Fine Tune Your Eating Habits to Lose that Last 5 Pounds
When you only need or want to lose a few pounds (five or less) the only thing you must do is fine-tune what you regularly do. In other words, you maintain your weight by what and how you eat, and whether you exercise or get much daily movement.
Analyze your habits. Where might you make some small modifications that you can live with, so any new weight loss will be permanent? You may become a bit more strict with your diet (less indulgences) or add a bit to your exercise. I say "a bit" because you only need to make slight modifications, not drastic changes.
Number On Scale Not What Matters
Remember it's not how many pounds you weigh (the number on the scale) but how much of that total weight is fat. Outside of the fat you need to cushion your organs and keep your body temperature regulated you don't need lots of extra body fat. Fat is lumpy and fluffy while muscle is sleek and slender. Work on reducing your body fat and gaining muscle. And no, ladies, you will not become big and freaky. It's not that easy to put on muscle, but it's fairly easy to lose fat.
Step away from the scale and focus on your overall health. When you lose fat and gain muscle your weight may not change (muscle tissue is more dense than fat), but you are going to be leaner and you'll start wearing smaller clothing sizes. We put far too much attention on the number on the scale when it doesn't tell the complete story.
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If you want to look your very best, ignore the scale, and exercise more to build more lean tissue -- it's sleeker (you'll measure smaller), it's more dense and it's active tissue so it requires more calories to be maintained. That means you can eat more, and still maintain your size. Think size, not weight.
Don't Reduce Calories Too Low
The worst thing is trying to reduce calories too low in an effort to quickly lose pounds, because without adequate calories and nutrients you'll likely lose that valuable muscle tissue. The more muscle you carry on your body the more calories you require at rest, meaning you burn more calories just sitting there than your overweight friend next to you.
To calculate how many calories you can have and still lose weight see this article which explains why you don't need to continually reduce calories to reduce weight.
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