What are the best ways to lose weight?


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I come from a long line of fat people and have had to lose 60+ pounds on 3 different occasions (need to do it again actually, but I’ll cover keeping it off at the end).  You can easily lose 60 pounds in 10 months.  In fact, based on the build you’ve described, I’m confident you can do this in 6 months with some minor lifestyle changes.  I would ignore any answer here from anyone who hasn’t actually ost 60+ pounds.  They are either regurgitating things they’ve read in fitness magazines or passing along common sense information that isn’t going to help you with the practical day-to-day regiment you need to follow.

Here’s what you need to do (in no particular order – DO IT ALL):

1) Stop drinking beer and alcohol.  Yes, completely.  Six months will fly by, so if you are serious about getting the extra fat off just do yourself a favor and mentally commit to not drinking.  Alcohol destroys your metabolism.  Even one night of drinking will destroy most of what you accomplish in a given week.  It also generally leads to a day or two of not working out or some sort of binge eating.  Just stop altogether.

2) Losing your extra weight is 99% about what you put in your mouth.  Your shitty diet got you where you are today.  Stop blaming genetics, working too hard, or watching too much tv.  You eat too much and it’s mostly shit.  Admit that to yourself.  Stop thinking about food as yummy deliciousness and start thinking about it as fuel.  More on this later.

3) Stop reading this right now and go for a long, very brisk walk.  Seriously.  Get off your ass right now and go.

4) I’m betting you decided to keep reading.  Don’t.  Go now!!!  The hardest thing you will ever do is start, so stop making excuses and GO.  RIGHT.  NOW.

5) Don’t you feel better already?

6) Get a membership at a gym if you don’t already have one.  Spend as much as you can afford and try to go to a really nice gym that isn’t ridiculously crowded.  When you are overweight, going to the gym can be embarrassing.  Stop being a huge pussy and get over yourself.  DO NOT sign up for CrossFit.  I love what they do and have done CrossFit in the past, but it is NOT right for someone who is 60+ pounds overweight and starting from a sedentary lifestyle.  The workouts have a significantly higher injury potential and nothing will set you back more in your pursuit than an injury.

7) The first 6 weeks are key, so keep it simple.  You need to get in the habit of working out and eating healthy.  Develop a routine and stick to it.  If you can work out in the mornings, I highly recommend it.  However, the snooze button is way to convenient and most people overestimate their ability to consistently overcome its allure.  They tell themselves they’ll just workout in the evening that day.  That shit never happens and once you’ve blown off a few workouts, you’re finished.  I recommend just going in the evenings at first.  Try to be consistent and avoid the rush hour at the gym if possible (again, an overcrowded gym should be avoided when possible).  Schedule your workout and avoid the temptation to skip your workout for happy hour.  This is really hard, so you need some mental toughness.  No one can give that to you so stop expecting help and nut up.

8) Your workouts should include lifting free weights.  If you are one of those people that is afraid lifting weights is going to cause you to “bulk up”, you might be too dumb to lose your 60 pounds.  Nothing anyone can do to help with that, so just trust me when I say that you have to do this.  Go online and find two slightly different all around workouts that include lifting free weights.  If you can’t find a workout, again, you may be too dumb to succeed.  You should either workout with weights every other day or do a 2 days on one day off.  YOU DO NOT NEED AN “OFF” DAY unless you are too sore to move  Even then, you should spend 35 min on the elliptical or rowing machine.  Also, make sure your workout includes cardio too.  I personally would spend at least 35 min on the elliptical and follow that up with some weight lifting.  I’ve read that it is better to lift weights first, but I always found that doing cardio first helped me warm up.  But I’m open to the lifting first theory.  Just don’t wuss out and skip your cardio or weights.  On days when you do not lift weights, do some sort of cardio.  When you workout, push yourself hard (assuming you do not have a health condition I guess – insert legal disclaimer here).   If you aren’t sweating a lot, you probably aren’t pushing yourself very hard and you’re going to be a fat ass for A LOT longer than needed.  Note: I lost a ton of weight when I started cycling.  But it takes FOREVER to shed the pounds.  You have to spend hours and hours on a bike.  In fact, the pics I attached are from when I was doing primarily endurance training.  The first time I was super successful, I primarily lifted weights and that chart would have been ridiculous.  Unfortunately, I didn’t track my weight online to show you.  Suffice to say, the progress was truly amazing and the time commitment minuscule compared to the endurance training used to get the pictured results.  Lifting weights with a mix of cardio will melt the weight off.  Stop thinking about it and just do it.

