Image by: AberroCreative
By Robert Spencer
It’s summer which means that everyone out there showing off their bodies on the beach. Except for maybe you. Do you head out to the beach in a shirt and board shorts instead of going without (your shirt)? Perhaps you need to lose a few pounds? Believe me, we’ve all been there.
If you need to shed a little bit of extra weight, check out this list of things that you can do to slim down. If you only need to lose a couple of pounds, you should be able to do it easily by following the tips listed but if you want to lose a little more than that, this will get you on the right track for the fall.
#1) Skip the Cinnamon Toast Crunch
When you eat breakfast (and you should be eating breakfast every day), grab lots of protein and healthy fats. Instead of having a couple donuts or a chocolate chip muffin, have some scrambled eggs and sausage links. If you don’t mind turkey sausage, grab some of that instead. The protein will make you feel fuller. If you still find that you’re hungry after that, add some more fiber to your mornings.
However, the trick to adding fiber is that you should slowly work it into your diet or it will create some, ahem, uncomfortable dietary issues.
#2) Skimp on the Starches
The general rule when it comes to starches and carbohydrates are, if it is white – you should probably stay away from it. Of course, that’s not always true. When it comes to vegetables, stay away from white potatoes but everything else that is both a vegetable and white are good. Refined sugars, pasta, white bread, etc.
However, you can go from white potatoes to sweet potatoes. Instead of white pasta, have whole wheat pasta. You just have to watch your serving sizes.
#3) Lift Weights
Unfortunately, you have to work out. While you don’t necessarily have to go to the gym, building muscle will help increase your metabolism. You’ll even burn calories after your workout is over – double bonus. You can get some free weights at home but I always suggest having someone spot you. You can, however, work with resistance instead. For example, get a rowing machine.
#4) Oh, and Alcohol
A glass of wine every now and then is pretty good for your heart. Low carb beer is pretty good too. Beer in general has a bunch of carbs in it so you’re going to want to avoid it for the most part.
The easiest way to drop a few pounds is to drop your carb intake. The problem with this is that the Atkins diet ruined the concept by making it into a fad diet and over-dramatizing the rules. Don’t eliminate all of your carbohydrates. Just stick to a low-carb diet and you should start seeing a difference in only a few weeks.
You have to commit to this lifestyle change though. Sure, every now and then you can splurge but don’t make it a habit and learn to curb your cravings by eating healthy. Fill the rest of your plate with vegetables. They make a great filler for dinner and will keep you from gaining weight. You may think that it sounds boring but you can prepare veggies in different ways to help you vary your diet.
#6) Do Some Sprints
You have to do a little more than hit the weights (as mentioned before) to lose weight. You’ll also need a healthy cardiovascular system to burn excess body fat. In order to work your cardiovascular system, try to do a bit of sprinting. Sprinting uses muscles that you’re not really used to using. In order to use those muscles you also have to use more energy. That makes your body play catch-up after the workout is over. That increases your metabolism also. Sweet.
Now it’s your turn. When you need to shed a couple pounds really quick, what tricks or tips do you follow? What tips do you have for guys who need to lose a little more than a couple pounds? Exercise and healthy eating habits go hand in hand. What do you do when you feel like you’re falling into bad habits with one or the other? We’d love to hear what you have to say. Share your thoughts, ideas, and questions in the comment section below.