15 of my Basic Weight Loss Rules and Tips
1. Define your normal calorie intake. Usually I like to stay at 1200 calories a day give or take, depending on the day and occasion. Which is good for me if I want to lose 1 pound a week. A good rule on how to tell how many calories you need in a day is to do this:
Your weight multiplied by 12 then subtracted by 500 equals your calorie goal. :)
For example last time I weighed myself I was 145 lbs and should still be at that.
145lbs * 12 = 1,740 - 500 = 1,240
2. In order to have some discipline and motivation, set a goal that you want to accomplish by a certain date. It can be anything from a wedding to bikini season, vacation to reunion. It doesn’t matter as long as you say I want to lose this amount of pounds by this date.
For Example: I want to lose 20lbs and tone my body in 6 months by 06/07/2013. I feel if I really stick to it the weight will come off sooner, toning will be my main concern after that. I think 6 months is a good time period to accomplish that. I may surprise myself and do it sooner, you never know. One can wish!3. Meal plan! My biggest issue lately is not planning healthy meals that suit me. We should be going shopping Tuesday and I’ll make sure Monday or tonight that I have everything I need to survive. I’m not a breakfast girl so my breakfasts are kind of plain but here is a typical day (from what I can recall.)
1 slice of whole wheat toast (45 calorie) 1 tablespoon peanut butter and a banana
1 slice of whole what toast (45 calorie) ½ tablespoon Nutella and 1 cup sliced strawberries
Yogurt fruit parfait
½ whole wheat bagel with low fat strawberry cream cheese
Oatmeal and Cereal are an every once in awhile thing for me, I don’t care for either anymore. But I may have to suck it up because it’s easy to get bored.
Salad (there’s so many ways to be creative with a salad now-a-days)
Soup (it is filling when you have a broth based)
Wraps ( a lot of possibilities here too)
Open faced sandwiches
My dinners are always all over the place but I make a point to figure out how to lighten up EVERYTHING. A good way to figure out how many calories is in a serving of what you’re making is to add all the calories of every ingredient you’re making then divide by the number of portions. SP really helps with this! Some low calorie recipes can be found on my site as well at http://screendoorsandsweettea.blogspot.com/search/label/Low%20Calorie.
I can usually go without a snack but sometimes I have days where I need one:
Yogurt, Granny Smith apple slices with creamy peanut butter, granola bar, celery sticks and light ranch, trail mix. My go to snacks!
4. Portion control and measuring everything is KEY! I really feel that is the only way to be successful in not over eating. Never allow yourself seconds after measuring out your food. I keep measuring cups handy at all times. You can buy them from dollar tree! Of course if you’re out at a gathering it can be tricky I always keep this little tad bit of information in mind.
1 teaspoon is the tip of your thumb to the middle joint, roughly.
1 tablespoon is your WHOLE thumb.
1 cup is about the size of your fist.
3 – 4 ounces is the palm of your hand.
Obviously these are all rough estimates but it’s better than nothing when you’re out and about.
5. Always use a little plate. A small plate tricks our brains in to thinking we ate a lot versus using a larger plate. A larger plate will make us eat more because it gives us a chance to pile on more food than we need. Smaller dinnerware means eating less and still feeling full.
6. Work out! Get moving! Do something, anything to get your body going. Maybe start small and do 30 minute sessions 3 times a week, then gradually move up. 15 minutes cardio, 15 minutes strength. Change the dynamics as you go. Sparkpeople will really help you set up your fitness goals when you join, which brings me to number 7.
7. Joining a site like Sparkpeople or MyFitnessPal will help you keep track of your calorie intake and fitness goal, there’s an app for that. You can learn so much about what you need to do for your body by joining. I suggest Sparkpeople and downloading their app to help you keep track. That brings be to number 8.
8. Keep track of everything! If you can’t use the app, keep a journal. Or do both like me! Write down your weight at the beginning of the week, what you eat, how many calories you consume that day, how much you work out, what you do during your work out, and for how long. You’ll be able to see what you need to change if you don’t see progress one week. It is a lot of work but it’s worth it and it helps!
9. Divide your dinner plate! ¼ of the plate should be a lean protein/meat, ¼ whole grains (like brown rice), and then ½ of your plate should be a mix of vegetables. Remember the more color, the more you’re getting different types of vitamins and minerals.
10. Sleep! If you’re tired during the day you are more likely to want to munch in order to get yourself more motivated and to have more energy. Try to get the recommended 6-8 hours of sleep a night.
11. Post something that motivates you either on your cell phone, computer screen, fridge, bathroom mirror, or in your car. It can be anything posted anywhere you choose as long as it helps you to stick to your goal. I have a few pictures of abs, a picture of me at my healthiest, a picture of me at my heaviest. I plan on making a motivational board and sticking it in my bathroom. After all, the bathroom is where I spend the most time nude and my scale is in there. All the motivation I need. As I’ve said before, who doesn’t want to look good naked?
12. Keep yourself hydrated throughout the day by drinking lots of water. I can’t drink water while I eat, I don’t know why. I guess I like to have something flavored like juice or tea with my meals. In between your meals drink as much water as you can. It is really hard to have 8 ounce glasses of water 8 times a day but do it. If you feel hungry drink some water. We often confuse thirst with hunger. If drinking water doesn’t help, find a little snack.
13. Do not weigh yourself excessively, just weekly. Do not obsess over the number of the scale. If you’re exercising and eating right, you’ll get there eventually. You can try taking your work outs up a notch if you start to plateau. Weigh yourself once a week on the same day every week, not every day. Weight fluctuates depending on the time of day. I weight myself on Monday mornings after waking up. I have a picture frame that I log my weight on weekly. I simply write on the glass with a dry erase marker.
14. After a slip up don’t say, “Oh well, I’ll start back again on Monday!” Slip ups happen, keep going, and try to get back on track immediately. Let’s say you over indulge one night on pasta and ice cream. You feel guilty, without a doubt. You feel as if your whole diet is ruined. Instead of starting over, do an extra long work out the next day. Eat better the next day. A slip up is no excuse to lose all the progress you made at the beginning of the week.
15. Reward yourself, and not with food, you aren’t an animal. Reward yourself with a night out, some new shoes, new makeup, new clothes, or a photo shoot to show off your new body. If you’re working towards a prize you’re likely to work much harder if it’s something you REALLY want.