How to Lose Weight: The Basics

To look at it simply, losing weight is about burning more calories than you eat. However, this is easier said than done. We often times result to drastic measures in order to speed up the weight loss process with various weight loss products like pills, and those gadgets we see on TV which promises instant results. You may be able to lose weight for the time being but what would happen when you go off that diet or stop your workout program? You would just gain back all the pounds you have gained and even more. If you are really locked-in on how to lose weight and be able to maintain that weight, you will need to make lasting changes. You should not be motivated by the promise of instant results. What you need to do is settle in for the long run. Energy balance is the key to weight control. If you want to understand energy balance in an instant, think of your body as a car that operates 24 hours a day. You would never expect your car to get from one place to the next without systematic refueling, just as you know there’s no point in putting more gas in the tank than it’s supposed to hold. But that’s how many of us operate our bodies. We try to run on empty for hours then dump in more fuel than we can handle. Research shows that this strategy is self-destructive. Engaging in a workout with an empty stomach is a way on how to lose muscle mass. Many people have the wrong notion on how to lose excess weight. They think they should strictly eat three meals a day and nothing in between. This will just make you hungrier and you will tend to eat more during meals to compensate for the feeling of hunger. You should eat five or six times a day, avoiding large gaps between meals and snacks. Don’t allow yourself to get ravenously hungry, and don’t stuff yourself. If you find you’re slipping into a bad mood before a meal, that’s a pretty good sign that you’ve waited too long to eat. Always eat something shortly before exercising; you’ll burn more calories that way. Then eat something soon after. This will speed up the repair process, which also costs your body some caloric capital.

Inefficient diet and exercise turn your body into a fat-burning machine. Efficiency is a good thing when you’re talking about running your business. But it sucks the benefits out of your diet and workout. The more efficient your body is at exercise, the fewer calories it burns. Science has shown us some good strategies for making exercise less efficient. You can make your lifts less efficient in two ways – by increasing the amount of weight you’re lifting or by choosing exercises that are more challenging to your balance and coordination. Let’s say your maximum bench press is 200 pounds. Lifting 200 pounds once is very inefficient; your body throws every muscle into it. But lifting 50 pounds four times is very easy, and thus efficient. The metabolic cost of lifting 200 pounds once is thus greater than the cost of lifting 50 pounds four times. Doing maximum-effort sets would be a better way to overload your metabolism.