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7 Proven Tips To Lose Weight And Keep It Off

7 Proven Tips To Lose Weight And Keep It Off

According to Gary Foster, Ph. D (University of Pennsylvania), almost 65% of all dieters end up back at their old weight within 3 years. That’s the bad news.

The good news is that this 2014 study found that of 3,000 people who lost 30+ pounds in one year, 87% maintained 10 lbs of that weight loss or more for the next decade.

In other words, most dieters fail to lose weight, but if you manage to make it through the first year, you dramatically improve your odds of staying at a lower, healthier weight for many years to come.

The question is, what can you do to avoid the mistakes that keep many of America’s 45 million dieters at their current weight year in, year out?

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    Read on to get 7 proven ways to lose weight so you can keep it off for good.

    1. Avoiding Crash Dieting

    Losing weight fast seems like a good idea. Part of the appeal is that once you’re slim, you can go back to indulging in the same foods and behaviors you had before.

    Unfortunately, Stanford University’s Wellsphere website reveals that 95% of the people who succeed in losing weight on a fast diet bounce right back.

    That’s why the number one rule of effective weight loss is having a long-term plan, not a quick-fix strategy.

    2. Consuming Enough Protein to Store Less Fat

    A study found that people eating low-protein diets stored 95% of excess calories as fat. Those on normal and high-protein diets stored just 55% of their extra calories as fat. That’s a whopping 40% difference.

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    In the study, participants getting as little as 15-25% of their calories from protein enjoyed that benefit. So if you want to lose weight and gain it back less slowly, cut down on carbs and fats and eat more protein.

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      3. Eating Breakfast

      It’s long been common knowledge that a big breakfast is key to losing weight — but now, we’ve got research to confirm it.

      The National Weight Loss Control Registry found a strong link between eating breakfast and keeping weight off. In a study where the average subject lost 32 kg, 78% of respondents reported having a healthy meal in the morning.

      So, do like your mom taught you and eat your breakfast as soon as you get up in the morning!

      4. Drinking Vinegar

      This 2009 Japanese study found that consuming vinegar daily reduced waist circumference, body fat levels, and Body Mass Index (BMI). This might seem odd, but it is backed by research, and so might be worth a try. Just make sure you don’t drink so much vinegar you get acid reflux!

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      5. Keeping a Food Journal

      Keeping a food diary can as much as double your fat loss, according to the Kaiser Permanente’s Center for Health Research, so journaling what you eat is another proven way to lose weight.

      If that sounds daunting, you may also want to plan what you eat ahead using the detailed instructions in this article. 

      6. Surgery

      If you or someone you know is suffering from obesity, Type 2 Diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, or other life-threatening diseases, it may be time to think about gastric bypass and lap band surgery.

      These methods, which reduce the amount of food you can consume, have been proven to provide long-term weight loss in many cases.

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      SONY DSC

        If you’re not ready to commit to surgery, you may do well with less invasive alternatives like the ReShape system, in which two saline-filled balloons are temporarily placed in your stomach for up to 6 months.

        A randomized study of 326 ReShape patients found that they lost an average of 14.3 pounds over 6 months; less than gastric bypass patients, but still impressive.

        7. Intermittent Fasting

        Dr. John Berardi, featured in Fast Company’s 2015 Most Innovative Companies, recommends intermittent fasting: a “diet” where you take long, periodic breaks between meals. If you’re the kind of person that finds it easy to go without food for extended periods of time, this might be the smartest strategy for you.

        Featured photo credit: PicJumbo via picjumbo.com

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        Published on March 8, 2019

        How Adding Flow Yoga to Your Workout Routine Boosts Your Gains

        How Adding Flow Yoga to Your Workout Routine Boosts Your Gains

        When we fall into a workout routine, our moves become automatic, and the body quickly adapts. This is called muscle memory.[1] While teaching your body how to properly execute squats, push-ups, or crunches is a benefit, overly relying on these moves to consistently grow gains won’t yield the kind of results you want. That’s because the muscles work in the same way every time.

        Simply put, they’re not being “surprised,” so they get lazy.

        Supplementing your routine with flow yoga is one way of surprising your muscles, especially if you are new to the yoga practice and have never tried the postures. It’s like taking a new road home when you drive, deviating from your usual route. Science has found that by doing so, you’re creating new neuropathways in your brain.[2] The same is done in your muscles when you try a new routine.

        How is this done? Let’s dive right into it.

        How Flow Yoga Boost Your Gains in Your Workout Routine

        Think about your current workouts:

        If you lift weights, you rely on external tools to engage your various muscle groups. Over time, your shoulders, legs, or biceps will come to expect the weighted plates or dumbbells, in the repetitive sequences that you remember.

        In flow yoga, we use the body as the weight. Add gravity and hundreds of different postures and combinations, and you have a workout that uses the same muscle groups, but in many different ways.

        A pose such as plank is a full-body workout, with every muscle engaged to keep the body in one long line. While it’s a stationary pose, it requires muscle control and activation, with no room for passivity.

          A Flow sequence, on the other hand, requires your muscle to switch from one pose to another swiftly, providing you with a more balanced and wholesome use of your major muscle groups.

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          Not only do these poses and routines re-energize the body in a refreshing way, they also allow you to learn something new, which is powerful for the mind.

          Bottom line? Complementing your exercise regimen with flow yoga is like hitting the shuffle button on your workouts, using your muscles in ways that “surprise” them, which in turn boost their growth and performance.

