If you want to lose one extra pound a week, this article will show you the best diet and exercise tricks to enhance weight loss.
You’ll be surprised how making small changes in your daily routine can help you lose weight faster. But don’t expect the results to be instant. It may take a few weeks to start losing more weight. So be patient and stay consistent.
Here are 16 actionable tips to lose one extra pound a week.
#1 Walk extra 5,000 steps each day
Most people don’t realize how effective walking is for weight loss. A study conducted in the UK found that people who walk for fitness, at a fast pace, weighed less than folks who did other exercises like cycling, running, and swimming.
It takes 10,000 steps to burn 500 calories. So walking extra 5,000 steps will help you burn an extra 250 calories each day. Remember the key to seeing great results with walking is to walk at a fast pace and increase steps day by day. Use a pedometer to help you track the number of steps you take each day. Learn how you can easily walk 10,000 steps a day.
#2 Drink 2-3 liters of water a day
Water plays a big role in weight loss, it increases satiety, boosts metabolism, and enhances weight loss. In fact, this study shows that subjects who drunk water before meals lost 44 percent more weight than those who didn’t, despite maintaining the same eating habits.
I may also note that most people confuse thirst for hunger, so always drink a glass of water whenever you’re hungry.
Using a water bottle will help you easily track the amount of water you drink each day. For instance, if you have a one-liter bottle, you only need to refill it once to drink 2 liters. I’ve realized that I always drink less water whenever I don’t have my water bottle.
#3 Eat less on the weekends
Research shows that we maintain healthy eating habits on weekdays only to sabotage them on the weekend. You’ll definitely lose more weight if you avoid junk food and overeating on the weekend. Oddly enough, I usually eat less on weekends than weekdays. And this has helped me stay lean year after year.
Idleness is the main reason folks overindulge in food on weekends. So find activities to keep you occupied, and avoid situations where you’re likely to eat junk food or drink alcohol.
#4 Eat high-fiber breakfast
The foods you eat for breakfast will influence your mood, energy levels and eating habits throughout the day. Eating sugary foods for breakfast will trigger cravings and weaken willpower. While high fiber foods will keep you full for long and prevent overeating. Aim for at least 7 grams of fiber in your breakfast meal. And 25 grams of fiber by the end of the day.
Some high fiber foods you can eat for breakfast include – avocado, beans, nuts, quinoa, leafy greens, oatmeal, smoothies, chia seeds, fruits, salads and so on. Eating these foods with high protein foods like eggs, chicken or greek yoghurt will keep you full, energetic and boost metabolism.
#5 Jump rope for 20 minutes
Jumping rope is a great way to boost metabolism, improve cardiovascular health, build muscular endurance, and burn fat. You can burn over 200 calories by jumping rope for 20 minutes.
Adding jump rope to your regular workout will help you shed more pounds. You just need to learn a few jump rope skills and you’re set. I prefer to jump rope first thing in the morning before my workout. Alternatively, you can take on the 21 day jump rope challenge.
#6 Substitute lemon water for sugary beverages and alcohol
One study says that sugar-sweetened beverages are the number one cause of child obesity, and this is true for adults as well.
Most people unknowingly consume lots of calories from sodas, juices, beers and so on. Additionally, sugary beverages trigger cravings which cause us to binge and overeat.
Eliminate all sugary beverages (including alcohol) from your diet for several weeks to see if it’ll make a difference on the scale. Whenever you want to drink juice, opt for a glass of water or hot lemon water. If can’t completely eliminate these drink from your diet, make sure you include them in your total daily calorie intake.
#7 Don’t eat out
Eating at restaurants is easy but it’ll make you gain weight fast. For one thing, restaurant foods are high in calories, sodium and sugar, than home-cooked meals. Even healthy foods are packed with excess calories since restaurants use a lot of (unhealthy) cooking oil to make their food tasty.
This study found that 30 percent of men who eat out are more likely to be overweight or obese. So you’re better off cooking your own meals.
If you don’t have time to cook each meal, use these meal prepping ideas to cook food that will last several days.
#8 Eat slowly
This is one of those tips which most people know but never apply. And it can actually help you eat less and lose more weight. As this study shows, fast eaters have 115 percent higher chance of being obese than slow eaters. And more studies show that slow eaters eat less.
