5 Clean Something Thoroughly
To fit in an extra workout during your day, pick a room and tackle one project. A regular “cleaning workout” can effectively shed extra calories. For instance, if you clean the bathroom, don’t just make it look tidy. Scrub the shower tiles, and scour the bathtub. If you choose to change your bed sheets, don’t just add fresh linen to your bed. Change the sheets on every bed in the household.
Strive to perform every task as well as you can. Clean and organize one area every day, and you will continue to burn major calories.
4 Make a List of Low-Calorie Foods
When starting a new weight loss plan, people tend to worry about what they are missing. Instead of looking at the meal plan as a deprivation diet, make a list of all of your favorite healthy foods. Add all of the fruits, vegetables, nuts, and beans you love to eat. Concentrate on water-rich, fiber-rich foods that are filled with vitamins and minerals.
This menu will become your shopping list. After you hit the grocery store, your kitchen will be stocked with ready-to-eat, nutritious meals and snacks.
3 Invent Prizes for Milestones
It's always nice to receive a gift. Getting something you really like is even better, and only you know what you really want. Give yourself a gift when you reach a milestone. It will be a fun addition to your weight loss process.
Since it’s your game, you set the rules, and you name the prizes. For example, you could treat yourself to a manicure after you lose five pounds. Or, splurge on a relaxing body massage after losing 10 pounds. With each new milestone, make the prizes bigger and better. Just don’t “reward” yourself with food.
2 Meditate While Eating
Whenever you need to calm the chaos, meditate. Meditation is a quiet and serene state of mindfulness. This practice stills the body and cleanses the mind.
Practice meditation during a meal. Eat slower. Take time to think about every bite, and how many times you chew each morsel. By integrating self-awareness often, you can thwart mindless eating.
Another way to combat mindless eating is to turn off the television during your meal. Frank Lloyd Wright described TV as “chewing gum for the eyes.” The small screen adds a distraction that will enable you to eat more. So, turn off the television, tune into your body, and stay in-the-moment.
1 Don’t Bring Containers of Food to the Table
If you’re a person who sets the dinner table with every dish on display, you need to change your routine. By bringing all of the food to the table, it makes it easier to take a second helping.
Control your environment by keeping most of the food in the kitchen, and only eat what’s on your plate. If you want more food, wait 20 minutes to let your stomach catch up to your brain.
Losing 20 pounds won’t happen overnight. It requires dedication and hard work. But stay strong, and don’t stop. If you do the work, trust the process, and stick with it, you are sure to lose the weight.