Secrets to Fast Weight Loss: Join a Fitness Center

Secrets to Fast Weight Loss: Join a Fitness Center

Joining a fitness center can motivate you to stick with your weight loss program. But there are so many to choose from, how can you narrow down the field?

Determine what your goals are for your fitness program. Do you want to lose weight, get in shape for an athletic event, improve your chosen sport or establish a life long fitness routine? Knowing what you want from a center will help you choose the right center. Take a few minutes and think about your goals.

Friendly or firm — philosophy counts Do you want a congenial atmosphere where the trainers are your friends and gently motivate you towards a fitter and firmer body? Or do you need the no nonsense ‘let’s get going’ approach? Or perhaps you prefer the camaraderie of your peer group pushing you to greater fitness. The atmosphere of the center will influence your enjoyment of the program and if you enjoy the program you’ll be consistent in your attendance.

Visiting the center’s website will give you some insight into the center’s philosophy. Better yet visit the center itself. While you’re there take a moment and look at the members and the interaction between the members and the instructors.

Location, location, location It’s important in real estate and it’s important for your fitness center. Choose a center that offers what you want and what you need, but also consider its location. If you have to travel out of your way, the odds are you won’t do it when you need it the most. Pick a center that is either close to home or close to work. That way you can work in your work out without spending as much time traveling to it as you spend using it.

You gotta have it If racquet ball is your favorite sport, then your fitness center has got to have racquet ball courts. If your heart is set on circuit training then the right equipment and instructors have got to be available. If swimming is your preferred method of getting fit, make sure your center has a lap pool. You might think it doesn’t matter, but in the long run, it will. You will be more likely to make excuses not to go, if the center doesn’t offer what you need.

Amenities Spa, massage, swimming pool, sauna, and Jacuzzi are all wonderful amenities but will you use them? And will they be available when you want to use them? While the appeal of having the day’s tensions and stress massaged away sounds wonderful, will you actually the service? Or would onsite day care be more useful to you? Most centers have busy time periods before the work day and after work, will the amenities you want to use be too busy? If your idea of the ideal workout includes a steam and sauna followed by a quick refreshing dip in the pool, make sure your center has them.

Show me the money Memberships fees can range from a few dollars a visit to thousands per year. Make sure the center you choose fits within your budget.

Lose 10 Pounds Fast – Walk Off The Weight

Lose 10 Pounds Fast - Walk Off The Weight

Exercise combined with a few changes in your diet can melt off the pounds in no time. But if you think exercise means hours sweating in the gym, think again. As with any new exercise program check with your doctor before proceeding.

Studies have shown that walking at a brisk pace has the same benefits to your heart as jogging, with less stress to your joints. Walkers are less prone to injuries than joggers. A brisk pace means that you can talk while you’re walking without gasping for air. If you can sing a tune you’re going too slow. You should be able to keep up the pace for 30 to 60 minutes without a lot of stress.

If your goal is to lose a pound a week you have to either increase your exercise to burn up 3500 calories or decrease your food intake by 3500 calories. On a daily basis that means a change of 500 calories. Walking a mile takes the average person 15 minutes and burns up 100 calories. So you’d have to walk about five miles a day, or spend an hour and fifteen minutes walking to lose a pound a week.

You don’t need a lot of expensive equipment to start walking. A good pair of walking shoes is essential, but other than you don’t need much of anything else. Wear loose clothing of natural fibers so if you sweat, the moisture will be wicked away from your body and evaporate. Wear sun block and a hat.

You can walk at any time of day (or night for that matter). Some people prefer the morning because it gives them a boost of energy for the day. Others prefer at the end of the day so they can unwind.

Start your walking program with a 15 minute walk for a few days in a row. Then gradually increase the time by five minutes. By the end of two weeks you should be up to 30 to 45 minutes a day. You’re burning 200 to 350 calories without any changes in your diet. After six months you’ll have lost from 12 to 20 pounds. If you want to accelerate the weight loss, walk faster, cover more ground in the same amount of time.

If you decrease the amount of food you eat by 200 calories a day you double the weight loss. 200 calories isn’t really that much of a sacrifice. For example regular salad dressing has about 100 calories per tablespoon; a serving size is two tablespoons, so substituting nonfat salad dressing would save 200 calories. A 3.5 inch bagel with two tablespoons of cream cheese is about 400 calories. Eat half of the bagel instead of the whole one, and you’ve saved your 200 calories. A glass of whole milk is 150 calories, skim milk is 90, if you drink 3 glasses of milk a day you save 180 calories by switching to skim.

