Thank you for stopping by to gather more insight to the top 10 weight loss tips I have put together for your learning benefits. With over 15 years of weight loss coaching experience, I’m confident you will be able to relate to these tips, find them realistic, and put them into action. The pictures below are all proud products of TNT Nutrition coaching. Kadie, Aissata, and Elisabeth did it, so can you! It’s exciting that you are at the stage of DOING something about your weight loss, congratulations, and enjoy!
#1 Refuel every 3-4 hours if possible. Yes, I’m asking you to eat more often to enhance your weight loss. If you are use to eating one or two times a day, you won’t be hungry to eat every 3-4 hours because your metabolism is slowing down to conserve energy. That’s ok, if you eat smaller meals where your portions are designed to help you feel “content” and not overly full, your body will more than likely naturally feel the need to refuel every 3-4 hours. Many of my weight loss clients always say to me “Are you sure this is a weight loss plan?” because they are very content every few hours and then they are in shock when the pounds start to come off. As you organize your day, use snacks as an opportunity to squeeze in anything you cannot squeeze in at your main meals. Fruit, vegetables, and dairy products make great snack fillers. Eating more frequently consisting of the RIGHT foods will help you stay fuller longer, and keep your blood sugar levels in check to avoid cravings throughout the day. Snacks higher in protein and fiber such as cheese and crackers, yogurt, and apple with peanut butter are always recommended versus foods without a lot of nutritional content such as 100-calorie pre-portioned bags of wheat thins. Don’t panic if you find yourself not hungry until the 5th hour, just pay attention and learn your body’s natural hunger rhythm. Not every single person on planet earth is hungry every 3-4 hours, but many are.
#2 Log your food for 1 week. I think we can all agree that food logging is an important tool for weight loss. How do you do know what to change if you don’t know how much you’re truly eating? Why cut more if you’re already only eating 800 calories? MANY times believe it or not, when I perform a consultation or begin working with a new weight loss client, we discover they were not eating enough throughout the day, but yet, in their minds they were having “huge” salads, and eating 4 times a day, etc, etc. Regardless of what you “think” you’re eating, you want to truly “know” what you’re eating. Logging will help you observe YOUR patterns of eating (eating too little, not enough protein) or no patterns at all-that is a problem all in itself! We’re talking 1 week of logging, not 7 days a week for the rest of your life, to help you discover more about what you need to change with your eating. It’s a helpful tool, so if you feel logging your food more frequently than 1 week is beneficial for you, then continue to use it as long as it serves as a helpful tool for you and not a nuisance.
#3 Eat more plants. Let food by thy medicine and medicine be thy food – Hippocrates. No one can argue that plants don’t better your health. Having a diet high in fruits, vegetables (includes beans/peas/lentils), whole grains, nuts and seeds continues to be proven as the only medicine without side effects that can help prevent and even reverse many of today’s lifestyle diseases in the United States. When you’re body is functioning at its best because you’re giving it the best fuel, you’ll have less cravings, less inflammation, you’ll have more energy to do more things and burn more calories.Your solution could be that simple! Not only will having more whole foods in your diet help with your health, it will significantly help with your waistline.
#4 Have an A+ grocery list. This is one of the simplest steps in weight loss that is overlooked and I am almost always setting it as a weekly goal for my clients. You don’t always have to have a meal plan to be successful with weight loss. With an A+ grocery list you can naturally make better eating decisions because you will be subbing higher calorie or empty calorie options for lower calorie, higher quality choices. You say you want to “eat a better breakfast”, that’s great, but how will you eat it if you don’t have what you need in your pantry or refrigerator? The more you take control with bringing your own meals and snacks, the more successful you will be at your weight loss, so take a few minutes for yourself (literally) and update your grocery list.
#5 Get moving. Exercise is a must for any weight loss program, however, don’t overwhelm yourself right away with a new eating regimen AND workout regimen. Ease into your exercise program slowly as you work on improving your nutrition. Something is always better than nothing! Weight training is SO important as is cardio. No, women, you will not get big and bulky because you lift a dumbbell. In fact, it will help you burn more calories at rest, reduce body fat, and allow you to become smaller and more defined. Cardio will also help expend more calories to support your weight loss. Weight loss is an intricate puzzle putting together nutrition, weight training, and cardio, so just take things one-step at a time with each category.
