Weight loss steps for Spring season are pretty much the same as any other time. But, sometimes during the Spring, we are ready to make some positive changes in our lives. So, while you’re making positive changes, set your weight loss and fat loss goals!
1. Spring freshen up your attitude.
Everything goes better for you when you have a positive attitude. The way you choose to react to the day’s events is a choice you make every day. A positive attitude does wonders for your health. Make your best days even better and make your bad days better by adjusting your attitude.
Spring is a great time to shape up, eat better and renew mind. The weather is warmer, the sun is shining more, the grass is greener, trees and flowers are blooming and there’s more hours of daylight. Everything seems to be renewing itself, so why not you too!
Any change, positive or negative, must take place in your mind first.
2. Its a good idea to get a Spring season body fat and fitness assessment with a trainer, if you have been inactive for a while. You need to know where you are with fitness and how to begin taking steps to improve your health. If you are overweight or have too much body fat (a skinny person can have too much body fat), your body is not as healthy as it could be….start making changes today!
Identify your fitness goals and determine why your fat loss and weight loss efforts have failed or succeeded in the past. You also have to get your motivation right for your exercise program to work for you. This step takes you being “very honest” with yourself! Sometimes it is a painful process.
You will learn your body composition (body fat % vs. lean mass %) during the assessment. You will also learn “where you are fat.” Excess abdominal fat has been shown to be a precursor to diseases such as cancer.
When’s the last time you had your body measurements taken (chest, arms, neck, hips, waist, etc.)? This is part of your fitness assessment also.
What’s your health history? You might need a doctor’s clearance before you can begin an exercise program.
3. Start controlling overeating.
Control your hunger during the day so you don’t overeat when you do eat. Do this by eating small meals every 3-4 hours to keep your energy and metabolism active. And, binge-eating is always looming….
The Mayo Clinic defines binge-eating disorder as follows:
“Binge-eating disorder is a serious eating disorder in which you frequently consume unusually large amounts of food. Almost everyone overeats on occasion, such as having seconds or thirds of a holiday meal. But for some people, overeating crosses the line to binge-eating disorder and it becomes a regular occurrence, shrouded in secrecy.
When you have binge-eating disorder, you may be deeply embarrassed about gorging and vow to stop. But you feel such a compulsion that you can’t resist the urges and continue binge eating.
Although binge-eating disorder is the most common of all eating disorders, it’s still not considered a distinct psychiatric condition. But if you have binge-eating disorder symptoms, treatment can help you.”
4. Plan and pack your meals with mainly whole, natural foods. You may also need to journal your eating choices and weigh and measure your food until you know what, how much and when to eat. Making hasty eating decisions can lead to poor meal and snack choices.
5. Do you have limiting behaviors?
Are you sabotaging your fat loss and weight loss efforts? For example, if you are trying to break bad eating habits, why do you keep junk food and sugary foods in your kitchen pantry? If its there, you will eat it!
6. How is your sleep going lately?
Lack of sleep affects memory, concentration and health. In a Medical News Today article, “Getting A Good Night’s Sleep,” the World Association of Sleep Medicine (WASM), reports that sleep problems add up to a global epidemic that affects 45% of the world’s population.
“Insomnia, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), restless legs syndrome (RLS), and sleep deprivation significantly impact physical, mental and emotional health, in addition to affecting work performance and personal relationships,” WASM said.
Growth hormone (the youth hormone) is also released during deep sleep. Try to sleep between 7-9 hours a night.
7. Limit prolonged stress in your life.
A certain amount of stress is good for us to live efficiently. Too much stress…well, you know the answer. In a Mayo Clinic article, “Stress Basics,” it states:
“When your brain perceives a threat, it signals your body to release a burst of hormones to fuel your capacity for a response. This has been labeled the “fight-or-flight” response.
Once the threat is gone, your body is meant to return to a normal relaxed state. Unfortunately, the nonstop stress of modern life means that your alarm system rarely shuts off. Without stress management, all too often your body is always on high alert. Over time, high levels of stress lead to serious health problems.”
