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3 Diet Hacks to Help You Lose 10 Pounds in 21 Days

3 Diet Hacks to Help You Lose 10 Pounds in 21 Days


    Weight loss doesn’t have to be a slow process that takes months on end of bland foods and long, boring workouts. You can safely lose a significant amount of weight in less than a month. This article shows you how. Following the tips in this article will help you lose 10 (or more) pounds in just 21 days. I’m not going to recommend a “miracle” nutritional supplement, expensive workout equipment, or hokey gimmick either. Just 3 things that work, quickly.

    The weight loss tips in this article are supported by scientific research and don’t require you to buy anything, starve yourself, or do anything that’s dangerous or downright silly. All you have to do is make a few changes to the way you exercise and eat.

    1. Stop Doing Hours of Slow, Boring Cardio

    Forget about spending hours every day on the treadmill to burn calories. Doing this doesn’t work. Walking at a moderate (brisk) pace will only burn about 295 calories an hour. Do this every day for a week and you won’t lose a pound. The better way to exercise for weight and fat loss is to do interval style resistance training workouts .

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    Also referred to as circuit training, this style of workout burns twice as many calories. Studies also show that doing some type of resistance training (calisthenics, kettlebells, weights, etc.) is also superior to cardio for burning off fat, especially abdominal fat which hurts your health and hides your 6 pack.

    When you workout this way your body will continue to burn calories from your stored body fat for up to 36 hours post-workout. This means you’ll continue to lose weight after your workout is done. These workouts will help you build muscle too which will have you looking better when the weight you want to lose is off.

    Circuit style workouts are easy to perform. You can do them barbells, dumbbells, and machines at your gym. One of the best way is to do bodyweight workouts. This is because they can be done anywhere, are really effective, and don’t require any equipment.

    When you train this way the key is to choose exercises that train several muscle groups (squats, push ups, pull ups, shoulder presses, etc.). This will make the workout more challenging and burn more calories. Select 4-5 exercises so ensure all of your major muscle groups are being trained. This can include: squats (legs), push ups (chest/shoulders/arms), pull ups (back/biceps), and military press (shoulders).

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    You’ll perform each exercise one after the other with no rest between sets. Only rest after you’ve performed the last exercise of the circuit. Rest as little as possible between circuits. Do 8-10 reps per set and repeat 3-5 times every workout.

    Below is a sample bodyweight exercise circuit training workout for fat loss.

    1. Squats
    2. Push Ups
    3. Burpees
    4. Pull Ups

    Here’s a circuit workout that can be done with a dumbbell or kettlebell.

    1. Two Handed Swings
    2. Standing Shoulder Press
    3. Squats
    4. 1 Arm Rows

    If you are just getting started or back into a workout routine give yourself a chance to get used to the intensity of these workouts. Rest as long as you have to between circuits and do as many reps as you can with 10 per exercise being your goal. Stick to it and you’ll be doing these workouts like a pro.

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    2. Cut the Carbs

    This is probably the most important tip to follow. It alone can help you lose 10 or more pounds in 21 days. Eating a low carbohydrate diet turns on the fat loss switch in your body and by getting it to use your stored body fat as energy. You’ll also lose excess water weight too. Best of all you don’t have to obsess over calories or reading labels.

    When I write cut the carbs I don’t mean that you have to avoid them entirely. You simply need to limit certain types. Once you lose the weight you can even eat them albeit in limited quantities.

    The foods you need to really limit for the next 21 days include processed carbohydrates (bread, cookies, pasta, rice) and simple sugars (candy, fruit juice, and soda). You can pretty much each all of the vegetables you like. Fruits in small amounts are okay too. All in all, your daily carbohydrate quota should not exceed 75 grams. Don’t worry about counting carbohydrates excessively or reading the label for every food you eat. Instead follow this simple tip, if it’s white or comes in a bag or box don’t eat it and you’re most likely eating the right amount. If you do want to count carbohydrates, use one of the many websites or apps that does the counting for you. I recommend reading this Lifehack article for more great tips to eliminate grains from your diet.

    In addition to limiting certain types of carbohydrates, the next thing you need to make sure of is that you eat plenty of protein and healthy fats. High protein foods you should eat at every meal include eggs, fish, pork, and red meat. You do not have to count grams of protein either. Just make sure the protein you eat is about the size of the palm of your hand at every meal and you’ll be on track to get enough every day. Last but not least, eat plenty of fat at every meal. You’ll stay full longer between meals. Fat also makes your food taste better too. Limit corn and other vegetable oils and instead make sure you get your fat from avocados, coconut, and olive oil. Almonds and macadamia nuts are also good sources of healthy fats.

