Stop working so hard to lose weight. The best results come from the smallest changes.
PUBLISHED: 10:28 20 May 2016 | UPDATED: 10:37 20 May 2016
If you squint hard through the rain and the clouds, you'll notice that summer's coming. And with it come the beaches, the shorts, and the insatiable desire to lose weight, get fit, and look and feel fantastic in the sun.
But too many people take to the gym immediately. From zero to a hundred, from watching TV and eating burgers to pumping the weights and sprinting the treadmill as hard as they can with a kale and avocado smoothie in each hand. Sweating the big stuff.
Crash diets are not healthy. You might think that cutting carbs will help you lose weight. Cut down the bloating. But carbohydrates are needed for energy. They break down into glucose that keeps you going. The body needs all types of food groups, and getting healthy and losing weight isn’t about throwing everything out the window.
Instead, it’s important to swap your bad habits for good ones. Making little positive changes to your daily routine will soon add up and get you to where you want to be much faster than an extreme detox.
For instance, try drinking a full glass of water before each meal. Often, the pangs of hunger you feel are because you’re dehydrated, not lacking food. In today’s hectic modern lifestyle it’s easy to lose track of how much you drink. Drinking a glass of water before a meal will fill you up, hydrate you, and help you manage portion sizes. Limiting overeating each mealtime is a little step that when done often can have great results.
Feeling peckish in the afternoon? Swap crisps and salted peanuts for healthier treats like carrot and pepper sticks with reduced fat hummus, or unsalted almonds and cashews.
Eat regularly. Plan your meals and prepare them in advance. Make sure you set aside specific time each day to eat - grabbing a sandwich on the train or a quick meal at your desk is not good enough. This also means less chance of heading off-track and reaching for the chocolate.
After being diagnosed with Coeliac Diseases at 21 and forced to be very careful about the kind of food she eats, Restart Coaching’s founder Lillie was inspired to train to be a personal trainer and nutritionist. She now specialises in wellbeing and how the key to a healthy lifestyle is to make small, frequent changes. When asked for a few words of wisdom she divulged a little recipe for energy balls that helps keep that sweet tooth in check.
They’re great for a boost and simple to make:
Take 8 tablespoons (tbsp) of oats; 4 tbsp peanut butter; 2 tbsp flax seeds ; 1 tbsp chocolate chips; 1tbsp honey and 1 tbsp of coconut oil and mix them in a bowl.
Split the mix into lots of golf ball-shaped treats, and then roll each one in a plate of desiccated coconut until it is covered. Store them in an airtight container in a fridge. These energy balls can also be frozen - just remember to take them out with enough time to thaw.
So stop stressing at the gym and sweating the big stuff. Combine small, healthy habitual changes with regular exercise and you’ll see the results you need without damaging yourself.
Find more healthy recipes at Restart Coaching.