My recommendations for helping control stress:
- regular exercise
- laugh often and don’t take yourself too seriously
- learn to relax by using tools such as music, deep breathing, walking, massage, meditation, etc.
- have a grateful attitude
- focus on positives and not negatives
- disassociate yourself from negative energy vampires in your life
8. Drink mainly water and unsweetened drinks.
Drinking too many sugary drinks will contribute to dangerous belly fat. Your body is about 70% water so it functions better when you are properly hydrated. I recommend drinking about half your weight in water every day.
So, if you weigh 150 pounds, drink about 75 ounces of water. High water content found in foods such as fruits and vegetables does count towards your intake.
9. If you drink alcohol, do it in moderation. Researchers from Denmark found that alcohol drinking can increase appetite.
Also, when you take a drink of alcohol, your body converts a small amount of it into fat and the rest is converted (by the liver) into a substance called acetate. This acetate is then quickly released into the bloodstream and used as the body’s main source of energy. So, your body is using the acetate for energy instead of the stored fat in your body. The more you drink, the more fat your body will store (many times belly fat).
10. Get a healthy, managed meal plan and comply with it at least 90% of the time.
If you are trying to burn fat and lose weight, nutrition is critical. Eat main whole, natural foods that have one ingredient. For example, fruits and vegetables have one ingredient.
I don’t ever encourage any diet that significantly omits one of the macronutrients (carbohydrates, fats, proteins). Your body’s metabolism needs all 3 macronutrients to operate properly. So, diets that are very low in carbohydrates or fats will not help your body in the long-term.
Also, what you eat plays an important role in brain function.
11. Regular exercise is critical for weight loss transformation.
If you made a New Year’s resolution, how’s that going? Need to get started exercising again? Physical exercise helps you burn fat, manage body weight, regulate stress and is necessary for maintaining good blood circulation to the body and brain. It also can significantly reduce the risk diseases such as heart attack, diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Enough said.
I recommend strength training 3 days a week and short, interval cardio sessions 2-3 days a week.
12. Staying active as much as possible is very under-rated.
It helps relieve stress, improves bloodflow and improves breathing. Sedentary lifestyles are a huge problem in society. We’ve gone from being physically active laborers (such as farmers) to sit-down jobs. So, if you have a “sit-down” job, I would recommend that you move more. When you sit, your fat-burning enzymes basically shut down.
Try to stand as much as you can during the day and take walking breaks to activate your fat-burning enzymes. Any activity is good to go along with your regular workouts. All movement burns calories.
13. Learn something every day to help you live a better overall life.
I love fitness. But, there are experts in health, business, medicine, and other life disciplines who help me in other parts of my life. Read books, start a new hobby, go to a seminar, listen in on webinars/teleconferences, follow experts on Twitter and Facebook, etc. There is really no excuse for not helping yourself improve.
14. Unless your daily nutrition is perfect, you need to take dietary supplements.
Multivitamins, krill oil and vitamin D3 are examples of common supplements that people take. Consult with your doctor before taking dietary supplements. Check out my Nutrition Store.
For sure, you don’t need fat burner supplements and weight loss pills. They don’t work long-term. Spend your hard-earned money to buy whole, natural foods for your meal plan.
15. Get other professional advice if needed.
When’s the last time you had a full physical exam? If you can’t remember, its been too long! Are your fat loss and weight loss efforts failing again and again? You may need a personal trainer to help you visualize success and individualize your fat loss and nutrition program.
Its hard to change your body all by your yourself. Research proves that you have a better chance to succeed if you have social support. That could be a trainer, spouse or friend.
Are you depressed? Although regular exercise will help you feel better, that won’t be enough to deal with serious depression. Get professional help.
Hey, its spring! Start taking positive steps today to improve your body health, appearance and wellness.
Mark has helped thousands of clients and readers make lifestyle changes that lead to better long-term health, which includes acceptable body fat and ideal body weight.He does not recommend fad diets, quick weight loss gimmicks, starvation diets, weight loss pills, fat burner supplements and the like.