Most diet-talk is about how to eat fewer calories, but what about the other side of the equation? How about getting your body to burn more calories?
Here are the five easiest ways to turn your body into a calorie-burning machine:
1. Eat more
Yes, I know that you need to eat less to lose weight, but if you’re a typical dieter then you’ve probably eaten less and less on diet after diet to the point where you don’t know how to eat less except to stop eating altogether.
If you’re in that position, then your body has also learned to exist happily on very few calories by burning very few calories.
The fix? You need to eat more to get your metabolic processes going again. More protein, some fat and lots of veggies will do the trick. This ensures that you get the required vitamins, minerals, and calories your body needs to function optimally instead of just “survive”. Once you’re feeding your cells, you will be able to boost your metabolism and burn more calories.
2. Lift something heavy
Weight training is a fantastic way to get your body burning more calories all the time because, unlike walking on the treadmill, weight lifting requires a longer reaction from your body due to the necessity to build new muscle in response to the training.
The new muscle also burns more calories because that’s what muscle does, so this is a win-win. If you’re afraid of the weights section, or you don’t know how to do any weight lifting movements safely, then I would recommend that you book a few sessions with a personal trainer who will show you a few essential exercises to get you started.
There is also a lot of training material online. If you don’t want to go alone, convince a friend to join you. A little friendly competition and motivation will benefit both of you.
3. Sleep six to eight hours
Sleeping too much or too little can have a horrible impact on your body’s ability to function, including your metabolic processes.
Aim for seven hours per night, and try to stick to it wherever possible. It’s the easiest to manage if you go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, but whatever works for you is OK as long as you get in the hours.
4. Check your thyroid
Thyroid problems can seriously affect your ability to lose weight because your metabolism is largely controlled by your thyroid function.
If you’re struggling to lose weight, and you are feeling lethargic and lacking in motivation, get your thyroid checked by your doctor to see that everything is in order.
Hormones play a huge role in weight loss and gain. If you’re reaching menopause then this could also be affecting your body’s ability to lose weight. Check with your doctor about hormone replacement therapy, and make sure that you are eating a lot of healthy vegetables to ensure you body and bones are getting the best nutrition possible.
5. Have a coffee
Caffeine can have a positive impact on metabolism. Starting the day with a couple of strong, black, unsweetened coffees can really rev up your system for the day, especially if you follow the coffees with some hard exercise.
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