If you’re overweight, there’s only one explanation for it. You take in more energy (calories) than you use. And if you want to lose weight and keep it off, there’s only one way to do it. You need to use more energy than you take in.
But if you’ve ever tried to lose weight simply by eating less and moving more, you may already know that simple, at least in this case, isn’t always easy.
Everyone is different genetically, which means one person can eat more calories without gaining weight than another. One person burns food for food more efficiently than another, and some people cannot tolerate foods that are normally healthy for others.
And there are other factors involved.
Stress and Weight
Under stress, the body produces the hormone cortisol. When you’re under chronic stress and your system is flooded with cortisol, you can end up with a less effective metabolism.
So, reducing stress is important if you want to lose weight and keep it off. It’s probably also no surprise that you’re more likely to binge-eat or opt for unhealthy foods when you’re stressed.
How can you keep stress in check? Pace yourself throughout your day. Take breaks. Enjoy a cup of tea, a walk with your pet, or a chat with a friend.
You can also manage stress with practices like yoga and meditation. In fact, many people initially turn to yoga to manage some form of stress.
Lose Weight and Keep it Off with Awareness
Like many people, you may eat when you’re nervous, lonely, or excited. Or maybe you eat because everyone around you is eating. This can be especially challenging at parties or during holiday celebrations. You may need to make some changes in your behavior or mindset to lose weight and keep it off.
Being mindful of your emotions and thoughts is the first step. You can use the practice of mindfulness to become aware of how your thoughts effective behaviors like eating and exercising. Mindfulness can also encourage you to take better care of yourself so you can move forward with self-love.
Mindfulness will also help you learn what works and what doesn’t—for you. Rather than following someone else’s weight loss plan, you can learn to tune in and listen to your unique body. Giving your own body what it needs is really the only way to lose weight and keep it off.
Learning what foods your body needs, how much it needs, and how exercise affects health and weight can seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. The first step is to become aware of what you are doing now. Then you can make a commitment to change one thing at a time at a pace that’s comfortable for you.
What do you love to do?
You won’t lose weight and keep it off unless you find healthy foods that taste good. And you won’t burn calories through movement consistently—that is, enough to lose weight and keep it off—unless you find activities you enjoy doing.
If you already love yoga, you’re in luck. But you may not think of yoga as a way to lose weight. The good news is, it can be! In fact, it may be one of the best options, because yoga addresses many of the factors weight loss depends on.
When it comes to weight loss exercise—or exercise in general—experts tell us to do three types: aerobic exercise, strength training, and stretching for flexibility.
You know yoga helps with flexibility, but you may not realize it can also burn calories and build strength, especially if you take power yoga or vinyasa yoga classes regularly.
If you’re ready to try yoga for weight loss, check out the weight loss class on the Track Yoga app to get started!