Are you entering a fit challenge at work or with some friends? First of all, good for YOU! Secondly, read on to learn how to put your “best bicep forward” and give yourself a great head start. Good luck!
As we all know, there are 2 ways to lose weight: Increase your activity or decrease your caloric intake. If you can do BOTH of those things, you will accelerate the number of pounds that will SHED off your body in a given period of time. YAY YOU!
A word on calories: Calories are a fancy word for “energy”, which we all NEED! Without calories, we wouldn’t feel like going out and having fun on those days when we call in sick to work (oops, did I just say that?).
Anyway, you want to create a “deficit”, but not STARVE the body… the trick is to maintain a lower intake level than you are used to, but eat frequently and in smaller quantities (and eat SMART foods…go easy on the simple sugars and carbs), so you can sustain the increased activity we will be doing. Think of food as FUEL for your journey!
So let’s say you want to lose 2 pounds per week. Know this: 1 POUND = 3500 CALORIES. Remember that deficit we talked about? Here is where you create it…You need to play with that delicate balance of “in” vs “out”, and when you reach a deficit of 3500 calories, you will lose one pound. So easy a cave man can do it!
Here’s an example:
1) Cut 300 calories each day from your normal eating routine (300 x 7 days = 2100 fewer calories already, just from your food!).
2) INCREASE your CARDIO output by burning an extra 200 calories per day (200 x 7 = 1400). That will not only help shed pounds directly, but also indirectly, as your metabolism starts kicking into gear (think “afterburn” effect).
3) Add that 1400 to your 2100, and you have your 3500 calories, or 2 pounds!
That wasn’t so hard, was it? The key is to keep that up over time, but if you’ve already read this far, I have no doubt you WILL! Cutting 300 calories is actually pretty easy! Do you drink soda everyday? Swap one for a bottled water and that saves 100. Skip the mayo on your Subway sandwhich and that’s another 100. Going to McDonald’s? Get your meal without the medium fries and you save another 380 (of course, this is if you MUST go to McDonald’s. The point is, it’s really a conscious thing that once you become aware of what you put into your body, you CAN make better choices!
So you say 2 pounds a week is not going to cut it! Not for this challenge! I want MORE!! All you have to do is cut a little more of the “in” and/or exert a little (or a lot) more on the “out”. Do both and it’s even better. It’s kind of like balancing a checkbook, except in this case we don’t want to be “balanced”…that will only keep you at the “maintain” stage..we want to PUSH through that stage and lose the weight, so find whatever will provide you with the deficit you need and go for it! Strength training is important, but don’t go too heavy into the weights during the challenge. You do want to “sculpt” your body a bit, but cardio cardio cardio is what will burn baby burn!
A DECLARATION OF DETERMINATION
“I’m going to push play on my DVR, and workout with “Insanity” 6 days per week for 12 weeks.” There, I said it. Notice I didn’t say “I’ll TRY”. I said “I WILL”. Somehow, stating our intentions out loud is half the battle to staying accountable. What will YOU be doing during your challenge? Choose what works for you. For me, Insanity has proven itself, helping me lose 11 inches and 7% body fat during the first go-around. Whatever program or routine you select, choose something, stick with it consistently, get your heart rate up, and sweat it out, DAILY. If you need help with your selection, click here for a comparison chart of some awesome programs: Which program is right for me?
I work at a middle school, and while our cafeteria staff is just a wonderful group of people, I have “banned” myself from the kitchen, which serves mostly chicken nuggets and pizza…I’ve been drinking Shakeology to replace the school lunch everyday for a few months now. I cannot tell you how much this drink has done for me! I sound like a commercial for it, but it really is pure nutrition in a glass, that tastes just like a chocolate shake, has no caffeine, no artificial sweeteners or sugar, and it’s packed with vitamins, minerals, protein and prebiotics. If you can get a bag of this stuff and drink it each day of your challenge, it just may put you over the top, in terms of weight loss and destroying the other teams. It will be a good kick start for the first few days, and after a couple weeks go by, you will begin to notice the healthy effects. Here is the nutrition label and a short video clip explaining about it:Nutritional Info
OK, now you are armed and ready! Time for you to proceed to the weigh in…set your sights on your goal and GO FOR IT! Good luck and good health!