The festive season is traditionally a time of eating, drinking and making merry, but many of us don’t stop to consider the havoc we wreak on our bodies by overindulging. The British Dietetic Association reports that the average person will eat over 6,000 kcals on Christmas day, and other studies have suggested that people can gain a whopping 5lbs over the Christmas period. And of course, now January has hit, the regret sets in and we want to lose all those extra pounds, but you might not want to fork out the pennies for an expensive gym. However, all is not lost! There are a few simple things you can do to help shift the extra weight – just follow our top 5 tips. Plus, here’s how you can earn extra money on the side to fund exercise classes or sports equipment!
1) Get out and move!
Recent research has suggested that spending too much time sitting down is worse for you than smoking, so it’s vital that you spend plenty of time being active. You should aim to move your body for at least two hours over the course of each week. Mixing up how you get a sweat on will help keep you motivated and interested, whether you choose a brisk walk, a refreshing swim or a fun team game like Ultimate Frisbee. Combining exercise with nature is a wonderful experience, so try getting out into a beautiful outdoor place you have access too, be it park, forest or beach.
2) Buddy up
January is the time of year when you’re more likely to have a few pounds to lose, yet it’s one of the hardest times to motivate yourself to get outside and exercise! It’s cold, dark and watching a film under a duvet will be ten times more tempting. Getting a mate to become your exercise buddy is a fab idea as you will be more likely to keep up your exercise regime because you won’t want to let them down. If you commit to your ‘fitness dates’ with the same enthusiasm you would a romantic date, or other important meetings, you’ll find the weight falling off in no time.
3) Make food your friend, not your enemy
The simplest and healthiest way to lose weight is to eat right, rather than eat less.
There are so many faddy diets in the media these days making claims such as you should only eat 500 calories per day, but with more people than ever before being diagnosed with eating disorders, information such as this is not only misleading but can also be harmful. Eating too little just deprives you of energy and stops you enjoying life to the full, whilst taking extreme measures such as cutting out whole food groups (such as carbs and fat) can lead to an unbalanced and unhealthy diet.
If you think you’re suffering from eating disorders, then please contact Beat today for free support services.
Instead of focusing on calories, eat a moderate amount of carbs, fat, proteins and fibre, and try to cut right back on sugar and alcohol. However, don’t deprive yourself so much that you’re miserable: if you want the cookie, eat the cookie – just don’t stuff down the whole box! Check out the NHS Choices website for loads of great information on this!
4) Stay hydrated!
You may think water has little to do with your weight, but staying hydrated will definitely help you lose your love handles according to Women’s Health Magazine.
Many people confuse thirst with hunger, as these processes are regulated from the same part of the brain, and will reach for a snack before they reach for a glass of water, so always drink something first and wait to see if that satisfies you before eating. You should aim to drink 1.5 litres of water a day: not only will it curb cravings but it will work miracles for your skin and also help your body function healthily.
5) Get some serious shut-eye
Unlikely as it might sound, numerous studies have shown that sleep plays a vital part in weight loss. When you don’t sleep enough your body produces hormones that stimulates hunger and slows down your metabolism, meaning you eat more calories and burn less. You should aim for 7-8 hours of quality sleep every night and develop good ‘sleep hygiene’ by going to bed and getting up at the same time every day.
We hope that this inspires you to get healthier for 2017 and to try something new without splashing the cash!
We hope that this inspires you to get healthier for 2017 and to try something new without splashing the cash! If you’re looking to try something new and earn extra money on the side, then why not sign up to our panel to take part in market research?