Whether you're a gourmand with a penchant for pastry or a sweet tooth with a snacking habit, many of us are carrying a few (or more) extra kilos.
The dangerous combination of gluttony, complacency and marriage has resulted in a recent expansion of my hips and thighs. While I'm not quite contending with the likes of back fat and a muffin top, I'm on a buttery slippery slope.
If you're a fellow food lover with a bit more jiggle than you'd like, here are some tips to help you get back into shape without resorting to diet foods or meal replacement shakes.
1. Lose the guilt: If you come home from work exhausted and you have no energy to cook, don't feel sorry for yourself and pick up tasteless takeaway. Take the opportunity to go out for dinner or pick up something that you will enjoy instead.
A fabulous seafood risotto may be calorie laden, but you're more likely to be satisfied and thus less likely to snack in the evening after a proper meal as opposed to a burger and chips.
2. Learn a new cuisine: Start attending cooking classes or hit the library for some books and teach yourself how to cook different foods.
If you get out of the food rut and learn something new, you can shake up your metabolism and enjoy lower fat alternatives. You might want to try the delicate balance of Vietnamese or get yourself a tagine for moist but no-fat-added Moroccan style cooking.
3. Eat better but less: Trade in the supermarket milk chocolate for a few squares of Belgium's finest. There is something ultra-luxurious about fine dark chocolate and a tightly pulled ristretto.
4. Make it worth it: Cut out the easy calories first. If you're going to go high-calorie, make it worth your while. Substitute the stuff that doesn't matter to you (mineral water instead of soft drink, for example) and enjoy the things you love. Low fat cheese makes me cry.
5. Track your progress and celebrate success: It is hard to be motivated unless you monitor your weight loss. Keep a diary and weigh yourself weekly, at the same time of day.
6. Bonus! Check out 17 Arse-kicking strategies to stick to your diet and get fit over at Zen Habits for more sustainable weight loss tips.
You're welcome to follow my progress as I attempt to follow my own rules. Tomorrow's post will be my first weigh in. Please keep me accountable and subscribe to my feed!
Your comments, tips and suggestions are appreciated.
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Tags: calorie, chocolate, coffee, complacency, cooking classes, diet, diet foods, drink, Eat it, food lover, gourmand, hips and thighs, kilos, lose weight, low fat cheese, milk chocolate, muffin top, tagine, tips, weigh, weight loss