With the holiday’s approaching, there are more and more challenges to losing weight. That doesn’t have to be your story though.

All you need a some go-to strategies that work for you. When the days get shorter and your to-do list gets longer, keep this list of 21 ways to lose weight in sight. 

15 Weight Loss Strategies

Make a plan – Know what you plan to eat and then…stick to  it.  Not having a  plan is the equivalent to planning to fail. We all know life will throw curve-balls in the form of office parties, impromptu cravings and more. But, the key is to anticipate those curves and plan for them as much as possible. Keep healthy snacks on hand and get to know your eating habits in order to effectively plan ahead.

Eat often – Before you get carried away… the trick is to eat the right foods for your body often. If you eat donuts often, you will not have a very reasonable chance of staying or getting thin. Eat every three hours to keep your metabolism working for (and not against) you. Additionally, if you eat more, you won’t experience that raging hunger that usually is the cause of most diet failures.

Stop after you sign – Sighing is a signal from your body that you’ve had enough to eat. Pay attention to when you sign during your meal and practice pushing your food away at that moment. 

Learn to love fruits and veggies – As much as we’d like each meal to consist of strictly meat and potatoes or pasta and cheese, making sure your meals are compromised of half fruits or veggies is a much better goal. Ideally, your breakfast should be half fruit, and your lunch and dinner, half veggies. Keep your snacks to a similar ratio as well.

Track it – Even if only for a few days, keep track of what you’re eating and write down the calorie count for each. Many people tend to uncover patterns of eating that they can change once they begin a serious diet plan. You can carry a small notebook or use apps like MyFitnessPal.com

Be honest – Did you workout three days or four? Did you take an extra cookie, or not? Being honest will help you track the ways you may be inconsistent in your diet and exercise plan. Follow a training plan (if you need help, consult with a personal trainer, like Jaylin, to help construct your unique training plan.) Having a plan will help you reach your goals faster and with mush more long-term success.

Don’t count on will power – Instead, avoid the temptation. If you keep your pantry loaded with chips, cookies, and other high calorie snacks, and then dare yourself NOT to eat them; then you are walking directly into the lion’s den. Instead, keep your kitchen stocked with healthy items to avoid temptation.

Dare to be the same – There’s some controversy as too how much variety you should include in your diet. However, many studies show that when it comes to weight loss, it’s often easier if you repeat the same few meals for each breakfast, lunch and dinner – less variety can lead to less temptation to over eat.

Sauce on the side – Beware of the hidden calories in sauces. Instead of dousing your meal with sauce, be more sparing. You can also make healthier substitutions like using tomato sauce instead of Alfredo on pasta; substitute hummus or mustard for mayo on a sandwich; and make your own salad dressing: Add a little ranch seasoning to plain Greek yogurt, or a dash of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

Be less nutty – Almonds, peanut butter and other whole nuts are a great source of protein, healthy fats and fiber. However serving size is two level tablespoons and people often end up eating three tablespoons or more. In foods that are packed full of nutrients (and calories), paying attention to the serving size is very important.

Fiber up – If you want to eat less and feel full, then aim for fiber. You will want to eat at least 25 grams of fiber a day. You’ll find a good source of fiber in beans, whole grains, fruits and vegetables. 

Stay safe at home – Don’t bring tempting foods into your home. It’s much easier to win the battle at the grocery store than in your kitchen, especially late at night, when you’re feeling hungry tired or just bored.

Slow down – Studies show that when you slow down your eating you give your mind a chance to process that your body is full. The best way to do this is to decrease the amount of distraction you have while eating: no computer, no television, no newspaper. If you do so, you’ll become aware of every bite and take it slower.

Do it yourself – Cook for yourself. It may be tempting to just grab something from a restaurant but doing so might be quick but it will almost definitely be loaded with calories. It’s in your best interests to control what you eat, right down to the whole-food ingredients that are put into every dish. Sure, you’ll still have room in your diet to go out and grab a bite to eat, but by cutting down on that practice you will save yourself some money and calories.

Move, move, move! The more your move and workout, the more calories you will burn. That’s the fun part, right? Well… if you’re not having fun with your workouts, come play with us at boot camp and Zumba. Fun is our motto!