You said to yourself on New Year’s Eve, “A new year, a new me,” or “this is where I get the ball rolling.” You tried as many people do but factors came into play: work, relationships, stress, emergencies, or maybe just the lazy bug. Guess what?
But Don’t Worry – Be Happy.
You can still lose weight this summer.
Many people think that getting in shape takes lots of work at the gym. Reality is that the real change happens in all the time outside of the gym. There are so many factors that play a part into how your body functions and if you want to lose weight this summer, it’s time we get down to business. Let’s think about it: realistically going to the gym twice a week for an hour is only two hours per week. Your body cannot magically transform into that ideal version of yourself, heck, you can’t even assemble many features from Ikea in two hours. Take those two hours a week out and we’re still left with 166 functioning hours.
I’ve compiled a short & easy list of GO-TO tips & healthy lifestyle hacks, that if you do correctly, can really propel with your fitness journey, particularly if you’re looking to lose weight this summer.
1. Go for volume
“Summer brings a generous supply of produce packed with water, which helps make us feel full with fewer calories. A study at Penn State showed this effect. Women served a broth-based soup before lunch ate about 100 fewer calories than women who started with a casserole—and they weren’t any hungrier later. At the farmers market, load up on watermelon, strawberries, peaches, zucchini and cucumbers.”1
—David Katz, MD, director of the Prevention Research Center at the Yale School of Medicine
2. Take after-dinner walks
“Bright evenings are made for strolls around the neighborhood, and going for a brisk 30-minute walk every day could help you shed about 10 pounds in a year. A 2010 study showed that women who walked in the p.m. burned more body fat than women who walked in the a.m. They also spontaneously started eating more of their daily calories in the morning, which gave them more opportunity to burn them off during the day.”1
—Kelly Springer, RD, a nutritional coach in upstate New York
3. Squeeze That Citrus
A 2012 review of human studies found that bitter orange (citrus aurantium) extract increased metabolic rate and energy expenditure when bitter orange extract products were taken for six to 12 weeks. Add in the extra effects of lowering stroke risk and increasing the number of detoxifying enzymes in the liver, stomach, & intestines (protective effect against some types of cancer).2
4. Go Nuts
Recent studies show that participants who consumed a 43 gram portion of dry-roasted, lightly salted almonds every day for four weeks saw a huge increase in their vitamin E and monounsaturated or ‘good’ fats levels, but didn’t gain any weight. This was tested on both men and women, of which some were overweight and some normal weight. For starters, these popular nuts are actually low in calories with ten almonds costing you approximately 78 calories. Other than that they’re packed with useful nutrients like Vitamin E and mono-saturated fat (‘good’ fat), which is highly satiating and provides bulk to food without adding calories. They are also full of B vitamins and zinc, which helps stop sugar cravings, plus the oleic oil in the nuts cuts hunger very quickly.3
Remember each and every point has been referenced by a professional, from a health journal, or is coming from a peer-reviewed article from a scientific database. Just like in life, there are no shortcuts in fitness. These are merely things you can do to control your body among the mirade of variables that contribute to the total sum of your physical being. For you to lose weight this summer, you have to make smart choices. Making that first step to getting to the strongest version of yourself in this respect means controlling those variables. Go out and make this summer your summer.
1Patz, A. (2015). Swimsuit Season Diet Secrets. Health, 29(5), 47-50.
2Petty, L. (2013). Zest for life. Alive: Canada’s Natural Health & Wellness Magazine, (367), 50-53.
3Tan, S., & Mattes, R. (n.d.). Appetitive, dietary and health effects of almonds consumed with meals or as snacks: A randomized, controlled trial. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 1205-1214.