There you have it: an easy way to lose weight, increase your fitness level and strengthen your cardiovascular system and all you did was take a walk.

Fast Weight Loss – Difference Between Men and Women

Fast Weight Loss  - Difference Between Men and Women

Alli Diet Pills

Another pill that has recently come on the market is Alli. It works by blocking your stomach and intestines from digesting about 20% of the fat you eat. You have to go on a low fat diet when you start taking Alli. In addition you can’t eat more than 15 grams of fat at any one time. You can’t save up your fat allotment for the day, or several days, in order to splurge. If you break either of these rules, you suffer ‘treatment effects’ which include unexpected diarrhea and stomach cramps. Alli actually recommends that you wear dark pants and bring a change of clothing with you for the first week of the program. And stay close to the bathroom. Alli claims that in scientific studies participants have lost 50% more when taking Alli then just staying on a low calorie, low fat diet.

The advantages include having a little help to get you started on your diet and losing weight a bit faster. The disadvantage includes the expense, and in the case of Alli, the treatment effects. Alli is not a diet program you can cheat on and then return to without suffering ill effects. Some participants have reported treatment effects for several weeks after they stopped the program. Others have said they get treatment effects even when they make sure their fat consumption is within limits.

Can you really lose weight just by thinking about it? Well studies have shown that athletes can improve their game through the technique of visualizing the correct sequence of muscle movements. During the process of visualization it seems that even though the muscles don’t move, the brain sends electrical impulses that mimic the impulses sent when the action is physically carried through. Practicing by thinking about it.

People who want to lose weight are often their own worst enemy. Looking in the mirror they chide themselves for their flabby thighs or stomach over hanging the belt. They don’t see that they’ve lost weight, they just see how much more weight they should lose. This mind set just re-enforces their poor self image. Then when a cookie beckons, they figure why not, they’re fat and flabby anyway.

Want to know a better thought process? Think of your body the way you want it to be. If you have a picture of your former thinner self, use it as a guideline. That’s the real you. Whenever you’re tempted by a double chocolate brownie think of the thin you.

You can use your mind to control your eating habits. If you’re tempted to eat, just delay gratification for 15 minutes. In most cases when the time has passed, so has the craving.

Visualization can be used as a substitute for eating. Think of a place where you feel safe and happy. Perhaps it’s the beach with the waves rhythmically pounding the shore, the sand underfoot, and the sun glistening off the water. Smell the salt air and feel the cool breeze ruffling your hair. When you feel an eating binge coming on, close your eyes and picture your safe place. You are turning your attention away from the momentary satisfaction of eating to the longer term satisfaction of losing weight by focusing on a pleasant memory.

Remind yourself you are in control of your food, not the other way around. Give yourself permission to have whatever you want. Deprivation as a diet doesn’t work. It’s like when someone says DON’T think of a pink elephant, the first thing you think of is — the pink elephant. If you tell yourself: I can’t have pizza, I can’t have pizza, I can’t have pizza, the more you’ll want the pizza. Give yourself permission to have the pizza, but just a small taste. Thank about what you like best about the pizza. Savor the crispy crust, the tang of the tomato sauce and the flavor of the cheese, then stop eating. You’ve had the taste of pizza, you don’t have to eat the entire portion.

Is the Atkins Diet For You?

The Atkins Diet is the grand daddy of the quick weight loss diets. It’s based on severely limiting carbohydrates. Carbs are processed by the body to become sugar or glucose. Glucose is used by the body for energy. If the carbs consumed for the day aren’t enough, the body transforms the fat it has stored back into glucose for energy. Carbs also cause the blood sugar to spike which signals the body to produce insulin to remove the sugar from the bloodstream. This causes the blood sugar to drop which results in a craving for more carbs to raise it back up. That’s the basis of the Atkin’s Diet. Severely limit carbohydrates in the daily diet and the body has to fall back on its fat storage for energy.

The initial two week kick start program only allows 20 grams of carbs per day. The carbs from fiber are netted – subtracted from the total carb count. So for example, while ¼ cup of blueberries has a total carb count of 5.1 grams, only 4.1 grams are counted because 1 gram is from fiber.

