Sometimes we make losing weight more complicated than it should be. You know, we have all done it. We have tried cauliflower as the base for everything, gone no carbs, all carbs, counted points, no grains, no dairy and the list goes on when really, making small changes to lose weight is what you need to start with to ultimately be successful long term.
We often take the all or nothing attitude about eating. How many times have you started the latest and greatest fad diet, failed by day 3 so you throw up your hands and go directly back to old habits? We tend to over think changes to lose weight by believing it is an all or nothing.
There are 5 small changes to lose weight that will get you on track for making larger changes with larger weight loss. After all, you don’t go to school and start lessons from the end of the book, do you? There is nothing wrong with baby steps before we take off running.
5 Small Changes to Lose Weight
Drink Only Water
Aside from water just being awesomely good for us, almost anything else is just plain calories. Why take on unnecessary empty calories? Good plain water is what our bodies need to truly function well. It is so important to stay hydrated (Do you know how much water you need daily?) for our bodies to properly operate, it helps us to feel better and have more energy. If I am slightly dehydrated, I instantly know it from feeling sluggish.
There are steps you can take to keep track of your hydration.
Keep a check off for each glass you drink.
Fill an old milk gallon jug with water to track how much you are drinking.
Divide your daily intake into your waking hours, and make sure to drink every hour.
Staying hydrated will also help you stay more full during the day, helping you to resist the urge to hit the junk food.
Eat More Fresh Vegetables
Isn’t this what mom used to tell us? Not only are vegetables just plain good for our bodies, but they will fill us and help us resist opening the junk food cabinet. Chances are, you are like I was not long ago and not eating anywhere close to the daily recommended amount of vegetables.
The 21 day diet containers are really great for measuring the amount of vegetables we should be eating every day. It was a real eye opener when I recently started using the containers. There was a problem though. I realized it was not always easy to eat enough vegetables, however, it was important to me. Enter green smoothies. What an easy, convenient way to eat veggies! Smoothies are now my go-to meal or snack about once a day, especially when running out the door!
Eat Less Sugar
Wouldn’t we love to be able to eat all of the sugar laden foods we want AND have healthy, fit, lean bodies? Actually, a friend of mine just published a book that does that for us! She has created so many delicious HEALTHY desserts for us to enjoy without refined sugar, gluten and dairy! Her book is Sweets in the Raw: Naturally Healthy Desserts, so we can have our cake and eat it too…without the guilt! You can pre-order her amazing book now, it comes out Sept 1, 2016.
Aside from the healthy natural sweets, the refined sugar foods wreak havoc on our weight loss and fitness efforts. There are much better ways to satisfy our sweet tooth.
If you are addicted to sugar like I was, Sugar Addiction: How I Broke Free will help you beat it also.
Walk 10,000 Steps a Day
Did you know by adding 10,000 steps a day into our daily routine we can lose an additional pound a week? It sounds like a lot of steps and effort, but there are ways to work this goal into our lives easily. If you want to lose an extra pound a week, be sure to check out this easy schedule to follow to get your 10,000 steps in!
Of course, having a fitness tracker makes measuring 10,000 steps much easier. I recently switched from my Apple Watch to a FitBit Blaze, which I like so much better for the ease of tracking and the detailed app. I highly recommend having some type of tracker that will help motivate you to reach your daily and weekly fitness goals.
Sleep 8-9 Hours Each Night
This one is high on my priority list, along with hydration. I have always needed 8 hours of sleep each night to stay at my optimal performance in anything I do. It is so difficult to motivate myself to work out if I am not well rested. A good night’s sleep ensures better effort while exercising. In addition to simply helping activity the next day, getting adequate sleep also helps keep the body healthy.
So, you see these are really minor changes to lose weight. Nothing that will rock your world too terribly much when starting a weight loss plan. The biggest advice I can give you is to adjust for a lifestyle change, not a temporary change while you are losing weight. As women over 40, yo-yo diets will not work long term. Be committed for long term…you’re good health and mobility are worth it!
Be sure to join the Facebook group just for Women Over 40 Losing Weight! It’s a great resource for asking questions, casual chatter and celebrating milestones.