9) Avoid personal trainers like the plague.  Trainers are a crutch.  If you work out with one, you become psychologically dependent on them.  It makes you lazy and less self-sufficient.  If you have never lifted weights, it’s ok to schedule a couple of sessions just to learn form, but make it clear that learning form is your only goal.  Trainers love to run you through a bunch of “core” exercises that are great later on when you are fit, but do not help you shed pounds quickly.  Focus on the large muscle groups instead with lots of crunches, back, and leg exercises.  Squats are the shit.  Make them your bitch.

10) Back to food… remember to keep it simple.  You don’t need fancy meals or a lot of diversity.  If you don’t have the mental fortitude to eat grilled chicken and lots of veggies every day, then your’re probably going to fail.  You only drink water and protein shakes (these are good because they are quick, tasty, filling and have a positive psychological effect – don’t over think this, just drink ’em when it makes sense).

11) Write down everything you eat or drink.  This can be a pain in the ass, but it is super helpful.  The primary benefit is making you conscious of what you are putting in your mouth.  If you aren’t certain the food is healthy and nutritious, just don’t eat it.  Remember, you’re keeping it super simple (especially in the first 6 weeks).  I would generally eat oatmeal, Kashi GoLean cereal w/ skim milk, or egg whites w/ veggies for breakfast.  Eat more than you might ordinarily here.  Then I would try to have a light lunch (spinach salad w/ grilled chicken was always my goto meal).  I would workout after work, then have a nutritious dinner of grilled chicken breast with lots of steamed veggies or another spinach salad.  Grilled salmon is good too.  Writing all of this down will alert you when you’ve slipped.  If you have more than one bad meal in a week, you’re a shitty person and likely going to hell.  If you want to succeed you have to have that mentality, especially in the first 6 weeks.  Others will say that you shouldn’t go overboard, but they’re idiots who think you need to be coddled.  You aren’t a baby are you?

12) Weigh yourself with a digital scale EVERY DAY.  Here is your new routine.  Drag your ass out of bed, take a poop, weigh yourself without your clothes.  Log your weight every morning.  Weight can fluctuate dramatically even within a single day.  Weighing yourself post-poop in the morning will give you a consistent baseline.  With 60+ pounds to lose, you will almost always see your weight going down if you are working out and eating right.  But don’t freak out if you see your weight jump.  It likely means that you are carrying some extra water, most likely because you ate something with a lot of sodium which is causing you to retain water weight.  In a few months, you’ll be able to predict your weight increases based on the salty food you ate (which you should have avoided incidentally).  TRACK YOUR WEIGHT.  There are lots of free online tools for this as well as some great apps that make it even more convenient.  You will definitely be glad you did this.

13) Do not go out of Friday or Saturday nights for awhile.  A long while.  You think you can resist temptation, but you aren’t ready yet.  The Force is not strong with you.  Avoid the Dark Side altogether.

14) Buy some comfortable shoes and multiple sets of workout clothes, at least 3 sets.  If you don’t have the money for this, don’t let it stop you from starting.

15) Workout music is important.  Get an iPod and find some hard driving music that gets you pumped.  This will help the time fly by, especially when you are doing cardio.  Oh, don’t start running.  When you are 60+ pounds overweight, running puts a ton of stress on your body and can lead to injury.  Also, when you are that out of shape, you just can’t get a good enough workout in by running.  Avoid the temptation to go for a run, even when your music wants you to.

16) Take pics of your “Before” self.  I always regretted not doing this.  Set a regularly day each week when you snap a pic.  You don’t have to share it with anyone now, but you’ll definitely want them later.

17) You’re going to drop a lot of weight in the first 6 weeks if you do all of this.  I personally found that I could lose 15-25 pounds in the first 6 weeks.  That’s the “easy” weight.  It will slow down after that, but 2 pounds a week and/or 10 pounds a month was always doable (I have charts to prove it somewhere).

18) After the first six weeks, start over.  I only gave you the 6 weeks because it feels manageable and is the amount of time it talkes to start feeling really good.  After 6 weeks you will have lost 15-25 pounds and that will be motivation to keep going.  6 months will fly by.  You’ll start thinking that working out is actually fun.  You’ll likely start investigating new workout routines and adding some new healthy meals.  Avoid over-complicating though.  If you can afford a “Bootcamp” styled program, go for it but make sure you keep lifting weights (again this is the fastest way to get the extra pounds off).  Just make sure you don’t get stuck lifting the same weight or doing the exact same exercises everyday.  Do 12 rep sets some days and 6 rep sets another day.  Or combine them.  Whatever.  Just keep going.

