A Real Approach to Weight Loss
By Unite Fitness Retreat Dietician, Brooke Bouwhuis
It’s not sexy, flashy or super popular. But..It is the way to do it right for the best results.
Achieving a healthy weight for the long term is not just about food. It’s also about managing stress, getting help with unresolved emotional issues, learning how to use gym equipment without feeling like a dough head, sleeping well, drinking water, learning new and changing old habits.
Losing weight slowly is not as dramatic or seemingly rewarding as what we see on tv or what grabs our eyes as we glance at magazine covers. Losing weight slowly is hard to swallow but it’s the best way on this planet to keep you from mangling your metabolism. When metabolism gets mangled we gain easier and faster when we quit dieting and that is frustrating!
A mangled metabolism means you don’t lose weight and keep it off.
Losing weight slowly helps you maintain muscle mass. Muscle is the flame to our fire. The more muscle we have the more calories we burn. Losing weight too quickly means your body breaks down muscle for calories and that putting you way behind the eight ball.
If you really love crunching numbers and are willing to record every bite of everything this might be right up your alley.
How to Lose a Few Pounds the Healthy Way
- For 1-2 weeks record everything you eat while you are MAINTAINING your weight. No gains, no losses just staying put. This will be your magic number. Your basal metabolic rate that calculates your food, your movement down to the last fidgety foot bounce and your rest. All without having to sit in a BodPod.
- Once you know your BMR, create a deficit. The best way to do this is to decrease your calories by 20%. We are all different sizes and have different metabolic rates. To tell everyone to just drop 500 calories here would be wrong – it would be too much for some and too little for others.
- The next several weeks consume 20% fewer calories and watch things happen. Once weight loss (1-2% of your weight which is usually 1 -2 pounds per week) slows bump up your game with exercise. Creating a new routine where you add in movement naturally – walking to drop something off at a friend’s house, taking an extra lap around the mall when out shopping, yoga and hitting the gym.
- When weight loss slows again, take a week off from eating less, this kicks your metabolism into super high hear..with our new improved energy, it’s time to kick up the process again.
Does this approach sound a little too much? For those not in the measure and weigh everything camp hold tight, there are solutions for you too!
Tips to Follow Daily for Weight Loss
- Eat when you are hungry and stop when you are full. Shut the front door, seriously? Yes, getting back in touch with what those feelings really are is the first and most fundamental step.
- The easiest way to do the first step is to eat to be satisfied. This means meals and snacks should have clean healthy protein, gorgeous creamy fats like avocado, nuts, seeds, coconut and olive oil as well as piles of veggies. Half your plate should be veggies with the rest protein, fats and a little bit of whole grain (beans, quinoa, lentils, grains). If you need to have another serving of entrée, you have a new rule in town. You also get ½ plate of veggies. Makes you think twice now doesn’t it?
- Eating well, moving your body with intention, addressing issues that are powerful negative forces are all part of learning how to change your lifestyle in a way that allows you to achieve a healthy weight and a healthier outlook on life.