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7 Quick Ways to Lose Weight Before Summer

7 Quick Ways to Lose Weight Before Summer

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    It’s that time of year again when everyone wants to lose a few pounds, to get ready for summer and no doubt there will be an array of diets in the media. Many of these diets are unrealistic for the average individual due to not being able to afford countless ingredients, having the time to make meals that require a a lot of prep is difficult, or the diets that restrict the intake of food can be hard to maintain. Not only are they unrealistic, but they’re incredibly bad for you. If you do manage to lose weight on them it’s only a matter of time before you put it back on.

    What’s my take on quick ways to lose weight for summer? It’s the right way, and by that I mean it’s the healthy way.

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    There are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to weight loss, as many people take the approach of less food and huge amounts of cardio. This couldn’t be more wrong. The main contributor to weight loss is in your food. Quite possibly the reason you’re not losing any weight is that you’re not eating enough. You should aim to have three main meals, three snacks and eight glasses of water each day. You’re made up of roughly 70% water, so it is essential to try and drink at least eight cups a day. It will help flush out toxins, is great for your skin and your heart, boosts your energy levels, and helps aid digestion. So drink up!

    While cardio is important for weight loss, it’s a combination of strength work and cardio that have the most impact on weight when it comes to exercise. When you strengthen and build your muscles your body will burn off more calories while you’re doing nothing, as it increases your metabolism. Now I know a lot of women don’t like to do a lot of strength training because they don’t want to get “bulky” but you need not worry about that. Women’s muscles are completely different than men’s and are naturally smaller, so you’ll feel stronger be more toned and have less fat. Why would you not want that?

    Exercise should be enjoyable. It should be fun and something you look forward to. If you don’t like the gym or don’t have a huge amount of time spare to attend classes, there are plenty of at home workouts available online that don’t require equipment or take up too much of your day. Check out this great beginner’s guide to at home workouts:

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      If you can afford a gym membership, try out a variety of classes and see which ones you like best. There are all kinds of classes out there, from beginners to advanced, from Zumba to Combat. If you can get a friend or family member to go with you, that will make it even more enjoyable!

      It goes without saying that food is by far one of the hardest things to have full control over thanks to the un-ending amount of temptation and media fixations. There are so many labels and articles saying to eat something one week and then next week it says to avoid it like the plague. It’s confusing right?

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      A great way to start adjusting to healthy eating is to not go mad all at once. It’s the gradual approach that works best. As opposed to eliminating foods, try substituting food instead. When it comes to rice and pasta, opt for the brown versions, as they’re higher in fiber and generally a whole lot better for you. The same goes for bread–swap the white bread for some whole meal; it tastes so much better with less calories! You can also swap those white potatoes for sweet potatoes. Add vegetables to your meals, try some salads, try to eat fruit in between your meals to stop snacking on food that aren’t helping your waistline!

      If you eat properly throughout your day, ensuring you eat decent-sized meals that are full of nutrients and vitamins and have healthy snacks you’ll be less like to go on a late night food bender. After dinner have a snack prepared to eat later, so you’re not tempted to just grab a load of biscuits or that last slice of cake. It’s perfectly fine to have something sweet during the day and have a cheat meal every now and again–the key is moderation!

      Emotional eating is becoming increasingly more popular due to the stressful nature of our lifestyles. Exercise will help reduce stress, and eating healthier will no doubt make you feel better, but we all still have those days when we just feel down and don’t want to do anything but eat a tub of ice cream, devour a cake, or order a deep-dish pizza and watch our favourite movies. The key to dealing with emotional eating is to consciously take control of the situation. When you’re just about to delve into whatever you’ve chosen, walk away and run a bath, paint your nails, or simply step outside, take a few deep breaths and ask yourself if you really want to eat it.

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      If you really struggle with controlling you’re eating I would advise you to keep a food log. Record everything you’ve consumed each day and at the end of every day write how this made you feel, whether it was a good day or a bad day so when you feel like eating because of your emotions you can read it and write down what it is you want to eat and why. Chances are that once you’ve walked away and taken control, you’ll realize you didn’t actually want it in the first place.

