to the team! on beginning your journey to a new and healthy lifestyle!
Tips to help get you started:
Remember this is NOT a DIET. It's a LIFESTYLE CHANGE. That's why it works. Why you'll shed the pounds and keep them off and become healthier overall.
Trackers! Use them!
MEASURE your food portions (at least at first) and TRACK ALL FOODS! Try your best to stay within your calorie range. Also, keep tabs on your macronutrients, vitamins, minerals, etc. Make sure your diet is balanced and nutritious!
EXERCISE! This means cardio and strength training! Cardio means getting your heart rate up about 70% above it's normal resting rate. Use a heart rate monitor if you have one (and/or if it's financially an option for you) or use the Perceived Rate of Exertion… this means you should be working hard enough that you are not so out of breath as you are unable to answer a question, but you should not be able to carry on a conversation. Cardio is what burns most of your calories. Strength training is also important to build muscle. I'm not talking to bulk up, I'm talking straight up just be able to perform daily functions better, have better balance, and keep your body in it's best shape and ability to burn more calories. The more muscle strength you have, the more calories you'll burn during your daily activities, be it your workouts, your household chores, or even just resting!
WATER!! Water is so important when it comes to weight loss and a healthy lifestyle! This may sound counterintuitive, but the more water you drink, the less water weight you hold on to. You should drink at least 8-10 glasses each day, more when you're heavily exerting yourself or the weather is hot and humid. Even if you have a day when you cant stay within your calorie range or you miss a workout, be sure that you're keeping yourself well hydrated!
Don't rely on just the scale to track your progress. Use body measurements, how your clothes fit, how much energy you have, and how you're feeling overall. Weights fluctuate day to day, and even hour to hour, but these other gauges of progress are more accurate.
Persevere! There's going to be days when you feel down on yourself or you're lacking in motivation. Don't let that deter you from creating this better life for yourself! Surround yourself with positive images and quotes that remind you exactly why you're doing this!
Take advantage of the community! That's why we're here! To keep you motivated, to answer questions, to help you along in whatever way you can. Join challenges, post on the message boards, send/receive spark goodies, find yourself an accountability buddy, join as many teams as you want that share similar interests in goals. It's all up to you exactly how much you want to participate, but community participation is certainly encouraged!
Having trouble finding your way around the site? Wanting to learn something new, but just don't know where to start. The Spark E-mails are super helpful for that, as is the SparkPoints tracker. Have fun trying to earn as many spark points as you can! It's fun, educational, motivational… what more could you ask for? It'll help you find your way around the site fast as a flash!
The most important thing is have FUN! Enjoy your life! You aren't going to adopt a healthy lifestyle if it makes you miserable or feel deprived.
Also a note on so called "diets"… if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is! Take care of yourself and don't fall for the gimmicks.
Audrey Eastern Time Zone Spring 2015 5% Challenge Casual Travelers
My name is Lauren and I'm "fluffy". Its something I've been struggling with as long as I can remember. I hope to lose roughly 75 pounds. Not only am I dealing with being over weight, but battling depression, asthma, taking care of a husband (whom I adore) with a TBI & drinking problem, plus we are recently married so we are still in that "just figuring out our roles"stage.
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