It’s the time of the year where many of you will be looking for the next best thing in rapid weight loss. I am confident that the adverts popping up on your phone, a friend on Facebook or your next door neighbour will already be notifying you of incredible weight loss pills, shake only plans or restrictive diets that enabled them to lose ‘X’ number of lbs in 1 week!
Having worked with Indian clients for the last 5 years, I have had a unique insight into the dietary approaches taken to lose weight. The most common of which are meal replacement shakes or cutting out food groups, most notably carbohydrates (roti and rice) and dietary fats (ghee, cooking oils). While undertaking a strict weight loss diet, will inevitably enable you to lose weight, they do not always set you up to maintain the progress your make year-round! The clients I work with have very busy social calendars including family occasions, client dinners or all-inclusive holidays abroad! Sticking to bland boring foods or cutting out food groups entirely is just not a viable approach to maintaining progress!
So, what can you do to ensure the progress you make is sustainable year-round?
Develop a better relationship with foods
Your relationship with food can make an incredible difference to the way you approach eating and improve your body shape. Being tied down to the same meals every single day, not knowing what foods you should be eating and why can cause a harmful mindset towards dieting for weight loss! How many of you start a diet, restrict calories or food groups and end up bingeing after a week or two?
Rather than restricting food groups or foods you enjoy, you will benefit hugely from learning about different macronutrients, how to set up your calorie intake and portion sizes. I have developed a formula for successfully losing weight in a healthy controlled manner in my free 5 Step Formula which you can download here.
I recently posted on my Instagram page about my online weight loss client, who took my advice on eating at social occasions and applied it to perfection. Rather than telling himself he was not going to eat any of the food available to him, which would have left him feeling ostracised and unhappy, he went into the party with a tactic! He focused on consuming protein and vegetables as his main intake whilst there, which enable him to feel full and satiated. Following this he knew he had room available in his ‘calorie intake budget’ to consume something he would really enjoy, namely a salted caramel dessert! The aspect of this story that impressed me most was that he was able to control his desire to eat the whole cake (which believe me would have been devoured before we started working together) and he asked for a small slice, knowing he would get the benefit of enjoying this food, whilst eating in line with what his body needs rather than what his mind craved! He lost 2.2kg that week!
Taking an approach to change your lifestyle slowly can have amazing benefits for your long-term weight loss goals! I imagine many of you will already be signing up to a gym in January. There are so many deals available at present to get you tied into contracts and signed up to classes!
While investing in a gym membership is something I strongly believe in, I also question how many people are ready for that kind of physical stress! Taking your body from doing very little to hitting a spin class or unstructured resistant training plans can take its toll on your body very quickly! Many people will experience soreness for days after their first workout and this can make or break your relationship with the gym!
I encourage my clients to start off small. Many of the people I work with are coming from a background of very little physical activity, long hours in sedentary jobs or crazy social calendars! Rather than hitting them with 6 day training splits and hardcore high intensity sessions, many of them benefit from increased aerobic fitness, which can be achieved through monitoring steps and setting heart rate goals! Although the specific heart rate goal will vary, some of my clients will start their day with a fast paced walk aiming to achieve a heart rate between 120-140 beats per minute. This kind of activity can be incorporated into your daily commute, your lunch breaks or evenings!
If you are already more advanced than increasing physical activity slowly, or you want to see a real change in your body shape without causing yourself injury, read Chapter 2 of my free guide to successfully losing 10lbs, where you will receive a training plan and plenty of guidance around incorporating exercise into your daily routine!
The festive season is a time where many of you will let your hair down, have a few drinks or have way more than a few! Often the impact of alcohol on your weight loss journey will be negative, however there are a few things you can do for damage limitation!
The psychology of a weight loss client coming up to a social occasion is something I find profoundly interesting. I can tell with an online client through skype, phone or messages in their tone of communication, what approach they will be taking! Before going to an event, you need to have the conversation with yourself, is this going to be a blow out or do you plan to control every action you take. Knowing which route, you are going to go down will give you the chance to take control of your actions in and around the event!
I was recently invited to a clients party for his daughters 1st birthday. The decision in his mind had already been made that he would partake in a few drinks with his family and friends to celebrate. To ensure that he was able to recover quickly and avoid the lethargy and cravings associated with the next mornings hangover, he already had coconut water in the fridge and a few of his meals prepared for the next day! He controlled his environment so that his one evening off did not negatively impact his results or the way he felt for the whole week!
I encourage my clients to choose their path so they have a plan b, c and d to get back on track and avoid the pitfalls of the effects of alcohol on inhibition, energy and motivation! In chapter 5 of my free guide I discuss the reason alcohol can have a negative effect on your body shape, weight loss and ability to progress! I also outline the best drinks to consume whilst looking to lose weight and how you can benefit from controlling your intake!
A simple weight loss hack that you need to start implementing today is tracking your progress! Did you know that some of my clients do not weigh themselves? Progress is more than the number on the scales, I am going to let you into a few areas I monitor with clients to ensure they are improving their health, happiness and body shape!
Pictures are a great indication of progress! Clients that train in the gym will often worry when their scales do not move much in a week. Pictures enable us to see visible changes in body composition that display a reduction in body fat and improvements in lean muscle mass and posture!
Measuring weight loss sites, such as, the hips, waist, chest, upper arm and thigh circumferences enable you to see a clear patter in progression! It is surprising to some of my clients how much these measurements can change in a short time frame, whilst the numbers on the scales do not always go down!
Tracking other areas of biofeedback is a tool I implement with clients that want to see advancements in their health and body shape! Reviewing their sleep patterns, fasted blood glucose levels, morning heart rate and heart rate variability enables me to develop plans that are specific to the individual! Working on develop a state where you can work, perform and live optimally will allow you to feel happier and healthier in your weight loss journey! My clients that achieve the best results are usually the ones that have reduced stress and are enjoying the process!
Make sure you pick up a copy of my free 5 Step Formula to Losing Your First 10lbs! This will kick start your weight loss journey and provide the fundamental action points you need to take to successfully lose weight, improve your health and change your body shape!