As with most things in life, setting goals is very important when dieting. When you look at things truthfully and objectively you should notice that most of the things you’ve accomplished in life have been accomplished because you not only had a goal but also had a clearly planned and well thought out process for achieving that goal. That being said, why is goal setting so important when it comes to dieting?
First of all, it is difficult to achieve a goal if you do not have a clearly defined goal. There are times in life when it is almost impossible to tell whether you are succeeding or failing because you aren’t certain exactly what the desired outcome should be. Identifying your dieting goals before you begin eliminates this particular possibility.
Second, having dieting goals gives you a measuring stick by which you can judge your process. This is important so that you know when your efforts are failing behind and when you’re moving along schedule or ahead of schedule. In other words, you will know when to celebrate and when to give yourself a swift kick to the rear.
Now that we know why we set weight loss goals, let’s discuss how we should go about setting those goals that are so important for dieting success. You want to set goals that are aggressive without being impossible to achieve. If you set goals that are beyond your reach you will find that frustration will be your dieting partner until you reach the point where you give up all together. In order to avoid this you should take great care to insure that your goals are possible for you to achieve.
When it comes to weight loss be specific when setting your goals. Rather than setting a total goal of 40 or 60 pounds start with a specific goal such as 10 pounds in one month. Then you can extend the goal to the next month until you’ve reached the overall goal of 40 or 60 pounds. It is much easier to lose 10 pounds four times than it is to lose 40 pounds at once. It’s a trick of the mind but it works. Ten pounds sounds simple and achievable. Forty pounds sounds like an insurmountable obstacle.
Another thing about goals is that you want to hold yourself accountable but you shouldn’t call the whole thing off if you only lose 9 pounds instead of 10. Instead, find out where you dropped the ball for the final pound and set your 10-pound goal for the next month.
You should also take great care that you are working with your personal goals and not the goals that someone else is pushing on you. The truth is that if it’s personal to you, it will be much more rewarding than if you are doing this for someone else. If your heart isn’t in it, there are very few goals that are going to motivate you properly.
Finally, you should establish small (non-food) rewards for accomplishing your dieting goals. Perhaps your reward will be a new accessory for your new (or new old) wardrobe or a pedicure for your new look. Make your reward something fun and frivolous and teach yourself that accomplishing your goals can be accomplished by something other than food. This is a key to dieting successfully.
The problem with people who want to lose weight is that they’re overly ambitious. This desire to lose a massive amount of weight can only lead to quitting early and big disappointments.
When it comes to creating weight loss goals, start first by creating a long term goal. Each goal you set should have mini-goals within it. This will keep you motivated and will serve as a barometer to your progress.
Here’s an example weight loss goal chart. The main goal can be divided into smaller goals, and then once again into even smaller goals which are descriptive and easy to accomplish.
More free weight loss tips can be at the Free Weight Loss Guide.
Main Goal: Lose enough weight so I can fit into my old pants within the next 6 months.
Goal #1. Reduce the amount of food I eat.
Goal #1a. Decrease the amount of junk food I eat. Don’t super-size it anymore. Order the small fries instead of the large fries. Order the smaller burger and chew it slowly.
Goal #1b. Order water, lemonade or Sprite instead of Pepsi.
Goal #1c. When going to a restaurant, eat only until I’m no longer hungry, and take the rest home to eat the next day.
Goal #2. Learn to exercise more.
Goal #2a. Take the steps at a mall or to my work, instead of taking the elevator all the time.
Goal #2b. Park a few parking spots further away when going to the grocery store.
Goal #2c. Whenever I get out of bed or from lying down on a couch, do 2-3 mini sit-ups to lift myself upwards.
Goal #3a. Begin counting the total calories I take in by writing the totals in a weight loss diary.
Goal #3b. Assure that I reduce my total fat or cholesterol intake to not exceed the amount listed in the nutritional facts on the side of every food product.
