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20 Rules to Live by for Those Who Want to Lose 10 Pounds in 3 Weeks

20 Rules to Live by for Those Who Want to Lose 10 Pounds in 3 Weeks

Weight loss has become a sticky subject of confusion, conflicting information and myths. Before you know it, you’re on the crash-course diet from hell and getting no-where! Sustainable weight loss is not a fad diet or program, it’s a lifestyle. With these 20 proven weight loss tips, you can lose 10 pounds in 3 weeks. Best of all, you will set yourself up for continued progress every week!

1. The Golden Rule: Calories In vs. Calories Out

This simple fact simply cannot be overruled – to lose weight you must burn more calories than you consume.

Use tools to help track and measure your daily intake then slowly taper down. Start with 500kcal steps or lower until you observe a consistent weekly loss.

Never go dangerously low, eating much below 1200-1600 can stall your progress and harm your health!

2. Set Attainable Goals And Track Your Progress

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    Achieving each goal will help spur you on, so be realistic and start small. Here is an example of an easily achievable goal progression:

    – Lose weight each week

    – Lose 1-3 pounds per week

    – Lose 10 pounds in 3 weeks

    – Fit into size 30 jeans!

    3. Consider Skipping Breakfast

    Breakfast is commonly considered the most important meal of the day, however, it is not so when it comes to weight loss.

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    Intermittent fasting can be a useful fat-loss tool. Restrict yourself to a smaller eating window by skipping breakfast and only eating from 12-8pm. You will reduce your daily calorie intake without restricting your lunch and dinner!

    4. Drink More Water (Especially Before Meals)

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      Drinking water an hour before eating has two proven benefits for weight loss:

      5. Make Coffee Your New Best Friend

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        Coffee has received a bad reputation in the past, however, it should be known that quality coffee is rich in antioxidants and beneficial to weight loss.

        The caffeine content will boost your body’s metabolism by up to 10%, leading to a 10-29% increase in fat burning power. Take it black, with no added sugar!

        6. Make Green Tea Your Second Best Friend

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          Green tea provides a milder dose of caffeine but it is abundant in wonderful catechins. These antioxidants will work with the caffeine in a perfect fat burning harmony!

          7. Always Check For Added Sugar

          Sugar has demonstrated worryingly strong links with obesity, diabetes and heart disease (to name a few).

          But even if you do not add it yourself, you should check the ingredients of your sauces or packaged foods. Even self-proclaimed health foods can be riddled with added sugar!

          8. Cut Out Simple Carbohydrates

          Simple/refined carbohydrates are quickly absorbed, spiking your blood sugar and insulin levels in the process. As a result, you will feel hunger and cravings come back again in no time!

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          Avoid all sugar or refined grains by avoiding the following foods:

          • Cookies, candy and sweets
          • Packaged cereals
          • White bread and rice
          • Cakes

          9. Scale Down Your Portion Sizes

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            It pays to become aware of how much you are eating, exercise portion control and slowly scale it down.

            Even small reductions of 10-20% are often enough to tip the balance and trigger weight loss. Try measuring your portions more carefully and don’t underestimate the power of using smaller bowls!

            10. Keep Healthy Food On Standby for Stacks

            The power of temptation is mighty, so why not remove it completely?

            Only keep healthy snacks within reach, then you won’t be able to binge on junk food! Here are some healthy ideas to stock your cupboard:

            • Whole fruit
            • Handful of nuts
            • Hard boiled eggs
            • Vegetables

            11. Spice Up Your Life

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              Breathe new life into your dishes and reinforce your weight loss efforts with the power of cayenne pepper! Capsaicin from cayenne pepper and other spicy foods helps to ramp up metabolism and decrease appetite.

              12. Top Up Your Protein Intake

              Protein rich foods not only keep you fuller for longer but burn more energy during digestion. Studies have shown that swapping calories for whey protein supplements can boost weight loss whilst increasing lean muscle!

