Is it realistic to try to lose one pound of body weight per week? For most people, the answer is yes. Though you can do this any time throughout the year, weight loss is a popular New Year’s resolution, and losing a pound a week is achievable. Even, if you want to lose weight naturally and fast (in about 10 to 20 weeks). Here’s how in a nutshell:
Cut 500 calories (about 2,100 kilojoules) from the diet each day. The trick to cutting out these calories is to actually divide this amount in half: you’ll cut half of the calories from your diet, while you’ll burn the other half through exercise.
To give you some ideas to cut and burn these calories and lose weight, here are 25 expert diet and exercise tips.
25 practices to help you lose a pound a week
1. Drink loads of water. Aim for 3 to 4 litres per day, with a 500 millilitre portion consumed in the morning and two hours before bedtime. Water is filling, acts as a detox and keeps the body hydrated while increasing metabolism.
2. Don’t think diet, think healthy eating. That means increasing the volume of plant-based foods and combining them with lean meats.
3. Count calories (or kilojoules);it’s the only way to keep track of food. For greater accuracy, download app tools to help you out.
4. Know the average amount of calorie (or kilojoule) burn for each exercise type. A high-intensity workout for 10 minutes can burn up to 300 calories (or 1,260 kilojoules), whereas a moderate aerobic workout for 10 minutes burns half that amount.
5. Remove dairy, wheat products and sugars, including fruit, from your diet for three days. Then slowly return to these foods to jump-start a sluggish metabolism.
6. Replace fatty spreads, high-calorie dressings and sauces with natural preserves and vinaigrettes.
7. Eat dry roasted nuts and seeds, but be aware that three handfuls of peanuts is a high-calorie meal. For lower calorie nuts, go for pistachios and pine nuts.
8. Always measure foods. Have handy utensils for measuring liquids and dry foods.
9. Fill up on low-energy, high-fibre foods like watermelons, pears and sweet potatoes.
10. Don’t eat too little. This mistake causes binging.
11. Use a pedometer to find out how many steps you take in an average day. Then walk an extra 4,000 steps every day.
12. Create fresh, ready-made meals ahead of time and portion them out to prevent going off your diet.
13. Don’t give up after the first day or your first slip. Give yourself two weeks to get into the rhythm of your new lifestyle.
14. Use weights or body weight resistance to increase the amount of fat burn.
15. Stay motivated. Use music or visualisation to help get yourself into the proper mindset. You can also try joining an online weight loss community.
16. For maximum burn, combine 15 minutes of brisk walking with 10 minutes of a Tabata style workout.
17. Add spices, such as cinnamon, cayenne pepper or ginger, to your meals to speed up your metabolism.
18. Eat the highest calorie meal in the morning, then taper to the lowest by evening.
19. Eliminate sugar. Say no to sports drinks, sodas, fruit juices, ketchup and syrups.
20. To speed up your metabolism, eat one-half of a large grapefruit before every meal.
21. Eat 25 to 30 grams of fibre per day, which leaves little room for consuming the wrong foods.
22. Eat decadent foods right before or after an intense workout.
23. Train for and run a 5K race.
24. Have cauliflower with cheddar instead of a large baked potato with sour cream.
25. Follow the 80-20 rule; eat plant-based foods most of the time, and allow a small window for cravings.
Help yourself lose a pound a week
Keeping track of and following these 25 tips for weight loss might seem daunting. But try writing them down and posting them somewhere that you’ll see them on a regular basis. Doing so should help you remember them, which, in turn, should help you put them into practice.
So whether you resolved to lose weight at New Year’s or just want to drop a few pounds, grab a pen or pencil, write these tips down, and keep at them. It is possible to lose one pound every week — and following these tips can help you pull that off.