10 Tips to Losing Weight after 50 | How to Lose Weight Over 50
Losing weight after 50 can be a tough nut to crack – but nowhere near impossible.
The key to do it right is to develop certain healthy habits and stay away from less-than-ideal ideas. Once you get that ball rolling, you won’t believe how easy it is to lose those extra pounds!
And here’s the thing: sure, losing weight might be harder to do than when you were 25, but you have the tools to do it right this time.
If you follow these 10 tips, your body will end up looking better than ever before.
1. Use the scale as a tool – and nothing else
The very first thing you need to understand is the difference between a pound of body fat and a pound of muscle – they look and feel different!
When you lose weight, the best scenario possible is losing fat while maintaining muscle mass. If you manage to do that, you’re golden. In fact, even if you lose no weight at all (by losing fat and gaining muscle), you’ll look better than before – no matter what number the scale shows.
If you truly want to see how well you’re doing, you should try to measure your body fat percentage once every two months. If that number is going down, you’re doing great!
2. There’s more to it than calories
Your daily calorie intake is an important number. Unless you get that under control, you’re not going to lose weight. But that’s far from the only thing that matters!
Recent studies have shown that hormones are as important as calories when it comes to losing weight. And, when it comes to losing weight when you’re 50, hormones might play an even bigger role than calories do.
Why are hormones that important? It’s all about cortisol (the stress hormone) – and being able to get it under control. When your body releases cortisol, you’re likely to retain body fat and lose muscle mass.
And, unfortunately, cortisol gets released every time you are stressed out – so you know you’re bound to be full of that hormone during these stressful times.
So, sure, you need to watch your calorie intake – but you also need to pick and choose quality food to help you regulate both good and bad hormones.
3. No fat? No, thanks.
If you want to lose weight, you probably thought that cutting dietary fat out of your life was a good idea. If you don’t eat fat, you won’t get fat, right? Wrong!
Dietary fat is not the same as body fat – nor are they related in any way. Not only that, but you should also know that eating dietary fat leaves you satiated, which means you tend to eat less when you have a meal full of it.
Don’t get it twisted: Body fat is a result of eating too much and being stressed out (remember about cortisol!). Dietary fat is one of the three essential macronutrients you need to live a healthy life.
4. Too much cardio can backfire
Most women tend to choose cardio when it’s time to lose weight. They grab their running shoes and hit the road. That’s not a bad plan – unless you’re overdoing it.
If you over-train by running too much, your body will end up releasing more cortisol than usual. And, you already know, cortisol leads to more body fat – and you want none of that!
Cardio is great! But only if you do it right, for the right amount of time, and you rest right after doing it. Otherwise, you’re probably hurting yourself.
5. Lift weights to lose weight
Strength training is a must if you want to lose weight, no matter how old you are. And it’s even more important if you’re over 50.
Believe it or not, lifting heavy weights is not going to make you look bulky but toned instead.
Lifting weights will stimulate your muscles to make them grow and, at the same time, help you lose body fat. That’s what you want.
Of course, you should mix it up with cardio – but remember not to over-train!
6. Diet over exercise
There’s an old saying that goes: muscles are made in the gym, abs appear in the kitchen.
And, you know, whoever said it was right! Nutrition is, more-or-less, 80% of the effort. If you don’t have your nutrition right, you’re not going to lose weight.
So, sure, you can exercise, run, jump, and do countless things during the day – but if you’re eating wrong, nothing good will happen.
On the other hand, if you eat right and avoid exercise, you could still lose weight and look great (but the healthy choice would be exercising as well.)
While far from ideal, the good news is that, if you don’t have time to exercise, you can still lose weight and look great. As long as you’re eating and sleeping right, you’ll be alright.
You can check out our diet guides here.
And more coming soon
7. Empty calories are full of problems
Can you fill your car’s gas tank with water and expect it to work? Not at all! So, why would anyone think you can use empty calories to maintain your body?
Your body needs the right amount of macronutrients and micronutrients. And the food you eat needs to be full of them.
If you decide to starve yourself or eat empty calories to lose weight, you’re bound to fail. Without the right calories, you’re going to release more cortisol than usual, feel terrible, and, eventually, gain your old weight back.
Slow and steady wins the weight loss race!
8. Time your food better
The right food at the wrong time could be the wrong choice.
Similar to dietary fat, you need carbs to lose weight – but you need to eat them at the right time. That’s the best way to balance your hormones and lose more body fat than usual.
So, for example, if you’re stressed out, you should try to eat carbs later that day. Otherwise, you have a greater chance of storing that food as body fat.
9. If you don’t sleep right, you’re doing it wrong
Let’s say you’re eating right and exercising right but you’re not sleeping your eight hours. You’re probably going to be stuck and not lose weight!
You need to sleep to gain muscle mass, make the most out of every calorie you eat, and function properly throughout the day.
And, believe it or not, a good’s night sleep helps you burn 300 to 500 calories – that’s the average lunch!
10. Don’t stress about weight loss – or you won’t be at your best
As a final note, we cannot stress enough how important it is to not be stressed out (no pun intended). It’s not easy, but you can do it!
When you’re trying to lose weight, it’s easy to get mad if you had a cheat meal, eat a little more than usual, or skipped your workout. You can also feel the stress accumulating if you’re not losing as much weight as you thought you would.
Well, don’t! Weight loss is a marathon, not a race. It doesn’t matter if this week wasn’t that good, you’ll do better next week!
And, before you know it, you’ll see your goal body in the mirror.
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