Protein such as fish, chicken, beef, and pork contains 0 grams. The diet allows cheese and eggs. Seafood is tricky, some, like shrimp, have 0 grams and others like oysters, pack a walloping 12.5 grams per 6 oz. You can have limited amounts of green vegetables such as spinach, kale, broccoli, asparagus, and cabbage. Fruit is not allowed. To give you examples of carb counts, an apple has a net 16 grams of carbs, a slice of wheat bread has 12 carbs. Alcohol in any form is not allowed during the kickoff stage. An exercise period of 30 minutes per day is mandatory.

After the initial two weeks, carbs are gradually and slowly added back to the diet, fruits and vegetables first. Some vegetables like sweet potatoes (19) and corn (14 per 1/3 cup) contain too many carbs to ever become a regular part of the diet. The maximum level of carbs at this stage should be between 30 to 35. The objective is to continue losing weight but at a lesser rate than the initial two week period. If the weight loss stops the number of carbs being consumed has to decrease again.

The maintenance diet is at a level of carbs where you’ve stopped losing weight and don’t gain weight. It maxes out at about 40 grams of carbs per day. A turkey sandwich with mayo and sliced tomatoes is about 30 grams of carbs. A medium pear has 21 and one cup of 2% milk has 11.

Sugar, processed foods, flour and starches, such as potatoes and rice are pretty much off limits forever on the Atkins Diet. Most fruits have to be eaten in moderation if at all and certain vegetables as well.

Do Low Calorie Diets Work?

The average person needs to eat about 2000 calories per day to maintain their weight. Of course this varies based on how much the person weighs, their metabolism and activity levels, but it is a bench mark. There are two ways to lose weight on a low calorie program, either cut back the number of calories consumed or increase activity levels to burn off more calories.

A pound of fat requires that 3500 calories either be burned or not consumed. A calorie is the amount of energy in food. 500 calories would have to be cut from the average person’s daily diet to lose one pound of fat per week. A restricted low calorie program is usually between 1200 to 1500 calories per day. A medium apple has 70 calories, an 8 oz. steak about 425. One tablespoon of fat, oil, or butter has 120 calories. As a general rule fat and oil has more calories than any other type of food. Vegetables and fruits have the least amount of calories.

Increasing the amount of exercise per day can result in weight loss. If you walk for 30 minutes daily you’ll burn off 250 calories. The good news is that exercising at a brisk pace, say walking, for 20 minutes will increase your metabolism from 10 to 15% for two to four hours afterward. A brisk pace means that you can still talk while walking. If you can whistle or sing, you’re going too slow and if you can’t catch your breath enough to hold up your end of the conversation, you’re going too fast.

Combining a low calorie program with an exercise program will allow you to burn off the fat faster.

The advantages of a low calorie program is that you can eat a wide variety of food. There are no restrictions on what you can eat, just how much you can eat. If you absolutely have to have a piece of cheesecake you can eat it as long as you include it in your daily calorie consumption.

The disadvantages include sometimes being hungry.

Severely cutting back calories doesn’t accelerate weight loss, in fact it has the opposite effect. Your body is conditioned to react to starvation, which is what you’re doing when you decrease calories below 1000 per day, by lowering your metabolism. So you can cut back and your body will just compensate. The bad news is if you go back to a normal diet it takes your body a while to realize you’re not starving and increase your metabolism back to normal levels.

Prepackaged Food Programs

You’ve probably heard of most of them like Jenny Craig, promoted by Kirstie Allie. You will receive prepackaged foods for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Some programs also include snacks. You may add fresh diary and produce. The meals are balanced to provide all the nutrients you need and are low fat and low calorie so you lose weight.

A variation of the prepackaged food program are the meal replacement programs. You consume a prepared drink or snack bar to replace breakfast and lunch and consume a normal low fat dinner.

The advantages of the prepackaged food programs is that you don’t have to think. You know what you can have. There are no decisions to be made. No carb counting. No calorie counting. The products have simplified diet programs.

The disadvantages include the expense of the program. The prepackaged meals are not cheap. Another disadvantage, at least in the beginning, is the shock of the small portions. Some participants recommend adding additional steamed veggies to bulk up the menu. If you prepare the meals for your family you might find it tempting to make dinner for them and then you have only your prepackaged dinner. A final disadvantage is that once you go off the program you may quickly return to your old eating habits because you aren’t used to making healthy eating choices.