              Alternatively, here are a number of protein-rich food sources:

              • Lean beef
              • Skinless chicken breasts
              • Eggs
              • Salmon
              • Low-fat yogurt

              13. Balance Your Diet With Complex Carbs

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                Consuming complex carbs will produce a sustained energy release and keep blood sugar levels manageable. You can easily keep hunger and cravings at bay with these nutrient dense complex carbs:

                • Vegetables
                • Fruit
                • Brown rice
                • Wholegrains
                • Beans and legumes

                14. Forget About Fast Food

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                  Not matter how healthy it may claim to be, fast food is almost always laden with heart-clogging trans fats, excessive sugar and salt.

                  Worse yet, these meals are high in calories whilst low in nutritional value, making them a terrible choice for fuel. Before you know it, you will have broken the cardinal rule of calories in vs. calories out!

                  15. Watch Out for “Hidden Calories”

                  There’s no need to completely forgo your favorite condiments, just make sure you are aware of their true caloric impact. It’s easy to go overboard and negate much of your hard work!

                  Go easy with the following condiments and toppings, they are surprisingly heavy in calories:

                  • Mayonnaise
                  • Salad dressing
                  • Cream
                  • Cheese
                  • Butter
                  • Oils

                  16. Choose Low-Medium GI Foods

                  High GI foods sources cause sugar levels to shoot up, the resultant spike in insulin will actually encourage dreaded fat storage!

                  Check out the GI scale and choose low-medium GI foods. Your insulin levels will remain under control, you will feel fuller for longer and find it easier to lose weight!

                  17. Opt For Weight Training Over Cardio

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                    Weight training burns a significant amount of calories, keeping you strong, fit and healthy in the process. It’s more effective than cardio for body recomposition as it helps preserve essential muscle mass whilst you lose weight.

                    Studies have also shown a significant increase in metabolic rate both during and after your workout, further supporting your weight loss efforts!

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                    Choose a routine that uses compound lifts such as Presses, Squats and Deadlifts. These exercises recruit the largest amount of muscles per movement, ideal for maintaining lean muscle mass and trimming body fat.

                    18. Go Walking or Cycling

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                      Consistent small actions soon add up to big changes. For this reason, why not choose to walk or cycle whenever you can? You will burn more calories as you go about your day without the need for further diet restrictions.

                      You can burn more calories as you go about your day, without any further diet restriction. If you’re physically able there is no excuse, take the stairs over escalators and lifts!

                      19. Get Enough Sleep

                      Sleep is highly underrated for weight loss. Forget about the 6-hour minimum claim, many of us require 8-9 hours to operate at peak efficiency.

                      Both duration and quality of sleep will have a great influence on hormones that control body composition. In fact, poor sleep has shown worrying links to obesity, increasing the risk in adults by 55%!

                      20. Be Careful Of Liquid Calories!

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                        We all know alcohol dehydrates and damages our liver and kidneys. But it can also thwart weight loss efforts as an unexpected source of calories.

                        You may be surprised to know a beer can equate to 150kcal, 125kcal for a glass of red wine and a whopping 400Kcal for a single sweet Piña Colada! Instead, try sticking to tonic water with a slice of lime, your body will thank you!

                        So there you have the 20 simple lifestyle tips that will support you in achieving healthy weight loss. Adopt as many as you can and you will easily lose 10 pounds or more in 3 weeks!

                        Featured photo credit: Lecic via shutterstock.com

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                        Last Updated on September 4, 2020

                        How to Lose Fat and Gain Muscle to See Results Fast

                        How to Lose Fat and Gain Muscle to See Results Fast

                        There’s a lot of confusion, mystery, and desperation around how to lose fat and gain muscle. We applaud body transformation pictures we see on Instagram, Facebook, and magazine covers but are never able to replicate the results ourselves.

                        Well, that mystery is over because I will tell you exactly how to achieve those results in this article.

                        The journey to getting there is straightforward but not easy. Most people give up too early in the game, when they stop making visible progress.

                        Keep reading to learn how to utilize your metabolism and the laws of muscle building to lose fat and gain muscle fast.

                        Skyrocket Your Metabolism to Lose Fat

                        Learning how to lose fat and gain muscle at the same time is one of the biggest misunderstandings of body transformations because they are opposite metabolic processes.

