Separating truth from reality is critical to weight-loss success
Many people consider the “Battle of the Bulge” a never-ending war between themselves, their bodies, and their appetites. But as anyone who’s struggled or succeeded with weight loss knows, the mental aspect may be the hardest to master. Maintaining the willpower to stay disciplined, while avoiding certain temptations is where many people fail.
The countless “get skinny quick!” schemes competing for your attention don’t help matters either. Every commercial on TV, every ad on the web, and every talk-show guest claims to have THE secret to helping you drop 30, 40, 50 pounds or more!
Rob Baban, owner of Game 7 Fitness (http://www.g7fit.com) in Moorestown, NJ, has spent the past 10 years helping his clients fight the weight-loss battle—while separating truth from reality. Today he offered ADVANCE a few important weight-loss tips. Next week, Mr. Baban will offer his take on five common myths regarding weight loss.
Tip 1: Use a Nutrition Tracking App
Remember when people used to carry weight loss journals with them? Now you can use simple and powerful apps like “My Fitness Pal” and “Lose It” to make tracking your nutrition even easier. It’s as easy as scanning the barcode on your food product, or selecting from a list that populates as you type in the name of your food. Tracking your food takes less than 5 minutes per day, and according to several studies will double your chances of reaching your weight loss goal!
Tip 2: Keep it NEAT!
NEAT stands for Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis. In easier terms, NEAT is your own unique level of daily activity, non-inclusive of actual gym workout time. The higher your level of NEAT, the more calories you are burning. Increasing your NEAT can be simple; taking the stairs, parking further from the store, walking your dog an extra day per week, etc. There are also many fun ways to increase your NEAT such as reliving your glory days by joining an adult or intramural sports league, attending a dance class, or spending an extra night of quality time with your spouse.
Tip 3: Strength Train
Did you know that strength training can burn more calories than traditional cardiovascular training? It’s true. Strength training creates an afterburn effect called EPOC (Exercise Post-Oxygen Consumption). This means your body is capable of burning calories for up to 48 hours post-strength training workout.
In addition, a proper strength training program creates functional strength to help you improve your daily activities, increases bone density, increases work capacity, and will burn fat faster than you might think.
Tip 4: Go to Sleep!
Easier said than done, right? We all have excuses…kids, demanding work schedules, stress, etc. Only recently have we come to understand the importance of sleep and stress as it relates to weight loss, and the relation and level of importance seem to be growing stronger and stronger. High-stress lifestyles and a lack of proper sleep can increase the release of stress chemicals such as cortisol that inhibit our ability to lose weight. This means you could be fighting a battle you can’t feel or see. Scary, right? You could be eating well and exercising regularly, but combined with a high-stress lifestyle and improper sleep habits, may not be seeing the results you ultimately seek.
Tip 5: Consistency Above Perfection
The problem with many exercise programs and diets is they call for absolute adherence and perfection, creating the mindset that anything less is failure. Weight loss is a journey that is meant to be enjoyed. Were you supposed to work out three times this week, but you missed a session? No biggie, pat yourself on the back for those two great workouts this week. Did you eat a little extra dessert or have an extra drink? Great, it’s these micro-rewards that will ultimately keep you on track.
When needed, remind yourself: no one ever failed to reach their goal from an occasional missed workout, or a little extra food once in a while.
While it’s important to remember that no two people are the same, the tips mentioned above should help you or your patients start the journey to weight loss off of the right foot—and aid in maintaining any necessary lifestyle changes as you work to reach your goal weight and optimize your overall health. Hopefully, some of Baban’s suggestions such as healthy eating, regular exercise, and consistent sleep habits become permanent changes in your life.
Don’t forget to check back next week, when Mr. Baban will offer his take on some of the biggest weight-loss myths in our society, along with helpful suggestions for avoiding these potential pitfalls.
Do you have tips that you have found successful on your own personal journey? If so, please feel free to share them with our readers.