Losing weight is a hot topic, and the recommended ways to achieve a weight loss are endless. I’m not an expert in this areas nor a doctor. I’m a simple fitness coach so you might want to ask yourself why you should consider my approach?
Well, let me first tell you my story on how I lost 2 pounds a week to see if you can recognize some elements and if it seems reasonable.
Many years ago, I promised myself that when I turned forty, I would start to live a healthier life. Too much desk bound work, fast food, long business trips, and absolutely no exercising could easily be seen on my round belly that just grew bigger and bigger. However, what was even more annoying was that simple activities like stair climbing and cleaning started to feel really hard. If I continued like that how would it be when I went fifty or even sixty?
So just after my 40 years birthday, I became a member of the local gym and started to work out the traditional way, with some weightlifting and a bit of cardio as well.
Slowly my body started to feel better, but the round belly was still in place, which was a mystery to me. You see when I was younger I was very slim and in general I never had a problem with my weight – however, something seemed different.
I added more cardio, and after some time I was spending more time on treadmills, rowers, and cross trainers than with the weights.
Little did it help on my belly. The stairs became much easier to climb, but the stomach still looked like a balloon.
Finally, I understood that exercising wouldn’t help me to lose weight around my belly. I needed to change my diet.
After reading different fitness blogs, I decided to cut down on calories as it seemed like a logical way to get rid of the annoying belly fat. Simply spend more energy than you consume.
Actually, I then did start to lose some weight – somewhere between 1-2 pounds a week. However, what also happened was that I felt tired and in lack of energy. The gym sessions became tougher to accomplish, and I needed longer time to recover, which meant several days without training. I was feeling hungry most of the time, and everything just seemed harder.
After a bit more than a month, I decided to drop the calorie restriction and of course my weight went up again.
I’m not a quitter and I, therefore, continued to look for another solution and then stumbled upon articles around the impact different foods has on our blood sugar and insulin. The diet seemed simple, and all I had to do was stay away from simple carbohydrates and besides that, just eat normal good quality food.
Without feeling the lack of energy or any other disturbance, I started to lose 2 pounds a week, and the best thing was that it was around my belly that you could see most results. About 1/2 an inch a week disappeared around my belly.
After two months, I had lost 15 pounds and cut 4 inches off my waist. My body fat percentage had gone from 25% to 18%.
Things then started to slow down which was fine because I didn’t want to go much further down.
Today I’m almost weighing the same, my waist is measuring 33 inches, and my body fat is around 15%, and that is exactly where I want to be.
How to lose 2 pounds a week?
So I did this without starting an extreme diet with many restrictions and calorie control. Nor did I start to workout 3 hours a day. Also, there were no magic pills or secret tricks. Everything was accomplished with common sense and the information from several studies around weight loss.
Today I have successfully helped a lot of other people to accomplish the same as I did and in this article, I will teach you how to do the same. Let’s get going.
In order to succeed, we want to focus on three areas.
Beginning with the most important first, they are:
The mindset to lose 2 pounds a week:
Though we will not have to change drastically, we still need to change, and that requires some motivation and will power.
First, we will discuss how to get the right motivation in place. Without motivation, there is no desire to change, and therefore we will soon go back to our old habits.
Diet/nutrition to lose 2 pounds a week.
I guess you expected that one 🙂
We will discuss which kind of foods we should eat and which we should stay away from. Also, I will explain why we should stay away from certain foods.
Exercise to lose 2 pounds a week
Actually, you could skip this one if you are just looking for a weight loss. However, if you do the right kind of exercises, we will kick start the weight loss and more importantly, build a body that will easily keep the weight loss.
We will look at two ways of exercising for weight loss.
The mindset to lose weight.
Without motivation, we would get little done. We do things for a reason. Think about it.
Basically, we do things to avoid pain in some form, or we do things to gain pleasure in some form. There is always a reason to why we do things.
For that reason, we need to deal with our new diet in the same way. Don’t think this is just a diet I will follow and then that’s it. You will have to change your habits in some way or else you will get the results that you have always gotten.
What we need to do is:
Define what we want to achieve,
Understand why we want to achieve.
Feel how it would be to achieve our goal.
