For as long as I can remember, I’ve always struggled to lose a few pounds. Maybe it’s because I had three children, or I have a weakness for pizza. Whatever the reason is, my body wants to hang on to these extra pounds.
The truth is, losing weight isn’t about how many children you have or what type of food you like to indulge in on the weekends. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that to lose weight, you need to reduce the number of calories you consume and increase the number of calories you burn. Sounds easy, right? It’s not! Experts say the reason those last few pounds are harder to lose is because when you don’t have much to lose, you need to work harder. The challenge I (and many others) face is figuring how to do that and keep the weight off for good.
Fortunately, there are a few tips that can help you lose those last 5 pounds and maintain that success for years to come.
Tip No. 1: Eat Breakfast Every Day.
Mornings at my house are chaotic. Getting everyone up and ready on time is a pretty big feat. I’m lucky if I remember to grab a banana on my way out the door. But, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), eating breakfast is a common trait among people who have lost weight and kept it off. Additionally, eating breakfast may help you avoid getting too hungry and then overeating later in the day. Be sure to plan accordingly so you can fuel up on a balanced breakfast that includes plenty of protein. Some good options to keep you full until your midmorning snack or lunch include steel-cut oatmeal and whole-wheat toast topped with peanut butter. An IsaLean® Shake or IsaLean Bar are also great choices, especially when you need to eat your breakfast on the go.
Tip No. 2: Drink Plenty of Water.
When you drink water, it not only hydrates your body but also improves your digestive system and reduces your appetite. Many times, people think they are hungry when they are just thirsty. Depending on your size and activity level, experts recommend you aim to drink about half an ounce of water for every pound you weigh. We all know that water can get boring after a while. So, to mix it up, consider adding AMPEDHydrate, available in refreshing flavors like Lemon Lime and Juicy Orange, to your water bottle that not only tastes great but also helps replenish nutrients lost during exercise.
Tip No. 3: Evaluate Your Exercise Regimen.
Your physical activity level may be what’s preventing you from losing weight. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to exercise as much as you may think. Sometimes, exercising too much could prevent you from dropping those last few pounds. People who have lost weight and kept it off typically engage in 60 to 90 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity most days of the week while not exceeding calorie needs, according to the CDC. Just be sure to take a break in between workouts, and plan some rest days.
Tip No. 4: Snack Smartly.
Eating snacks in between meals can help satisfy your appetite. But, choose your snacks wisely. Processed snacks, while convenient, are often filled with empty calories and excessive amounts of carbohydrates, which eventually turn into sugar and can cause you to gain weight. Instead, opt for more nutritious options like whole fruits, fresh-cut veggies, low-fat Greek yogurt, or a handful of almonds. When you’re short on time, reach for a bag of Whey Thins or Harvest Thins. These savory, delicious protein-packed snacks are 100 calories and guaranteed to satisfy cravings.
Tip No. 5: Stay Motivated.
One of the biggest hurdles many people face when trying to lose weight is maintaining the momentum. For me, weekends are the most challenging, because they are usually filled with birthday parties (cake!) and eating out with family and friends (pizza and wine!). It’s easy to derail from well-intended plans and veer off track. Surround yourself with people who will not only provide encouragement and support but also hold you accountable, so you can reach your goals.
Finally, try not to be so hard on yourself. Some days, I need to remind myself that my body, while nowhere near perfect, is healthy and strong, and that is something to celebrate.