There are a lot of people who would give a lot to increase their metabolism. Having a high level of metabolism enables one to maintain burn fat and lose weight fast with the least amount of activity. Metabolism is the rate by which the body produces and consumes energy and calories to support life.
There are several factors that affect the metabolism of a person, such as the amount of muscle tissue, the frequency of the meals one consumes, genetics, stress levels, personal diet and activity levels. Metabolism slows done due to the following: loss of muscle because of not enough physical activity, the tendency of the body to cannibalize its own tissue because there is not enough food energy to sustain it, and the decrease of physical activity that comes naturally with old age.
Here are several ways to fire up one’s metabolism:
1. Build up on lean, mean body mass. It is only natural that metabolism decreases along with age, but it is possible to counter the effects. The amount of muscle a person has is a very strong determinant in the ability to burn calories and shed fat. So it goes without saying that exercise is essential. Build strength and resistance by working out at least twice a week, preferably with weights. Do easy exercises in between workouts. Simple tasks such as walking the dog and using the stairs in place of the elevator can already take off calories. The key is to match the amount of eating to the amount of activity one has. Here are some guidelines in getting the right exercise:
For strength training
-Increase the amount of repetitions of a particular exercise.
-Add the level of resistance
-Utilize advance exercise techniques if possible
For cardiovascular training
-Insert intervals between exercises
-Perform cross-training and combine the exercises
-Add up on resistance and speed
2. Eat breakfast. A lot of people are ignoring the fact that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Surprisingly, the ones who eat breakfast are thinner than the ones who do not. Metabolism can slow down considerably if breakfast is taken during mid-morning or if one waits until the afternoon to eat.
3. Avoid sugar. Sugar enables the body to store fat. It is recommended that a person consumes food that helps sustain an even level of blood-sugar. Additionally, progressive execerise 2-3 times a week should be in order to stabilize blood sugar.
4. Eat spicy foods. Hot cuisine with peppers can increase metabolism.
5. Sleep more. According to research, it is riskier for people who do not get enough sleep to gain weight. Also, muscles are regenerated during the last couple of hours of slumber.
6. Increase water intake. Water flushes out toxins that are produced whenever the body burns fat. Majority of bodily functions involves water, and lack of water causes the body system’s operations to decrease its speed, and produces unneeded stress as a result.
7. Eat smaller meals. It is advisable to consume 4 to 6 small meals that are timed 2 to 3 hours apart.
8. Never skip meals. People tend to skip meals in order to lose weight, which is a big mistake since it slows down metabolism.
9. Plan meals in detail. Always prepare the right amount of food to be consumed at the designated intervals. Do not commit the mistake of eating meals in sporadic patterns.
9. Ditch the stress! Stress, be it physical or emotional, triggers the release of a steroid called cortisol, which decreases metabolism. Also, people tend to eat excessively when stressed.
10. Guzzle up on green tea. It can be used as a substitute for coffee. Tea has the ability to stimulate metabolism, and unlike coffee, it has no undesirable side effects when too much is consumed.
11. Include more energy foods in the diet, such as fruits and vegetables, beans and whole grains.
Achieving the desired body weight is never impossible if one has the determination and patience needed to stabilize the metabolism level, which plays an important role in weight loss. A person needs to realize that eating right and working out is not just a passing fancy, but a way of life.
It is a fact: we are born in a society where beauty is a powerful asset. It is important, for specially women, to fit that sexy and coveted figure projected by Hollywood. Physical beauty may not mean everything, but it does mean a lot. Who wouldn’t want to get approving stares from eligible bachelors? Who wouldn’t want to be tagged sexy and beautiful? Everyone dreams of that faithful day.
The world-renowned South Beach Diet promises a way to get that dream. It claims have a way of living relying by taking in just the right amount of fats and carbohydrates. Meaning, you don’t need to deprive yourself of delicious desserts and meals any longer. Sweet deal right?