19) Set aside some money for new clothes.  One of the “problems” you will encounter is that your clothes won’t fit anymore.  Nothing looks worse than clothes that are way too loose (except clothes that are way too tight).  If you work in a place where you are expected to dress professionally every day, you will need to buy new stuff.  What you don’t want to do is buy a new wardrobe every time you go down a size.  I did this my first go around and it cost a pretty penny.  I personally can’t wear used clothes, but if you aren’t morally opposed it might be an option.  The other thing to do is just buy generic pants and shirts and clean them frequently.  This is a good problem to have, but it will definitely be a problem unless you saved some of your skinny clothes.  Incidentally, save at least one pair of your “big” clothes.  It’s pretty awesome when you get to the point where you can fit in one leg.

20) Focusing on what you put in your mouth remains the MOST IMPORTANT thing to focus on.  Always have healthy snacks like apples and raw almonds on hand.  Eat before you are totally starving.  5 smaller meals each day is definitely the way to go.  Eat a ton of veggies and learn to love them.  Avoid most condiments.  Stay away from alcohol.  Have as much sex as possible (it’s especially important to pay attention to what you put in your mouth here).

You asked about getting the weight off rather than keeping it off, but I’ll address this here.  I mentioned at the beginning that I’ve done this on three occasions.  I kept the weight off for several years each time, but I definitely have a genetic predisposition to getting fat.  I don’t use that as an excuse, but I know that when I stop working out, I almost always start having too many beers and eating crap.  It generally takes many months, but eventually my body starts adding the weight seemingly faster than ever.  It’s just a reality of getting older.

But when I was most successful at keeing the weight off I did two main things.  First, I gave myself something to work toward.  For me, it was triathlons.  That always kept me focused.  5 and 10K’s are another great thing to schedule and focus on for a month or two.  Secondly, I made sure I never went more than 3 days without a workout.  It’s amazing how long the body will maintain health if you just give it a hard workout once or twice each week.  Once you’ve gotten the extra weight off, just be religious about working out hard 2 days per week and you’ll be golden.

The hardest part is getting started.  I’ve personally been avoiding just that for the last few months, but writing this post got me fired up to get going.  Headed out right now for a walk.  Good luck!!!

