Weight loss challenge – Boom to Bust!Weight loss challenges are all the rage these days! Celebrities recommend or talk about different weight loss challenges, citing them as the key to their amazing bodies. Everyone wants something that will help them to lose weight quickly, so they jump on “30 Day” or “60 Day” challenges that offer to help them drop pounds in a set timeframe. But is it healthy to do a weight loss challenge? Here’s what you need to know…
The Terrible Truth of Weight Loss ChallengesHere’s something no one told you about weight loss challenges: they’re only temporarily effective!
Weight loss challenges are only temporarily effective! Use the challenge to change your lifestyle.Click to Tweet Weight loss challenges only last a short amount of time, usually anywhere from 15 to 60 days. During these days, you’re high on the feeling of being healthy, exercising, and losing weight. You shed those pounds and feel like a million bucks! Then Day 61 rolls around, and Day 62, and so on. You’re so used to the “high” that you look for ways to sustain it. Sadly, that sort of feeling cannot be sustained long-term. Yes, you can lose 15 pounds in a 30-day challenge, or more–depending on the intensity of the challenge. But to keep that up for the long term isn’t usually possible. By the time Day 75, 80, or 100 rolls around, you’re back to your old habits and feeling blue because you’ve regained a lot of weight. Weight loss is only effective if it’s MAINTAINED for the long term. You have to do more than just be healthy for 30 to 60 days–it has to be for the rest of your life. The key to effective weight loss is to use the challenge to help you transform your lifestyle.
Components of a Healthy Weight Loss ChallengeIf you are going on a weight loss or fat burning challenge, use it as an opportunity to learn a new way of life. If you can transform your lifestyle, diet habits, and exercise habits as a result of the challenge, it will work. Here is what every healthy weight loss challenge (and every healthy life!) should include:
Water intake increaseWater is one of the most important components of a healthy weight loss challenge, as well as a healthy life. Water helps to get rid of toxins, promotes fat burning, reduces excess water storage, and keeps you going through your workout. You should be consuming at least 3 or 4 quarts of water per day in order to be healthy!
Sugar intake reductionTo have a healthy body and a healthy life, you’re going to HAVE to cut sugar. Sugar increases body fat, slows your metabolism, and can even lead to serious health problems. Artificial sugars aren’t any better–they’re often worse for you, in fact! A healthy weight loss diet will force you to cut sugar (both natural and refined), and it’s a habit you’d do well to continue for the rest of your life.
Exercise increaseOne MAJOR component of every weight loss challenge is exercise. Without exercise, you’re never going to burn fat. You can lose weight by eating less, but the weight you will have lost will be muscle mass. To get rid of fat, you need to:
- Lift weights at least 3 to 4 times per week. Work all the muscles in your body no less than once per week. Focus on your core!
- Perform cardiovascular exercise. This includes running, cycling, jogging, or stair-climbing. The most effective type of exercise for fat-burning is High Intensity Interval Training, also known as Sprint Training.
Healthy dietWhat does a healthy diet include?
- Less carbs. Unhealthy carbs (white rice, bread, and flour, potatoes, and pasta) will likely be cut from your diet, but you will likely limit intake of even healthy carbs (fruit, whole grains, oats, etc.).
- More healthy fats. You’ll limit saturated fats and cut trans fats from your diet, but most weight loss challenges promote the consumption of healthy unsaturated fats–which come from coconuts, olive oil, avocados, nuts, and fish.
- More protein. Protein is the key ingredient to your weight loss! Protein helps you to build muscle, promotes fat burning, and helps you to fill up between meals. If your goal is to burn fat and get in shape, you need to add a lot of protein to your life. You can get protein from natural sources (such as chicken, beef, eggs, fish, or legumes), or you can take protein powder to get a concentrated dose of amino acids. Either way, you NEED more protein!