Anyone got that friend? You know the one I mean, that eats junk food, doesn’t exercise, and just never seems to gain weight. You on the other hand are cooking healthy meals, avoiding the biscuit jar like the plague, and sweating your butt off for an hour at the gym every single day… and your weight is coming off at the pace of an iceberg melting. In Antarctica. In Winter.
How incredibly frustrating.
Although we know that to some extent your metabolism is controlled by genetics, there are steps that you can take to get a bit of a metabolism kickstart.
Change things up
If you’ve been following the same type of meal plan for months and months, and doing the same types of exercise as well, your body might need a bit of a challenge. Try forcing a metabolism kickstart by switching up your workouts.
Got that aerobics thing down pat? Swap to swimming. Used to working out after work? Try a morning session instead. Try some new recipes, try having a bigger breakfast and a smaller dinner instead of the other way around, throw in some light days here or there.
Optimise muscle recovery
You have three primary fuel types in your body. Fat, carbohydrate (sugar), and protein. If you are exercising, this causes stress on your muscles, and they need to repair themselves. They will in fact grow and strengthen in response to exercise, but this depends on them having the building blocks available to do so.
When you lose weight your carbohydrate and protein stores will become depleted as a result of you burning off more energy than you are taking in. This means that when you exercise, you don’t have the backup stores of carbohydrate and protein to provide the building blocks for muscles to repair and recover.
The problem here is that if your muscles can’t repair, they start to degenerate. And the less muscle mass you have the lower your metabolism will be. To minimise this breakdown it’s important to replace both carbohydrate and protein stores within an hour of exercising. A good snack might be something like cheese on crackers, a wholemeal fruit muffin, yoghurt and muesli, a tuna sandwich, peanut butter an an english muffin etc.
Speaking of muscles…
It’s a good idea to included resistance exercises in your week. Cardio (aerobic exercise) is great for improving fitness and burning calories, but the inclusion of weight bearing exercises could be just as important for your weight loss.
Resistance exercises could include body weight exercises, using hand weights, weight machines, weighted ankle or wrist straps, drink bottles or cans of tinned food, ropes, tires, sand bags…. anything that has some weight to it that will force your muscles to move against a resistance, and therefore require them to grow and get stronger.
Bigger muscles = metabolism kickstart.
If you have tried all of these tips and still aren’t losing weight why not consider coming to visit us at one of our weight loss retreats? We have helped hundreds of guests just like you who thought they had tried everything. Find out about the proven program here.