At the moment, I am on a kick to sort myself out. I’m very all or nothing; when I was training to teach fitness I was crazy on it, super clean eating etc, but for the last year or so life has just taken over. It happens.
To get me back on track, I’ve started the Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Guide. I’ll review this more fully later as I’m only on week 1 at the moment, but for a whole week before that I decided to go sugar free and alcohol free. I’m aiming to keep this up for a month, although I bloody miss G&Ts, especially in this sunny weather!
This post, before I review Kayla Itsines in a week or so, covers the quick and easy habits you can incorporate so that if you don’t want to commit to a specific programme, you can still start your weight loss journey.
#1. Take some time to reset your body
You may not like this one, as it’s the toughest one (so let’s get it over with first). There aren’t any shortcuts. But sugar is like a drug. I saw a documentary (BBC I think) which showed that sugar was more addictive than cocaine when they tested on rats. My week of being totally alcohol free and sugar free (yes, even fructose – no fruit for 7 days either! Lots of veggies!) gave me some time to clean out my system, and even though it really sucks, it helps you break the ‘just one won’t hurt’ mentality that is a slippery (fatty!) slope. Maybe you’re not as extreme and don’t want to give up fruit, but cut out all processed food and alcohol. Which brings me to…
#2. To drink or not to drink? That is the question…
I LOVE alcohol. Champagne, gin, red wine, white wine, vodka, martini, cosmopolitan… you name it. Sadly in the UK it’s hugely ingrained in our social culture too, so the psychological associations of wanting or needing a drink to socialise or celebrate are hard to shake. BUT. It is FULL OF SUGAR, it is essentially EMPTY CALORIES and IT LOWERS YOUR INHIBITIONS making you MORE LIKELY TO OVER INDULGE (or order that cheeky kebab on the way home!)
There’s another catch too. It makes you 76% less efficient at burning fat. Yup. It actually SLOWS DOWN YOUR METABOLISM. A fact I learned from god knows where, but it stuck with me.
So, while you’re shifting your weight, it’s best to give up alcohol as much as possible.
IF you can’t leave it entirely, than make sensible substitutions. Spirits are only 50 kcals per shot. Don’t drink them with diet mixers, as these can oddly make you gain weight, and don’t drink them with high sugar sodas like Coke either – that’s just more shit in your body! Things like vodka soda are best.
Also, fun fact… prosecco and sparkling wines have fewer calories (about 80) compared with their non sparkling vino sisters (about 180 – 250).
#3. Water, water everywhere
Down a glass of water before each meal. It will aid digestion, help you feel fuller, and if you can drink ice cold water bonus points – your body has to work harder to warm up, and so it burns more calories!
#4. Work out!
You might not have hours to pound a treadmill in the gym, but short bursts of HIIT (high intensity interval training) can be just as effective. You don’t even have to get a trainer or buy programmes like Kayla Itsines’ Bikini Body Guide – youtubers like Cassey Ho of Blogilates and Karena and Katrina of Tone it Up post free workout videos – have a look (Blogilates here, Tone it Up here).
I’m not a morning person so I feel your pain if an early start sounds unappealing, but there are huuuuuuuge advantages to this. Firstly, you get it over with, and then your evenings are free for fun after work! Secondly, if you do it before eating, your blood sugar is lower, meaning instead of using up carbs for energy, your body will be forced to use your fat as fuel instead. BOOM.
#5. A little bit of what you fancy…
One cheat meal a week can stop you going crazy. Life’s too short to never have pizza again, right? Just follow Kayla Itsines and Cassey Ho’s advice – make sure it’s just one meal, not one day!
You might want to consider ways you can improve even these cheat meals slightly, so that you’re still having something that’s a ‘treat’ but won’t feel as guilty! If you have to have a desert, try switching fatty ice-cream for frozen yoghurt with fresh fruit, for example.
For more fitspiration check out my Bikini Series Vision Board on Pinterest (from last year’s Tone it Up phase!) or my Health & Fitness inspiration board here.
What are your top tips for weightloss? Any youtube workouts you can recommend? Let me know!