Losing Weight In Time For Summer
It’s that time of year again when everyone wants to lose a few pounds to get ready for summer and no doubt there will be an array of diets in the media. And with lockdown starting to ease and holidays looking like a possibility again many of us are wanting to slim down and get 'beach ready'.
So let's take a look at how you can make this summer a happier experience. But first, a warning...
Summer Weight Loss Trap
One guaranteed way to fail is to look for a "short term" weight loss method or fad diet. You know what I mean: the type of programme that promises "a fast effortless way to reduce weight". In my experience, none of these diets actually work, and the medical evidence is quite clear: the maximum rate of sustainable fat loss is between 1 and 2 pounds per week, perhaps a little more if you are obese. Besides, if a brilliant scientist did manage to concoct a formula for rapid effortless weight reduction, overnight he would be more famous than Einstein. He certainly wouldn't be peddling his program in 30-second TV and instagram adverts!
Three Month Summer Diet Plan
You can't lose much weight in a week or two. You need about two to three months to make a significant impact on your body shape. So, the key here is to plan ahead and be realistic about your goals and time frame. Remember, the human body is interested in survival, not cosmetic appearances, and since rapid weight loss is a prima facie symptom of disease not good health, the only guaranteed way to improve your body shape is to adopt a gradual approach of healthy eating and increased exercise.
In three months, you can lose about 26 pounds - more than enough for most overweight people to experience noticeable health improvements as well as a much leaner body. And by reducing your weight gradually in this manner, you have far less chance of weight regain, so if necessary you can continue losing more with less danger of incurring a weight loss plateau or other obstacle. So if you started now (July); you could lose around 8 - 10lbs lbs if you're going away at the start of August and perhaps around 16 - 18 lbs if you're going away nearer to September. Of course, this all depends on your starting weight and approach used.
You Need A GOAL
No one likes to change their habits. So if you want to change your eating and exercise habits, you need a strong motive - something to keep you dieting and exercising when boredom sets in. Whatever motive you choose, it must be something more powerful than the urge to eat tasty high calorie foods in front of Netflix each weekend!
Anything that commits you in advance to achieving your weight loss goal, makes a great motive. So be bold. Book an expensive beach holiday, or buy some gorgeous clothes to fit the body you want to have at the end of your diet program. Both these actions require you to succeed, and therefore provide constant motivation along the way. Alternatively, set yourself an achievable goal, such as: ' I'm going to lose 1 stone and be able to run 5k in 2 months time'. Stick it on your fridge door or set it as your phone screensaver as a constant reminder to keep going!
Think Healthy Eating Not Weight Loss
In my experience, one of the most effective weight loss strategies is to focus on healthy eating. I'm not saying you shouldn't stand on your weighing scales occasionally if it helps you, but just don't measure progress exclusively by what the scales say. Tracking your progress in this way is simply just not accurate. Being healthy and happy is about more than just your weight and size after all.
Be aware that it's just as important to enjoy your food and feel good about your change of eating habits. And any diet you hate is guaranteed to fail, no matter how much weight you lose, because as soon as you achieve your goal, you will revert to your old eating habits and regain every pound lost. Healthy eating can be tasty and simple to prepare when you have the right plan to follow.
Exercise Provides Wonderful Indirect Benefits
Exercise does burn extra calories and therefore does help to widen your calorie deficit. It raises our metabolic rate, helping us to burn calories at a slightly faster rate, and improves our mood, which typically reduces our need for comfort-eating. However, don't overdo your exercise workouts. I've lost
count of the number of dieters who started exercising too vigorously and burnt out within 3 weeks. Ideally, start with something you can easily manage, and very gradually increase the duration or intensity when ready. Listen to your body at all times, and be sure to loosen up beforehand and wind down afterwards.
Your First Priority - Get Support
So... are you ready to do this?! If you really want to lose weight for the summer and lose some of that extra lockdown weight gain, your first priority is to find support...
If you don't have any then we have our free 7 Minute Mornings exercise, wellbeing and nutrition programmes to support you through this HERE. With fitness tests, fun workouts for all levels that progress as you get fitter you can start to create a healthier lifestyle that works for you.
Going it alone can work for some, but when difficulties arise, as they surely will, having the support of real people and athlete designed programmes can make all the difference between success and failure. We're here to help you to build confidence, improve your fitness, lift your mood and lose some weight too.
7 Minute Mornings