Losing Weight when trying to join
Losing weight to join the military is a question I get nearly everyday. I figured since this is such a widely sought after question I should dedicate a blog post to it.
You are what you eat
The first step I'm going to encourage is healthy eating habits. Yes, before exercise lets get your eating habits under control! This may seem like common sense but much of the food today that we consume is absolutely terrible for us and is actually making us gain weight and be unhealthy. Lets start off by cutting out certain foods and then we will move on to what to add to your diet. TIP: It has taken many months/years to get to where your body is today, be prepared to put in several months of self discipline to get back to where you want to be.
Foods you should NEVER have again:
- Fast food
- Energy Drinks
- Fried foods
- foods loaded with sugar
- foods very high in salt content
- foods very high in fat content
Just by cutting out the above foods alone you will start to see a drop in your weight and body fat percentage in the first few weeks with no added exercise. Imagine how much progress you can make in a few months with healthy eating habits and regular exercise.
Foods you should start having more of:
- fruit with 1-2 meals
- vegetables with 2-3 meals
- source of lean protein with 3-5 meals
- WATER WATER WATER!!
The reason I say to have lean protein with 3-5 meals a day is because you should be eating between 4-6 small meals a day. These meals should consist of 400-700 calories roughly and be 3-5 hours apart. Your metabolism is fueled by food and by eating small meals throughout the day you'll be able to burn calories continuously and since you won't be eating large meals your body will be able to burn off the calories it's taking in.
NEVER SKIP BREAKFAST
Breakfast will be the most important meal of the day. As I just said above, your metabolism is fueled from the food you feed it. If you skip breakfast your metabolism isn't starting right away in the morning meaning your body isn't burning calories first thing in the morning. EAT BREAKFAST!!
How to decide what to eat:
My rule of thumb is that we are all adults, we know what is healthy, what is unhealthy, what is full of sugar or salt, and so on. When getting healthy eating habits it starts with self discipline and doing what you know is right for your body and your goal. You can't reach your goal if you're doing things that push your goal farther away. If you have any thought that what you're about to eat isn't healthy either (A) don't eat it and eat something you KNOW is healthy or (B) look up whether that food is healthy and see what experts say. After a few weeks it will start to be become easier and easier to determine what is good or bad for you and also what you first reach for when you're hungry. You'll eventually have made it a habit to only eat healthy food.
The second half of the battle, exercise:
exercise doesn't have to be running 10 miles a day or hitting the gym for some heavy lifting for 2 hours. If you're not in the shape you want to be in or your over the weight you would like to be the odds are you either aren't working out at all or that much. THAT IS OKAY!! The key here is to start small and work your way up. If you try to immediately jump into hardcore workouts you'll most likely get overwhelmed and discouraged and quit. So lets take it slow and remember that everyday that you aren't doing everything you can to accomplish a goal is one day farther away you are from reaching that goal.
To start out for exercising I would suggest you make good self judgement as to what you can handle. If you haven't been running or walking everyday I would start out with forcing yourself to walk/run .5-1 miles 3-4 days a week. Remember slow and steady pace wins the race! If after a week you feel like it was too easy start working your way up. Start running 1-1.5 miles 3-4 days a week. after a week or two try doing (3) 1 miles runs and (3) 1.5 mile runs which means you'll have started running 6 days a week. Keep working your way up until you can run 2-3 miles 4-6 days a week. Once you get to that point you should be at the weight you desire and if not start timing yourself and trying to run your runs faster each day. After several weeks of pushing yourself and eating healthy the weight should be coming off the way you would like!
Why only running and no lifting weights?
The reason I suggest running and don't tell people to lift weights when trying to lose weight is simple. Its a lot easier for people to run and no one should have an excuse as to why they can't go outside and run on the sidewalk. To lift weights requires someone to either go buy a weight set or get a membership to a gym and then commute to and from the gym each day. in the time it takes you to commute to and from the gym you could have gone for a run and been done for the day. Lifting weights take up much more time and while it does burn calories and help you lose weight its much more time consuming and when the key focus is to just lose weight running is definitely the best option.
Stay focused and have self discipline:
Without focus or self discipline you'll fail to achieve your goal. No one will make you put in the work to get you to where you want to be other than you. If you aren't working towards your goal everyday you may never get there. If you have a goal in mind your actions everyday should be helping you reach that goal. Exercising regularly and eating healthy can be tough. Whether you get to where you want to be or not depends one how hard you're willing to work on your goal everyday. Hopefully this article helped you and will motivate you to go out there and get what you want in life. Not just for losing weight but any goal you have.