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    3. Ditch Diet Soda and Drink Lemon Water Instead

    I know, diet sodas don’t have calories and taste good. The way their bubbles make your mouth tingle feels great too. Unfortunately, they can kill your weight loss progress. Studies show that drinking diet soda can actually make you eat more and gain weight. Scientists believe this is because the artificial sweeteners in these drinks send signals to your brain that make you want to eat, even if you’re not hungry.

    Instead of drinking diet soda I suggest you drink cold lemon water. Doing so has many benefits. You’ll feel full longer between meals and because of the lemon juice in the water you’re body will digest food slower and can even help keep your energy levels stable. One study shows drinking cold water can help you burn more calories too.

    Drinking your water before you eat may also help you eat less at every meal.

    Conclusion

    Make these 3 tips part of your life for 21 days and you’ll easily lose 10 pounds. More important, they will become habits that you follow for the days, weeks, and months to follow. Then you’ll really reap their benefits that go beyond weight loss to healthier, stronger, more energetic you!

    Sources: (1) Fowler SP, Williams K, Resendez RG, Hunt KJ, Hazuda HP, Stern MP. Fueling the obesity epidemic? Artificially sweetened beverage use and long-term weight gain. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2008 Aug;16(8):1894-900. (2) Ostman E, Granfeldt Y, Persson L, Björck I. Vinegar supplementation lowers glucose and insulin responses and increases satiety after a bread meal in healthy subjects. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2005 Sep;59(9):983-8.

    (Photo credit: Diet via Shutterstock)

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    Last Updated on August 15, 2018

    7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

    7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

    Bodyweight exercises are gaining ground in the fitness world due to the practicality and simplicity of getting in shape using your own body weight. Planks are one form of bodyweight exercises that will never go out of fashion. Planks are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Why? Because they require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.

    Video Summary

    Why is it important to train up our core strength?

    There are numerous sites and blogs which detail ways to build your core muscles or core strength. Often though, these sites neglect to explain what your core muscles actually are, and why building them is important.

    This is quite surprising, as core muscles are quite easy to explain. Your core muscles are a series of muscles in your midsection, and are used in most forms of movement. Though they aren’t housed in your arms or legs, your core muscles can help transfer force from one limb to another, or are used in addition to muscles in your arms or legs to increase their effectiveness. As such a strong core will make a big improvement on your ability to move and exercise further.

    Also they are great for helping other muscles in your midsection such as your abdominal muscles. Your abdominal muscles are important for supporting your back and spinal column, and as such are important aids in preventing injuries. However for them to be most effective you need to spend a lot of time developing your core muscles.

    In short, planking exercises can make a huge improvement in your muscles down your whole body. Making them a hugely effective exercise to perform.

    One Exercise, multiple benefits

    There are few forms of exercise as effective at building your core as planking exercises. However, planking exercises benefit far more than just your core strength.

    By holding yourself in the position for a planking exercise, you’ll notice that your biceps, neck, and shoulder muscles are also being tested and strained. This this encouraging their buildup and development. This is great news if you like to do press ups, developed shoulder muscles will have a big impact on your press up performance.

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    When planking, you are holding yourself up through your arms and biceps and so by holding a planking position, your arm muscles are being toned and developed. Making planking a great alternative exercise to other forms of bicep developing exercises.

    Moving down your midsection, successful plank exercises actually develop the muscles in your butt! These muscles tend to be ignored by a lot of exercises, so this is another great benefit of plank exercises.

    In much the same way as you develop your biceps and arm muscles, holding the planking position helps develop the muscles in your thighs too.

    What is even better is that planking exercises don’t take much time at all. In fact you should probably only spend about ten minutes max per day in the planking exercise.

    What will happen when you start doing planks every day

      1. You’ll improve core definition and performance: 

      Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles exactly because they engage all major core muscle groups including the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominusthe external oblique muscle, and the glutes. The importance of strengthening each muscle group cannot be underestimated either, for all of these groups serve their own purpose. If you strengthen these muscle groups you will notice:

      • Transverse abdominis: increased ability to lift heavier weights.
      • Rectus adbominis: improved sports performance, particularly with jumping. This muscle group is also responsible for giving you the renowned six pack look.
      • Oblique muscles: improved capacity for stable side-bending and waist-twisting
      • Glutes: a supported back and a strong, shapely booty.

