18 Simple Ways to Lose WeightBy Mike DuBose and Joel DuBose
For many of us, the number on the scale starts creeping up with age. Fortunately, there are some easy measures that anyone can take to reverse weight gain, and these small strategies add up! Based on several university studies and advice from Joel DuBose, a certified personal trainer with DuBose Fitness Center, here are some recommendations for beginning a healthier lifestyle today:
- First, obtain a comprehensive medical exam from a trusted physician (we like Dr. Surb Guram, MD) to rule out weight gain due to medical problems. Also, research your prescriptions before the appointment so you can discuss alternatives with your doctor if they are causing hunger or weight gain.
- If you are eating too much, assess your mental and emotional health. Unhappiness, depression, grief, anger, resentment, stress, and anxiety can often trigger overeating. See a counselor if necessary. Hypnosis can also address some of these areas (we like Dr. Fredric Mau of Watermark Hypnosis).
- “Play” weight loss like a game. There’s no single approach that works for everyone; keep trying until you find the right strategy for you.
- Don’t lose too much too fast. Rapid weight loss can put the body into “starvation mode,” slowing your metabolism and prompting the body to eat. To lose one pound per week, reduce caloric intake by roughly 500 calories per day (numbers may vary slightly by individual).
- Read nutrition labels and avoid foods high in calories, sugar, and sodium. The Mrs. Dash range of spices offers good sodium-free salt alternatives.
- Eat more fiber—it slows digestion and reduces hunger.
- Increase daily water intake. Water flushes toxins from the body and decreases your desire for food. Avoid sugary sodas and fruit juices, which numerous studies have linked to America’s soaring obesity rates.
- For extra help with your diet, consult a nutritionist or take a nutrition class.
- Limit restaurant dining (especially fast food). When you do eat out, ask for any sauces on the side—they can be highly caloric!
- It takes 20 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain to “turn off” hunger, so eat slowly and don’t stuff yourself. Food also tastes better—and lasts longer—if you don’t shovel it in.
- Don’t box yourself into a day full of work meetings with no time for lunch. If you must eat at your desk, close your door and turn off phone and e-mail notifications so you can have a slow, restful meal.
- Periodically get up from your desk and walk around for a few minutes during the workday.
- Get at least 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise five days per week, as well as some weight training. You cannot “target” problem areas, but the more muscle you build, the more calories your body will burn.
- You don’t have to join expensive gyms or exercise classes to get fit. Walking is a great, low-impact, low-cost physical activity. However, to meet your goals faster and more safely, consider hiring a competent, certified personal trainer.
- Get at least 7-8 hours of rest each night to promote overall good health. Staring at screens can negatively impact sleep, so cut back on electronics before bed.
- Don’t feel guilty about splurging a little! When on vacation, consider stepping up your exercise to counteract any rich foods you may be eating.
- Set aside some fun time for yourself each week. Mental health and happiness are important components of one’s well-being.
- Once you have reached your weight goal, enjoy life. If you start to gain the pounds back, resume dieting until you get back below your maximum desired weight.
The bottom line: Healthy, sustainable weight loss comes as a result of many small changes and smart choices. It’s normal for your weight to fluctuate slightly each day, so don’t obsess over the number on the scale. Instead, live a healthy lifestyle and make adjustments as needed to reach and maintain your optimum weight!
About the Authors: Our corporate and personal purpose is to “create opportunities to improve lives” by sharing our knowledge, research, experiences, successes, and mistakes. You can contact Joel DuBose or Mike DuBose by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Joel DuBose is president of DuBose Fitness Center, a private gym that only offers one-on-one personal training. He studied exercise science and psychology at the University of South Carolina and later served as the strengthening and conditioning coach with basketball coach Tim Whipple at Irmo High School. He is a Certified Personal Trainer with the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America and the International Association of Fitness Science.
Mike DuBose, a University of South Carolina graduate, is the author of The Art of Building a Great Business. He has been in business since 1981 and is the owner of Research Associates, The Evaluation Group, Columbia Conference Center, and DuBose Web Group. He also partnered, with his son, Joel DuBose, to create the company DuBose Fitness Center. Visit his nonprofit website www.mikedubose.com for a free copy of his book and more than 100 additional business, travel, and personal published articles, including health columns written with Dr. Surb Guram, MD.
Katie Beck serves as Director of Communications for the DuBose family of companies. She graduated from the USC School of Journalism and Honors College.
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