What! Surely you can’t be serious? Yes I am deadly serious. Crash diets work, short term, so yes go on that diet by all means, but if you are looking for a long term solution, forget it. It won’t last, they never do.
Most diets now are geared towards parting you from your hard earned cash. A quick fix at a great cost usually. I’ll let you into a little secret here:
THERE IS NO QUICK FIX!!
I can guarantee anyone that is fit, toned and healthy has been working at it for some time. A good physique is not forged in a week or a month, it can take years. That doesn’t mean you can’t make dramatic changes in a short space of time, it means you have to be realistic.
Undoing years of poor eating habits and lack of exercise won’t happen overnight, you will have to work at it, both physically and mentally.
But what about Mary who lost 3 stone in 2 weeks? Yes she did, and some of that was fat, the rest was most likely water and muscle. That is not being healthy, yes she lost the weight but as quick as she lost it she will regain it. Healthy weight loss should be at the rate of around 1 – 3 pounds of body fat per week, it may be slightly more depending on your activity level.
You can’t expect to go on a diet for a month or 3 months and be toned and healthy for ever more. It just won’t happen, unless that diet is one that is sustainable and you are doing some form of exercise alongside it.
So it’s not so much a diet as a lifestyle change that is needed. Here I have some recommendations to help you get started:
- Reduce portion sizes
- Eat less processed foods
- Consume less simple sugars
- Eat less saturated animal fats
- Eat more oily fish
- Eat nuts, grains, seeds and pulses
- Eat more vegetables
- Eat more lean protein
- Learn to cook and prep batches of meals
- Eat more fibre
- Carbs are ok, too much sugar isn’t (read food labels)
- Eat some fruit
Aim to move for at least 30 mins each day
- Get a bike and use it, even a stationary exercise bike is brilliant, you don’t need to leave your house!
- Walk, Swim, Run if you feel confident but first read this
- Aim to gradually increase your workload, your body will get used to the strain you place upon it so you have to keep pressing it to get that weight off
- Lift weights, start light and build up gradually, aim for reps initially, get the form right then increase weight, reduce reps
- Join a club, walking club, swimming club, yoga club, something that appeals to you, it doesn’t have to be hard work
In order to lose between 1 and 3 pounds of body fat per week, you need to burn at least 500 calories a day. Walking for half an hour will burn around 250 calories if you go at a reasonable pace. Reduce your food calorie intake as well and you will see how quickly you can make a change, the more you move and less you eat the more weight and fat you will burn.