Losing and gaining weight are two common goals for people around the world. Although gaining weight may not be as common as trying to lose it, it is still a valid goal for people who are underweight.
No matter your goal, will power is needed for the final result. What is your intent? Lose 5 lbs.? Lose 10 lbs.? More? Gain 15 pounds of muscle?
The first step is to evaluate your intake. What do you eat and drink? Look at the calories you are ingesting every day.
Are you addicted to sweets? Drinking soda and sweet drinks all day? Be true to your self with your answers.
Are you in too much of a hurry to do your daily tasks to make something to eat and drive thru quickly to just satisfy your hunger? In the office do you hit the snack machine for candy, cookies or chips regularly?
Is beer your friend? Cut it in half, then half again. Or, drink less caloric beer.
Fried foods aren’t the best. Eliminate all microwaveable quick meals. No boxed or canned foods full of who knows what to preserve them.
Now, look at your list of what you are NOT eating. We need to have a realization that those things alone left out of your day could cut 3 or more pounds in one week. Maybe even more.
To lose weight, you have-to-be “real” to yourself. No excuses. And don’t tell yourself lies or promise yourself tomorrow.
Tomorrow never comes that way! Write down all the things you eat in a few days and keep it known only to yourself. No one needs to know.
Take a deep breath and your inner strength. Become your own coach. Tell yourself positive things passing milestones like NOT getting that candy bar after lunch that always turns into two.
Congratulate yourself. If you want the candy, take a walk around the office to distract yourself. You can do it fast or slow. If you lose a couple of pounds, don’t reward yourself with food. Let’s repeat that… don’t reward yourself with food.
Reward yourself with self-praise instead. We all have that inner person who needs a little praise once and awhile and often use food to offer that praise as a reward. If we can just break that habit slowly, we can accomplish our goal. Even surpass it.
Once you take excess sugar and unhealthy snacks out of your diet, you can be poised for success. Replace them with something else so you are rewarded. Here are some ideas that might work:
- Low-fat cheese sticks
- Celery sticks
- Carrot sticks
- Yogurt with granola
- A piece of fruit
- A tablespoon of peanut butter (think of it as a popsicle)
- Cottage cheese and fruit
- An Apple and some cheddar
- Drink tea unsweetened instead of coffee
- Drink water to replace any other beverages
- Make your main meal a protein, grilled and ½ cup of rice or a salad
- Eat eggs for dinner. Omelets filled with meats, cheese and tomatoes can be great for dinner
Next up, consider your level of exercise. You can start taking walks. Start with 15 minutes as fast or slow as you want.
Don’t text while you walk. Instead, put on your 5 favorite songs and listen to them. When done, you may find you’ve already walked for 30 minutes. Do that at work on a break for as long as you can twice a day instead of hitting the candy machine.
With no cheating, you can be rewarded at the scale and in your mind knowing you have accomplished something for just you! Your mind can also be clearer from all the sugar, not to mention how much healthier you are becoming.
If you have diabetes or heart disease, your doctor should be consulted before any major change of diet. Some individuals even experience a decrease in their reliance on medications by simply changing their diet. We all have the “free will” to make any kind of change we want. Our tools are right in our mind to make the changes needed to succeed in our goals.
To Gain Weight
The quickest way to gain weight the healthy way is usually to add muscle to your body. How do we do that?
You can start out slow if you don’t already work out with light weights, and work yourself up to heavier weight training. Weight training, when done evenly for the whole body, can build muscle on every part of the body.
Your arms, legs, and your back can all become stronger, and you can build core strength in the center of your body. This is not only great for gaining a few needed pounds, but gaining body strength helps protect you from injuries.
Staying away from the sugary foods is recommended to gain weight as well. Steer yourself to well rounded meals and eat more often than 3 meals and make sure there are good proteins in your food choices. 5-6 small meals are recommended.
Your body should start to get used to being fed more often, and the weight in muscle will build. Add good fats like avocados to your diet. Eat cheese if you are not lactose intolerant. Eat fruits and veggies for digestion of the proteins.
You may also consider taking walks. Working with weights is good to add bulk, but the body needs to be fluid, so try and walk. At least 25 minutes a day is recommended.
Give it what you can and build from your starting point. Just get out and move! Your clothes might start fitting better and you can have stamina you never knew existed.
Treat yourself right and your body and mind will reward you. Make some healthy changes and stay away from fast food and microwave quick meals. See what you can accomplish if you just put your mind to it.