          Energizing Flow Yoga with Added Cardio

          Flow yoga is also known as “Vinyasa.”[3] In Sanskrit – the sacred language of the practice and its Indian roots – Vinyasa is roughly translated to “one breath, one movement.”

          This guideline, first and foremost, enhances your breathing, and teaches you how to go from our typical shallow, chest-only breathing, to a more deeper, belly-chest breath that uses the entire lung system.

          Not only is this beneficial for a myriad of healthcare reasons (combat allergies, eliminate toxins, reduce stress, ease anxiety), it also greatly impacts our muscles,[4] and therefore our workout.

          Flooding your muscles with rich oxygen will only keep them healthy, while the cardio benefit will get you warmed up to take on the more challenging postures in a flow yoga class. This prevents injuries and cramping.

          The best example of energizing cardio in flow yoga is the Sun Salutation sequence. Each pose is completed on an inhale or an exhale, until the sequence is finished. One full sequence may be repeated several times, encouraging you to take fuller and deeper breaths. The cycles warm up and loosen the body and prepare the muscles for stationary poses that are held longer.

          Here’s how to do a Sun Salutation Flow:

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          Due to the Sun Salutations, the muscles are not thrown into a challenging workout, but rather primed and prepared with energizing breath.

          Why is this important, you ask? Because happy muscles are warmed-up muscles.

          The Best Thing About Flow Yoga

          The best thing about practicing flow yoga? You’re building strength and flexibility.

          Strength and flexibility are like the Mecca of a wholesome workout routine. Before we get into why this is important, let’s break these two down individually to see how they stand up on their own:

          Meet Strong Stan

          Strong Stan is at the gym, doing bicep curls with massive dumbbells. His muscles have peaked in size, and he proudly displays them.

          While he loves to lift weights, Strong Stan often skips stretching or warm-ups. He just doesn’t see how that could help him continue his muscle gains, so he jumps right into a heavy workout.

          While it’s not evident to a passerby, Stan’s muscles are hurting. Without sufficient flexibility or deliberate stretching, Stan’s muscles are shortening and getting tighter. This eventually leads to joint injuries,[5] because un-stretched muscles have limited range of motion.

          Big muscles are a sure indicator of strength, but here’s the kicker – choosing not to prioritize flexibility will keep them inherently at risk.

          Meet Flexible Fiona

          Flexible Fiona is in a flow yoga class, easing herself into a backbend.[6] She effortlessly gets into the pose, and “hangs” out there for a few breaths while the teacher cues the class.

          Even though the teacher instructs the students to engage their glutes and be mindful that this is an active pose, Flexible Fiona opts otherwise, and relaxes into the posture by sacrificing the strength she ought to be building.

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          To many in the class, Fiona’s execution of the backbend would be a success – maybe even something to envy. However, what Fiona doesn’t realize is that her excessive flexibility is actually a detriment to her joints.[7]

          Flexibility has been defined as the “absolute range of motion” by Tony Gummerson, Martial Arts instructor. For people who are naturally flexible, that line of absolute range is often blurry and, in practice, overlooked.

          It’s very easy for Fiona to go above and beyond her range of motion, since her flexibility parameters are much wider than what Strong Stan may experience in a similar pose.

          Because she doesn’t feel the stretch in the same degree of motion as other students in class, Fiona has to push the envelope of her flexibility. This puts too much pressure on the joints that are already overworked, and it overstretches the muscles that are now prone to tearing.

          Your goal is to create muscle and joint balance and wholeness.

          What Strong Stan and Flexible Fiona have in common is that they’re both missing vital pieces of muscle awareness.

          In Stan’s case, heavy and tight muscles crave flexibility. Without it, not only would Stan hit a plateau in his gains because of a sure injury, but he would miss out on having the lean and toned muscles that we all want to have.

          In Fiona’s case, her overstretched muscles are not getting a workout at all. Rather, her excessive flexibility is resting on her joints, which leads to definite injury.

          So what can you do? It’s quite simple.

          You have to give your muscles the opposite of what they’re used to.

          If you’re a Stan and hate stretching, focusing on your flexibility is key. You will lengthen your tight muscles, and you’ll create new muscle memory by practicing routines that are new to you and your muscle groups.

          If you’re a Fiona and hate strengthening, focusing on this priority is vital. Your muscles are used to being passive as you stretch, so shaking up the usual and putting them to work will not only keep you injury-free, but that much closer to the muscle gains you’ve been looking for.

          Fortunately, flow yoga is the whole package, and can be the one-stop-shop for both Stan and Fiona.

            Final Thoughts

            If you’re serious about using flow yoga to supplement your workout routine to boost gains, sign up for a class at your local gym or yoga studio. There are a number of styles of yoga to try, but as we’ve discussed in this article, the Vinyasa style is your best bet to complement a moderate exercise regimen.

            Many studios offer beginner-style Vinyasa classes, where the instructor will explain the basics, and break down the sequences in a pace that is suitable for entry-level students. From here, the student can build upon their practice, and opt for more challenging, fast-paced classes, such as Power Flow or Ashtanga.

            Working out is a lesson in teaching your muscles. The gains that we grow are the result of that experience, and it all comes down to conditioning our body in a way that is healthy, efficient, and balanced.

            With a practice like flow yoga, we can offer supplemental training to our current regimen that will work our muscles in ways that are new, refreshing, and “surprising.” This method will keep our muscles toned and lean, as long as we prioritize the balance between strength and flexibility to ensure that we’re meeting both of these needs. Our muscle gains and body health depend on it.

            More Resources About Yoga and Fitness

            Featured photo credit: Edit Sztazics via unsplash.com

            Reference

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