First of all, I hate list articles that advise you to do things like ‘laugh more’ to burn an extra 10 calories a day. Nothing against laughter, but I don’t think it belongs on a serious list of weight loss tactics and strategies. We’ve put together a list of small steps that are achievable with the barest threshold of effort that will help you reach your fat loss goals in 2022. You don’t need to jump all over all of them, but be mindful as you read through the list which of them call out to you. I suggest re-reading this list on a regular basis, and making adjustments to your routine as you go. We are all about achievability and consistency here at BodyRock - there are things that will challenge you on this list, but know that anyone is capable of change, especially when it comes to making small changes that compound to have a massive impact. Let’s get started.
1. Stop Drinking Regular Soda. This is not an argument in support of artificial sweeteners, but when I see people drinking can after can of regular soda, it hits me as hard as seeing people smoking cigarettes. There are 240 calories per can. At just 1 can a day, you are packing in an extra 3,360 calories a week - more than an extra full day of calories. And let's be honest, who just drinks 1 can of soda? Stop. Drinking. Regular. Soda.
2. Have a Crystal Clear Goal. Write your goal down and post it somewhere in your home where you can see it regularly. It’s common sense. You need a target to aim at. Get serious - write down what you want.
3. Don’t drink your calories. This is an obvious follow up from my advice around regular soda. Don’t drink a Starbucks flavored coffee that has 600 calories in it. Don’t drink regular beer, when there are multiple low calorie alternatives. Don’t workout for an hour and then power down 2 large, full calorie Gatorades. Stick to the basics. Low cal, zero calorie, water, tea, coffee (black or with 0% milk). If holding awareness around liquids is something new for you, then dialing down on what you are drinking will be a weight loss gold mine.
4. Avoid processed foods. You know what your favorite treats are. For me, its dairy milk chocolate. If I have a large bar in the house, I will eat it, guaranteed. I know that it’s going to kick me in the ass if I buy it at the store. I try and win these battles in the checkout line, because fighting off the temptation at 2 am in the kitchen is not a fight I can usually win. Keep it out of the house.
5. Bag it. If you struggle to add veggies to your meals, grab a pre-made, pre-washed bagged salad and then dash some low calorie balsamic dressing over it. This strategy has the best chance of getting greens on your plate because it involves almost zero effort. To compound the benefits, eat the salad first. Always. It will help fill you up.
6. Lift. We’ve been pushing strength training as the foundation of any weight loss strategy because it works. Building long, lean, muscle tone will transform your body’s fat burning powers, and give you an athletic silhouette. If you want to learn how to strength train, we have a beginner program in BodyRockPlus called ‘Intro to Strength Training’ - it will get you started with the best exercises and progress you into feeling confident and strong. Once you see and feel the results, you will wish that you had unlocked the benefits of strength training years ago.
7. Do HIIT. HIIT training is one of the most efficient workouts for burning fat, and when you combine it with lifting, you have pretty much the best workout in the world. Try our Tone & Torch or Intro to HIIT workout series for a perfectly balanced workout that combines strength and HIIT.
8. Go Full Body. Do workouts that take on the full body vs focusing on individual muscle groups. It’s more efficient.
9. Track your Food. Bottom line is that you need to keep track and be mindful about what you are loading into your face. MyFitnessPal is a great app that makes this as easy as it gets. Tracking your food is guaranteed to be horribly annoying at first, but if you don’t know what your numbers are, you don’t have a chance. Track your food.
10. Eat When You Wake Up. Unless you are following our Intermittent Fasting Program, then you should be eating breakfast. A pile of research has shown that those who eat breakfast are more successful with long term weight loss. Think fruit, Greek yogurt, a handful of nuts. I personally like to scramble some eggs for a quick breakfast win. Having some diced onions, peppers etc in the fridge adds a lot of flavor, and I dust my eggs off with some Franks Hot Sauce.
11. Be an AM eater. Most people eat their heaviest meal in the evening. Try and make lunch your big meal, and taper it off later in the day. People that get their calories in earlier have been shown to have greater weight loss success.
12. Step it up. Walk places. Take the stairs. Stand up from your desk and move around. Look for the small movement wins and take them. Every step counts in this journey.
13. Don’t make any food decisions when you are starving. If you are off balance with hunger and are ready to kill someone, chances are you won’t make great choices. Avoid shopping for groceries, ordering from a delivery app, etc when you are ravenous. If you find yourself in this situation, drink a cup of water, bite an apple, and then when you return to being human, make good choices.
14. Have something on you. Keep some jerky or a low calorie protein bar on you in case you get hangry. This is an emergency, healthy choice back up, not a snickers bar. It’s a smash the glass in case of an emergency food item, not a snack. Let it hide in the bottom of your bag.
