Eat less and exercise more—that’s the simplistic answer to anyone asking about how to lose weight and shed excess body fat. But if it were really that easy—there will be no overweight women in this world—and all of us would be in great great shape. It turns out, some of your other behaviors also play a big role in losing fat. Here are 16 things you need to do— including several unusual ones—to fire up your metabolism and get your body skinny and sexy quickly—with these tips, you can lose anywhere from 20 to 25 pounds in just 2 weeks. Good luck.
1. You need to have a plan
As the adage goes: “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” Have a goal and set specific targets for your week to reach that goal. But, make sure that you don’t end up being too strict with yourself. Life is not just about losing weight and getting sexy (at least it’s for me!). So be sure to find that balance between reaching your goal and enjoying your precious life moments.
2. You need to sleep more
Sleep is not just about getting your body to recover after a long day—it actually helps you fight fat. Researchers at the University of Alberta reported that sleeping less than seven to eight hours a night can increase your appetite, forcing you to overeat; slow your metabolism, causing you to burn fewer calories, and ultimately your body will retain more abdominal fat. If you lack sleep, you’ll also have bad workouts. So, do yourself a favor and get some rest. Your body will thank you.
3. You need to pick the right snacks
Yes, some people benefit from eating four to six meals per day and enjoying snacks. But researchers from Yale University found that how you snack could be sabotaging your efforts. You may not know this but there’s a high probably that the total calories from your snacks each day can be anywhere between 500 calories to 600 calories—as a reference, an average handful of peanuts has over 120 calories. If you’re a big snacker, choose healthier options so that you’re snacks are nutrient-rich and contains less calories or better yet, cut down on your calorie intake during dinner.
4. You need to keep track of how much you’re eating
To successfully lose weight, you need to watch what you eat and how much you eat. But unfortunately, most people do very badly with this. Research has shown that most people grossly underestimate how much they are eating, sometimes by up to 50 percent! So, keep track of your food intake and make sure the calories you consume in everyday is less than what you expend—that’s the true way of losing weight.
5. You need to move a lot more
This is, essentially, the second half of the equation—the calories-out side. Unfortunately, most people struggle with this process. In today’s society, we’re largely sedentary: We travel in cars, we work in front of computers all day and we relax in front of the television. Add incidental exercise (like talking the stairs or tapping your foot) in addition to formal activity (such as playing sports, lifting weights, running) to see the greatest benefits.
6. You have to lay off the beverages
More than 21 percent of the calories that Americans consume each day comes from beverages. Not only are these drinks less likely to keep you full, thus leaving you hungry, they’re oftentimes loaded with sugar.
7. You need to take a cheat day now and then
Going on a diet is tough on you, both mentally and physically. That’s why a cheat day is a frequent part of many successful diet plans. The splurge can provide you with the break from your restrictive habits that will keep you satisfied while still losing weight.
8. You need to lift heavy weights
For any woman, the fastest way to burn fat faster is by lifting heavy weights. Not only do heavier weights activate more muscle fibers, they also increase your resting metabolism. In other words, when you lift heavy weights, you continue to burn calories at a higher rate, even when you’re doing nothing.
9. You need to add variety to your workouts
For a high-impact workout that will kick up your metabolism in a short amount of time, try alternating cardio and resistance training in a circuit. For example, start with five minutes of cardio (treadmill, bike, elliptical) immediately followed by a dumbbell circuit of cleans, clean and presses, lunges, military presses and bent-over rows, where each exercise is performed for eight repetitions. This entire circuit can be repeated two to three times.
10. You need to swap your carbs
Carb swapping is is one of the easiest (and fastest) ways to jump-start your weight loss. Replace foods like pasta, rice and bread with fruits and vegetables. The fruits and vegetables have fewer calories and carbohydrates than their processed counterparts. That means you can eat more total food without adding weight.
11. You need to take less rest during exercise
There are many essential variables that must be managed when structuring your workout, one of them being rest. The rest periods you take between exercises can be modified to elicit a fat-burning effect. By shortening the time you take between exercises to as little as 10 to 30 seconds, you can increase your resting metabolism and the intensity of your workout.
12. You need to combine your exercises
Linking two to three different exercises together into a chain of movements is a great way to get a lot of work done in a short amount of time. This is the key to improving your workout efficiency and positively impacting your fat-loss goals. Combos like linking a push-up and a burpee into a pull-up are an amazing example of this technique.
13. You need to eat more fat
Did you know that the Institute of Medicine recommends that a diet be made up of 25 to 35 percent fat? Turns out, high-fat foods like nuts, avocados and healthy oils can help you lose fat faster than other diet approaches. Just make sure you figure out how much fat you need in your diet to prevent yourself from overeating. And as always, avoid trans fats — they’re still not healthy.
14. You need to eat more protein
Protein helps you maintain lean body mass (muscle, not fat), and increase the thermic effect of your diet. That is, protein requires more energy for your body to process than carbohydrates or fat. This can subtly contribute to the calories-out side of the energy equation. As a bonus, eating protein keeps you fuller longer, and researchers have shown that it can reduce how much you eat per day by hundreds of calories.
15. You need to drink more water
While there’s nothing magical about water, the process of consuming lots of liquid can trick you into feeling less hungry. What’s more, when you’re dehydrated you burn two percent fewer calories per day. So if you struggle to control your appetite, drink up before your meal. Then drink some more. You’ll be more likely to fight off fat.
16. Get on a detox plan
If you’re looking for a sensible and effective way to lose weight quickly and detox your body of toxins at the same time, look no further than the Red Tea Detox system.
The Red Tea Detox system combines the use of a special blend of rooibos (“red”) tea drink with a smart, effective weight loss system to help you crush big weight—and fast! Did you know that just by drinking rooibos tea, you can increase your metabolism and burn 20% more fat, all without exercising or feeling hungry?
Women who have followed the Red Tea Detox system reported losing up to 14 pounds and 2-4 inches from their waist in just a matter of 14 days—the methods in the Red Tea Detox system are all backed by science. Click here to read how my friend Jenny, a 42-year-old yo-yo dieter who’s struggled to lose weight all her life lost 80 pounds by following the Red Tea Detox program.