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HOW TO LOSE WEIGHT AND STAY IN SHAPE

IT TAKES A STRONG COMMITMENT

Actually, losing weight and staying in shape are two separate but closely related goals. I can remember weighing around 235 pounds and playing tennis several times per week. My energy levels and blood pressure readings indicated fitness. But I now have orthopedic issues partially because of that activity. My weight is now 179.5. I think of my past activity at 235 as similar to driving a large truck with threadbare tires.

A decision to lose weight and gain or maintain fitness is not an idle one. I have known people who lost a huge amount of weight, but who did so without exercise of any kind. The results were not becoming.

The commitment must be ironclad, not something to do only if we are able to find time.

That commitment must include the removal of habits that may make us comfortable while not being in our best interests – like eating for comfort rather than for nutrition.

“Finding time” seems like making excuses in advance. We all have the same 24 hours per day allotted to us. My daily workouts require about 30 minutes per day, or 2% of my day. Even putting aside 8 hours for sleep, I still am only using 3 % of my day for a consistent daily workout.

So, we must exercise or otherwise work out in some manner to sculpt a fitter body. It isn’t difficult.

The remainder of the commitment is to eat healthy foods. This takes no additional time.

This post will be about my personal experience and ideas about losing weight and maintaining fitness.

COMPELLING REASONS TO DO THIS

We all have personal motivations to make a change. Here are many that may apply to weight loss with fitness:

  • Improved appearance – everyone wants to look better, so this may be the top reason for many people
  • Better mobility – we can boost our metabolism and move better without superfluous weight
  • Better sleep – fewer nights without rest and blocked nasal passages
  • Improved cognitive ability – cortisol levels are lowered with weight loss
  • Food will taste better – so true! I have found that eating more slowly is much more satisfying than gobbling food
  • More energy – with less weight, we have more energy in reserve
  • Better skin – fruits and vegetables, not sugary foods, help our skin to glow
  • More confidence – looking better will certainly improve our self-confidence
  • Improved cardiovascular health – blood pressure and blood flow are improved
  • Decreased risk of diabetes – blood glucose levels are lessened
  • Easier breathing – respiratory function is improved
  • Longer lives – our lifespans are lengthened as we eliminate risks of diseases associated with aging

A personal note – I am 80 years of age and I see where the average lifespan of men in the United States is 75.1. This is going down.

Recently, I received a call from my bank. I had to verify a purchase I made for fitness equipment. The man from the bank questioned the purchase, since he thought that no one of my age would be interested in fitness.

Here is a picture made of me 3 weeks after I turned 80 –

I really believe that we underestimate the importance of fitness and reasonably good health for senior adults.

Must I apologize to the banker who questioned why I would buy fitness equipment at my age? Am I supposed to be dead, as of 4 years ago? Am I living on borrowed time? Is our culture receding into complacency?

WAYS AND MEANS

I improved my relatonship with food when I stopped eating lots of foods with salt, sugar and fats. These were comfort foods, but were not healthy for me.

I was eating for taste only, not for any other reason. It took me a while to learn that meals are not occasions when we quickly eat for taste and then get on with the rest of our day.

Eating slowly helped a lot. I found that I could better enjoy my food.

Deep breathing before eating, almost meditating, was of benefit.

Drinking lots of water helped. My goal is to drink an amount of water daily in ounces at least equal to one half of my weight. That would be 90 ounces per day. (Water is also contained in many foods, such as fruits. This adds to my water consumpton).

I counted calories per meal and per day. I still do and I post this as a daily entry on my computer. Personal accountability is crucial.

Intermittent fasting pushed me past my goal lines. This elongated my fasting to 18 -19 hours per day. Best of all, it has not been a burden on me whatsoever. See my prior post on intermittent fasting. This has solidified my process of weight management more than anything else. I recommend it highly. Our ancestors were hunters and gatherers who did not eat until they found and processed their food. Often, they would fast for a day or two. We can enhance our metabolism by fasting.

MY WORKOUT EQUIPMENT

I don’t do heavy barbell weight training now. Generally, I do high reps with lighter dumbbell weights or simlar forms of resistance. My practice is to do resistance training one day, cardio the next.

Many of the items shown below are supplied by Amazon. As an Amazon affiliate, I can make recommendations and earn from qualifying purchases. I have found Amazon to be a trustworthy source of equipment, with reasonable prices and excellent service.

Here is my Nordic Track treadmill, not the most expensive, but it has served me well for many years.

Adjustable dumbbells, easy to use and then put away. See all the other choices with this link.

Resistance bands, great for full body workouts and reasonably priced

Crunch device, for protecting my back when I do floor abdominal exercises

BULLWORKER FITNESSĀ gives us high quality workout tools, with modes for both isotonic and isometric movements. I like to do isotonic reps and then finish with a lengthy isometric hold.

I have the Steel Bow and the Bow Classic, which is a larger version of the Steel Bow. Both are shown and described on the Bullworker site.

Bullworkers are relatively small and easily manageable. They are especially good to take along when we travel.

Check out the Bullworker website.

Lastly, I have used Dick’s Sporting Goods for most of my athletic goods and workout equipment in the last few decades. See the link on the side of this article for current price discounts.

FINAL THOUGHTS

There are many ways to lose weight and maintain fitness. This has been a report on what has worked for me.

To repeat – a commitment must be made and this must be non-negotiable. Then, it becomes a matter of consistent application of that process.

It isn’t mysterious or complicated. Keep it simple. Set in motion a plan to improve yourself physically. You will be bolstered by the forthcoming improvements. They will quickly become obvious.

It isn’t difficult!

Please leave me any comments or questions in the “Comments” section below. Or email me, richard@myworkoutathome.com.

Stay healthy!

Richard

4 Comments

  1. I’m thankful to come across this post as I’m currently trying to lose weight.

    Like you’ve mentioned here I need to definitely need to get rid of eating for comfort habit, it’s what’s stopping me from successfully losing weight.

    I agree with the reasons you’ve mentioned as to why people generally would want lose some unwanted fat.

    Thanks

  2. Live healthy, Live long. Thank you, Richard.

    You have explained the benefits of regular exercise.

    it is often that we excuse ourselves being tired, no time to do exercise, and all the rants one can think of.

    I admire your exercise equipment at home. They are quite effective items and not overly expensive. 

    I am in my mid-sixties and love exercising and I am a foodie. My diet promises are all forgotten once I see some delicious food. I have been improving my habits slowly. I slip, then come back to the healthy food. Have happened a few times.

    I am not obese anymore. The clue was optimizing my Vitamin-D level, using nutrition as a handle and regular exercise.

    I walk and that’s mostly the exercise and I love it, I do high-intensity interval walking. Always I do yoga and pranayam by habit. I do not like to eat after the sunlight is gone and easily fast for 13-14 hours. Have lost from 186 lbs. to 122 over 4- 5 years period.

    • Great work, Anu! You have accomplished much and I feel sure you are pleased. I like your use of a variety of exercise modes. Walking is great exercise! “Slipping” is part of the process and no disgrace. The key is to get back on your plan as soon as you can. Congratulations and please keep in touch!

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