Sustaining Your Weight Loss Efforts
Weight loss, fat loss, looking great naked or whatever you want to call it all requires the same elements. But why do so many people struggle with this persistent nuisance? Out of 100 people that walk into the gym almost 90% of them are concerned with this problem. So how do we combat it? What is the big SECRET behind weight loss. Well, to be frank, consistent weight loss requires you to be focused on your long term goal and maintain it for a long period of time. This is tough to do, but here are couple tools that will help you sustain long-term weight loss.
Complacent with Less Than Optimal Results
Sure you’ve started a diet and you’ve lost a few pounds. At least initially, but then the results start to peater out at the two to three week mark and you start losing your nerve. It’s too hard! I don’t have time. The kids need me. Blah, blah, blah.
To overcome this complacency and lack of motivation you must get serious. Having a long term goal setup with a timeline will help, but you need to find a way to make it personal. The people who are successful in weight loss generally have a solid timeline and physical problem that they need to hit in order to be successful or they risk losing something.
You see the risk of losing or fear of losing is going to be a great motivator. All you need to do is figure out what is going to be a suitable motivator for you. Whatever that emotional trigger happens to be. It could be fear of contracting a morbid disease that will kill you by the time you’re 45 or that feeling of being too big to fit into the wedding dress that you so desire. Doesn’t matter, it just has to be personal.
Look in the mirror. What do you want? Why do you want to lose the weight, the BIG why?
Keep On Progressing
Once you’ve got the “why” you can focus on the rest. After all you’ve gotten a good start with about 10 to 12 pounds of weight loss, generally comprised of body water and a little bit of bodyfat. Sure, looks good on the scale, but it’s a far cry from where you really want to be.
The initial week or so of training and dieting is just the beginning of your weight loss journey, so don’t get cocky. This initial adaptation is just getting the body ready for the onslaught of training and fat loss to continue. A mere stepping stone in the right direction.
In order to continue to adapt and continue losing weight you have to hold the course. Your body takes time to adjust and accommodate to lack of adequate calories and upgraded workout routine. For about a month any initial programming you engage in will work, although your weight loss will slowly grind to a halt without any increase in intensity or volume.
Additionally, most hard chargers that think more is better will eventually reduce their calorie intake to levels far too low to stimulate fat loss and will therefore continue to spin their wheels, while being constantly reminded of just how little they’re eating.
To continue this weight loss battle you have to eat an appropriate level of protein, fats and carbs within reason to help burn more calories and be exercising regularly.
Are You Regular?
Regular training will help you be successful in your weight loss efforts. What do I mean by regular training? You should be training at least 3-4 days per week to stimulate adequate weight loss. That means at least 45-60 minutes of hard, intense training using resistance training and hard cardiovascular efforts. Not to mention filling in the rest of the days with some long and slow bouts of steady state exercise for about an hour.
Basically you should be moving at least six or seven days out of the week. Oh, but what about a rest day, okay sure you can take a rest day. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be out there and moving around. Even on a rest day you can take a short walk in the park or get some housecleaning done. The key is simply moving more altogether.
You want to lose weight, stimulate the weight loss with movement. Teach your body how to burn calories effectively.
Change It Up To Keep Losing
Another thing you should focus on is keeping your workouts “fresh” and “inventive”. You don’t need to follow a set program for days and weeks on end when your goal is fat loss. You simply need to work on increasing your strength through progressive resistance training, lift some moderately heavy weights for reps, do some high intensity sprint type work and add in some long distance cardio.
But the key is not to get bored!
People get too structured in their training programs when they just don’t know what to do. All one needs to do is follow the basics. Get good at the big compound lifts and build up to a good level of strength. Deadlifts, squats, bench, military press, pullups, that whole gig. You can keep these in your program for long periods of time and as long as you’re progressing in weight they can stay pretty much the same all year long.
But don’t be afraid to add in exercises you like or exercises that will help you get stronger at those bigger lifts. You can go a powerlifting route from there or a bodybuilding route. Doesn’t really matter when all you’re worried about is fat loss. Choose exercises you like and keep them fluctuating.
As long as the big lifts are going up, you’re doing fine. No one really cares how much weight you can bicep curl or French press anyways.
Add in some metabolic cardio like Prowler sprints, hill sprints, kettlebell circuits or barbell complexes to help shred fat faster.
Then find some cardio modes you like. Biking, cycling classes, running, swimming, kayaking, whatever you like. Keep it fresh and have some fun. The more fun you have, the less your weight loss feels like work.
That’s pretty much all it takes to sustain weight loss over the long haul. Remember that weight loss is a marathon and not a sprint. It could take a year or more to lose the amount of fat you want, depending upon where you start. And it’s not a straight line in the process. Focus on these three elements to be successful: find your emotional trigger to fuel your motivation, be regular with your training efforts, and change up your workouts frequently to prevent boredom. Don’t take the easy way out and think that some sort of supplement or miraculous diet will cure all your weight loss woes. It’s going to be a process and it’s going to be long. Fortify your body against these torrents and settling for a long seige on with weight loss.
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