I come from a long line of fat people and have had to lose 60+ pounds on 3 different occasions (need to do it again actually, but I’ll cover keeping it off at the end). You can easily lose 60 pounds in 10 months. In fact, based on the build you’ve described, I’m confident you can do this in 6 months with some minor lifestyle changes. I would ignore any answer here from anyone who hasn’t actually ost 60+ pounds. They are either regurgitating things they’ve read in fitness magazines or passing along common sense information that isn’t going to help you with the practical day-to-day regiment you need to follow.Here’s what you need to do (in no particular order – DO IT ALL):1) Stop drinking beer and alcohol. Yes, completely. Six months will fly by, so if you are serious about getting the extra fat off just do yourself a favor and mentally commit to not drinking. Alcohol destroys your metabolism. Even one night of drinking will destroy most of what you accomplish in a given week. It also generally leads to a day or two of not working out or some sort of binge eating. Just stop altogether.2) Losing your extra weight is 99% about what you put in your mouth. Your shitty diet got you where you are today. Stop blaming genetics, working too hard, or watching too much tv. You eat too much and it’s mostly shit. Admit that to yourself. Stop thinking about food as yummy deliciousness and start thinking about it as fuel. More on this later.3) Stop reading this right now and go for a long, very brisk walk. Seriously. Get off your ass right now and go.4) I’m betting you decided to keep reading. Don’t. Go now!!! The hardest thing you will ever do is start, so stop making excuses and GO. RIGHT. NOW.5) Don’t you feel better already?6) Get a membership at a gym if you don’t already have one. Spend as much as you can afford and try to go to a really nice gym that isn’t ridiculously crowded. When you are overweight, going to the gym can be embarrassing. Stop being a huge pussy and get over yourself. DO NOT sign up for CrossFit. I love what they do and have done CrossFit in the past, but it is NOT right for someone who is 60+ pounds overweight and starting from a sedentary lifestyle. The workouts have a significantly higher injury potential and nothing will set you back more in your pursuit than an injury.7) The first 6 weeks are key, so keep it simple. You need to get in the habit of working out and eating healthy. Develop a routine and stick to it. If you can work out in the mornings, I highly recommend it. However, the snooze button is way to convenient and most people overestimate their ability to consistently overcome its allure. They tell themselves they’ll just workout in the evening that day. That shit never happens and once you’ve blown off a few workouts, you’re finished. I recommend just going in the evenings at first. Try to be consistent and avoid the rush hour at the gym if possible (again, an overcrowded gym should be avoided when possible). Schedule your workout and avoid the temptation to skip your workout for happy hour. This is really hard, so you need some mental toughness. No one can give that to you so stop expecting help and nut up.8) Your workouts should include lifting free weights. If you are one of those people that is afraid lifting weights is going to cause you to “bulk up”, you might be too dumb to lose your 60 pounds. Nothing anyone can do to help with that, so just trust me when I say that you have to do this. Go online and find two slightly different all around workouts that include lifting free weights. If you can’t find a workout, again, you may be too dumb to succeed. You should either workout with weights every other day or do a 2 days on one day off. YOU DO NOT NEED AN “OFF” DAY unless you are too sore to move Even then, you should spend 35 min on the elliptical or rowing machine. Also, make sure your workout includes cardio too. I personally would spend at least 35 min on the elliptical and follow that up with some weight lifting. I’ve read that it is better to lift weights first, but I always found that doing cardio first helped me warm up. But I’m open to the lifting first theory. Just don’t wuss out and skip your cardio or weights. On days when you do not lift weights, do some sort of cardio. When you workout, push yourself hard (assuming you do not have a health condition I guess – insert legal disclaimer here). If you aren’t sweating a lot, you probably aren’t pushing yourself very hard and you’re going to be a fat ass for A LOT longer than needed. Note: I lost a ton of weight when I started cycling. But it takes FOREVER to shed the pounds. You have to spend hours and hours on a bike. In fact, the pics I attached are from when I was doing primarily endurance training. The first time I was super successful, I primarily lifted weights and that chart would have been ridiculous. Unfortunately, I didn’t track my weight online to show you. Suffice to say, the progress was truly amazing and the time commitment minuscule compared to the endurance training used to get the pictured results. Lifting weights with a mix of cardio will melt the weight off. Stop thinking about it and just do it.9) Avoid personal trainers like the plague. Trainers are a crutch. If you work out with one, you become psychologically dependent on them. It makes you lazy and less self-sufficient. If you have never lifted weights, it’s ok to schedule a couple of sessions just to learn form, but make it clear that learning form is your only goal. Trainers love to run you through a bunch of “core” exercises that are great later on when you are fit, but do not help you shed pounds quickly. Focus on the large muscle groups instead with lots of crunches, back, and leg exercises. Squats are the shit. Make them your bitch.10) Back to food… remember to keep it simple. You don’t need fancy meals or a lot of diversity. If you don’t have the mental fortitude to eat grilled chicken and lots of veggies every day, then your’re probably going to fail. You only drink water and protein shakes (these are good because they are quick, tasty, filling and have a positive psychological effect – don’t over think this, just drink ’em when it makes sense).11) Write down everything you eat or drink. This can be a pain in the ass, but it is super helpful. The primary benefit is making you conscious of what you are putting in your mouth. If you aren’t certain the food is healthy and nutritious, just don’t eat it. Remember, you’re keeping it super simple (especially in the first 6 weeks). I would generally eat