15. Get Steamed. Almost all restaurants will replace a side of fries with fresh, streamed veggies. Ask.
16. Get Baked, Not Fried. Chicken wings taste just as good baked as they do fried. Always choose baked items over fried to save significant, hidden calories. If in doubt, ask.
17. Get comfortable Asking. You are an adult, paying for an experience. Don’t feel remotely shy or rude about asking how your food is being prepared, and asking for alternatives where they exist. It’s a restaurant, not a secret test kitchen.
18. Take control of your portions. Skip appetizers. Split mains between 2 people. If you are still hungry, then look at ordering something else. This is a total game changer in terms of costs, and calorie intake. Most restaurant portions can easily feed 2 people.
19. Avoid social grazing. This simply comes down to not socializing directly over the chip bowls. Take a handful, then move away to be social. Mindless eating happens when people are socializing with food.
20. Walk your Dog. Enough with just opening the back door to the backyard. Take your furry bestie for a walk. They will love you even more, and you will be racking up steps and movement.
21. Cut 100 Calories per day. This can add up to an extra pound of weight loss per month, without even noticing it.
22. Make the Red Sauce switch. If you are a ketchup person (you put it on almost everything), try making the switch to a hot sauce. Start with a mild and then work your way up. You will save on calories and sugar.
23. Use Your Feet More. Think about when you can realistically walk places. Skip Ubers, and aim for at least 10k steps per day. Your phone should be able to track your steps inside your health settings. This tactic can have a massive impact on pressing your weight loss goals forward.
24. Have a Plan Ready. No need to get complicated here, just consider your days. What do your food options look like? When can you walk? What workout are you doing? Holding basic awareness about your day in relation to your goals is a level of focus that is mandatory if you want to succeed.
25. Take before pictures. This one scares people, but it’s incredibly powerful. It’s important that you recognize your starting point, so that you can chart your progress. Be loving and kind to yourself. Have an acceptance of where you are, and where you want to go. Face yourself and really see yourself. Awareness is incredibly powerful. Keep them private, but have them.
26. Hang with active People. You’ve likely heard the expression that you are who you spend your time with. This is doubly true when it comes to weight loss. If your friendships revolve around drinking bottles of red and eating cheese pizzas, you likely won't get very far. You need to be supported by people that have the same goals and intentions as you, and that like to move. Deciding to lose weight is one of the biggest social disruptors, be prepared to broaden your social horizons.
27. You are #1. Decide that your fitness and health is the most important commitment that you can make. Don’t choose to break away from behaviors that support your journey just to accommodate someone that is not on your quest. You first.
28. Get to bed. Sleep is boring to talk about, but absolutely essential to successfully losing weight. You need to figure out a way to get 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep per day. Anything less and you are stacking the deck against yourself. Figure this out as a priority.
29. Get therapy. If you are ‘emotionally eating’ or suspect that your mental health is a factor in your weight loss history, you don’t need a trainer, you need a therapist. At BodyRock we believe that therapy is personal training for your emotions, and we all know what happens when people don’t choose to train. Think of it as emotional hygiene. Getting a handle on what is going on with you emotionally is just basic common sense. Do it. It will change your entire life.
30. Indulge. No one is going to be able to sustain a perfect diet indefinitely. Aim for 80% good choices, 20% indulgent ones. You can only really make this work if you are tracking your food, so think of this as the reward for tracking your calorie intake. Without tracking, we’ve seen this 80/20 rule quickly reverse itself. There is power in awareness. Know your numbers, and enjoy the 20%.
31. Have it in your back pocket. Having your workouts ready to stream on your phone, or on your Apple TV, Roku, Smart Tv etc is like having a personal trainer in your pocket. Stay connected to your goals, by following a workout program that is achievable at your level. If you are a beginner, don’t sign yourself up for an advanced workout just because you are feeling inspired to lose weight. Exercise smart. Do workouts that are challenging but achievable. If you are just starting out again, try our Beginner Bootcamps, or Intro to Strength Training on BodyRockPlus.com - if you are reading this you can get a full year of unlimited access for just $69 with code: XMAS69
32. Get Back Up. It’s never about perfection. It’s about consistency. If you mess up, fail or fall off the wagon, the only thing that matters is how fast you stand back up. Punishing yourself is stupid. Shake it off and get back into your life again. We are human, we all f-up. Press play on your workout and let us help you keep pressing forward. We’ve got you - it’s what we do.
How do I access the workouts. Are they free or subscription or what ??
This is by far one of the best articles I’ve read that hasn’t had me feeling I was a loser. It’s helped me tweak my new year agenda list & feel really great about moving forward.
Thank you so much.
I LOVE TO READ YOUR ENCOURAGING ARTICLES ON HELP LOSING WEIGHT
I wanted to thank you for keeping me on your email list. I’m starting over.. again. Reminders and encouragement are always welcomed and needed.
Like a list like this one. It makes total sense. Putting it into practice and getting over my mental hurdles is difficult, but not impossible.