Easy Ways To Lose Weight Fast And Burn Fat

Easy Ways To Lose Weight Fast And Burn Fat

Lowering your cholesterol can be a challenge, especially if you day’s schedule doesn’t have a moment to spare. Here are 3 foods to cut fat and cholesterol.

Eat an apple a day. It’s not just an old wife’s tale that an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Consuming a 5 ounce apple means you’re adding 3 grams of pectin to your diet. Pectin is a soluble fiber that binds to bad-for-you fats cleaning them out of your system. Apples have flavonoids which are compounds that prevent cholesterol’s ability to cling to the inner walls of your arteries by as much as 38%. That’s good news because it decreases your risk of a heart attack.

D-glucaric acid is a substance that decreases the body’s ability to form LDL cholesterol, the bad cholesterol, in the liver by 35%. As an added bonus pectin also adds a feeling of fullness which means you can less than you usually do, lose weight, but still feel full. It’s best to eat the apples raw to get all their benefits. Apple slices spread with peanut butter is a good way to start your day at breakfast.

Another fat fighter and food that lowers cholesterol are nuts. Only 2 ounces a day reduces the liver’s production of LDL cholesterol by 33% and increases the good HDL cholesterol by 11%.

Nuts are rich in monounsaturated fats. Not only do monounsaturated fats cut cholesterol they also act as an appetite suppressant. Any kind of nut will do but almonds and walnuts are especially beneficial.

Nuts make a terrific snack by themselves. 2 ounces is what would fit in your cupped palm or about 2 tablespoons. Nuts can be added to salads, fruit smoothies, breakfast cereals and cooked vegetables. One red grapefruit daily decreases LDL cholesterol up to 20% and is twice as effective as white or pink grapefruit. The reason is red grapefruit is richer in antioxidants which curb the liver’s tendency to produce cholesterol.

As an added bonus one study showed that women who ate any color grapefruit daily lost 20 pounds in three months without any other change in their habits. Eat the whole fruit rather than just drinking the juice to take advantage of all the fiber.

Adding these three foods to your daily diet can help lower your bad cholesterol levels, increase your good cholesterol and as an added bonus help you lose weight.

Best Ways To Lose Weight – 5 Tips

Best Ways To Lose Weight - 5 Tips

You’ve finally decided you’re going to lose weight. Getting rid of those extra pounds will not only make you look better but you’ll feel better and have more energy. Follow these 5 tips on the best ways to lose weight and get a jump start on your weight loss program.

Make a list of low cost activities that you like to do. The list could include a bubble bath, working on a puzzle, listening to music, giving yourself a manicure, or indulging in some quiet time. When the urge to eat hits choose an activity from the list instead. You’ll avoid temptation and decrease your stress levels. Besides you wouldn’t want to wreck your freshly polished fingernails by reaching into a bag of chips now would you?

Keep a food journal for a week. Keep track of not only what you’re eating, but when, and how you feel. Track what you’re drinking as well, unless it’s water or no calorie soft drinks. You may be surprised that you’re eating more than you thought. The journal may reveal trigger points for eating as well. You may not realize that you head for the vending machine at work every time a certain co-worker interrupts you, or that you munch away when your sister calls. Knowing your trigger points means you can avoid them or you can be prepared to deal with them. When Sis calls, you can nosh on celery and carrots sticks instead of cookies.

Snacks count. Many weight loss programs include a snack or two every day. Those snacks count in your total calorie consumption. If your snack is half a peanut butter sandwich on whole grain bread, don’t be tempted to eat the other half because you don’t want to waste it. If you eat the entire sandwich with a glass of milk and an apple, you haven’t had a snack, you’ve had lunch.

Portion size is important. These days when super size has become the norm for portion size, it’s easy to overestimate how much a portion is. Look on the package for how many portions it contains. A small piece of fruit is a portion. A ½ cup of vegetables is a normal portion. 2 cups of salad greens is a portion. A piece of chicken or beef the size of deck of playing cards is a portion. If you have to, measure your portions until you get comfortable with estimating.

Eat a small salad or cup of soup, before dinner. Dinner is usually the biggest meal of the day. You can cut down on how much you eat if you have a small snack about 15 to 20 minutes before you sit down to dinner. It takes your brain 20 minutes to recognize your tummy is full and you’ve had enough to eat. You can jump start that time period if you eat a small salad, or cup of soup before dinner.