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The Lazy Guide To Weight Loss

The Lazy Guide To Weight Loss

About 5 years ago, I realized I had gradually gained 15 lbs., thanks to stress, overeating, and total unawareness of the calories I’d been consuming. I woke up one day and realized if I didn’t lose the weight now, I may never shed it. So I worked out and changed my diet. I jogged, lifted weights, monitored my calories, and cut back sweets, but made no drastic changes. Now, I’m back to a healthy weight and I’ve taken basic measures to simply maintain it. I hate exercise, but I love cupcakes. For the lazy person in all of us, here are 18 different ways to help you lose weight and keep it off: no gym membership required. This worked for me!

1. Drink Water

Lots of it! It’s not only good for you in flushing out toxins and keeping your organs operating optimally – which further aids in shedding pounds – but water also fills you up so you eat less.

1 - A Glass of Water, Susan Nilsson

    2. Sleep More

    If you’re sleeping, you’re not eating, and more sleep means the less energy your body needs from caloric foods. Aim for 8 to 9 hours a night, or at the very least, 1 to 2 more hours than you’re used to getting.

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      3. Eat Breakfast

      Fruit, whole grains, or even a to-go bar. Giving your body energy in the morning kick starts your metabolism to help burn calories for you and keep your hunger pangs in check.

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      3 - Breakfast on Caltrain, Richard Masoner

        4. Walk 30 Minutes A Day

        Listen to music, ponder your life’s purpose, or call your mom. Just stay active for 30 minutes a day and you’ll start to see the effects.

        4 - On A Walk, John Anes SMALLER

          5. Eat As Much As You Want!

          Of carrots, apples, oranges, edamame, or any fruit or veggie that satisfies your need to nosh. These are filling foods that are good for you, and after a few days, your body will crave those instead of that bag of greasy potato chips.

          5 - babycarrots_beets_tomatoes_2009, Christopher Paquette

            6. Keep Coffee And Sweets, But Have Them Early

            If you’re craving that piece of cake or a cup of coffee, don’t deprive yourself. Just have them early in the day, not right before bed. The sugar and caffeine will inhibit a good night’s sleep, which can lead to overeating the next day.

            OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

              7. Forgive Yourself

              Don’t beat yourself up for missing a workout or feeling tight in your jeans. Negative thoughts contribute to depression, which can contribute to weight gain and overeating.

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              7 - Blong Girl Thoughfully Watching A Sunrise, Ed Gregory, Stokpic

                8. Snack MORE!

                Eating smaller bites throughout the day will keep your blood sugar from spiking and keep you from overeating if let yourself go hungry for too long.

                8 - Girls Hand Reaching accross Mexican Tapas Cafe Table, Ed Gregory, Stokpic SMALLER

                  9. Keep Calories In Food

                  Don’t drink them. You’ll feel fuller if you have food over a soda. If water doesn’t do the trick, add lemon or lime juice, or a bit of orange zest for a kick. If you’re ordering an iced tea, keep it unsweetened if you can.

                  9 - Bells Milk Bar, Spider5

                    10. Chew Gum

                    Curb your eating out of boredom with a stick of gum.

                    10 - Chiclete na boca, Guilherme Yagui

                      11. Cut Out Alcohol

                      Despite the calories on the label, the way your body processes alcohol is not as straightforward. Alcohol lowers your metabolism, suppresses fat-burning testosterone, and converts to insulin, keeping the pounds packed on. Essentially, it fuels your body’s desire for fat storage. Give it a rest until you meet your goal, and then introduce alcohol back into your life gradually.

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                      11 - Elijah Craig, Ryan Hyde

                        12. Watch TV While Lifting Weights

                        Depending on your body frame and goals, lifting 3-lb. to 10-lb. weights is easier to do while you’re watching your favorite show. Or pick up some small ankle or wrist weights to help tone and strengthen your muscles, which will help burn fat without much extra effort. Just be cautious and don’t overexert yourself: these wearable weights will alter your movements and can possibly cause damage to ligaments and bones.

                        12 - Heavy Weight, Maik Meid

                          13. Slow Down Your Meals

                          Savor your food! You’ll enjoy eating and feel more satisfied. You’ll also become more aware of when you’re full, helping you lessen the chance of overeating.

                          13 - Franklin Heijnen

                            14. Meditate And Breathe

                            Anxiety and stress contribute to weight gain. Meditating helps you calm down and take a moment for yourself. Think positively and focus on your goals. Not only will you feel better and gain more direction, but you’ll be encouraged and re-energized to continue getting healthy.

