Hard to believe summer is coming to an end! Fall officially starts on September 22nd this year. For those individuals who find a sense of relief with bikini-season wrapping up - stress no more - consider this your cheat sheet to not only looking, but feeling your absolute best.
No more slacking off with the mindset you'll be able to hide those extra pounds with over-sized sweaters the next few months. Achieve and maintain the body you are happy with and then flatter it with the fashion trends of the season, rather than knowing you can hide it simply because the season has changed!
Here are my Top 10 tips to Flatter your Figure for Fall:
- Although you’ve likely heard this many times before, skipping meals is a major DON’T! Doing so causes your body to go into “starvation mode.” This essentially means your body will store what you consume (hence why it is also referred to as “fat-storing” mode). Think of your body as a machine. It needs FUEL in order to work at maximum efficiency. When you deprive it of what is necessary – you make it harder (on yourself!) to burn calories.
- Use UTENSILS! In a recent study, those individuals who chose to use their hands while eating consumed an average of 27 more calories per minute compared to those who chose to use utensils (go ahead and cut your pizza-really)!
- Boost your metabolism by doing simply things such as drinking ice-cold water before a workout, incorporating chili peppers into your diet, or having a cup of green tea when the afternoon slump hits.
- When in doubt, TAKE THE STAIRS! You'd be surprised how little changes (such as the one mentioned) can make big differences.
- Stop thinking CARDIO when it comes to weight-loss. I cannot stress the importance of STRENGTH TRAINING! Muscle, at rest, burns more calories than fat does. In other words, the more muscle mass you have, the more calories you will burn by doing NOTHING. This doesn't mean you have to lift heavily, either. Start incorporating both arm and leg exercises (alternating days you work each muscle group) with light (5-7 pound) weights.
- When weights, machines, or other factors are not accessible to your normal workout routine, remember how well calisthenics has always worked. Yes, the classic pushup, sit-up, jumping jack, lunge, etc. are always effective and there is absolutely no excuse to not set aside 15 minutes a day to doing them.
- Never eat until you feel FULL! This might be the most important step to achieving your weight loss goals. Savor every bite. Try holding a conversation when eating, if in the company of others. Have a few bites and then take mini-breaks in between. In other words, TAKE YOUR TIME!
- Substitute cinnamon for sugar, olive oil for butter, garlic (or an herb of your liking) for salt, etc. Finding healthier alternatives is key! You will be surprised just how satisfied you will feel replacing the less-healthy options. Be creative...think outside the box!
- Weigh yourself! Although this is controversial to many, I find it to be extremely effective when tracking one's progress. Keep a journal and assess when you need to cut-back and also when you have the option to even slack-off!
- PROTEIN! This has always proven successful when keeping any extra pounds off. However, you have to find what works for YOU. (Keep in mind protein doesn't just mean red meat. Nuts, tofu, etc. are high in protein.) This all has to be a LIFESTYLE change, not just a quick-fix to feeling and looking good.
...and remember, never be too hard on yourself! Acknowledge when you have gotten off track and then get on with it!