When you start a weight loss program, you probably take up some form of exercise, too, since diet and exercise are the two pillars of weight loss. However, it's common to control your eating and exercise and not see the results you want. Here are four tips for using diet and exercise to help with your weight loss program.
1. Monitor Your Calories In And Out
It's common for people to eat more calories than they realize. The little bites you take here and there add up. Plus, if you eat out a lot, there could be hidden calories in foods that you're not accounting for. Start a calorie journal and faithfully track how many calories you eat each day so you realize how much you take in. Also, note if exercise makes you eat more, which it often does, as this can sabotage your weight loss.
Time the amount of exercise you get and then calculate the calories you burned off. Remember to differentiate between mild and vigorous exercise. A slow walk after dinner might be good for your health, but you won't burn many calories unless you walk fast. Once you know your calorie intake and expenditure, you can see why you're not losing weight. That helps you make adjustments as needed until you've established better habits.
2. Exercise For Fat Loss
It's good to do a combination of aerobic and strength training exercises. Remember that when you build muscle, you'll put on weight. This can make you think you're not losing weight, but you're losing fat, and that's what you want to do. Rather than judge your progress by the scale alone, judge it by how your body is changing and how loose your clothes are becoming.
3. Focus On Nutrition
You may find it easier to lose weight if you join a program that provides food or helps you with your diet. Nutrition is important for weight loss and with having strength for exercise and muscle building. Eating a calorie-controlled diet based on junk foods and processed foods may not give you the same results as eating a natural foods diet that is less inflammatory and gives you more energy for exercise.
4. Establish Good Habits For Life
The frustrating thing about weight loss is how fast the weight comes back on once you stop your program. You may even put on extra weight and start a cycle of yo-yo dieting that leaves you heavier at the end of each passing year. Rather than think about quick weight loss using some fad or gimmick, think about healthy habits you can use for a lifetime, such as daily exercise and healthy eating, so once the weight is off, it won't come back.