This guest post comes from Paige Corley, a Program Director at the Biggest Loser Resort at Fitness Ridge.
Spring is a great time to either begin or renew your quest for a healthy lifestyle. Part of this quest is often weight loss. Unfortunately many of us make the common error of setting unrealistic expectations of weight loss then find ourselves disappointed or disillusioned with this process then we end up frustrated and give up. To stop this pattern we must become educated so that we can set realistic expectations, meet them and find ourselves successful in our journey.
Here are the three things you must know in order to set realistic expectations of weight loss:
1. Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR): this is the amount of calories you burn in a 24 hour period. Don’t guess this number; know it! There are tests out there (we offer them here at The Resort) that will tell you what your unique RMR is. Or there are various websites that have Resting Metabolic Calculators on them. You will need to input your weight, height, gender and age. From this information a general RMR will be given.
2. Calories burned during exercise: Many people guess this number or believe what the treadmill read out tells you; this is a mistake. A heart rate monitor can help to give you a more accurate number of calories burned during exercise. Miscalculation of how many calories burned during exercise can lead to unrealistic expectations of weight loss.
3. Calories consumed with food and drink: This is the area where the most mistakes are made. People greatly underestimate how many calories are in the foods and drinks they consume. Remember: even healthy food is caloric. If you snack on walnuts thinking they are full of antioxidants and vitamins you are correct but what you might not realize is that you could be adding as many as 180 calories to your daily intake – with each handful! Take advantage of the many website and smart phone apps out there that help you realize how many calories are in your food and drink. Or simply read the labels on your food and drink containers. Measure your food when you cook at home and control your portions.
If those three things are taken into account you can set realistic weight loss results. Remember you need to burn 3500 calories in order to burn a pound of fat; your calories out must exceed your calories in every day in order to achieve weight loss. In general, eat a lower quantity of quality calories and get more activity into your life. This combination will result in a healthier you.