Let the people around us understand the same things so that they can support us.
Define your goal:
The more specific we are with defining our goal, the easier it becomes to measure if we are on the right track and the easier it is to break the main goal down in smaller maintainable steps.
Bad goal definition: “I want to lose weight.”
Good goal definition: “I want to lose 2 pounds a week and half an inch around my belly a week. In total, I want to lose 14 pounds and 7 inches.”
Another benefit of clear clarification of your goal is that it’s more difficult to make it unrealistic and therefore more achievable. Make sure to write it down – don’t just think about it.
Why do you want to achieve this goal?
Here you should take your time and make sure that it becomes personal.
If you really manage to break it down to reasons that matter to you, then you have won a big battle.
It has to be something that really matters to you. The reason is not important and could be anything, but it has to be personal.
Bad reason definition: “I want to feel better.”
Good reason definition: “I want other people to admire me when I walk on the beach.”
People mostly fail in achieving goals because they have little reason to achieve it. They can easily live with the consequences of not achieving their goal.
As with the goal definition, you need to write it down.
Wrap feelings around your goal:
We human beings often want to believe that we react and take actions out from well-considered logical thoughts. We say, “I think this is the best way.” Most often what we should say is, “I feel this is the best way.”
Decisions are most often emotional and not logical.
Therefore we want to add emotions to our new goal.
Imagine that you have reached your goal. How does it feel? What do other people say? What do you do differently? What kind of feelings does this generate inside you?
You need to go somewhere where you can be alone and close your eyes to imagine it. Try to make your imagination as detailed as possible. Imagine you going to that special store and actually buying that special dress, which you are now able to wear. What do people say? How do people look at you? etc.
This will also validate our reasons to achieve a specific goal.
If we don’t get strong feelings when imagining ourselves reaching that specific goal, our reasons are simply not right or strong enough. And there is a big change that we will fail.
Redo the previous step and see how it works when imagining the goal reached.
Also, we need to accept that sometimes our reasons are simply not strong enough and then just skip that goal.
Tell the world around you:
Now it’s time to actually tell other people about your new goal and even more important why you want to do this.
Start with the people you really care about. With them, you should go into as many details as possible. Tell them why this is important and how you want to accomplish this. Also, try to explain to them how it will have an impact on them. How the relationship could improve by reaching your goal.
Involving people you love and who loves you can make a big difference when things become a bit difficult.
When it comes to people that are not that close to you, select carefully who should know this and how much they should know.
For some people, it can be motivating to tell others about their goals, just to see them think, “yea right, you will never achieve that.” Where for others, this will just harm their motivation.
Therefore consider carefully who you tell what.
Diet & nutrition to lose 2 pounds a week
Before I tell you how the diet works, let me tell you what we will not focus on.
No calorie restrictions – at least not in the beginning.
No strict diets, where we only eat one type of food for a week
No magic pills
No magic fruits/drinks etc.
No magic tricks like taking cold showers or only drinking water in the morning etc.
No powder food nor low-fat dishes
Ok with that in place, what should we focus on:
Avoid simple carbs
Simple carbs are called simple because they do not contain much more than energy. Meaning very little vitamins, minerals, fibers, etc.
The biggest issue with simple carbs, besides the lack of all the good stuff, is that they raise blood sugar and when our blood sugar goes up, our body starts to produce insulin.
Insulin helps to break down the sugar, but it’s also a fat storing hormone.
Besides the insulin effect, the simple carbs are energy bombs and therefore easy to overeat.
Which are they?
Sugar is the number one simple carb and our biggest enemy – try to avoid any food or drink with added sugar. As a rule of thumb, stay below 5% added sugar in any food and drinks.
If you need something sweet, eat some fruits and berries.
Highly refined products like flour and so most white bread, biscuits, pastries, cakes and white pasta.
The issues with these products are the same as with sugar. They have been removed from all the healthy stuff and what is only left is the big amount of energy.
Instead of refined products eat whole grain products – but don’t go crazy.
Processed food like canned soups, micro dinners, snacks or ready to fried hamburgers are normally pumped with simple carbs and bad oils. The reason for that is that simple carbs and some oils are cheap and your brain loves them.
