Weight Loss Tips

Getting Rid of Bad Weight Loss Habits

 

Bad Habits.

Everyone has them–even if they won’t admit it. After all, who wants to be labeled as

  • The nail-biter
  • The procrastinator
  • The knuckle-cracker
  • The interrupter
  • The swearer
  • Or even worse… the nose picker.

No one really likes having a bad habit; it’s like admitting a weakness or lack of self-control. But, we all have them and we all struggle giving them up–even if we really want to.

A United States government study found that while 70% of smokers would like to quit smoking, only six percent actually do.

That means 64% of the smokers you see out there are wandering around and wishing they could quit, but they just don’t know how.

Most bad habits are like that. They have a way of sticking around even when you wish they were gone.

Bad habits are especially damaging when it comes to your weight. Those bad habits that have a way of causing trouble and helping you slowly and steadily pack on the pounds. Luckily bad habits can be changed. It takes some serious work and effort, but it is possible. And when it comes to weight loss, it’s essential.

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bad habits memeBusting Bad Weight Loss Habits

Bad Habit #1: Snacking

lindsey with snack

Whether you’re a mindless muncher or a nighttime nibbler, those extra bites, licks and tastes you take throughout your day tend to add up pretty quickly. It’s easy to think that one bite, lick or taste isn’t a big deal, but when you’re biting, licking and tasting all day long, you can add up to 300 extra calories a day to your diet. That’s the equivalent of inviting an extra ½ pound to your waistline every week.

Tips and Tricks to Bust the Bad

Don’t get all crazy and decide to completely eliminate snacks from your diet. Instead, be mindful of what snacks you eat. Plan for them and make sure they will benefit your weight loss goals. Things like fruits, vegetables, nuts or a hunger-blocking snack bar are perfect choices to help fulfill your snacking needs while still keeping you on track with your diet goals.

Another helpful trick is to keep a food journal. If you track everything you eat, you are much less likely to give in to thoughtless snacking.

Sometimes you just need a distraction. Instead of snacking, try getting a big drink of water, brushing your teeth or chewing a piece of gum. Those choices can help keep snacking at bay and buy you a little time until your next meal.

Bad Habit #2: Fast Food

It’s cheap. It’s easy. And for most people, it’s a way of life. However, fast food is one of the worst habits to have when it comes to weight loss. For starters, the ingredients are frightening and the nutritional value is barely measurable. There’s really nothing good that comes from fast food if you’re trying to lose weight.

Tips and Tricks to Bust the Bad

So, how do you get rid of the addictive powers of fast food? The first and probably most important step is developing some serious willpower…quickly!

A good strategy is to keep your distance–take an out of sight, out of mind approach If you find it hard to resist fast food, don’t even drive by your favorite restaurant. Alter your driving routes if necessary to keep yourself as far away from it as possible.

Stashing healthy snacks in your car will help too. That way, when hunger pangs hit, you have something ready and waiting to help you fight off the cravings.

Bad Habit #3: Skipping Breakfast

Drinking idealshake

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

Everyone has heard it, but not everyone believes it. For most people, mornings are busy and fast paced. Skipping breakfast seems like an easy way to save some time. However, your body needs fuel in the morning to kick-start your metabolism, raise your blood sugar and set you on a better path to weight loss success.

What you eat for breakfast is an important element of your mornings too. Eating a nutritionally void breakfast (hello donuts and sugary cereal) isn’t going to help you meet your weight loss goals.

Tips and Tricks to Bust the Bad

Putting a little effort into planning breakfast will go a long way. If you plan what you’re going to eat the night before, it’s easy to fit breakfast into your morning routine.

If you like to cook, breakfast foods can be fun and easy to make–plus the cooking time is pretty quick. If you don’t like to cook there are still plenty of healthy breakfast choices out there for you.

When you’re eating for weight loss, it’s best to stick to nutritionally valuable foods like eggs, fruit, whole-grain cereals and meal-replacement shakes and smoothies.

If time really is an issue, try making a meal replacement shake your go-to breakfast. They’re quick. They’re easy. And they’ll speed up weight loss faster than a lot of other choices.

Bad Habit #5: Unhealthy Rewards

If the sugary treats or fatty foods start calling your name as soon as you finish a workout or reach a big milestone at work, you’re probably in trouble.

It’s easy to justify poor food choices when you look at them as a reward. But just because you did something good…or even something amazing, doesn’t mean that your favorite food indulgences suddenly become healthy.

Tips and Tricks to Bust the Bad

You need to find a new reward system for yourself. One that is more in line with your health and fitness goals. Don’t give up rewards altogether, instead, start finding non-food rewards that will make you just as happy and that will last a lot longer.

Need some ideas? Try buying new workout or work clothes. Add money to a vacation fund. Get a massage, new make-up, a pedicure or anything else that makes you feel good about yourself and last longer than a chew and a swallow.

Bad Habit #6:”Drinking” Problem

Reading that may have made you think twice about last night’s margarita. But in this case, a “drinking problem” isn’t specific to alcohol. Alcohol is just one of many “drinking problems” you need to be aware of. Soda, juice and any other drink that’s full of calories and empty on nutrition wreak havoc on your diet.

