Losing weight is no easy feat, and I ought to know. Sure, you may have heard stories about people who have lost dozens of pounds simply switching to diet soda or walking a few minutes each day. And who knows – and maybe they’re all true – but my guess is that it took changing several “little habits” to create the big change.
I like to call that habit-stacking, and the truth is that my personal weight loss experience seems to prove the whole habit-stacking theory.
What is habit stacking?
In the case of losing weight, this can increase your metabolism over time.
I can honestly tell you that it worked for me. I lost 100 pounds that way, and I’m still working on getting those last few off as I type this.
The truth is that weight loss is always quicker and easier if you can increase your metabolic rate and burn more calories. Here are seven ways you can do just that.
Get Your Groove On (Easily) By Just Moving More
Sedentary people burn about one-third less calories per day. Just moving – and taking every opportunity to move – can make quite a dramatic difference to the amount of calories you burn in one day.
Believe it or not, small movements will add up over time to lots of calories. The trick is to keep moving throughout your day. Write the word ‘move’ on post-it notes and put them in places you’ll notice them when you’re sitting still. Then, take every opportunity to move – here are a few ideas for burning extra calories.
- Tap your feet
- Swing your legs
- Stand up and stretch
- Move your head from side to side
- Change position
- Wriggle and fidget
- Pace up and down
- Use the restroom upstairs
- Park in the furthest corner of the parking lot
- Stand up when you’re on the phone and step from side to side
- Clench and release your muscles
Eat Small Portions, and Do This Often
Evidence suggests that eating small meals every two to four hours will keep your metabolism burning faster than larger, less frequent meals. When you eat small amounts often your body is constantly working to digest and absorb food which requires energy.
Eat Some Fat (Yeah, I said FAT)
If you want feel good and keep the fat off you need to first put it in. Fat not only tastes good our bodies need it to work efficiently. By consuming several servings of ‘healthy’ fats every day you will actually increase your calorie burning potential. Try incorporating fats like Flaxseed oil, hempseed oil, olive oil, avocados, salmon, albacore tuna, nuts and seeds into your diet daily.
Drink Cold Water
Evidence shows that your body might expend more calories trying to raise cold water to the temperature of your body then hot beverages. And overall being well hydrated will help your body’s metabolic processes burn quicker.
Exercise (with weights)
Training with weights boosts your metabolism in a number of ways. By lifting weights you will build muscle tissue. And muscle tissue is metabolically active, so it requires calories even when at rest and so it helps to increase fat-burning enzymes in your body.
Spice up your life (with spicy foods!)
Eating hot spices might speed up your metabolism. Just half a teaspoon of cinnamon per day can help boost metabolism and keep blood sugar levels in check. Can’t stand the thought of cinnamon in your morning cup of coffee? Spice up with cayenne, crushed red pepper or wasabi.
Eat More Protein
Protein requires a more complex chemical breakdown by your body in order to be digested and used as fuel. For example, 100 calories of protein may take up to 30 calories to process. Protein also takes longer to digest and helps to stabilize blood sugar for longer periods of time and this can help you to not overeat later in the day. Eat a portion of protein at every meal and as part of your snacks and you will increase the total number of calories you burn each day.
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Angela Atkinson is a Certified Life Coach and the author of more than 20 books on narcissism, narcissistic abuse recovery and related topics. A recognized expert on narcissism and narcissistic personality disorder who has studied and written extensively on narcissistic relationships since 2006, Atkinson was inspired to begin her work as a result of having survived toxic relationships of her own.
Atkinson offers trauma-informed coaching and has certifications in life coaching, level 2 therapeutic model, CBT coaching, integrative wellness coaching, and NLP. She is a certified trauma support coach and certified family trauma professional. She also has a professional PTSD counseling certification. Her mission is to help those who have experienced the emotional and mental devastation that comes with narcissistic abuse in these incredibly toxic relationships to (re)discover their true selves, stop the gaslighting and manipulation and move forward into their genuine desires – into a life that is exactly what they choose for themselves.
Along with her solution-focused life coaching experience, Atkinson’s previous career in journalism and research helps her to offer both accurate and understandable information for survivors of abuse in a simple-to-understand way that helps to increase awareness in the narcissistic abuse recovery community. Atkinson founded QueenBeeing.com Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support, the SPANily Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support Groups and the Life Makeover Academy. In her life coaching practice, Atkinson’s clients enjoy her personalized approach that allows and encourages them to become the best possible versions of themselves and to succeed in doing what they love most. She offers individual and group coaching for victims and survivors of narcissistic abuse at NarcissisticAbuseRecovery.Online and NarcissismSupportCoach.com.