If you are short on time and funds but want to lose weight, don't bother to invest in a pricey gym membership to slim down. In fact, you never even have to set foot past your front door to get in an effective workout as long as you are dedicated to your weight loss program.
Setting Your Goal
You will go further in your home weight loss plan if you have a clear-cut goal to strive for. Your physician is the best person to help you set a healthy goal based on your health, weight and fitness aims. For the most part, physicians don’t recommend losing more than about 1 to 2 lbs. each week, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This means you shouldn’t cut back more than about 500 to 1,000 calories a day through diet and exercise.
Sweat Off the Calories
Every home weight loss workout regimen should include plenty of cardio exercise. Cardio improves your heart’s efficiency and increases the amount of oxygen you have in your blood, but also is ideal for burning off body fat. Shoot for a minimum 30 daily minutes of cardio but bear in mind that any extra activity translates to more calories burned. Some simple home cardio activities include jogging on a treadmill and riding on a stationary bicycle, but fancy equipment isn’t a necessity. Jumping rope, climbing up and down your staircase, jogging in place and running around with your kids also count as cardio.
Resistance is Good
A greater amount of muscle mass equates to a faster metabolism, which means training with weights helps you burn calories more efficiently throughout each day. Any activity that requires your muscles to work against some type of resistance counts as strength training. Using your own body weight during yoga poses, performing abdominal crunches on an exercise ball and lifting free weights are just a few examples of strength training exercises. If you don’t have access to free weights, you can make your own at home by filling plastic water or soda bottles with sand or water. Aim for at least two to three weekly 20-minute strength training sessions for optimal results, recommends the Women’s Heart Foundation.
Stretch Your Muscles
Stretch all major muscle areas after every workout session to balance out the contracting and flexing you do throughout your cardio and strengthening exercises. Having flexible muscles can reduce stress, improve your joints’ range of motion and reduce your risk of injury during exercise and other day-to-day activities. Some forms of exercise, such as yoga, incorporate strength training as well as stretching. One helpful yoga pose to stretch the hamstrings and open up the back of your body is called uttanasana, which involves bending forward at your hips and placing your palms as far down toward the floor as possible.
Don't Forget Your Diet
Diet is as important as exercise in promoting weight loss, as you need to constantly burn more calories than you eat to lose weight. Emphasize plant-based foods in your daily diet, including veggies and fruits. Helpguide.org recommends including low-fat dairy, lean protein and filling whole grains in your diet, and replacing most saturated fats with healthy fats, such as nut butters, vegetable oils, avocados and fish.
- Dr. Frank Lipman: Uttanasana Pose Benefits & How-to Instruction
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Losing Weight
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: How Much Physical Activity Do Adults Need?
- Women’s Heart Foundation: Strength Training for Women
- American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons: Weightbearing Exercise for Women and Girls
- Helpguide.org:Healthy Weight Loss & Dieting Tips
- Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images
This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.