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                            14 - Man Watching Sunrise On Balcony, Ed Gregory, Stokpic

                              15. Use A Smaller Plate

                              The psychology behind this seems trivial but it is effective. If your plate looks half empty, you’re going to feel starved; if it looks full, you’ll feel full. So help slim your waist and help fill your stomach, and fill up the plate but make the plate smaller. Try some of these great recipes for healthy but delicious options.

                              15 - Street Food Festival, StateofIsrael

                                16. Brush Your Teeth

                                Right after dinner especially will help curb your need to nibble on dessert. After all, us lazy folks don’t want to brush our teeth twice in the same evening, do we?

                                16 - Day 221 of 365, Arek Olek

                                  17. Do The 7-Minute Workout

                                  Realistically, tests exhibit noticeable results if you’re at it for 20 minutes a day. Still, 7 to 20 minutes of a heavy workout may require a real effort, but hey, it’s only as little as 7 minutes out of 1,440 in a day. That’s two Pandora songs. You can handle that, right?

                                  17 - Time Out, Chris Combe

                                    18. Kill The Craving

                                    If you need a cookie, eat a cookie. Just don’t eat 5 cookies. Want a cupcake? Try cutting it in half and save the rest for tomorrow’s dessert. Just be sure to put the rest away before digging in, so you’re not as tempted to reach for more.

                                    Stokpic

                                      Featured photo credit: Piotr Szczepankiewicz/Flickr via flic.kr

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                                      Last Updated on August 15, 2018

                                      7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

                                      7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

                                      Bodyweight exercises are gaining ground in the fitness world due to the practicality and simplicity of getting in shape using your own body weight. Planks are one form of bodyweight exercises that will never go out of fashion. Planks are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Why? Because they require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.

                                      Video Summary

                                      Why is it important to train up our core strength?

                                      There are numerous sites and blogs which detail ways to build your core muscles or core strength. Often though, these sites neglect to explain what your core muscles actually are, and why building them is important.

                                      This is quite surprising, as core muscles are quite easy to explain. Your core muscles are a series of muscles in your midsection, and are used in most forms of movement. Though they aren’t housed in your arms or legs, your core muscles can help transfer force from one limb to another, or are used in addition to muscles in your arms or legs to increase their effectiveness. As such a strong core will make a big improvement on your ability to move and exercise further.

                                      Also they are great for helping other muscles in your midsection such as your abdominal muscles. Your abdominal muscles are important for supporting your back and spinal column, and as such are important aids in preventing injuries. However for them to be most effective you need to spend a lot of time developing your core muscles.

                                      In short, planking exercises can make a huge improvement in your muscles down your whole body. Making them a hugely effective exercise to perform.

                                      One Exercise, multiple benefits

                                      There are few forms of exercise as effective at building your core as planking exercises. However, planking exercises benefit far more than just your core strength.

                                      By holding yourself in the position for a planking exercise, you’ll notice that your biceps, neck, and shoulder muscles are also being tested and strained. This this encouraging their buildup and development. This is great news if you like to do press ups, developed shoulder muscles will have a big impact on your press up performance.

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                                      When planking, you are holding yourself up through your arms and biceps and so by holding a planking position, your arm muscles are being toned and developed. Making planking a great alternative exercise to other forms of bicep developing exercises.

                                      Moving down your midsection, successful plank exercises actually develop the muscles in your butt! These muscles tend to be ignored by a lot of exercises, so this is another great benefit of plank exercises.

                                      In much the same way as you develop your biceps and arm muscles, holding the planking position helps develop the muscles in your thighs too.

                                      What is even better is that planking exercises don’t take much time at all. In fact you should probably only spend about ten minutes max per day in the planking exercise.

                                      What will happen when you start doing planks every day

                                        1. You’ll improve core definition and performance: 

                                        Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles exactly because they engage all major core muscle groups including the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominusthe external oblique muscle, and the glutes. The importance of strengthening each muscle group cannot be underestimated either, for all of these groups serve their own purpose. If you strengthen these muscle groups you will notice:

                                        • Transverse abdominis: increased ability to lift heavier weights.
                                        • Rectus adbominis: improved sports performance, particularly with jumping. This muscle group is also responsible for giving you the renowned six pack look.
                                        • Oblique muscles: improved capacity for stable side-bending and waist-twisting
                                        • Glutes: a supported back and a strong, shapely booty.

