How To Lose Weight Without A Gym
If your goal is weight loss, you have probably thought about or been told that joining the gym is your first step. However, you may not have time to get to a gym, you may have children to look after throughout the day or you might just hate the idea of going to a gym altogether. Does this mean you have to abandon your goal of getting into great shape and feeling fitter before you even start?
Most certainly not! Yes, the gym is a great place to lose weight but it isn’t going to be for everybody. So, what other options do you have? I have put together a list of the things you can be doing to start dropping pounds, inches and clothes sizes right away without ever stepping foot inside the gym doors.
- Simple dietary changes
Honestly, this one goes for everybody. It doesn’t matter if you are going to the gym or not, you must change your eating habits if you want to change your body.
Keep it simple, though. There is no need for a massive overhaul of your entire eating routine. Big, drastic changes may work well in the beginning but they are very hard to sustain. Instead, pick 2 or 3 areas of your diet that you know could be improved and work on them for 2-3 weeks. It will take a few weeks for those new changes to become a habit. Once you have focused on improving those areas and they are ingrained in your new routine, you can pick a couple more things to be improved and set about creating those habits.
Taking this option may be slower in the start, but it has a snowball effect. Each time you improve on a new part of your diet, your results are amplified. This method is also much less stressful and more sustainable over the long term.
Here are a few common examples of where most people could begin:
Start eating a higher protein and fibre breakfast. Starting the day off this way should keep you feeling full for longer and provide you with better energy in the hours after.
Switch calorie containing drinks to water or their calorie-free alternatives. Consuming drinks that contain high calories is an easy way to rack up your overall calorie intake each day. Swapping them for calorie-free or lower calorie alternatives is an instant way to reduce your daily calorie intake.
Eat green vegetables with at least 2 meals each day. Again, green vegetables are very filling and low calorie. Focusing on increasing the amount of green veg you eat will have you feeling full for longer, eating fewer calories overall plus improving your general health as a result of the vitamins and minerals they contain.
Pick a couple of the above options or think of some that are more personal to your diet, focus on them for a few weeks then re-evaluate. If you can average just two new and improved habits each month, that would be 24 things that you will be doing better by this time next year. Do you think making 24 improvements to your current diet will get have you in better shape? I can guarantee it would!
- Be N.E.A.T
N.E.A.T stands for non-exercise activity thermogenesis. Sounds complicated but it’s fairly simple. It basically stands for the amount of energy (calories) that you burn while doing any activity that isn’t planned exercise.
Yes, you are always burning calories no matter what you are doing. It isn’t just exercise that can burn fat. Each time you walk upstairs or vacuum the house, you are burning calories.
So, a very easy way to increase your fat burning efforts is to increase the number of calories you burn as you go about your day to day tasks.
There is a whole host of ways that you could increase your N.E.A.T. Anything that isn’t planned exercise/activity counts so you can get imaginative with it.
Going for walks is an obvious one, walking or cycling to the shops instead of driving, parking further away from the entrance to places when you do drive, taking stairs instead of the lift, cleaning the car, dusting the house, getting out of the office and walking at lunch times, the list is huge.
Another great, more modern way of increasing your non-exercise activity is to use a fitbit/step counter and try to reach a target number of daily steps. This is a nice way of tracking since it is more visual and objective. You can also increase your step target over time so you keep improving.
As with the diet, these are all relatively small changes that definitely add up over time.
- Gym-free Training
Essentially, all you will be doing with a gym is using their equipment to work your muscles and burn extra calories. It isn’t the act of just going to the gym that gets you in shape, it’s what you actually do while you are there. For weight loss, the type of things you should be doing in the gym can be done at home as well. You just need to be a little more creative since it won’t be as simple as hopping on a treadmill or cross trainer (for what it’s worth, that isn’t the best way to exercise for weight loss anyway).
What you need to be doing as part of a successful weight loss plan is some kind of resistance training to work your muscles and some type of cardio to keep your heart and lungs healthy and for extra calorie burn. Both of these can be done in the home, garden or park.
For the resistance training element, you can buy a few excellent pieces of equipment that don’t take up much space and can be used to train your entire body. Things like kettlebells, adjustable dumbbells, medicine balls, suspension trainers and resistance bands are all perfect choices for an awesome workout and they don’t take up much space.
Alternatively, using your own bodyweight is a form of resistance training. Performing circuits of press ups, squats, mountain climbers, glute bridges, jumps, ab work and sprints is a sure way to work your body into burning a load of calories.
As for cardio, that is a simple one to solve. Walking, running and cycling are very simple to go ahead and do. Sprinting (particularly up a hill) works very well. You can also arrange any of your resistance exercises into circuit or interval workouts and get the best of both worlds in a short period of time.
Put it all into practice
It goes without saying that you can learn all of the different tricks and techniques in the world, but nothing will work if you don’t actually put a bit of time into actually doing it. Of course, it will require a bit of effort and some perseverance but I promise the results will be well worth it.
Go ahead and use these few tips and be sure to get in touch if you have any questions or just to let me know your progress (love to hear when people succeed after taking some of my advice).
Until next time,