Losing weight can be a pain, especially if you have a less-then-cooperative metabolism. If your body seems to hold on to calories the way a spendthrift clings to his wallet, the battle of the bulge can be particularly frustrating. What's worse, diet and exercise can actually make things worse by slowing an already handicapped metabolism. Be smart with weight loss by employing strategies that will fire up your body's calorie-burning furnace, making it easier to drop unwanted weight.
Engage in high intensity interval training (HIIT). This type of training employs repeated intervals consisting of a period of maximal effort followed by a brief recovery period. A great thing about HIIT is that it elevates your resting metabolism by increasing your excess post-exercise oxygen consumption, which keeps your body burning calories at an elevated rate for hours after your exercise session is over.
Incorporate resistance training to increase lean body mass. Muscle burns more calories at rest than fat does, and since your goal is to reduce body fat, it pays to pick up the weights. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends engaging in resistance training two to three days per week. To maximize muscle hypertrophy for muscle gains, perform three to five sets of 8 to 12 repetitions per exercise.
Eat small meals throughout the day. If your body has a steady supply of nutrient-rich food coming in, it will burn calories more freely. Eat five to six small meals each day, spaced three to four hours apart, and never skip breakfast.
Keep calorie intake adequate. Although you must create a calorie deficit to lose weight, cutting calories too drastically in an attempt to drop weight fast can wreak havoc on your metabolic rate. Unless you're under a doctor's orders, don't restrict yourself to less than 1,200 calories per day.
Tips & Warnings
- Keep a journal to record your diet intake and exercise each day. It might take some time for you to see results, but if you don't notice changes within a couple of weeks, review your journal to identify where you need to make changes. Also, share your weight loss goals with your friends and family members to enlist as many positive cheerleaders and motivators as you can.
- Always talk with your doctor before making any changes to your exercise or diet routine. If you have prolonged weight problems, check with your physician to make sure you don't have an underlying condition.
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