Hiking is an amazing way to get fit and stay fit. If you are over-weight and want to shed some pounds, try my tips. They worked for me. I was 240 pounds and I came down to 170.
Here are my before and after photos…
I started walking 5 km on flat trails about 3 times a week. I would time myself and try to better my times.
Here are some useful exercise tips I’ve learned…
- Start Easy – Don’t run. Don’t hike up steep hills
(Too fast too early will increase the chance of injury and motivation loss)
- Gradually work your way up to more and more challenging walks/hikes
- The Energy Trail at Buntzen Lake is a great place .
- Log your workouts (time, distance and date)
(I use Endomondo to track my workouts)
- If you wish, find a partner to help push and motivate you
- It’s more difficult to lose weight than to eat junk food
- Lift weights
- Weigh yourself only once/week and do it in the morning
Here are some useful dieting tips…
- Drink lots of water
- Lower the sugar in your diet (see below)
- ‘Low Fat’ advertising is tricky. Low fat foods often have high sugar
- Have small meals, with healthy snacks in between, such as trailmix or WASA Light Rye Crispbread, with peanut butter (non-hydrogenated)
- Nuts are a good snack and they help to make you feel full
- Too much alcohol is bad. Don’t waste your liver’s time breaking down alcohol, when it could be breaking down sugars. Plus alcohol contains empty calories.
- Avoid buffets
- Don’t eat out too much
- Low fat milk makes you feel less full; consider using 2% or homo unless you have a cholesterol problem
- Good sugar substitutes are: Stevia; Erythritol; Xylitol
- Close your kitchen down 2 hours prior to bedtime
- Have one treat a week (but not a 2 lb sundae !)
- Use spices, mustard or hot sauce for flavour
- Substitute Hummus for Mayo
- Always eat breakfast
- Have lots of fibre
- Don’t eat the skin from chicken
- Have a consultation with a dietitian
Some high sugar foods to avoid or cut back:
- Fruit juices
- Frappuccino (Venti Mocha from Starbucks = 76 grams of sugar)
- Dried fruit, canned fruit
- Cookies, cakes, pies and donuts
- Jams, preserves & spreads
- Many cereals (try below 6 gr/serving);
Cheerios, bran flakes and oatmeal are good
- Sauces, like ketchup and BBQ
- Ice cream
These tips are all great, but what makes it so hard to stick to a diet plan and lose weight ? Motivation, confidence and mood are key factors.
Things that can motivate you to lose weight and get in shape:
- Health reasons
- More energy
- Enhance your appearance
- Increase your confidence
- Save money
Many health plans fail due to lack in confidence.
Confidence will naturally increase once you start exercising, but try this tip that was useful for me:
Challenge yourself – for me it was cutting back on Starbucks Mocha Frappuccinos (Tall is 40 grams of sugar). I challenged myself to not have them for a month. After a month, it turned into 3 months. Once you realize you can beat the demons that lead you to food, your confidence will naturally increase.
The challenge doesn’t have to be a food challenge either – you can challenge yourself to cut back on watching TV or the challenge can be walking 1, 2 or 3 km… every day.