oatmeal, Kashi GoLean cereal w/ skim milk, or egg whites w/ veggies for breakfast. Eat more than you might ordinarily here. Then I would try to have a light lunch (spinach salad w/ grilled chicken was always my goto meal). I would workout after work, then have a nutritious dinner of grilled chicken breast with lots of steamed veggies or another spinach salad. Grilled salmon is good too. Writing all of this down will alert you when you’ve slipped. If you have more than one bad meal in a week, you’re a shitty person and likely going to hell. If you want to succeed you have to have that mentality, especially in the first 6 weeks. Others will say that you shouldn’t go overboard, but they’re idiots who think you need to be coddled. You aren’t a baby are you?12) Weigh yourself with a digital scale EVERY DAY. Here is your new routine. Drag your ass out of bed, take a poop, weigh yourself without your clothes. Log your weight every morning. Weight can fluctuate dramatically even within a single day. Weighing yourself post-poop in the morning will give you a consistent baseline. With 60+ pounds to lose, you will almost always see your weight going down if you are working out and eating right. But don’t freak out if you see your weight jump. It likely means that you are carrying some extra water, most likely because you ate something with a lot of sodium which is causing you to retain water weight. In a few months, you’ll be able to predict your weight increases based on the salty food you ate (which you should have avoided incidentally). TRACK YOUR WEIGHT. There are lots of free online tools for this as well as some great apps that make it even more convenient. You will definitely be glad you did this.13) Do not go out of Friday or Saturday nights for awhile. A long while. You think you can resist temptation, but you aren’t ready yet. The Force is not strong with you. Avoid the Dark Side altogether.14) Buy some comfortable shoes and multiple sets of workout clothes, at least 3 sets. If you don’t have the money for this, don’t let it stop you from starting.15) Workout music is important. Get an iPod and find some hard driving music that gets you pumped. This will help the time fly by, especially when you are doing cardio. Oh, don’t start running. When you are 60+ pounds overweight, running puts a ton of stress on your body and can lead to injury. Also, when you are that out of shape, you just can’t get a good enough workout in by running. Avoid the temptation to go for a run, even when your music wants you to.16) Take pics of your “Before” self. I always regretted not doing this. Set a regularly day each week when you snap a pic. You don’t have to share it with anyone now, but you’ll definitely want them later.17) You’re going to drop a lot of weight in the first 6 weeks if you do all of this. I personally found that I could lose 15-25 pounds in the first 6 weeks. That’s the “easy” weight. It will slow down after that, but 2 pounds a week and/or 10 pounds a month was always doable (I have charts to prove it somewhere).18) After the first six weeks, start over. I only gave you the 6 weeks because it feels manageable and is the amount of time it talkes to start feeling really good. After 6 weeks you will have lost 15-25 pounds and that will be motivation to keep going. 6 months will fly by. You’ll start thinking that working out is actually fun. You’ll likely start investigating new workout routines and adding some new healthy meals. Avoid over-complicating though. If you can afford a “Bootcamp” styled program, go for it but make sure you keep lifting weights (again this is the fastest way to get the extra pounds off). Just make sure you don’t get stuck lifting the same weight or doing the exact same exercises everyday. Do 12 rep sets some days and 6 rep sets another day. Or combine them. Whatever. Just keep going.19) Set aside some money for new clothes. One of the “problems” you will encounter is that your clothes won’t fit anymore. Nothing looks worse than clothes that are way too loose (except clothes that are way too tight). If you work in a place where you are expected to dress professionally every day, you will need to buy new stuff. What you don’t want to do is buy a new wardrobe every time you go down a size. I did this my first go around and it cost a pretty penny. I personally can’t wear used clothes, but if you aren’t morally opposed it might be an option. The other thing to do is just buy generic pants and shirts and clean them frequently. This is a good problem to have, but it will definitely be a problem unless you saved some of your skinny clothes. Incidentally, save at least one pair of your “big” clothes. It’s pretty awesome when you get to the point where you can fit in one leg.20) Focusing on what you put in your mouth remains the MOST IMPORTANT thing to focus on. Always have healthy snacks like apples and raw almonds on hand. Eat before you are totally starving. 5 smaller meals each day is definitely the way to go. Eat a ton of veggies and learn to love them. Avoid most condiments. Stay away from alcohol. Have as much sex as possible (it’s especially important to pay attention to what you put in your mouth here).You asked about getting the weight off rather than keeping it off, but I’ll address this here. I mentioned at the beginning that I’ve done this on three occasions. I kept the weight off for several years each time, but I definitely have a genetic predisposition to getting fat. I don’t use that as an excuse, but I know that when I stop working out, I almost always start having too many beers and eating crap. It generally takes many months, but eventually my body starts adding the weight seemingly faster than ever. It’s just a reality of getting older.But when I was most successful at keeing the weight off I did two main things. First, I gave myself something to work toward. For me, it was triathlons. That always kept me focused. 5 and 10K’s are another great thing to schedule and focus on for a month or two. Secondly, I made sure I never went more than 3 days without a workout. It’s amazing how long the body will maintain health if you just give it a hard workout once or twice each week. Once you’ve gotten the extra weight off, just be religious about working out hard 2 days per week and you’ll be golden.The hardest part is getting started. I’ve personally been avoiding just that for the last few months, but writing this post got me fired up to get going. Headed out right now for a walk. Good luck!!!

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