                                        2. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column

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                                          Doing planks is a type of exercise that allow you to build muscle while also making sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your spine or hips. According to the American Council on Exercise, doing planks regularly not only significantly reduces back pain but it also strengthens your muscles and ensures a strong support for your entire back, especially in the areas around your upper back.

                                          Check out this article if you would like to find out about how doing planks on different surfaces can impact the effectiveness of this exercise in strengthening your core.

                                          3. You’ll experience an increased boost to your overall metabolism

                                            Planking is an excellent way of challenging your entire body because doing them every day will burn more calories than other traditional abdominal exercises, such as crunches or sit-ups. The muscles you strengthen by doing this exercise on a day-to-day basis will ensure that you burn more energy even when sedentary. This is especially important if you are spending the majority of your day sitting in front of a computer. Also, making it a daily 10- to 1 minute home exercise before or after work will not only provide an enhanced metabolic rate but it will also ensure that that metabolic rate remains high all day long, (yes, even while you are asleep).

                                            4. You’ll significantly improve your posture

                                              Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture. This is great news as a strong posture brings with it a huge number of fantastic benefits .

                                              A good posture keeps your bones and joins in the correct alignment which means both your bones and joints will be better maintained and more healthy, but also means the overall effectiveness of your muscles will be improved.

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                                              A good posture will ensure your back or spine is in the correct position and so you will suffer less back pain.

                                              On top of everything, someone with good posture looks better, healthier, and more confident.

                                              5. You’ll improve overall balance

                                                Have you ever felt that when you tried standing on one leg, you couldn’t stand up straight for more than a couple of seconds? It’s not because you were drunk- unless you happened to be at the time!-  but rather, it’s because your abdominal muscles weren’t strong enough to give you the balance you needed. Through improving your balance by doing side planks and planks with extensions you will boost your performance in every kind of sporting activity.

                                                6. You’ll become more flexible than ever before

                                                  Flexibility is a key benefit of doing planks regularly, for this form of exercise expands and stretches all your posterior muscle groups – shouldersshoulder blades, and collarbone – while also stretching your hamstrings, arches of your feet, and toes. With a side plank added in to the mix, you can also work on your oblique muscles. This will provide you with further benefits when it comes to hyper-extending your toes, a movement that is crucial for supporting your body’s weight.

                                                  7. You’ll witness mental benefits

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                                                    Plank exercises have a particular effect on our nerves, making them an excellent means of improving overall mood. How? Well, they stretch out muscle groups that contribute to stress and tension in the body. Just think about it: you are sitting in your chair, at home or at work, all day long; your thigh muscles get tight, your legs get heavy due to being bent for several hours; and tension develops in your shoulders due to being forced to slump forward all day. These are all circumstances that put too stress on the muscles and nerves. The good news is that planks not only calm your brain, but they can also treat anxiety and symptoms of depression– but only if you make it part of your daily routine.

                                                    How to hold a plank position

                                                    1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
                                                    2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
                                                    3. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
                                                    4. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
                                                    5. Hold the position for as long as you can.
                                                    6. Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.
                                                    7. When your form begins to suffer, pull the plug. You’re only benefiting from the plank by actually doing the plank.

                                                    Watch the video if you have any doubt!

                                                    Here is a great infographic that shows the best plank variation exercises to evenly target all abdominal muscle groups:

                                                      How to improve your plank time gradually

                                                      1. Start with the easier variation if needed. You can start with a bent-knee plank if you can’t perform a regular plank yet. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to these tougher variations.
                                                      2. Practise every day. Space your planking exercise throughout the day and do 3-4 times every day. Try to hold the position 10 seconds longer each time.
                                                      3. Perform other body-weight exercises at the same time. Push-up and squat will improve your core strength too.

                                                      Are you ready to devote 5-10 minutes of your day, every day, to stay fit, healthy and, most importantly, strong as a bull? Then jump in and make doing plank exercises a part of your life.

                                                      Who Should Be Cautious Doing The Plank?

                                                      You need to be cautious doing Planking exercises if any of these risks apply to you:

                                                      • Prolapse
                                                      • After prolapse surgery
                                                      • Pelvic pain conditions
                                                      • Weak or poorly functioning pelvic floor muscles
                                                      • Previous childbirth
                                                      • Overweight

                                                      Choose an alternative pelvic floor abdominal exercise or consult your doctor before performing plank regularly.

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