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10 Unconventional Weight Loss Tactics that Actually Work

10 Unconventional Weight Loss Tactics that Actually Work

If there’s one thing we can all agree on, it’s that eating tasty food can be one hell of an experience. It can improve your mood, give you the energy you need to go through another hard day at work, and it can even be an integral part of a romantic evening. Salty, fatty and sugary foods taste incredibly good to us, because these types of foods are rare finds in nature and are necessary for us to keep functioning properly. Over time we have developed mechanisms that keep us hooked on calorie dense foods, and our bodies tend to favor fat build up over muscle synthesis, because this enables us to survive long periods with minimal resources available.

Combine these natural traits with the fact that our modern lifestyle requires us to move and exert force very little in our daily lives and you have the perfect recipe for incredible fat gain and a number of health problems. Most of us can’t hope to push our bodies even close to the point our ancestors would push them in terms of physical exertion, as we don’t actually need to put in a lot of effort to survive, so we need every little bit of help we can get to keep ourselves fit.

With this in mind, here are some unusual weight loss tactics that don’t require too much energy, but actually add up and make a big difference in the grand scheme of thing.

1. Keep your home squeaky clean

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Cleaning

    Let’s face it, most people should be putting a little bit of extra effort into home maintenance. In order to keep your home impeccably clean you’ll need to vacuum at least every other day, wash the dishes a couple of times a day, do some dusting every day, as well as wash and iron your clothes regularly. All this requires quite a bit of effort, which can actually benefit you in several ways.

    When you clean the house you are actually spending time on your feet and applying a certain amount of force, which will help you burn a decent amount of calories. You are also less likely to think of food or have random snacks when you are preoccupied with a number of household chores.

    2. Don’t heat up or cool down your house too much

    The body burns calories to keep warm or to cool when the temperature of our surroundings is not optimal. If you keep reaching for the AC at the first sight of temperature change, e.g. turning on the heat drastically in winter or making your room chilly in the middle of the summer, you are actually doing yourself a disservice. All it takes to boost your weight loss is to focus on saving energy on heating, and by doing so you will make your body work on keeping the core temperature stable and will be able to burn some extra calories with no effort at all.

    3. Spice up your meals

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    Red Chilli

      It’s true that hot peppers can boost metabolism, although not to a great extent. The biggest weight loss benefit that you can get from spicy food is the fact that it makes us eat slower and less food overall. You can’t just shovel the food from the plate to your mouth quickly, as you will need to catch a breath and have a drink, which means you’ll be cutting some calories from your meal.

      4. Serve food on red-colored dishes

      Red color is associated with stopping and danger. If we serve food on red plates we are reminded that we are on a diet and our brain is subconsciously being told that we are engaging in something that isn’t right, making us less likely to overeat. Combine this with smaller plate sizes and you have a more effective way of portion control.

      5. Eat bite-sized snacks at work

      This one might seem counter-intuitive. As we all know, when you have a bunch of small snacks in front of you, it’s very easy to eat a whole lot without even realizing just how much we’ve eaten. However, a bag of bite-sized snacks can be easily shared with colleagues at work, so you end up eating less overall simply because others dip in and eat a good portion of the food. The trick is to force yourself to share it openly and offer it to others, treating the food as more of a snack that you can’t handle alone instead of a big meal.

      6. Go shopping with some friends

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      Shopping

        One of the biggest problems people have when losing weight is to find the time and motivation to engage in physical activities that help burn off calories. Well, a very low effort form of physical, like walking, done for a couple of hours can burn a decent amount of calories, so you don’t have to worry about feeling tired or sore. If you mask it with a fun activity, e.g. shopping, you can end up walking around shops, going up and down stairs, picking things up and carrying bags for 2-3 hours straight without even noticing it. Just don’t sit down for a burger or a cup of coffee with tons of cream and sugar afterwards – have a salad or some fruit as a snack.

        7. Work on your oral hygiene

        Brushing your teeth right after a meal signals that eating time is over and it leaves that strong minty taste in the mouth that makes everything taste weird. You won’t want to eat anything more for at least 10-20 minutes after brushing your teeth, i.e. until the minty taste subsides, and you can find something else you can occupy yourself with during this time. You’ll have clean teeth and you’ll avoid grabbing a few cheat snacks after a meal, so it’s a great habit to adopt.

        8. Read a book instead of watching TV

        Books

          We eat while watching TV, but if your hands are busy with a book and your mind engaged, you won’t get a chance to eat. A good book, particularly one you’ve bought recently is not something you’ll want to leave chocolate smudge marks on, and it requires a lot more focus than watching a movie and engages the brain more, so you’ll forget about the hunger and you’ll have your hands occupied.

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          9. Have traditional family meals

          Eating with a family means waiting for a big meal to get ready (the designated cook will have your head if you try to fill up on snacks before lunch) and you eat more slowly as you engage in conversation and try to look a bit classier. Now, some traditional family meals will have several courses and a whole lot of food and drink that you are expected to gorge on.

          However, unless it’s a big holiday dinner you can try something a bit different and prepare a tasty healthy meal for the whole family. This way you won’t be tempted to break your diet because your family is eating junk food in front of you, you’ll eat slower and avoid overeating, and you will learn some great recipes that make healthy food actually taste good.

          10. Dress up for lunch and dinner, even if you are eating alone at home

          Baby with bow tie

            Loose fitting sweatpants make you feel more relaxed and allow you to fill up more, while tighter-fitting jeans make it more formal and won’t allow you to eat as much as you would. When you feel more formal you will be more likely to follow the rules and do what is expected of you, i.e. follow your diet, and the same goes for having a tidy room. Also, you can’t really fill up too much when your stomach is pressing against the tight jeans and belt. You will also try to eat a bit slower and avoid putting too many condiments on the food, as you will want to avoid staining your good clothes.

            When all is said and done, we realize that going for healthier food options, controlling our caloric intake and striving to burn off more calories through physical activity are the things that will get you good results on a weight loss program. However, no one said that you can’t make things easier, more fun or even trick yourself into doing all the right things without making it seem like too much hard work. With these great weight loss tips, you will be able to stay motivated and shed some serious weight over time, so go ahead and try them out.

            More by this author

            Ivan Dimitrijevic

            Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

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            Last Updated on September 16, 2019

            How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

            How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

            You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

            We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

            The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

            Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

            1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

            Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

            For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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            • (1) Research
            • (2) Deciding the topic
            • (3) Creating the outline
            • (4) Drafting the content
            • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
            • (6) Revision
            • (7) etc.

            Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

            2. Change Your Environment

            Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

            One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

            3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

            Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

            Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

            My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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            Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

            4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

            If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

            Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

            I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

            5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

            I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

            Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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            As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

            6. Get a Buddy

            Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

            I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

            7. Tell Others About Your Goals

            This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

            For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

            8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

            What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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            9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

            If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

            Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

            10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

            Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

            Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

            11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

            At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

            Reality check:

            I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

            More About Procrastination

            Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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