The South Beach Diet has been in existence for years now. Even Senator Hilary Clinton has tried and benefited from it. Celebrated talk show host Oprah made an effort with the program. Sex In The City’s Kim Cattrall and award-wining actress Nicole Kidman swears it works for them. After several books published about the phenomena of South Beach Diet, Hollywood stars have joined the craze. You might just want to join the bandwagon.
The heart-friendly South Beach Diet was fashioned by cardiologist Dr. Arthur Agatston MD, director of the Mount Sinai Cardiac Prevention Center in Miami Beach, Fla. He also wrote the best-selling book entitled South Beach Diet: The Delicious, Doctor-Designed, Foolproof Plan for Fast and Healthy Weight Loss. The South Beach Diet gives emphasis to the consumption of healthy fats and carbs. Not only do doctors believe that too much intake of unhealthy or bad carbohydrates adds to the probability of a person to have heart diseases but it creates a resistance to insulin. Insulin is important to our body without which we will tend to eat a lot but still our body will be in a state of starvation.
The South Beach Diet has tree stages. In all three of them, Dr. Agataston advises to lessen the intake of unhealthy fats.
The first stage of The South Beach Diet lasts for two weeks. Lean meats are advised but dieters are asked to forget sweets that have high sugar content and that include the yummy cakes and bread of friendly neighborhood bakeshop. Staying away from this food will make your body non-resist insulin and in turn, your body will burn up the fats you wanted to loose leading to weight loss of up to 13 pounds. The objective is to eat three balanced meals in a day, and to have adequate food intake so that you won’t crave for more.
There are a number of tools you use to gauge your progress by following The South Beach Diet|: the practical and a-must-have weighing scale at home, hearty yet delicious recipes, a meal planner, a calendar, a journal were you could not only track how South Beach Diet has helped you in your weight dilemma but also how it changed your life, and of course to make weight loss more fulfilling try be in a group so you could also discuss with friends and share tips.
So now you ask the question, are you one the people who can make South Beach Diet bring incredible results? Well, if you have the will, determination and self-motivation to loose weight then you are sure to get that perfect figure in no time. Just a quick reminder, it s is always wise to consult a physician first before getting into a South Beach Diet program. For it would not be smart to loose weight and be unhealthy, it misses the whole point.
When it comes to losing weight, you’ll likely face many decisions. There are so many options for losing weight, such as weight loss supplements, organic components, exercise, and healthier eating habits, you can easily get confused or discouraged in the journey. But losing weight naturally with all of the above factors working together seems to be the best way to get rid of those unwanted pounds. Let’s explore these options.
Discover the Reason You’re Not Losing
Before you can lose weight, you should first try to discover the reason you are not losing.
Write the following heading on a piece of paper: Why I don’t lose weight.
Then, list possible reasons for not losing weight. Some of these include poor blood sugar regulation, under active thyroid, overeating, lack of sleep, viral infections, lack of exercise, and slow metabolism. To lose weight the healthy way, you can use the process of elimination to discover which of these hinders your weight loss.
Blood sugar regulation means controlling the amount of sugar and refined carbohydrates you take into your body. When your blood sugar levels are too high, this causes you to be hungry and encourages your body to store fat instead of burning it. Test this by reducing sugar intake for a month or two and see if this boosts your weight loss. If you plan to take a supplement, probably the best weight loss supplement to look for is one that will help you regulate blood sugar levels. Some supplements also supply ATP (adenosine triphosphate), a phosphate molecule that is a source of high energy for the body.
Next, add exercise to your daily routine if you’re not already active. If you already exercise, try going a little longer each day. Make a few small changes to your eating habits such as eating fresh fruit as a snack instead of candy or snack cakes, grilling, baking, or steaming foods instead of frying them, or dining out less for several weeks. Also, reduce portion sizes for each meal little by little. And, be sure to get plenty of sleep every day so your body can function normally.