      Also ensure that you’re getting enough sleep. You should be aiming to get between 7-8 hours per night. This will help also help reduce stress and make you feel more energized and refreshed during the day. Those who tend to have less or worse quality of sleep find it more difficult to concentrate and do simple day to day tasks. This has a negative impact on how they feel and can lead to emotional eating habits. Get into a routine, with exercise, the times you eat, go to bed at the same time, wake up at the same time, and try to avoid using your phone while in bed. You’ll soon develop a healthy sleeping pattern and have a good night sleep every night!

      So, here’s a summary of all that:

      • You don’t have to eat less, you just have to eat right.
      • Enjoy your exercise, aim to combine strength with cardio three times a week for 30-60 minutes.
      • Eat three meals a day and snack in between.
      • Water is your new best friend. Drink it!
      • Avoid late-night binging.
      • Take control of emotional eating.
      • Get at least 7-8 hours sleep per night.

      Follow these 7 simple steps and you’ll have that summer body you’ve always desired. By doing it this way you’ll inevitably change your lifestyle for the better and reap a number health benefits that come from eating right and exercising, what you’ll look like is just a bonus! And don’t forget to have fun!

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      Last Updated on January 17, 2019

      8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

      8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

      In life, we all need to be conscientious of what we are doing. You don’t need to live a life of stress if you don’t want to. You can achieve peace and happiness in life by carefully building mindfulness exercises into your life’s routine.

      Exercising mindfulness isn’t rocket science and as importantly, you can do it. It will, however, take a few tries to get into the groove of things but once you get it, it is like riding a bike, you will never lose it.

      Trust me. It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. In this article, I will share with you 8 mindfulness exercises that will help you to boost your energy, vitality and live a more peaceful and happier life.

      Why Is It Hard to Live A Peaceful And Happy Life?

      Our Habitat Has Become Too Technological

      The world has accepted the idea that technology is often the cure for all evil. We have accepted, as a society, that everything technological will make us live a better life without fully investigating the many side effects that modernity brings.

      There are a number of technological side effects that have a tremendous impact on your life that the media rarely tells you about.[1] Some of them include self-harm, economic inequality, having less sex, and even suicide. The global community is becoming less happy because of technology.

      How can anybody live a peaceful and happy life when they are depressed? Technology advancements, ladies and gents, is a major reason for why we are living a poor life because it has infiltrated our lives too much.

      According to my research, Americans spend an average of 8 hours a day looking at the computer screen — The average screen time spent on smartphones alone is about 20 hours per week. That’s a lot! No wonder why living a happy and peaceful life is so difficult these days.

      Too Many People Don’t Want to Unplug

      Americans check their phones an average of 80 times during vacation.[2] Some admit to checking their smartphones 300 times every single day. In countries like Brazil, India and China, the situation is no different.

      The reality is that people are constantly plugged into technological devices and this behavior is literally making people all over the globe fight an inner war with themselves, which consequently makes them very sad. As we know, war is the enemy of peace which won’t make anybody happy.

      Listen carefully:

      We have a global anxiety epidemic because people don’t want to unplug from their smartphones and most people aren’t doing anything to fix it. It is a sad state of affairs but very real. This obsession with technology is turning us into perishable robots who live terrible lives.

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      The era of anxiety is here to stay. There is little doubt about it. We can, however, fight back with the best remedy of all — We call it mindfulness!

      Thank God there is an antidote to this whole technological madness. Without further ado, let’s go straight to the mindful exercises.

      8 Mindfulness Exercises to Start Practicing

      There are tons of mindfulness exercises available for you to engage with out there.[3] In the paragraphs below, I will include the best ones I’ve personally tried or have seen my close friends and family members try.

      Are you ready for it? Let’s go!

      1. Pray Daily

      You should pray on a daily basis. Why is that you may ask — Well, because science has told us to do so.

      When people pray, they feel peaceful, almost eliminating anxiety. Worries become secondary, and often gives people energy and hope to cope with the difficulties of life.

      Prayer can make you more confident and focused. Prayer also helps you with self-control, helps to control pain, and can protect you against illnesses and disorders like cancer and high blood pressure. At least, this is what researchers from Harvard Medical School have said.[4]

      Pray. You won’t regret it.[5]

      2. Pay Attention to Your Inner Thoughts

      A lot of people allow themselves to be influenced by their negative thoughts. Be different and resist believing in them. It is a bad habit that can lead to unhappiness.

      By the way, if you do feel this way, chances are high that somebody other than you put these thoughts into your head.