                        To lose fat, you must have calorie deficits each day, and to gain muscle, you must be in a caloric surplus, but you cannot do both at the same time.

                        When you look at pictures, it looks like it can be done simultaneously, but what is actually happening is a change in fat and muscle percentages.

                        If your weight stays the same through your journey, and you lose body fat, your percent of lean muscle mass automatically goes up by default. You didn’t gain any muscle, but your fat and muscle ratio percentages have shifted.

                        Calculating Your Calories to Lose Fat

                        There are many good calorie calculators out there that will give you an estimate on how much to eat to start losing fat for weight loss. You usually need to cut about 10 to 15% of your TDEE (total daily energy expenditure) calories to start the process.

                        You can find a visual explanation of TDEE below[1]:

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                        Use TDEE to learn how to lose fat and gain muscle.

                          Remember that the calculators are just an estimate. It’s up to you to track your measurements and to adjust your caloric intake to ensure you’re getting the results you’re looking for.

                          Metabolism calculators take into account four different ways your body burns calories to come up with your TDEE, or how many calories you burn in a day:

                          • Resting metabolic rate
                          • Thermic effect of food
                          • Thermic effect of activity
                          • Non-exercise activity thermogenesis

                          Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR)

                          This is your baseline metabolism at rest, or how many calories your body needs to survive if you spent the entire day lying in bed awake.

                          RMR accounts for about 60 to 75% of your total daily energy expenditure. Your RMR is mostly determined by how much you weigh.

                          A heavier person has a higher RMR than a lighter person, even if the lighter person has a higher lean muscle mass, because the metabolism of muscle only contributes to about 20% of your total RMR energy expenditure[2].

                          Thermic Effect of Food (TEF)

                          You’ve heard that to lose weight and gain muscle, you should be eating lots of protein. This is true for a number of reasons:

                          • Lowers your intake of other types of foods, like processed carbs.
                          • Increases satiety, so you continue to feel fuller, longer.
                          • The building blocks for your muscles are found in protein.

                          About 30% of the calories from protein intake are burned off during the digestion process, which includes absorption and waste removal of it. Eating more protein as opposed to other macros increases the amount of calories burned during digestion. That’s why you feel fuller with a higher protein diet.

                          Thermic Effect of Activity (TEA)

                          The calories burned in TEA are relatively minor in your entire TDEE equation. TEA is any calories burned during official exercise, like going to the gym, doing an aerobics class, or going for a run. It covers any exercise you do outside of your normal activities.

                          Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT)

                          The calories burned in NEAT is the big game changer for most people and can vary up to 2000 calories burned per day between people with identical RMRs[3].

                          For the majority of us, when we’re done with our workouts for the day, we don’t do much else for movement. We spend about an hour in the gym, and instead of using the other 15 hours awake as an opportunity to move and burn more calories, we spend it sitting.

                          This is how there can be such a big difference between the amount of calories burned between two people who have the same RMR.

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                          Outside of your gym workout, any additional body movements count towards burning additional calories. The quickest way to add this to your day is to make everything you do as inconvenient for yourself as possible.

                          Examples of inconvenient activities that count towards NEAT include:

                          • Taking the stairs versus the elevator
                          • Parking farther away
                          • Getting up to change the TV channel versus using the remote
                          • Pacing and walking while on a phone call instead of sitting down

                          Increasing your NEAT goes a long way to helping your burn calories faster, leading to quicker fat loss. For more ideas on how to make life a little more inconvenient to up your activity level, check out this article.

                          The Laws of Building Muscle

                          Congrats on reaching the stage where you want to tone and get some definition! Learning how to lose fat and gain muscle isn’t an easy process, so if you’ve taken it on, that’s a huge step.

                          To build muscle, first you want to increase your calorie intake.

                          Based on your TDEE, you want to add about 10% more calories as a starting point. This is enough calories to build muscle, and any excess can lead to fat storage if you’re not training hard enough or aren’t active enough.

                          Again, be sure to track your measurements and adjust your calories if necessary.

                          Second, follow a muscle-building program that you can sustain for at least 3 to 6 months.

                          Consistency is key with building muscles because they need to be stimulated and broken down on a regular basis in order to build back up. You want to strength train at least twice a week for at least an hour each time to start getting results.

