Small Changes to Jumpstart Your Weight Loss Journey
If you want to lose weight but don’t know where to begin, making these small changes will go a long way.
Losing weight can mean different things to different people. For some, it’s just a matter of saying no to dessert when eating out, while for others, particularly those who struggle with obesity, it involves changing many aspects of their lifestyle.
If you belong to the latter group, it’s natural to feel like your weight loss journey is going to be long and strenuous. We want to help you get rid of this misconception. Sustained weight loss, before or after bariatric surgery, is made up of a series of small changes that can have a huge impact.
Start with these five small lifestyle changes to jumpstart your weight loss journey.
1. Don’t Drink Your Calories
Many people don’t realize how much sugar goes into sodas, iced teas, sports drinks, and fruit juices. A frappuccino or coffee with a lot of flavored syrups and whipped cream can easily top 200 to 300 calories, and those empty calories aren’t doing anything to help you feel full or fuel your body.
Make water the number one liquid in your life and drink 48 to 64 ounces each day. Carry a water bottle with you at all times so you won’t be tempted to cool down with a soda. This simple swap helps curb your appetite, eliminate a lot of extra calories, and even give your skin a healthy glow.
2. Get More Sleep
Getting enough sleep is essential for weight loss. Your cortisol levels rise when you don’t get enough sleep, and high cortisol levels have been linked to increased junk food cravings. Your body actually tries to fight off excess cortisol by eating foods that are carbohydrate-rich and high in fat. Also, you’re less likely to squeeze that workout in after work if all you can think about is how tired you are.
Experts recommend getting at least seven hours of sleep each night. You should try to go to bed and wake up at the same time each day (even the weekends!) to establish a healthy sleep schedule.
3. Move More
Obesity can limit your mobility and make it harder to exercise due to joint pain, poor cardiovascular health, and fatigue. The good news is that getting more active and making small changes in this area can have some of the biggest returns. In fact, just walking has been proven to reduce the risk of heart disease, lower blood sugar, and extend your life.
The key to consistently logging at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise each day is mixing up your routine and choosing activities you enjoy. You don’t have to run or struggle through a spin class if you don’t want to. There are many different ways to stay active — dancing, swimming, yoga, outdoor sports — and it’ll be easier to stick to a routine if you find something you love doing.
4. Eat Mindfully
Mindful eating is a weight loss strategy that helps you lose weight by teaching you how to slow down and truly experience the food you eat instead of just gobbling it down. When you eat mindfully, you set aside time to do nothing but eat, notice and appreciate each bite, and take stock of your emotions as you eat. This keeps you from mindlessly overeating and helps you learn how to recognize when you’re actually full.
5. Lean into Meal Prep
When you start transitioning to a healthier diet, it can be challenging to remember what you should eat or teach yourself how to cook these new foods. This is where meal prep comes in. If you prepare the week’s lunches in advance, that’s one less thing you have to think about during the day and you won’t have to worry about whether or not the lunch you have in front of you is healthy or not. You’ve already made a healthy recipe and set reasonable portions, so all you have to do is take it out of the refrigerator and eat! By taking the guesswork out of your meals, you’re more likely to stick to your new regimen.
Start Your Journey With Us!
At Long Island Laparoscopic Doctors, we know that the journey to a healthier, happier you begins with a single step. For more tips and tricks that will boost your chances of weight loss success before and after bariatric surgery, set up a consultation with one of our weight loss experts. Contact us today!