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4 Ways to Have Fun Losing Weight

4 Ways to Have Fun Losing Weight

According to a Gallup poll from last year, almost a third of Americans are trying to lose weight. Unfortunately, most people have a very hard time following through. One of the biggest reasons is that weight loss simply isn’t much fun.

If you need a little more motivation to stick to your weight loss plan, you should find a more enjoyable approach. Here are some fun ways that can help you lose weight.

1. Create a Bootcamp Club

Many people feel that working out is depressing. One of the biggest reasons they don’t like it is that it is too isolating.

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It is easier to stay motivated if you work out with a few friends. There is nothing more fun than bonding with a friend during a jog or doing squats. However, you still need to keep yourself focused. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Make sure your friends aren’t too out of shape. Otherwise, they may hold you back.
  • Set some ground rules. You don’t want to work out with someone that is going to chat the entire time.
  • Don’t be too reliant on your friends. If they can’t make it one week, you should plan on working out without them.

Ask your friends if they are interested in joining you for a workout group. If they aren’t interested or are too busy, you can reach out to a few strangers on Meetup.com, Exercisefriends.com, Poundfit.com or any other similar site.

2. Create a Cool Playlist

Everyone loves listening to their favorite songs. Listening to music can help you get through your exercise routines. It provides a rush of endorphins that dull the pain and give you the extra drive you need.

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What are some great songs to listen to? Women’s Health Magazine created some great exercise playlists you may want to check out. They suggest listening to:

  • Justin Timberlake’s “Cry Me a River”, “Like I Love You” and “Sexy Back”
  • Britney Spears’ “Til the World Ends”, “Me Against the Music” and “Toxic”

Of course, you don’t have to listen to Justin Timberlake or Britney Spears. You may have your own favorite songs that you want to listen to.

Just make sure that you listen to music that gets you excited. If it is too soothing, it may discourage you from giving it your 100%.

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3. Reward Yourself for Meeting Milestones

We all need a little positive reinforcement sometimes. Rewarding yourself can give you the motivation you need to push yourself to your limits. Of course, you don’t want to reward yourself with junk food, so you should find something that doesn’t ruin your goals.

“Often times I see my patients reward a weight loss by indulging in foods they know aren’t the best for their goals. Instead, I suggest using things like manicures, SoulCycle classes and workout gear as a reward for all their hard work,”((http://www.eatthis.com/weight-loss-diet-resolutions))says Leah Kaufman, a dietitian at NYU Langone Medical Center.

4. Find More Interesting Ways to Work Out

Most people try to lose weight by running. There is nothing wrong with that if you enjoy running three to four days a week, but there are other ways that you can get exercise instead. Here are some tips to consider:

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  • Try kickboxing. If you are a more competitive person, you may really like it.
  • Try belly dancing. Belly dancing is tough, but it is fun.
  • Take country or swing dancing lessons. You won’t burn quite as many calories, but it is a lot of fun. You also get to meet people of the opposite sex, so it can be great if you are single.
  • Join a pickup league. Many towns have pickup leagues for people that like playing softball, tennis, basketball and a lot of other sports.

There are hundreds of ways to lose weight. Find some that you enjoy.

Conclusion

Losing weight doesn’t have to be boring. There are loads of ways to have fun while getting a workout, so you don’t have an excuse for not being motivated!

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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Ryan Kh

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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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