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10 year end weight loss tips

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There are 10 health, fitness and weight loss steps you need to take before year-end. There's no good reason to wait until January to get started improving your health and fitness!

If you have been struggling with weight gain this year, start making changes today.

Here are 10 steps to start taking now:

1. Every thing always starts with the "Big A." That's your attitude. Everything goes better for you when you are optimistic each day. A positive attitude does wonders for your health. And, you'll need a positive attitude to identify your fitness goals and determine why your fat loss and weight loss efforts have failed or succeeded in the past. You must get your motivation right for your exercise program to work for you.

2. Get used to drinking mainly water for beverages. This will help you limit sugary drinks (empty calories) that pack on belly fat. Your body is about two-thirds water. Drink water and unsweetened drinks (like tea) most of the time. It will help you eat less and help your body function better.

Drink about half your weight in water every day. So, if you weigh 150 pounds, drink about 75 ounces of water each day.

Water also helps your body flex muscles, remove wastes, cushion joints, carry nutrients and oxygen to your cells and helps convert food into energy (although water doesn't provide energy).

3. You need to know where you are fat (body composition: fat mass vs. muscle mass). Excess abdominal fat has been shown to be a precursor to diseases such as cancer. A trainer will check it for you for free as part of a fitness assessment.

4. When's the last time you had your body measurements taken (chest, arms, neck, hips, waist, etc.)? You must burn fat and inches to transform your body. This is part of your fitness assessment. You need a starting point to measure against.

5. What's your health history? When was your last physical exam? If you can't remember, that's too long! You might need a doctor's clearance before you can begin an exercise program.

6. What are your eating habits? Part of your assessment will look at what you are eating, how you are eating and changes that you need to make. You may need a pantry makeover, throw out the bad stuff and replace it with healthy stuff.

7. Have you had low back pain for some time? If so, you probably have postural problems that need to be corrected. And, yes, a postural assessment is part of your fitness assessment. Do you have other injuries? Start healing your body. You can't exercise if you're injured.

8. Had any muscle spasms or "knotted muscles" lately? Then, you need to improve your flexibility. The fitness assessment will tell you where your muscles are tight, lengthened or weak. You may need other therapy such as deep tissue massage.

9. Start walking 30 minutes every day. Staying active as much as possible is very under-rated. It helps relieve stress, improves bloodflow and improves breathing. Sedentary lifestyles are a huge problem in society. We’ve gone from being physically active laborers (such as farmers) to sit-down jobs. So, if you have a "sit-down" job, I would recommend that you move more. When you sit, your fat-burning enzymes basically shut down.

10. Try to stand as much as you can during the day and take walking breaks to activate your fat-burning enzymes. Any activity is good to go along with your regular workouts. All movement burns calories. Stand-up desk are becoming more popular.

Steps taken today means you will be further along the progress road when January comes.

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