If none of these seem to help boost your weight loss, you might need to see a doctor to find out if there’s a viral infection, thyroid issue, or any other health problem that could hinder your weight loss.
How to Lose Weight Safely with a Weight Loss Supplement
Once you’ve answered the question “why can’t I lose weight?” you might want to try a weight loss supplement as well. But be very careful. Some weight loss pills are unhealthy and can even be dangerous. Be aware of the chemicals and ingredients they contain. Thankfully, there are natural weight loss supplements that provide healthy ingredients for your weight loss efforts such as caraluma fimbriata (cactus plant to suppress appetite), Chinese green tea, and other organic components. You might also find a supplement that helps with other needs such as DMAE (dimethylaminoethanol), a chemical linked to memory that is found in fish.
If you are experiencing a stall or plateau in your Atkins weight loss efforts, you are not alone. This occurs from time to time. However, you first must make sure that you have actually reached a plateau point.
A plateau means that you have gone an extended period of time without losing weight or inches. It’s important to take your measurements before you start your weight loss plan, in addition to your weight. On some weeks it may not seem like you are losing any at all on the scale. But a quick look at your measurements will prove otherwise.
On the Atkins diet you are replacing fat with muscle, which is denser and heavier. You might actually gain a little weight because you are building muscle to replace your fat. The result will be an increase on the scale, but a decrease in your inches. Your body will be smaller and leaner, but you may weigh the same.
Before you start your program, measure your chest, waist, hips, upper arms, thighs and calves. You never know where you may be losing inches, so it’s important to have these comprehensive measurements to refer to. It is normal to go through periods where you body is readjusting. Remember that you are reforming the composition of your body and this process will take some time. Check your measurements once a week, just like your weight, and you can track your overall progress.
There may be periods of 3 to 4 weeks where you have a stall in weight loss, but a loss in inches. Or vice versa. Using both methods to track your fat loss is the best assurance for an accurate measure of your progress. These stall periods are not a reason to quit or to give up. They are natural parts of the weight loss process.
Stalls may occur more frequently if you are 5 to 10 pounds away from being at your goal weight. By following a low-carb, high-protein way of eating you have created a lot more muscle in your body. Your muscle-to-fat ratio is higher than ever before, so your body might be resisting losing anymore fat. It may be time to rethink your goal weight. Perhaps your body is trying to tell you something and its time to start maintaining your weight loss rather than trying to lose more.
There are some other possible causes of stalls and plateaus on the road to weight loss. If you’ve gone four weeks with no change in weight or measurements and you are nowhere near your goal weight, you can try a few different methods to get yourself out of the rut. First, make sure your carbohydrate level is in check. If you are eating too many carbohydrate grams per day, your weight loss will stall. Look for hidden carbohydrates in packaged foods, dressings and sauces to make sure they aren’t the culprits in your plateau.
Check your daily water intake. When you are dehydrated, your body will retain water and that can mimic a plateau. Water will also help flush ketones from your system and make more room for new fat burning ketones.
Undereating can also be a cause for weight loss plateaus. Make sure not to let yourself go hungry and eat smaller, more frequent meals. Remember, you are on a carbohydrate-restricted diet, not a calorie-restricted diet. Make sure to have some protein with every meal and snack. Never go more than 5 hours without eating something (except overnight of course). Also, eat freely from the acceptable foods. Don’t try to count calories or restrict your calorie intake. When your body gets too few calories, it goes into starvation mode and will hold onto fat cells.
Increasing your exercise level can help get you through a plateau as well. As your muscles get used to working out at a certain level, you’ll have to increase the duration or the intensity in order to keep challenging your body. Add a new exercise into the mix, or try increasing weight in resistance training.
Trying one of these methods will most likely get your weight loss back on track. Remember that occasional stalls are normal, but they do not have to last.
Did you know that simply eating breakfast raises your metabolism by 10 percent? Oatmeal is one of the most powerful breakfast foods of them all. If you are looking to get your body in great shape, you should incorporate this as a staple food in your diet.
