Athletes & Celebrities

Living Lean: Easy Lifestyle Tweaks to Burn More Fat, Part IV

IFBB Pro Noora Kuusivuori shares 13 easy fat-boosting strategies to add to your daily routine.

If you are trying to make changes in your health and your body it doesn't matter where you start, it only matters that you start. It can be one small but smart change at a time and you'll be moving in the right direction. When you are ready for more changes that you can maintain in your lifestyle, pick another one that works for you.

Cycle Your Calories
Calorie cycling is another effective dieting strategy. It can help you stick to an otherwise gruelling diet. When you stick to a low calorie intake for a long period of time, your body will eventually adapt to that calorie intake by slowing down your metabolism. Add a few higher calorie days to your low calorie days to keep things going and make the diet enjoyable. Always remember, the only nutrition plan that works is the one you stick with.

Switch Up Your Training
Getting bored with the same workout is one of the biggest reasons people fall off training entirely. To prevent boredom, make a new workout change each week. This doesn't mean you have to consistently dive outside your comfort zone. The change can be simple. Consider trying out a new group fitness class or switch up your cardio from interval sprints to uphill running. In addition to hitting refresh on your routine on repeat, integrating change into your workout will subject your body to new stimulus and activate different muscles.

Start With Soup
Broth based soups are excellent for hunger control and for decreasing your total calorie consumption. Make soup an appetizer before any big meal. If it's loaded with vegetables, it'll also help increase your total daily fiber and antioxidant intake; all great things for a fat loss dieter.

Try a New Vegetable Each Week
Just as with workouts, dietary boredom is a big reason many people fall off a healthy diet. To overcome this, try adding one new vegetable each week. You'll add new flavors, textures, and tastes to a meal while keeping your calorie count down and nutrient intake high. Use seasonal favorites and turn them into flavorful sides. Or get creative with things like spaghetti squash and use them as healthy carb replacements.

Predict Potential Roadblocks
Anticipating potential pitfalls before they happen will help you in pushing thru hard times. If you can identify any potential roadblocks that might stand in your way, you can do a better job creating a game plan to help you succeed. Do you tend to fall off your workouts during the winter months? Get a workout partner to push you on and keep you accountable. Know you're not a morning person? Prep breakfast the night before for an easy, nutritious grab and go meal.

Rate Your Hunger
Before you eat, always take a moment to rate your hunger. Before you rummage through the fridge, ask yourself if you're really hungry or if you're just channelling another emotion into a craving for food whether it's boredom, sadness, happiness, etc. Taking this intermediate step can mean the difference between binge eating and mindful mealtime.

Eat More Beans
When it comes to weight loss, beans are boss. Beans are a slow-digesting source of complex carbohydrates that are high in fiber, rich in protein, and guaranteed to keep you full.

Skip the Scale
If you want faster fat loss success, ditch the scale. Using a scale is a fast way to get frustrated at daily fluctuations in water weigh which are bound to occur. Instead of relying on wavering numbers, opt for a body fat test. Options like the BodPod and underwater testing are far more effective ways to measure your progress.

Go Gluten Free
You may not have been diagnosed with gluten sensitivity or allergy but cutting it out of your diet could help you eliminate some of the foods in your diet that typically cause trouble. Gluten-free diets are high in protein and healthy fats. Fruits and vegetables are stressed as a top priority, so you'll have a healthy intake of fiber and antioxidants. Just don't create a full menu of gluten-free baked goods.

Read Restaurant Menus Online
Before ordering in a restaurant, check the menu online. Restaurants often post nutritional stats so you can find the healthiest options ahead of time. If you don't have access to the nutritional content, the basics will keep you on track: skip creamy dressings, cream based sauces, fast carbs, and sugary treats.

Ditch Alcohol
The minute you put alcohol in your system is the minute fat burning comes to a halt. Not only is alcohol packed with empty calories, but it inhibits fat burning hormones. If you want to see optimal results, it's vital that you keep alcohol out of the picture as much as possible. Doing so will help keep you leaner and help minimize recovery time between workouts.

Blast Beats While You Exercise
Want a fast and easy way to crank up the intensity of your workout sessions? Pick up the pace by pounding some tunes. Upbeat music has been shown to increase the intensity and speed of your workout. Try tuning in to burn more calories both during—and after—your exercise session.

Smell (And Sip On) Peppermint Tea
The scent of peppermint can have appetite-reducing properties, so take a big whiff of a hot cup of peppermint tea when you crave dessert. Sugar-free peppermint gum can also help, though tea is significantly more awesome.

Good luck and if you have a lifestyle change success story, please share it for others to see. The best motivation is to see others who have done and succeeded at what you are aiming for.

Follow me on:
Twitter: @NooraKuusivuori
Instagram: @NooraKuusivuori
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/noora.kuusivuori

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