      Here is my secret to combat this cancer — look at things objectively. I bet that if you look at things as they are, you will realize that most if not all of your negative thoughts are only inside of your head.

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      If you pay close attention, you will quickly realize that these voices aren’t worth your time. Believe me — Ignoring them and looking at things with objectivity is often the best course of action.

      This article can guide you to beat negative thoughts:

      How to Stop Automatic Negative Thoughts When You’re Overwhelmed

      3. Smile Often

      Smiling will slow down your heart. It will also relax your body because when you smile, your body releases endorphins which in itself has a number of positive benefits for you as a person.

      Smile often! You may want to smile early in the morning, during the day, and late in the evening. It is amazing what happens to you when you decide to smile instead of being grumpy.

      Surrender your problems to a nice smile. You will notice two things. First, most people just don’t which makes them live a miserable life. Second, if you decide to smile often, you will eventually smile unconsciously which is the ideal.

      The moment that you smile unconsciously, you then know that you are truly happy.

      4. Organize Your Working Desk

      A messy desk will make you less productive and can agitate and overstimulate you. You don’t want that.

      When you clear your desk, you engage in deep inner-thinking and your systematic decision making ends up becoming therapeutic.

      Most people realize that they are most creative when their creative space is clean and organized. The former often makes people more aware of what they are doing which lends to less stress and more productivity.

      Organizing your desk will also make you more energetic and focused because order often decreases chaos which is a condition that often slows down daily progress.

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      5. Celebrate Your Friend’s Victories

      I love this mindful exercise. One of the best ways to live a happy and peaceful life is to celebrate the victories of others. When you do that, you automatically make your friends in a better mood which makes you in a better mood, as well.

      Happiness is contagious! We might as well celebrate others as much as we can. If you find out that your peer has won an award, celebrate with him! If your friend is the recipient of a local charity award, celebrate with her!

      What is also awesome is that when you celebrate with others, they often celebrate with you in return. This, ladies and gentleman, will make you feel fantastic. You can’t go wrong with this one, period.

      6. Listen to Your Spouse/Partner

      God put someone in your life for a reason. You might as well listen to him or her.

      I listen to my wife everyday. In fact, I often ask the following question to her, “Amanda, what are your thoughts about…” or “What am I missing about…” It is shocking what I hear back from her. Without her having much context and perspective, by the art of observation in my own nonverbal behavior and the behavior of others, she accurately gives me incredible insights which helps me out with living my life to the fullest.

      I’m a firm believer that spouses are supposed to engage in interpersonal communication every day. I most definitely do and will continue doing it. You should do the same.

      7. Give Yourself a Break from Technology

      You can’t be in total equilibrium if your computerized devices control your life. You must get away from technology on a daily basis.[6]

      How do you do that? This is my formula:

      First, take this smartphone control test. It is only ten questions but this test will place you somewhere in the human robot cycle continuum.

      If your score is between 25-30, take a break from the computer (or smartphone, pad, laptop/desktop) every twenty minutes and stop being on a computerized device after 8:00pm.

      If you score between 30-35, still take a break every 20 minutes but stop being on these devices at 5:00pm.

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      If you score more than 35, you need to take action immediately.

      Limit computer use as much as possible throughout the day. Give yourself as many breaks from the computer as possible. Are you ready for the challenge?

      8. Go Exercise

      Go exercise at least three times a week. I don’t care if you need to workout early in the morning, late in the evening, on the weekends or during work days. Working out is absolutely imperative for you to live happy and peaceful life.

      The stresses of the modern world are too much for you to neglect this important mindfulness exercise. When you go to the gym, you burn calories, focus on activities one step at a time, your mind relaxes, anxiety decreases, you sweat and often think about topics unrelated to your work place among many other benefits.

      You must exercise at least three hours each week for optimum results. Why? Just take a look at all the benefits of regular exercising:

      12 Benefits of Regular Exercise You Should Know

      The Bottom Line

      It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. Now that our habitat has become too technological and many people just don’t want to unplug, engaging in daily prayer, celebrate your friends’ victories, and listening to your spouse are among the best ways to be mindful about what you are doing and how you are living.

      It is possible to live a happy and peaceful life. It only depends on you.

      Go exercise! Take a break from technology and invest in you! Life is too short for distractions.

      More Resources About Mindfulness

      Featured photo credit: Lesly Juarez via unsplash.com

      Reference

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