Oatmeal is the perfect meal to start your day because it boosts your energy and has plenty of fiber to keep you full and satisfied. Oatmeal breaks down slowly in the stomach, giving you long-lasting energy. It is also full of water-soluble fibers, which play a crucial role in making you feel full over a longer period of time. Studies have also shown that oatmeal reduces cholesterol, maintains blood sugar levels and fights against heart disease, diabetes, colon cancer, and obesity.
If you want to add some powerful antioxidants to your oatmeal, simply throw on some blueberries and raspberries. These delicious fruits are packed with antioxidants that fight against heart disease, cancer, and a multitude of other ailments. Blueberries have also been proven to preserve vision. This powerful fruit rated highest in antioxidants among over 40 fruits and vegetables.
What more could you ask out of the first meal of your day? However, oatmeal doesn’t just have to be for breakfast. You can use it a couple hours before you exercise to energize your workout. You can even include oatmeal in your smoothies. It is also a wonderful addition to muffins and even as a covering for chicken breasts.
Keep in mind that you must buy the unsweetened, unflavored variety. To spice it up a little, you can use bananas, berries, or milk. The downfall of pre-flavored oatmeal is that it often comes loaded with sugar calories. So, stick to the good stuff.
If you’re looking for oatmeal with a little more texture, you can try out the steel-cut oat variety. Although this type does take a little longer to cook, I find that it is well worth the wait. They have a somewhat chewier texture and heartier flavor than rolled oats. Once you try this variety, you may never go back.
If your having trouble with late night binges, have a bowl of oatmeal instead. This will help squash your cravings. Not to mention, you’ll be avoiding any junk food or empty calories.
If your looking to get in the best shape of your life, I suggest your alternate your morning meals between oatmeal on one day and have eggs and meat on another. This will put your fat-burning into overdrive.
Adequate nutrition for your body before and after strenuous work-outs is important in order for you to reap the maximum benefits from your efforts. An increasingly popular way of achieving this is through the use of natural Whey Protein supplements.
Nowadays many athletes, especially Body Builders, are utilizing natural Whey Protein supplements to replenish protein levels that are burned off through hard-core exercise routines. Amino Acids prevent deterioration in muscle tissue as well as provide endurance and assist in building mass. Proteins help supply these amino acids.
– So what exactly is Whey Protein?
Whey Protein is derived from cow’s milk and is also a by-product of making cheese, which in the past was typically thrown out as a waste product. We now know that Whey Protein is rich in amino acids essential for building muscle and overall good health.
Whey Protein is also naturally found in breast milk as well as some types of baby formula. Although protein is also found in other foods such as meats and vegetables, Whey Protein is known to have the highest digestible levels of protein that the body can use.
Whey Protein offers several other health benefits like a healthier immune system, stronger bones, weight loss, and just plain overall better well being. Whey Protein is also sometimes used to help speed the healing of wounds or burns.
– Are there risks or side affects?
Since Whey Protein is derived from food it doesn’t have any of the risks associated with man-made supplements. However, you can even have too much of a good thing if you’re not careful. Extreme high use can be more than your liver can handle. Moderation is always best.
“Fitness” is an elusive term covering a vast array of attributes: flexibility, cardiovascular endurance, muscular endurance, strength, power, balance, coordination, body-fat percentage and more. While its generally accepted that multiple 30-60 minute sessions per week are optimal for producing results, the truth is that it’s possible to do a great amount in far less time.
EVERYONE has five minutes a day…the only question is, can anything really useful be done in just 300 seconds?
The answer is a resounding “yes”, but we need choose our exercises carefully. If there is such a limited amount of time, the best choice is to pick the most important muscle group. Chest? Back? Shoulders? Legs? All wrong. The abdominals are the most important muscles in the body. In no particular order, they:
1) Protect the low back.
