How to Lose 24 Pounds in 2 Months

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Losing fat requires a combination of diet and exercise.
Losing fat requires a combination of diet and exercise. (Image: overweight man running on a stadium image by Alena Yakusheva from Fotolia.com)

Losing 24 pounds in two months can be an intense undertaking. The Mayo Clinic suggests losing 1 to 2 pounds of per week for sustained weight loss, but to reach a 24-pound goal in two months, you would need to lose approximately 3 pounds per week. A pound of weight equals 3,500 calories so you would need to have a daily deficit of 1,500 calories. This means that you will need to burn 1,500 calories more than you consume daily. This can be done through a combination of diet and increased physical activity.

How Many Calories You Need

Figure out your basal metabolic rate (BMR), the number of calories your body burns at rest every day. Calculate for men: 66 + ( 6.23 x weight in pounds ) + ( 12.7 x height in inches ) - ( 6.8 x age in years). Calculate for women: 655 + ( 4.35 x weight in pounds ) + ( 4.7 x height in inches ) - ( 4.7 x age in years ).

Calculate your daily calorie needs based on your activity level. Multiply your BMR by 1.2 if you are sedentary; by 1.375 if you are lightly active; by 1.55 if you moderately active and 1.725 if you are very active.

Subtract 1,500 calories from your daily calorie needs through diet and exercise to achieve your weight loss goal of 24 pounds in two months.

Diet

Eat five or six small meals per day including breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks to keep your metabolism working full time and burning calories, because your body expends energy digesting food.

Choose high protein foods including lean chicken, fish and soy and complex carbohydrates such as vegetables and whole grains to feel full longer. Increase the amount of low-fat protein you eat at every meal. Replace simple carbohydrates, such as white rice or pasta and sugar, with more whole grains and vegetables.

Avoid calories in drinks: A glass of soda or juice can contain as many as 150 calories; beer or wine also contain more than 100 calories per serving. Drink water, which will quench your thirst without the added calories. Stay hydrated with water as dehydration often feels to the body like hunger.

Eat a snack of healthy protein and complex carbohydrates, such as yogurt with fruit, an hour before your workout to give you the energy you need for intense exercise. Eat a post-workout snack of protein and simple carbohydrates, such as low-fat chocolate milk, after your workout to replenish nutrients you have lost during exercise.

Keep a food journal. Writing down everything you eat will help you keep count of how many calories you are eating, making it easier to stick to your daily limits.

Exercise

Choose to be active whenever you can. Walk instead of drive whenever possible and take the stairs rather than the elevator or escalator. Park at the outside edges of parking lots to walk a little extra for shopping or other errands.

Aim to burn an extra 500 to 1,000 calories per day through exercise. Do at least 60 minutes of aerobic exercise per day, all at once or split up into several sessions throughout the day to raise your heart rate for a sustained period. Jog, swim or take part in an aerobics class for approximately one hour to burn 500 calories.

Add resistance training to your daily workout. Burn more calories with new muscles to make your workouts more effective. Add at least three weight-training workouts to your week, as rapid weight loss decreases muscle mass.

Change your exercise routine regularly to prevent your body from adapting to the exercises you are doing and burn fewer calories. Increase the intensity and volume of your aerobic and weight training exercises. Reduce boredom with routine changes to keep interested in burning calories.

Add rest to your day and get a full eight hours of sleep, when your body recovers from workouts. Increase your risk of being overweight and struggling to lose weight by getting less sleep than needed.

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