#6 Set 1 weekly measurable goal every week as to HOW or WHAT you will improve with your eating. So important! These goals will ensure you stay focused on always accomplishing and acknowledging progress to help keep the momentum high. Think of them as your steps to getting to your final weight loss goal! Make them measurable, and realistic. A good goal would be “I’m going to have 1 piece of fruit every day this week”. Those in our Classic Weight Loss program have frequent coaching calls with us and the student and coach set at least 1 nutrition goal per week together, and then follow up on that goal the following week. This makes a HUGE difference when taking on the big responsibility of changing your eating habits. Check out our How to Lose Weight Using S.M.A.R.T Goals for extra support.
#7 Don’t sweat the small stuff. One of the biggest sabotages to one’s weight loss success is their pursuit of perfection. Perfection just isn’t going to happen! Having one of your favorite treats from time to time is not a problem unless you’re having too many and the calories are adding up. Simply re-budget your amount of extra permissions, don’t completely restrict yourself from some of your favorite foods. One thing to keep in mind is that eating healthy and losing weight involves literally hundreds of decision making processes a day whether you realize it or not; between meals, leading up to meals, during meals, following meals; HUNDREDS. Why let ONE decision make you feel like you just made hundreds of bad decisions? Just let it go and stop beating yourself up already.
#8 Plan ahead. If you’ve got a busy schedule, MAKE it work by planning ahead your meals and snacks as often as you can. Weight loss isn’t just going to happen, you have to make it happen! Plan and implement one or two go-to snacks for on the go for in your purse, travel bag, or car. Cook in bulk; make 2 recipes instead of 1 so you can have leftovers. Cook some protein such as lean chicken on a Sunday or off day so it makes it easy to throw it in salads, wraps, pasta, etc when times get busy. Take a cooler with you in the car so you are always prepared, it’s not as big a deal as you think it is, and it just may become your new best friend!
#9 Be real and confront your habits and tendencies WITHOUT JUDGEMENT. The psychological side of weight loss is just as important as how many calories you are consuming. We all have tendencies, we all have habits. We all have thought processes that go with them, we’re humans. Sometimes you will never outgrow the want to procrastinate, the want to emotionally eat for many reasons, but you CAN control how you respond to those wants. You can, and it starts by acknowledging your own tendencies and confronting them without judgment so you can deal with them. Once you acknowledge them, then you know the red flags to watch out for and redirect your actions in a new direction the next time those tendencies or habits show themselves versus how you always negatively tend to deal with them. For example, you always eat when you’re stressed. Eating is always a response to your stress. So next time you get stressed and the feeling builds up as usual to want to eat in response, redirect your actions to something other than food to deal with the stress. What does that solution look like? Go for a walk? Read a book? Clean? Sitting through it and doing nothing is also a solution. Have a solution in place BEFORE it happens so you can simply put your plan into action. To also help break habits, I always ask the question, “What were your intentions by eating [5 cookies]?” Usually the answer is “I was stressed” or “I wanted to relax”. Then I follow with the question “Did eating 5 cookies take away your stress, or help you relax?” The answer is always “NO”, in fact, it adds stress and anxiety and frustration by the time it’s all said and done! So get real, deal with the situation at hand and don’t fabricate a story line where emotional eating is the solution to your problems. Acknowledge your habits, tendencies, and come up with an alternative solution to dealing with them for the next time it occurs.
#10 Define and Revisit your motivation. What is the underlying reason for wanting to lose weight? To be a better example for your kids? To avoid diabetes? Whatever it is, you will need to reference this from time to time so print it out and tack it on your wall, set reminders on your phone, keep it as a screen saver on your desktop, but physically put it somewhere. When you cross some bumps in the road referencing and refreshing your motivation will be vital.
Weight loss is not easy. But it doesn’t mean it’s impossible or that you are incapable of succeeding. Everyone’s needs are different, and you may still be discovering what your needs are to help you lose weight successfully and that’s ok. This article is not meant to be intimidating, as a coach, it’s always important for me to prepare my clients for what to expect on their weight loss journey. The more they know what to expect, the more successful they will become. So I’m simply passing this on to you, and I hope you’ve found it helpful too.