2) Are vital to sports performance, transferring power from the lower to upper body.
3) Aid digestion, and massage the internal organs.
4) Are important for proper, healthy sexual function.
5) Are “the window of health”—we judge fitness and health more rapidly with a glimpse at the waistline than any other single indication.
6) Are vital for posture, which increases physical energy and mood.
7) Are the linchpin of your entire fitness program. You’ve never seen someone with toned abdominal muscles and flabby arms and legs, have you? The reverse is not true.
8) Are the most important muscle group for physical attractiveness in men or women. No matter the wonderful definition of arms or legs, if your gut is sagging, you have a problem!
There are other reasons, but one of the best is the fact that of all body parts, the abs tend to be the least favorite body part to work. They’re hard! That reason alone should be enough to motivate you: anything other people don’t like working is a golden opportunity for you!
But how can you do anything useful in just five minutes? One daily approach is to perform five minutes of the toughest ab exercises you can find, and a fantastic tool for this is a “Roller Wheel” available for five dollars at any sporting goods store. Not the fancy ones, just the simple get-on-your-knees variety. Try this: perform one rep, and take a breath. Then do two reps, and take two breaths. Then three, and take three breaths…and so on until you can’t go any higher. Then, drop back to one rep, and start climbing again. When that gets easy, take one breath for every two reps.
An even better method is to break up your exercise into multiple daily sessions. The roller wheel is useful here as well, but you might want to investigate some of the powerful “Vacuum” exercises from yoga, or the dynamic-tension style “stomach flattening” exercises. In these, you exhale all air, and flex the abdominal muscles for several seconds. Believe me, if you do these properly, even without aerobic exercise your waistline will decrease!
While there is no serious disagreement that longer sessions produce better, and more balanced results, the busiest man or woman on earth can find five minutes a day…and sometimes, that toehold is what it takes to get you started on a new, healthier lifestyle.
Introduction: low glycemic diets are good for everyone but the people who need these diets most are Diabetics and those trying to lose weight. Foods are measured by GI glycemic indexing.
What is glycemic indexing (GI)? The glycemic index ranks from 1 to 100.This is the method by which foods are measured and shows the amount a food will raise blood sugar and insulin levels. The rate at which your blood sugar rises is very important in managing diabetes and weight maintenance. High glycemic foods are those that are quickly digested and turned into sugar. They will cause a considerable rise in high blood sugar. Foods ranking 70 or greater on the GI scale are considered high glycemic foods. Examples of these foods are:
Foods high in sugar or glucose
* Baked or mashed potatoes
* White Rice
* White (not whole grain) bread
* Cookies, cakes, muffins, doughnuts-made with refined white flour
* Junk foods
Low glycemic foods include some fruits and vegetables they are 55 or less on the GI scale. Examples of these are:
Why use a low Glycemic Diets: High glycemic foods can cause weight gain and are dangerous for those suffering from Diabetes. High glycemic foods increase your appetite, and cause your body to increase triglycerides. They can also lead to weight gain. Cutting carbohydrates is not enough. You need to be aware of how all the food you eat measures up to the GI index.
Protein foods such as cheese, vegetables, eggs and fresh meat are not included in the GI index because they do not include large amounts of carbohydrates. Therefore these foods can be eaten when you are on a low glycemic diet.
Diabetes is a life threatening disease when not taken care of and it is very important to be aware of the glycemic index of the foods you eat. One of the first methods of treatment is to put these patients on a low glycemic diet. This will help them to lower their blood sugar levels and maintain a normal blood sugar level.
Obesity: A low glycemic diet will also help you lose weight. Eating more protein foods and low glycemic foods will help you drop those pounds and when you maintain a low glycemic diet will help you sustain your weight.
Eating in a healthier manner is just a matter of understanding the different foods and paying attention to what you eat. Educate yourself a little on which foods are high in protein and low in glycemic levels and you will be able to improve your health and have more energy to do the things that are really important to you.