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6 Philosophies Every Woman Trying To Lose Weight Should Read

6 Philosophies Every Woman Trying To Lose Weight Should Read

If you’ve ever tried to lose weight – for whatever reason – you’ve probably found that one bit of dietary or fitness advice does not fit all! Whether you’re trying to drop a little extra weight, or just trying to keep in shape, here are 6 top pieces of advice I always share with my clients to help their weight loss journey be more harmonious and successful.

1. Stop trying to emulate others

Find out what works for your body and what does not.

Do not make the mistake that many people make when they try to copy their idol. These idols may make random comments such as “spirulina changed my life.” The result being a massive increase in spirulina sales. Yet, spirulina may not suit everyone. I know when I tried spirulina, after 4 days I was so constipated I felt like I had swallowed a brick. Having sufficient iron levels already, adding spirulina to my daily routine did not suit my constitution at all.

The same for a 7 day juice only plan. All it gave me was a headache and rebound weight gain.

You will know when a food or diet program suits you when you gain energy and vitality as opposed deprivation and irritability.

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2. You have the tools you need at hand

Don’t have any money? Going for a run is free.

Not sporty? Take up walking, even if it means walking 10 minutes a day.

Step outside your front door and get started.

Need weights for your arms? Carry a 500ml water bottle in each hand.

Once you have made a start, no matter what level, you can raise the level of exercise from one week to the next.

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3. There will be pain

I am not going to sugar coat this point.

Of course there will be pain, or else you would have made changes to your lifestyle long ago.

I liken myself to a fat person living in a thin body. Yes, you heard me correctly. Just like a reformed alcoholic who is only a drink away from falling off the wagon, if I find myself wandering from my usual eating habits (for example start eating processed foods on a regular basis) I will fall off the wagon and be on the slippery slope to obesity once again.

When I first stopped eating the processed foods that I mistakenly thought was okay to eat, such as brown pasta and breads, I felt miserable. I would crave these foods. But instinctively I knew that I had to work through the initial pain.

Having cereal for breakfast, sandwiches for lunch and pasta for dinner was a carb overload that did not suit my body at all. Where was the fruit and vegetables in all this? When I first stopped eating the processed foods and introduced a diet comprising more fruit and vegetables, the withdrawals were so severe I had to send my husband and children away for a weekend away!

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But after a couple of days, I woke up with such clarity and energy, I knew that I had overcome the worst days and the future was going to be okay. The pain was gone and was replaced with enthusiasm and strength to move on.

4. Find out what you enjoy doing and modify what you do not

If your aim is to lose weight or to improve your exercise endurance but do not like the thought of joining a gym, then find something that you do enjoy. There may be a walking club in your area, or explore other possibilities such as line dancing, pole dancing (keep an open mind here!), or water aerobics.

Even if you have a regular exercise regime, it is always important to break your routine to give your body a change of scenery. Do you take the same walk to the bus stop every morning, or evening while out walking the dog? Try and vary your route and you will be amazed at what you discover. Maybe you may find the new street has less traffic or better access. You will see something new and pay attention to it. This is the way your body reacts to a new exercise regime. Different muscles may be activated thus reigniting your body.

5. Stay positive

There will be bad days as well as the good.

When I decided that it was time to lose weight and no longer be trapped in the obese body I was encased in, the journey was not all smooth sailing. There were times I would look at my husband with envy and anger. He is one of those rare people who actually has trouble gaining weight. He does not have to watch what he eats and has never had to worry about his weight.

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Being angry with him served me no purpose. It was only making me miserable so I decided to concentrate on my own journey. When the weight started to go down, and clothes shopping became easier (buying off the rack has its benefits) the journey was that much sweeter because I had earned it.

6. Develop a plan by visualizing your goal

There are 3 steps that you must take if you want to achieve your goal and these are vision, goal, action.

Vision is self explanatory. You want to visualize yourself as being slimmer than you are now. You can do it. You must create a vision not about what you can do but about what you want to be able to do.

Goal: whether it is an upcoming wedding or your own birthday party, having a goal to work towards is a great tool to work towards. In my instance, my goals kept changing as I lost the weight, At first I thought it would be great to look good for an upcoming family reunion. I aimed to lose 5kg for that event that was one month away.  Once I started losing the weight, I then knew that I could achieve even more weight loss. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that I would lose the weight that I did (25kg), but breaking it down into achievable goals allowed to me achieve what I originally thought was impossible. (On a side note here, before I decide I had to lose weight when I was obese and in my late 40’s I had resigned myself to being obese for the rest of my life. If I had not changed this mindset and made the changes that I made, I know that I would not be the same person I am today, both inside and out and so glad that I made the decision to do something about my ever expanding waistline all those years ago.)

Action: vision without action will get you nowhere fast! This is where the hard work begins. The first step is the hardest, but once you have made the first step the journey becomes easier, albeit with a few bumps along the way to keep you on top of your toes. This is where you have to find a program that suits your style and way of life.

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Last Updated on May 22, 2019

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

1. Cat Camel Stretch

Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

Here’s a video to guide you through:

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2. Go for a Walk or a Run

This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

3. Jumping Jacks

Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

4. Abductor Side Lifts

Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

5. Balancing Table Pose

This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

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    6. Leg Squats

    Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

    Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

    The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

    7. Push Ups

    You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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    An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

    Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

    This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

    8. Bicycle Crunches

    There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

    Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

    9. Lunges

    Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

    Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

    This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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    10. Bicep Curls

    You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

    Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

    Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

    Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

    Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

    These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

    You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

    Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

    More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

    Reference

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