Besides the simple carbs, there are two other types of foods we need to avoid.
Artificial fats are the ones that we need to avoid. Instead, eat natural cold pressed oils and butter.
White foods we already mentioned the ones that have refined flour inside them, but we also need to limit our intake of potatoes and rice.
Even though they are pretty natural, they have a tendency to raise our blood sugar a lot due to the starch, which is a kind of sugar as well.
If you can’t live without potatoes and rice, then eat them after your workout where the muscles are screaming for energy.
And that is it. Those are the products that we should avoid.
Now let’s just list the rest of the foods that are good to eat.
Real meat (Not the processed one with strange things inside) – if possible try to go for animals that have lived as natural life as possible. For cattle, that would mean grass feed and fish should be wild caught. The reason for that is that the fat in this kind of meat is healthier.
Fruits are ok but try to eat them whole, not juiced. Also, limit it to 1-3 fruits a day – it’s still a lot of sugar.
Vegetable are great – just go crazy
Dairy is fine as well – no need for the low-fat ones. Go for the natural ones.
Beans and lentils are also great
Some alcohol but no drinks with added sugar
Whole grain products are fine but limit them as they still raise your blood sugar to some level.
How to do then?
Simply avoid the mentioned foods as much as possible and then else eat normally.
After some weeks you should start to see results. If that is not the case, then make sure to remove even more of the bad foods.
If you are not touching any of the bad foods and still don’t see any results (which will happen for very few people), then start to cut down on fruits and whole grain products as well.
If still nothing, then mail me.
As mentioned earlier the diet will work even if you don’t exercise, however, there are two main reasons why you want to consider exercising along with your weight loss journey.
It will kick-start your weight loss if done correctly
It will help you to maintain your weight loss if done correctly
Ok, so what do I mean with, “exercising correctly”?
Mot people like myself start out with the idea that longer aerobic session will help you to boost your metabolism and thereby make it easier to lose weight. To some part, it’s right that long aerobic session will help you.
As an example, a 20-minute normal pace run will burn around 200 calories – depending on the body composition of course. If we don’t add additional energy to our body, it could mean that after seventeen, 20 minutes runs we could burn 1 pound of fat.
All of this is fine, but there is an even better way to do this.
HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training, and it basically means that we workout in intervals and we do it with very high intensity – meaning a heart between 90-100% of max heart rate.
If we calculate in the same way as above, we can take a 15-minute workout instead of a 20-minute – this as HIIT is too demanding to do for longer sessions.
On average, we burn 17 calories a minute in a HIIT session which then would equal 255 calories. Meaning, we would burn more calories than by running and even cut 5 minutes of the workout.
But the best is yet to come.
Several studies have shown that HIIT workouts leave a kind of energy depth or an afterburner as some people call it. What it means is that it leaves our metabolism more active and we burn about 10% more calories 24 hours after a HIIT session. For a guy like me, it would mean around additional 160 calories.
So by doing 15 minutes of HIIT, I would totally burn around 405 calories – more than double compared to a normal pace of 20 minutes run would do.
Therefore, do HIIT if you want your workout to burn calories.
Aside from the calories, there are also several studies that mention other effects of HIIT, and some are that the metabolism and fat burning process speeds up.
Upgrade you engine.
This is very simple. A big engine requires more fuel to run than a small engine. I live in Europe where fuel prices are terribly high, so we are very aware of it 🙂
The same goes for your body, and when we talk about the engine of your body, I’m referring to your muscles.
Simply put, the more muscles you have, the more energy they need, and so it is easier for people with muscles to keep a steady weight.
More importantly, you should know that I’m not talking about big bodybuilder muscles, but normal lean muscles.
Without going into figures – because that is where people start to disagree – several studies have shown that people who start to do strength training find it easier to lose weight and more importantly, keep their weight loss.
For that reason, you want to combine your HIIT training with strength training.
Now you know how to lose 2 pounds a week without any magic tricks.
The above methods have been proven over and over again to work, and I have therefore developed simple week plans for both the diet and the exercising. If you are interested in trying them out for free, please go to this page.
I hope you find the above information useful and I would love to hear what you think.