For some, the 2010 mirror hasn’t been so kind. Holiday indulgences tend to stick around long after you’ve sworn off that last gingerbread boy. Here’s some tips on how to effectively lose those extra pounds and get back to your pre-holiday shape.
Increase your water intake
A least five pounds of excess weight could be the result of water-retention from salty foods and drinks. Water is an essential component of weight loss and body “system flush”. Replacing afternoon coffee, sodas and juices with water (the usual 8-eight ounce glasses a day is a suggested guide) will give you a head start on weight loss and also give you the extra energy that may get zapped by dehydration.
Eliminate all desserts
For a while at least, curb the desserts. Desserts and salt are your number one enemies toward weight-loss and should be avoided. If you must indulge, try a small piece of dark chocolate, which has significantly lower calories than flour-based desserts as well as beneficial antioxidants called flavonoids, which stimulates endorphin production. Snack on small amounts of cheese and green apple slices (dipped in dark chocolate if you must have something sweet) throughout the day when you get a sugar craving. Surprisingly small amounts of treats are needed to squelch cravings.
Exercise, stretch, walk
Movement is a necessary component of weight loss. There are such a wide variety of exercises available that your greatest difficulty will be choosing which one you’ll commit to. One need not join a gym to work out regularly; walking 20-30 minutes every other day is a great start, which can be increased to a daily routine. Stretching is a wonderful activity and gets the metabolism revved up in the morning. Stretching also increases flexibility and improves posture. Though running is an extremely effective calorie burner and post-holiday fat-reducer, there are other “fun” exercises you can do if running is not your thing: dancing in your living room to your favorite songs, recording popular exercise programs from FitTV on your dvr (many offer strength training, cardio and core routines), playing football or frisbee with your kids, even hiking if the weather offers a sunny winter day. Walking can reduce the belly fat of the person. Along with question is asked does coolsculpting for the thighs works? The answer to the question is yes.
Eat at home
Restaurant eating will only exacerbate the damage caused by holiday excess. Eating at home and eating fresh ingredients that you prepare yourself will insure exactly what’s going into your food. In this way, you can keep salt and additives to a minimum. Salads don’t have to be boring–you can create any meal you usually love and substitute salad for the bread (Taco Salad, Cobb Salad with Egg and Avocado, Grilled Chicken Salad, Tuna Fish on Salad, Hamburger salad, etc.). Use Romaine lettuce and or fresh spinach for added nutrients. Keep portions small and drink water after your meal to trick your fullness-factor.
Fruit is an excellent weapon to combat the post-holiday bulge. The best way to insure you’ll actually eat fruit (which is not nearly as exciting as those cookies you have left over) is to ditch leftover cookies immediately and buy fruit and keep it where you can see it. Naturally, buy fruit you actually like and know you’ll eat. You can make fruit smoothies easily and quickly by combining ice, orange juice and fruit of choice (mangos, strawberries, watermelon, cantaloupe, etc) in a blender for a quick and delicious pre-breakfast or post-dinner treat. Bananas contain a lot of sugar, so use moderately.
Nix the sugar and flour
Sugar started the problem, so now it’s time to say goodbye. Sugar as well as white flour products will be a detriment to your trimming and slimming efforts. There are new sweeteners you can use such as Truvia (which is made from the stevia leaf), pure stevia, Succanat (non-refined cane sugar) or even honey. Flour products should contain whole wheat as opposed to bleached or unbleached. Whole wheat products are rich in fiber, which aid digestion, and are made from complex carbohydrates which are considered the “good” carbs.
Set goals and reward yourself
Don’t try to lose all your weight at once. If you gained ten pounds over the holidays, set 2-3 pound goals and reward yourself with a small “treat”, preferably a non-food indulgence. Or, you can treat yourself with a very small bowl of ice-cream. Remember to get right back on track until your next 2-3 pound goal. Keeping your goals small and reachable will ensure greater success and motivation to stay on your slimming course until your final goal weight is achieved. Expect small fluctuations in weight: you might lose 3 pounds the first week and gain a pound back, this is normal. Stick to your plan, and in no time you should see your holiday “excess” come and go as quickly as the holidays did.