THERE is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to losing weight.
Every body is different, and so what works for one may not agree with another.
However, there are some general rules that everyone needs to know before setting off on a mission to shed the pounds and blitz body fat.
Here Marvin Burton, Head of Fitness at Anytime Fitness, talks The Sun Online through his key “dos and don’ts” when it comes to losing weight.
DON’T be deflated by BMI scores
Don’t be deflated by BMI scores – this is only a generic guideline and doesn’t factor in muscle.
For example, the majority of the England Rugby team would be considered obese if they were to focus on this.
It is a reference point for non-active people and if you are regularly exercising, you are no longer the “average person”.
DO find exercise you enjoy
Find ways to exercise that you enjoy and vary them.
Try bringing friends to exercise with or involve others around you – exercise is fun and motivating if you can include your family or spend time with friends.
It becomes a social part of your life.
DON’T use diet pills
Extreme diets/tablets/methods can create weight loss by causing to you to lose weight from vital areas and off-set your hormonal balance.
Therefore, once you stop these methods, you will be susceptible to putting on all of the weight, possibly more and find it much harder to lose body fat in the future.
Focus solely on weight. You also must factor the transfer from body fat to muscle and the improvement of visceral fat (around your organs) which are far more important to health.
DO try weight loss calculators
Weight loss calculators help you find out exactly how many calories you need to be cutting out.
Losing weight involves many variables that can change from person to person, which means that everyone requires a different calorie intake.
Weight loss calculators, like the one from BMI Calculator, help you calculate exactly what you should be eating.
While this may not work for everyone and doesn’t need to be stuck to strictly (this can limit enjoyment of food/diet), it is a useful guide to recommended calories and macros.
For example, we all enjoy a lavish cheat meal/day at the weekend and knowing your recommended weekly calorie target means you’re aware if you need to scale back slightly during the week to account for your indulgent weekend.
DON’T do keto
Hundreds of celebrities may claim that the keto diet, which involves swapping out carbs for fats and proteins, have made them slim.
However, it limits carbs to the extreme while encouraging high fat intake in order to obtain the ‘magical state’ of ketosis where you burn more fat.
Instead, vary your food selections – healthy eating is only boring if you don’t explore and search.
DO learn new skills
Learn new skills – cooking, baking and different food cultures will expand your knowledge of healthy eating and you will love finding new flavours.
DON’T under eat
Dramatic reductions in calories are not healthy and will leave you feeling tired, having mood swings, increase your stress levels and contribute to muscle loss (which isn’t a good look).
Remember, you need a baseline level of calories for your organs and vital functions.
Also, muscle burns fat! The aim of every fat loss plan is to increase muscle.
DO track your progress
Garmin‘s head of marketing and product Theo Axford told The Sun Online: “Using a fitness tracker, usually a wrist based one that monitors your heart rate and exercise, can be a great way of staying motivated.
“Seeing your progress can act as a huge motivator, helping you to stay on track on the tougher days by seeing how far you’ve come.
“Exercise usually comes as a part of a person’s weight loss journey, whether this is a few hundred extra steps a day or taking up something a bit more vigorous like running.”
DON’T over exercise
Trying too hard is also the wrong thing to do.
If you are overreaching for your goal you will not allow time for your body to develop, your muscles to adapt and your body to repair.
Make sure you are having rest days and have recovery.
DO reflect on your lifestyle
Spend time reflecting on your lifestyle and work towards removing the things that are holding you back.
Also, look at passive health – most people focus on the active part of health but your mental health and self-confidence will become a bigger influence towards your goals.
DON’T focus on the mirror
We see our reflection hundreds of times each day.
Changes to your body shape will always be occurring but you won’t necessarily be the person who notices first.
So don’t beat yourself up trying to see a difference after day one.
Instead, you could take front / side profile photos on week 1 and every 2-3 weeks later.
Or judge your body shape change by your clothes – are they getting easier to fasten? Do you have more room to manoeuvre?
DON’T skimp on sleep
Theo, from Garmin, added: “Sleep is incredibly beneficial for giving you the energy to exercise and to make better decisions, and has a huge impact on how charged your Body Battery is.
“While you don’t necessarily need to get 12 hours, ensuring you’re well rested can help keep you motivated.
“Fitness trackers again can help you stay on top of this, with the best trackers showing how restful your sleep is, how many hours you’re getting, and providing advice on how to get better rest.”
DO celebrate each victory
Being healthy and losing body fat is your ultimate goal.
But along every journey there are lots of micro points and barriers you will overcome.
Celebrate these and be happy that you are becoming accountable and achieving.
Anytime Fitness has over 160 gyms across the UK and is the UK’s second largest private gym operator, with over 160,000 members. Visit www.anytimefitness.co.uk/2019 to claim a free day pass.
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