      2. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column

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        Doing planks is a type of exercise that allow you to build muscle while also making sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your spine or hips. According to the American Council on Exercise, doing planks regularly not only significantly reduces back pain but it also strengthens your muscles and ensures a strong support for your entire back, especially in the areas around your upper back.

        Check out this article if you would like to find out about how doing planks on different surfaces can impact the effectiveness of this exercise in strengthening your core.

        3. You’ll experience an increased boost to your overall metabolism

          Planking is an excellent way of challenging your entire body because doing them every day will burn more calories than other traditional abdominal exercises, such as crunches or sit-ups. The muscles you strengthen by doing this exercise on a day-to-day basis will ensure that you burn more energy even when sedentary. This is especially important if you are spending the majority of your day sitting in front of a computer. Also, making it a daily 10- to 1 minute home exercise before or after work will not only provide an enhanced metabolic rate but it will also ensure that that metabolic rate remains high all day long, (yes, even while you are asleep).

          4. You’ll significantly improve your posture

            Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture. This is great news as a strong posture brings with it a huge number of fantastic benefits .

            A good posture keeps your bones and joins in the correct alignment which means both your bones and joints will be better maintained and more healthy, but also means the overall effectiveness of your muscles will be improved.

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            A good posture will ensure your back or spine is in the correct position and so you will suffer less back pain.

            On top of everything, someone with good posture looks better, healthier, and more confident.

            5. You’ll improve overall balance

              Have you ever felt that when you tried standing on one leg, you couldn’t stand up straight for more than a couple of seconds? It’s not because you were drunk- unless you happened to be at the time!-  but rather, it’s because your abdominal muscles weren’t strong enough to give you the balance you needed. Through improving your balance by doing side planks and planks with extensions you will boost your performance in every kind of sporting activity.

              6. You’ll become more flexible than ever before

                Flexibility is a key benefit of doing planks regularly, for this form of exercise expands and stretches all your posterior muscle groups – shouldersshoulder blades, and collarbone – while also stretching your hamstrings, arches of your feet, and toes. With a side plank added in to the mix, you can also work on your oblique muscles. This will provide you with further benefits when it comes to hyper-extending your toes, a movement that is crucial for supporting your body’s weight.

                7. You’ll witness mental benefits

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                  Plank exercises have a particular effect on our nerves, making them an excellent means of improving overall mood. How? Well, they stretch out muscle groups that contribute to stress and tension in the body. Just think about it: you are sitting in your chair, at home or at work, all day long; your thigh muscles get tight, your legs get heavy due to being bent for several hours; and tension develops in your shoulders due to being forced to slump forward all day. These are all circumstances that put too stress on the muscles and nerves. The good news is that planks not only calm your brain, but they can also treat anxiety and symptoms of depression– but only if you make it part of your daily routine.

                  How to hold a plank position

                  1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
                  2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
                  3. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
                  4. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
                  5. Hold the position for as long as you can.
                  6. Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.
                  7. When your form begins to suffer, pull the plug. You’re only benefiting from the plank by actually doing the plank.

                  Watch the video if you have any doubt!

                  Here is a great infographic that shows the best plank variation exercises to evenly target all abdominal muscle groups:

                    How to improve your plank time gradually

                    1. Start with the easier variation if needed. You can start with a bent-knee plank if you can’t perform a regular plank yet. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to these tougher variations.
                    2. Practise every day. Space your planking exercise throughout the day and do 3-4 times every day. Try to hold the position 10 seconds longer each time.
                    3. Perform other body-weight exercises at the same time. Push-up and squat will improve your core strength too.

                    Are you ready to devote 5-10 minutes of your day, every day, to stay fit, healthy and, most importantly, strong as a bull? Then jump in and make doing plank exercises a part of your life.

                    Who Should Be Cautious Doing The Plank?

                    You need to be cautious doing Planking exercises if any of these risks apply to you:

                    • Prolapse
                    • After prolapse surgery
                    • Pelvic pain conditions
                    • Weak or poorly functioning pelvic floor muscles
                    • Previous childbirth
                    • Overweight

                    Choose an alternative pelvic floor abdominal exercise or consult your doctor before performing plank regularly.

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