2 May 2014 It’s Back to the Basics for Weight Loss

No matter how many ways you cut it, losing weight is about mastering the basics. For those sports fans out there, here’s an analogy. How many times have you heard that practice is about drills, about learning the fundamentals? How to baseball players hit home runs, NBA stars make free throws, Tiger Woods make birdies? It’s through an innate understanding of the basics of their respective sports and muscle memory. So how does that apply to dieting and weight management? Easily.

Weight is a balancing act, and calories play a very big part of that equation. Sure, many other macro-nutrients do too, but calories in vs. calories out is the basic problem we are solving every day at every meal. Now that we understand that, we can use that equation to set a goal. If we have no goal then we have no game. We have to know what weight we want to be, what time we are dedicating to reaching our goal that embodies a safe pace, and how many calories we should zero out at every day.

When sports stars talk about muscle memory, it comes from the weeks, months, and years they spent doing the same thing over and over again. Some of us seem to have a muscle memory for reaching into the cupboard for cookies. That’s fine, as long as we know that won’t help us reach our goals. Muscle memory is a very hard thing to undo; that’s why it’s better to “overdo” it, and by that I mean teach your body a new muscle memory that overrides the bad habit. Instead of acting on, “I feel like a cookie,” our response instead should be “Since I feel like eating a cookie, I’m going to eat a healthy snack instead, and I’m now reminded that I should also do 10 push-ups.” You get the idea.

When it comes to dieting for weight loss, there is no end to the number of diet plans. If you doubt this, just peruse the nearest magazine rack and read the celebrity-splattered covers. The question to ask yourself about which diet is right for you is to know which one(s) fit your needs and lifestyle. Does the diet represent a healthy, balanced intake of a variety of major food groups? Are the foods easy to find, not only in grocery stores, but at restaurants and the places you travel to frequently? Is it within your budget? Is it safe?

Remember that point about a balancing act? Well, here’s an obvious fact that some people seem to overlook. All foods contribute to the “calories in” part of the equation, so something must be done for “calories out,” and there is nothing better for that than exercise. And though Dr. Oz recently claimed that people don’t really need exercise to lose weight, we know better. Losing weight is mostly about diet, but exercise is still an important component; it gives us energy to do all the other things that go with dieting, like getting good sleep, prepping and cooking meals, and seeing positive body changes.

Weight loss is about using common sense, doing things that you’d be proud to share with your friends and family (and doctor), and keeping balance. Don’t you think?

Ryan Newhouse

Ryan Newhouse is the Marketing Director for MyNetDiary and writes for a variety of publications. He wants you to check out MyNetDiary on Instagram!

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Disclaimer: The information provided here does not constitute medical advice. If you are seeking medical advice, please visit your healthcare provider or medical professional.

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