I think it’s fair to say the biggest excuse people use when it comes to exercise is “I don’t have time”. We’ve all been guilty of this excuse. I don’t have kids to look after and my current job situation means I’m no longer working 12 hour days, so I DO have time to exercise, no excuses.
So you’re sat on the sofa grabbing at your belly rolls thinking “if only I wasn’t so busy/if only my job didnt take up all my time/if only I had someone to watch the kids for an hour” or some variation of this ‘lack of time’ thinking. Sucks to be you right? How are you ever going to get rid of those belly rolls if you don’t have time to exercise?
Well I have news. Don’t get me wrong, exercise IS important, for maintaining a healthy weight, for gaining lean muscle mass and to keep your body active and limber at any age. BUT what you put in your mouth at breakfast, lunch and dinner makes up approximately 80% of your success (or failure) rate when it comes to slimming down. 80%!!! That’s a really high percentage without having to even entertain the idea of squats, lunges and bicep curls. This is fabulous news for those that are time short. There is success to be had regardless of exercise. Yippee!
What you can’t make excuses for is the food you choose to eat each day. Again it’s an excuse we have all used “I don’t have time to make lunch/I don’t have time to cook dinner” etc etc. You need to plan ahead, and if you can’t do that then you need to keep a mental list of the places you can buy a healthy salad from, a protein bar, some grilled chicken, or whatever you enjoy that is protein rich and not going to pile on the pounds.
Diet is key.
You will need a rough idea of what your calorie intake should be each day to maintain your current weight, that way you will be aware that you will need to eat below this intake each day to slim down. There are loads of calorie calculators online that will work this out for you, here is one for you to try:
Once you’ve done the calculations, and if you are looking to slim down, DO NOT go crazy and cut out a huge amount of calories!! You’ll only be left starving, grumpy and think ‘I can’t take this anymore!’, you will then reach for your phone, dial the local pizza restaurant for take out and be back at square one. Look to lowering your calorie intake by around 300kcal’s per day, below the calorie calculation.
We ALL want results fast, and I’ve also thought at different times that I’ve failed because the scale hasn’t descended quick enough for my liking. There is an important point to accept here, it’s not the answer you will want to hear, but the sooner you accept it the less you will punish yourself when the pounds haven’t melted off at warp speed. Weight loss does not happen super quick, it’s kinda like those Pantene Ad’s ‘It won’t happen overnight, but it will happen’. If you can accept this and stop hoping for a miracle after 7 days of healthy eating, you will be on the highway to success. If however you want to lose ’10 pounds in 10 days’, go ahead, be my guest, go on a crazy diet and you lose those 10 pounds sunshine! But just so you know, you will gain those 10 pounds right back, because no human being can maintain a crazy diet, we simply don’t have the willpower to start with, and low calorie soup or whatever it is you’re inhaling on said crazy diet, really loses its appeal after a few days.
I just found this ‘Diet’ on Pinterest. ARE.YOU,KIDDING.ME! I would A. like to meet the person that lasts 30 days on this diet. and B. like to see what they eat on Day 31, because if they’re not already hooked up and being fed through an IV then my money is on them devouring thousands of calories in one sitting. I’m hungry just looking at this diet plan!
What you need to do is give yourself say a window of 3 months to track your progress. If you are just eating healthily and not exercising, weigh yourself every 1-2 weeks – do not freak out if you do a sneaky scale check midweek only to discover your weight hasn’t moved or even scarier, it’s gone up. Bodyweight fluctuates daily depending on all sorts of things, my weight can change daily up to around 1.5 kgs. That is why you always read that you should track your progress once a week or less, so you don’t get disheartened.
If you are eating healthily and exercising, I would worry less about the number on the scales and instead track your progress by taking measurements of your waist, hips, arms etc. The reason for this is because when you exercise, you will likely build some muscle mass, and muscle isn’t light, so the scales may not descend at all, for some they may actually ascend! This is simply because although you are losing fat, you’re building muscle, one replaces the other and whilst the number on the scales may not move, your body shape will become leaner, so measuring yourself every 1-2 weeks helps you realise you are progressing. My weight more or less stays the same, never descending much at all, for the very reason I’ve just described, so I don’t beat myself up about how much I weigh.
So that’s step one, deciding to upgrade your eating, to a healthier level. You can relax, you don’t need to think about ab crunches and stair climbing today. But let me just add right now, if you do throw in exercise, your daily calorie allowance gets higher! I love this, because I love food! But we can chat about that later.
Next post, we are going to have a little pep talk on what needs to go in your grocery basket to keep you super healthy and never starving.
Happy eating y’all x