Spending time in the gym to get healthy and to lose weight is extremely effective, that’s an undeniable fact.
Provided you are using the right program and the right exercises, you should be able to utilize working out in the gym to keep your weight under control.
But if you are really committed to your health, you shouldn’t limit your attempts to the four or five hours a week that you are actually inside the gym.
You should be thinking about it as often as possible and searching for ways to deal with any potential weight problems should be a priority.
There’s many different tricks that can put you on the right track and many different behaviour you can introduce into your routine.
As I’m sure you are aware, burning calories is an important element of weight loss. Here’s five ways that you can do that outside of the gym.
Exercise First Thing in the Morning
While you’re asleep, your metabolism is basically inactive. You’re not burning calories while you’re not doing anything.
And it doesn’t start the second that you wake up either. Much like having to warm up before you go for a run, your body needs to warm up before it can start burning calories.
Usually this will just happen naturally over the course of a few hours but if you start the process yourself before your do anything else, then it will stay active as you go about your day.
You don’t have to do a full on workout while you’re still half asleep, but some light cardio which will raise your heart rate and get those juices flowing and start burning calories right off the bat.
A 5 or 6 minute workout should do the trick just fine. Maybe a couple of sets of jumping jacks, squats or lunges.
Eat an Omelette for Breakfast
Are you familiar with something known as the thermic effect of food? What we are referring to here is the amount of energy expended for specific foods.
Your body will require to use more energy metabolizing different food groups such as proteins, carbohydrates and fats.
It’s possible to calculate the thermic effect of your food to and what has been determined, is that more energy is expended metabolizing protein.
And this means that during the process of metabolization, you will burn more calories if you eat something that’s high in protein.
If you start your day with an omelette, you are doing yourself a favour in quite a few different ways.
It’s not particularly fattening, it tastes great and it will also quicken up the morning process of your metabolism burning calories. It’s a simple but effective change.
Stand as Often as Possible
You may have heard a phrase that’s been doing the rounds recently which states that ‘sitting is the new smoking’.
I think this is a little bit of an exaggeration, but it’s certainly rooted in some truth. Sitting for long periods of time can have a serious effect on your health.
It can lead to heart disease, cancer and probably a whole host of other potentially fatal issues that you should be trying to avoid.
If you stand more often, you can contribute to keeping these problems away and have the added bonus of burning more calories.
Standing upright means that your core will be engaged, which means that you will constantly be burning calories.
If you have a desk job this might seem unrealistic, but it’s not really these days. There are some surprisingly inexpensive standing desks in production right now.
If you get one that has an adjustable height, you can alternate between sitting and standing during the day to make the transition easier.
You know who had a standing desk back in the day? Winston Churchill. Churchill was overweight, he drank like a fish and he smoked a ton of cigarettes.
He was never the picture of perfect health and yet the man lived to be 90 years old. Maybe there was a connection.
Quick AMRAP Workouts
You know, maybe you don’t even need to go to the gym. Maybe if you do the right exercises in the right way, you can get the job done at home.
The acronym AMRAP stands for As Many Reps as Possible, and that’s pretty much self-explanatory as to what’s involved in this kind of exercise.
Generally you keep them pretty short. You might do a ten or a twenty minute AMRAP exercise during which your goal is to do sets of ten of specific exercises.
In this case, you do ten of one exercise and then ten of the next one and your repeat this over and over for the entire ten or twenty minutes.
The idea is to do take as few breaks as possible. As you can imagine, this is an extremely tough exercise but it’s worth it.
If you can get a good variety of exercises into the one workout then you can work your entire body but you also better be sure that this will burn a ton of calories.
Here’s a good list of AMRAP workouts from Athletic Muscle. Some of them are a perfect fit for you to try at home.
Practice Deep Breathing
This might not sound particularly effective, but it’s a small change that can have a big effect.
Breathing deeply means that you will be using the muscles in your chest and abdomen. You’ll be contracting your diaphragm.
Any expense of energy will burn a certain amount of calories. Though it may not feel like it, that’s exactly what you’ll be doing when you breathe deeply.
It’s not going to cause you to lose a ton of weight or anything. It can burn some extra calories for you and you can do it for extended periods of time.
Practice this when you’re doing anything that allows you to be stationary. So while you’re sitting (or standing) at your desk, driving or watching TV.
Just focus on inhaling and exhaling deeply.
What you should also remember is that none of these things will work unless you do them consistently.
Don’t think of these as specific ways to lose weight, so much as they are habits that you are integrating into your daily life. That way you’ll always reap the benefits.