                          Of course, more often is better but requires better planning and a more complicated body parts training plan. So, start simple if you’re a novice. It’s not necessary to train 6 times a week unless you’re training for a competition.

                          Progressive Overload

                          Muscle needs to be challenged in order to grow. You need to gradually and consistently increase the amount of load and volume you are lifting.

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                          Load means the amount of weight you’re lifting during weight training. Up to a certain point, it becomes unrealistic to keep adding pounds to each exercise every week, at which point you need to switch exercises and work on your weaker points to break that plateau.

                          However, the goal with load is to keep increasing the amount of weight you lift.

                          Increasing the volume you do is another method to progressive overload. Volume means the total number of reps for that specific exercise. If you’re doing 3 sets of 12 reps, it means you’ve done a total of 36 reps.

                          But increasing volume doesn’t mean doing super high reps of 20+ unless you’re training your muscle for endurance versus strength.

                          You want to use a challenging weight and be able to lift more of it each week through increased reps and sets.

                          Here is a visual explanation of how you can engage in progressive overload[4]:

                          PROGRESSIVE OVERLOAD FOR MUSCLE MASS by @jmaxfitness - Visit the link in my bio to claim your free 1-week muscle bu… | Muscle, Gain muscle, Weight training workouts

                            Training Intensity

                            Paying attention to what you’re doing is required if you want to lose fat and build muscle because you want to build and improve the mind-muscle connection to optimize growth.

                            A healthy mind-body connection means you’re able to better feel your muscles working during each lift.

                            You know you’ve picked the right weight when the last 2 to 3 reps of your intended rep range is challenging. On occasion, you want to push past the burn and muscle fatigue for the last reps.

                            This little bit of pushing past the discomfort is the difference between an average body and a body with more definition. Lifting almost to failure increases muscle recruitment, metabolic stress, and anabolic recruitment to grow muscles.

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                            Proper Recovery

                            This is the most overlooked aspect of building muscles. We focus too much on pre/post workout meals, macro tweaking, and supplements, forgetting that we already have the ultimate tool for recovery: our own body.

                            For best recovery practices, allow at least a day, but no more than 3 days of rest between workouts that stress the same muscle group. Overtraining results in diminished exercise capacity, possible injury, and illness.

                            Remember, muscles are broken down in the gym and built outside of it during recovery.

                            Get 7 to 8 hours of sleep, and be mindful of your stress levels to optimize recovery time. A lack of sleep and excess stress will spike cortisol levels, leading to hunger cravings, decrease regulation of burning fat, and cause faster aging.

                            You can learn how to lower your stress levels fast here.

                            Stop Program Hopping

                            Every day, there is new workout, new exercise, new program on a website, in a magazine, or in your social media feed. No wonder we’re tempted to try a little bit of everything!

                            Frequent program hopping stops you from getting any results.

                            When you change programs too often, you don’t make progress on each exercise. It becomes hard to gauge whether you’re getting stronger or even getting results because you’re not allowing enough time for your body to adapt.

                            Strength is a skill that needs to be built and developed by practicing it consistently. If you’re changing the skill set too often, you won’t know if you’re improving, and, therefore, cutting yourself short of future muscle gains.

                            Conclusion

                            The steps to losing fat and gaining muscle are simple, but the journey to get there is not.

                            Tracking and measuring your calories is the quickest way to lose fat, along with increasing your activity level outside of the gym. Having a stronger, more toned body can be yours when you follow the laws of building muscles consistently.

                            Applying these methods will guarantee that you get the results you’re after!

                            More on How to Lose Fat and Gain Muscle

                            Featured photo credit: Benjamin Klaver via unsplash.com

                            Reference

                            [1] Cheat Day Design: What is TDEE?
                            [2] International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders: Determinants of energy expenditure and fuel utilization in man: effects of body composition, age, sex, ethnicity and glucose tolerance in 916 subjects
                            [3] Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care: Variability in energy expenditure and its components
                            [4] J Max Fitness: PROGRESSIVE OVERLOAD FOR MUSCLE MASS

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