You don’t need a pricey gym membership or personal trainer to benefit from a custom weight loss plan! All you need for lasting success is the commitment to make positive changes and these six steps to build your own program for fat loss.
Step 1: HIIT Your Fat
HIIT (high-intensity interval training) is a technique that involves short, high-intensity bursts of energy followed by short rest periods. It’s ideal for shedding pounds because the intensity boosts the metabolism for up to 24 hours after the workout has ended.
These workouts aren’t just effective for weight loss—they’re also convenient. You can do HIIT virtually anywhere, and no gym or special equipment is required. What’s more, many HIIT workouts can be done in less than 15 minutes, and some can be completed in just four minutes, making it easy to work fat-burning moves into even the busiest day.
Get your HIIT on with these workouts:
Melt Fat in Minutes HIIT Routine
Fat-Blasting HIIT Workout to Burn Fat up to 24 Hours
Torch Calories & Fat in Under 5 Minutes Workout
Step 2: Build Muscle
Strength training is a powerful tool when you’re building a program for fat loss. It’s so effective because it builds muscles, which burns more calories than fat. This, in turn, raises your metabolism, even during times of rest. When you use weights, whether it’s your own body weight or dumbbells, the activity overloads the muscles, forcing them to work harder.
Strength training won’t make you bulky either. Instead, you’ll look leaner and slimmer.
Plan to complete a strength training routine three to four times a week for maximum weight loss. You can also add a strength component to other exercises, like a treadmill workout, by adding weights.
Step 3: Control Your Portions
Portion control is key to weight loss success. Our culture has developed an unhealthy sense of portion size over the last several decades. But it’s not as hard as you might think to overcome what may be a lifetime of eating oversized servings.
Always measure out the recommended serving size when you dish out your meals. This will give you a precise idea of how many calories you’re consuming. However, portion control isn’t all about getting a handle on the negative; it also lets you ensure you’re taking in the right amounts of the nutrients that support healthy weight loss, including fiber and protein.
Step 4: Plan Meals
We can’t overstate the importance of meal planning for weight loss. Not only does it remove the temptation to hit the takeout lane on a busy night, but it also lowers the chances you’ll break open a processed meal that’s likely full of extra calories, fat, sugar, or sodium.
Set aside time each week before your main grocery trip. Plan out what you’ll eat—meals and snacks—over the coming days. Then shop for as many of the ingredients as possible so they’ll be available when it’s time to cook.
Plan to use a slow cooker on crazy-busy days, so you can come home to a warm, tasty, weight loss meal. Save prep time and reduce waste by stocking up on frozen produce with no added salt or sugar. Frozen fruit is ideal for topping pancakes, oatmeal, yogurt, and more. Use frozen veggies for side dishes, soups, or crockpot meals.
Start with these meal planning resources:
Top 10 Flush the Fat Away Recipes
7 Best Weight Loss Meal Plans
50 Delicious Weight Watchers Dinners with 7 Points or Fewer
Step 5: Drink Up
No, you can’t drink any ol’ beverage. We’re talking water. H2O is critical for any personalized weight loss program. One recent study found that people who were less hydrated were more likely to have a higher body mass index (BMI) .
Drink a full glass of water before each meal to avoid overeating. Craving a late night snack? Try consuming a glass of water first, then wait 15 minutes to see if your hunger disappears; sometimes we misinterpret thirst for hunger.
Step 6: Challenge Yourself
An exercise or eating challenge delivers a one-two punch to excess weight. The challenge itself will jumpstart weight loss by increasing your activity level or reducing calories. However, a challenge can also help you develop a healthy habit, such as consuming less sugar or increasing the number of steps you take each day.
Exercise and healthy eating challenges are fun to do with a partner, friend, or family member, too. The combination of partnership and competition can be exactly the motivation you need to make changes you can see and feel.
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