Will I lose weight? How hard will it be? Will I fit into my clothes again? Will all this pregnancy weight ever go away? These are just a few of the many weight related questions that are thrown my way on a daily basis. There isn’t a single person who doesn’t want to know the secret mantra to getting rid of excess fat.
I’ll let you in on a little secret: it really isn’t difficult to lose weight. If a one-legged man can run a marathon and a blind girl can become a world-renowned photographer, trust me this is a piece of cake (no pun intended). We’re all familiar with several tips that help such as:
Calorie in is calorie out
High protein and low carb
Eat every hour or two hours or three hours
Mathematically 3,500 kcal is equal to 1 pound of fat
Though all these are well known tips, everything needs to be structured to suit your needs best for it to work. What I mean is: what type of calorie does one need to consume? (Yes, there are three major types!) How does one calculate every calorie of 3,500 kcal for that one pound of fat? What does a vegetarian need to for a high protein and low carb diet?
Clearly there is no single method to lose weight. One size does not fit all. It’s your body after all, not a pair of socks. However, minor changes in your existing routine can begin the process of weight loss:
Follow your routine: If a friend loses weight with a diet they’re following, we tend to copy their eating pattern. A diet must change and be adapted to an individual’s routine. A diet depends on whether it’s a working person with a desk job or one with travel demands, an early riser or nocturnal creature, a small peckish eater or one unable to put the fork down.
Adapt sustainable changes: We tend to get carried away. We start dieting and bring a change in our routine and begin exercising, all at one time for maximum results. All this is too much together. Changes should be slow, gradual, realistic and sustainable. If you try for everything, you’ll end up with nothing.
Eat as it is cooked at home: Make healthy changes in your cooking style but no drastic changes where the kitchen has to make every food separately for you. Not only is it impractical but at some stage you will give in to the temptation either at home or outside.
Don’t give up food you love to eat: Completely giving up alcohol, sweets, french-fries and red meat will make you extremely cranky, and people around you crankier. Try to balance healthy foods with the guilty meals. Ration it and allow yourself the occasional indulgence, so you don’t start eating your favourite food again with a vengeance.
Don’t obsess over the weighing scale: In the morning, pre and post-workout or even in the evening, the weighing scale will differ constantly. Don’t get discouraged, but rather stay focused on your body fat and inch loss. Let the clothes fit better. Let people notice — trust me they will. And it’s India, so they will tell you they noticed. That will be more satisfying and motivating than any number on any scale.
Take professional help: An individual plan is always more effective than a commercial-general-workout-diet plan. Nutrition is a science and so is healthy dieting. Remember, you are what you eat!