It takes 20 minutes for the stomach to signal the brain that you’re full. Which means hunger hormones won’t pick up fullness in time if you eat too fast.
To eat slowly, you need to chew every bite thoroughly before swallowing. This study shows that the subjects reduced calorie intake after they chewed their food slower. Avoiding distractions like TV, mobile phone or music while eating will help you eat slowly.
#9 Serve more veggies
You can lose an extra pound a week without eating less food. You just need to eat more of the good foods. As you may know, veggies are nutrient dense, low in calories and very filling. So serve more veggies in your plate and serve less high-calorie foods like rice and pasta.
But realize that starchy veggies like potatoes are high in calories. This approach will only work when eating nonstarchy veggies. In fact, you don’t need to count calories if you use this trick.
#10 Exercise in the morning
Choosing to exercise in the morning is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I no longer skip workouts like I used to. But that’s not the only reason you should exercise in the morning. Exercising in the morning will keep you energetic throughout the day and keep your willpower intact. Secondly, research shows that morning workouts can help you sleep better. Plus, this study shows that exercising before breakfast can help you lose more weight.
Well, the best part about morning workouts is there are no distractions, and the body is fresh. So you’re more likely to get the most out of each workout.
#11 Ditch bread
Bread is loaded with sugar and lots of calories. A slice of bread has 80 calories and two slices of bread spikes blood sugar levels more than two tablespoons of sugar. Whole wheat bread isn’t safe either. It has just as many calories as white bread, but it’s more nutritious since it contains fiber.
Now, it may not be possible to avoid bread completely, I eat it sometimes. But you should eat less bread and find healthy substitute foods like sweet potatoes, corn tortillas, oatmeal, and so on.
#12 Think and act like a thin person
Even though genetics play a role in weight loss, it’s our habits that greatly determine whether we’re going to be overweight or thin. And it’s clear that thin people have different diet and exercise habits than overweight ones.
If you have a thin friend, copy their eating habits. And if they exercise 4 times a week, start doing the same thing. Thinking like a thin person will also change your attitude towards food and exercise.
#13 Use smaller plates
It’s clear that most people are bad at estimating calories. This was proven by a study which found that most of the subjects, including experts, underestimated the number of calories they consumed.
Well, another study found that the size of the plates led to inaccurate estimate of calories. Bigger plates led to underestimation of calories. The same study also found that people ate less when they used smaller plates, and it didn’t affect their fullness.
Serving your food in smaller plates will help eat less and lose more weight.
#14 Stop emotional eating
Do you eat when you’re stressed, bored, happy, or anxious? Turning to food for comfort when experiencing different emotions can hinder weight loss or cause weight gain. In fact, research considers this behavior one of the leading causes of obesity.
First find out the feelings that trigger emotional eating and then find other ways to deal with them. Frankly, this is not an easy thing to do, so consult with an eating disorder specialist.
#15 Step on the scale less frequently
For most folks, stepping on the scale leads to feelings of stress and sadness. These feelings can trigger emotional eating and ultimately cause weight gain.
Realize that weight fluctuates every day, so there’s no point of weighing yourself every day or several times a day. Sometimes weight increases due to water weight.
Weigh yourself once a week, at the same time, preferably in the morning, before eating anything. Friday morning is the best time to weigh yourself because it’ll motivate you to eat healthy over the weekend.
#16 Reduce sodium intake
Low sodium intake will help you lose weight but it doesn’t enhance fat loss. You see, the body retains excess fluids when we consume lots of sodium and this causes the weight to go up. Cutting sodium can even help you drop more than 3 pounds. But you’ll regain this weight when you increase sodium intake.
It’s recommended we consume not more than 2.5grams of sodium per day. And not more than 1.5grams per day if you’re over 40. Note that reducing sodium intake will also reduce risk of blood pressure, stroke and heart disease.
Avoid adding too much salt to food or eating processed foods since most of them contain sodium.
These tips are enough to help you lose one extra pound a week. In fact, you don’t have to apply all of them. Just pick the ones that fit your lifestyle and incorporate them in your daily routine.
But remember that weight loss isn’t always consistent. Expect to lose less weight as you get closer to your ideal weight.
Which strategies have helped you lose more than a pound a week?