So, you have decided to begin your weight-loss journey.
But where to begin?
Trawling the internet for tips can throw up a lot of conflicting information, meaning it is easy to get confused. This, in turn, can influence people to give up at the first hurdle.
I have designed a five-step process that will allow you to take that difficult first step while keeping things simple and easy to follow.
Don’t Rush It
Ever heard the phrase, “Too much too soon?” This is exactly where a lot of people go wrong when starting their journey.
If you put yourself under too much pressure to achieve your goal quickly rather than over a sustained period, then you will get overwhelmed and be more likely to give up.
Set small, achievable goals that are realistic, this will help to ensure you maintain a positive mentality and keep you on the right track.
Ensure you have a Negative Calorie Balance
The key to weight loss is pretty simple if you burn off more calories than you consume then the weight will start to come off.
Reducing your calorific intake means that your body has to use its stored reserves, it will use the energy you have already saved up in your carbohydrate and fat reserves.
However, a lot of people assume they have to make big changes to their diet which is often difficult to maintain, you do not need to do this.
Instead, reduce your calorie intake by a small amount, this will allow you to drop weight slowly and consistently over a few months, and will allow you to maintain the weight loss, rather than going at it too quickly and regaining the weight later on.
This link will take you to a useful, free, calorie calculator
I cannot emphasise this enough, water is essential when trying to make positive lifestyle changes.
Your body contains up to 60% water, and it is so important that you keep yourself topped up by drinking between 2 litres and 3 litres a day.
It’s not just about keeping yourself hydrated, your body needs water to absorb nutrients and to help increase your metabolic rate so make sure you always have a bottle to hand!
Eat a Balanced Diet
Eating healthily doesn’t need to be boring or lacking in flavour, but it will be a large part of your weight loss journey.
Ensure you are taking in plenty of vitamins and minerals by including plenty of plant-based products, i.e. grains, vegetables, salad, and fruit.
Aim to eat 5 portions of these per day.
This doesn’t mean you have to restrict yourself from the food you enjoy, just consume them in moderation, try to avoid processed foods where possible but do allow yourself a treat every now and again to avoid ‘diet fatigue’!
Don’t label your weight-loss journey as a diet, this can make it seem temporary, what you are looking to do is implement a lifestyle change.
It doesn’t need to be strict and overly regimented; this will make it harder for you to achieve and won’t help you to maintain a positive mindset.
There will be times where you either eat more than usual, head out for a night out and a few drinks, or decide that you fancy a takeaway! All of this is fine, provided you balance it out over the week. If you know you’re going to be overindulging at some point, make allowances for it within your weekly calorie intake.
Everyone gives in to temptation now and again, it’s part of being human, however, if this does happen, just ensure you get yourself back on track rather than falling back into old habits.
If you follow these simple steps and don’t put too much pressure on yourself to achieve instant, incredible results, you will soon start to feel healthier and more positive about starting your journey!