Losing weight is like balancing your bank account or savings. If you keep spending money and do not top up your account, your savings will go down. Likewise, if you burn off calories with extra exercise and do not take in too many calories by sticking to a low sugar, low fat diet, your weight will go down. It’s simple mathematics!
Diet alone will not work. You need a combination of diet and exercise to get good results. Check your weight weekly to monitor your results. Be patient. Have a six-month plan and then review and re evaluate.
Get help. Ask family, friends and colleagues to help by not offering you food treats, going for a walk with you, joining you in the gym or in some other strenuous physical activity. Join active clubs such as hill walking, jogging, cycling, dancing, aerobics, zumba, etc. Try to make your exercise sessions as sociable and as fun as possible.
Weight Watchers is in every town in Ireland and has been helping people to lose weight for over forty years. They give sound, sensible advice, together with a targeted exercise program and regular weigh-ins to help keep you motivated. They have special groups for men, women and children. You can phone the following free phone number to find out where your local Weight Watchers Clinic is held –
Ph: 1850 234 123.
Choose ’’low fat and low sugar’’ in every food, such as milk, spreads, cheese, yoghurts, cereals, mayonnaise, etc. Never add sugar to tea, coffee, cereals, etc. Choose small portions of lean fresh meat, chicken, and fish and grill everything. Throw away the frying pan and deep fat fryer.
Avoid junk foods such as burgers, chips, crisps, pizzas, TV dinners, chocolates, sweets, etc. Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables as snacks. Avoid scones; they are loaded with butter.
Do not drink fizzy drinks. Drink plenty of water instead. Sparkling water with ice and a quarter of lemon or lime is tasty and refreshing. If you are stuck (eg. in the pub, in a friends house), have a diet drink such diet coke or diet 7up or an isotonic drink such as Lucozade Sport or Club Sport or have a half a glass of fruit juice mixed with equal parts of water.
Use a small plate when putting out your dinner. Eat regular meals. (Breakfast, dinner and evening meal).
Aim to get thirty minutes of strenuous physical exercise everyday or three and a half hours a week. If you miss an exercise session on one day do twice as much the next. If you are busy during the week, do exercise sessions over the weekend to make up your three and a half hours per week. Good exercise includes brisk walking, jogging, cycling, swimming, rowing, tennis, football, etc. Try walking to work and to the shops. Take the stairs instead of the lift. Exercise is also one of the best stress busters. You should aim to increase your exercise gradually up to an hour a day (seven hours a week). Please remember that the first thirty minutes will burn off carbohydrates (sugar) and in the second thirty minutes of continuous exercise you burn off fat.
Beware of wine, beer, stout and cider as they are loaded with calories. Also, alcohol can lower your resolve and lead you into temptation such as going to the chipper on your way home from the pub! Keep alcohol to a minimum. Choose low calorie drinks such as a spirit with a low calorie mixer such as slim line tonic or diet coke. Skip a round or have some water every second round if you are out with friends.
If you feel you deserve a reward, try to avoid food treats. Buy yourself a new t-shirt, a good book or a DVD or plan a trip to the cinema, the theatre or a football game. If you are stressed try not to comfort eat but exercise instead.
Try and change your eating habits and your commitment to exercise for life, rather than for a few weeks or months.
Copyright © Dr. David Buckley