Not drinking enough water is also a diet “drinking problem” that many dieters tend to overlook. By not drinking enough H2O, you rob yourself of a lot of great weight loss benefits.

Tips and Tricks to Bust the Bad

For starters you need to change your mindset about water. Don’t think of it as a boring drink. Think of it as a weight loss challenge that’s easy to meet.

Buy a cute water bottle, set a goal for daily water intake, make sure you always have your water bottle handy and start sipping your way skinny.

Drinking a gallon of water a day has been linked to weight loss, so remembering that can be a huge motivator.

And, if you just can’t handle drinking a flavorless beverage, hope is not lost. Try adding your own flavor. IdealBoost is the perfect 5 calorie drink mix that will fill your water with fruity flavor, curb your appetite, and has added weight loss and fat blasting ingredients as well.

Bad Habit #7: Free Food

lindsey grocery shopping for veggies

What do kid’s school programs, office meetings, and wedding receptions have in common? They all come with a hefty helping of free food.

Then there’s the freebies that seem to appear out of nowhere at your favorite sit-down restaurants. Chips and salsa, baskets of bread, and even free birthday desserts.

All those free foods add up quickly in the calorie department and you definitely don’t need that!

Tips and Tricks to Bust the Bad

This is another place where willpower and a food journal can come in handy. Your food journal really does help you be mindful of what you put into your mouth. It may even give you the resolve needed to say no to those freebies that keep popping up.

Bad Habit #8: Emotional Eating

Sad. Stressed. Angry. Lonely. Frustrated.

Just a few of the many emotions that make you turn to food to fill an emotional void. But filling that void with food won’t last and once the “food high” wears off, you’ll find yourself back where you started and ready to begin the vicious cycle again.

Tips and Tricks to Bust the Bad

Breaking free of emotional eating can give a big boost to your weight loss goals but it’s easier said than done.

You need to come up with different coping strategies when emotions start to take over. You can substitute exercise for food. It doesn’t have to be anything crazy. Maybe a walk around the block, a few sit ups, push ups, burpees or anything else that gets your heart rate up and helps you take control over your emotions.

If exercise isn’t your thing, find a different stress reliever-like a tv show, a shower, or a quick phone call or text to a trusted friend.

It’s also a good idea to keep your go-to stress foods out of the house. If you eliminate access to your favorite comfort foods, you’re already one step closer to success.

Bad Habit #9: Not Getting Enough Sleep

Late nights and early mornings tend to wreak havoc on your weight. Your body needs 7-9 hours of sleep a night to help you recover from the previous day and prepare for the day ahead.

You need adequate amounts of sleep to help keep your hunger hormones in check. Even though you can function on too little of sleep doesn’t mean that you should. When you’re sleep deprived, your hormones will change and cause an increase in appetite.

Bottom line, if your body isn’t getting the proper amount of shut eye, your weight will suffer

Tips and Tricks to Bust the Bad

Quality sleep and weight loss are closely related. When you get enough sleep you have better appetite control and will see quicker weight loss results.

Go to bed at the same time every night and get up at the same time every morning… even on weekends.

Have a bedtime routine that you follow every night to help prepare your brain for bedtime. Ditch the afternoon/evening caffeine. Make exercise part of your day so that sleep comes easier at night.

Find a way to wind down without a screen in front of your face in the evening. Reading a book or writing in a journal are great ways to help your brain and body relax.

Bad Habit #10: Lack of Commitment

Lindsey workout in gym

If you’re like most people, you want to lose weight but you struggle to find the commitment to work to make it happen.

Being committed to a weight loss program is the only way you are ever going to see weight loss success.

If you’re not all in–mentally, physically and emotionally–you’re bound to fail before you even start.

Tips and Tricks to Bust the Bad

The best thing you can do for yourself is to find your why.

Confused?

Don’t be.

Finding your why simply means focusing on the real reason you want to lose weight. It’s changing your mindset from simply wanting to lose weight to understanding why you want to lose weight. And once you find your why, you also find your motivation.

And your commitment.

But having a why will only take you so far on your weight loss journey. You also need a plan. Having a specific plan to follow helps you know what and when to eat, when and how to exercise and when to let loose and have a little fun.

It’s also in your best interest to find a way to keep yourself accountable. Tell your friends and family about your goals and your plan. Have a set weekly weigh in. Be willing to share your results with others. Participate in a weight-loss challenge. Keep a food journal. Use a weight loss app. All of these are great ways to keep yourself focused on your why and committed to your plan.

Conclusion

Busting your bad weight loss habits will take a little bit of learning and a lot of self-control, but it will all be worth it in the end.

It’s important to remember that your bad habits are only habits. They’re not you and they’re not permanent unless you let them be.

If you really want to see success, pick one habit to work on at a time. Don’t overwhelm yourself by taking on too many life changes at a time. Weight loss doesn’t happen overnight and the same goes for diet and behavior changes. They happen slowly and steadily and that’s just the way it should be if you want to see permanent success.

 

 



Lindsey Mathews

Lindsey Mathews

Head Trainer


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