9 tips to lose weight when you don’t have time
Daily life can be stressful and chaotic.
How can you lose weight when you work full time, have a partner and/or children and are overwhelmed with tasks?
Good habits like cooking and exercising often go out the window.
Fortunately, your busy schedule doesn’t have to get in the way of your weight loss efforts.
Want to know how to lose weight when you don’t have time? Then read on.
* Tip #1: Prepare your meals the night before
When you have a busy schedule, you don’t always have time to prepare a good breakfast in the morning. Nine times out of ten, you end up eating junk food at work.
A better solution: prepare your meals the night before.
When you cook your meals, you decide on the ingredients that go into them and you are sure to eat well throughout the day.
Not only will preparing your meals ahead of time save you valuable time during the rest of the week, but you’ll always have something to eat in case you get hungry. You won’t have to rely on the lunchroom or the vending machine.
* Tip #2: Keep your workouts short and intense
To burn fat, you don’t need to spend hours at the gym. It’s much more effective! Several studies have shown that a 20-minute HIIT workout can burn more calories than 45 minutes of running on a mat (source).
This type of training increases the heart rate and keeps it high, burning more calories and fat in less time.
The high intensity of these workouts means that the body needs more oxygen to return to its normal state once the workout is over. This is called the “afterburn” effect. This is accompanied by an increase in caloric expenditure and fat burning.
Ideal when you want to lose weight but don’t have the time!
* Tip #3: Work out in the morning
Late meetings, dinners with clients, drinks with colleagues… There are many things that can prevent you from working out in the evening.
And it’s frustrating, because you have good intentions.
So what’s the solution to burning calories? Work out in the morning!
Do you have any idea what you could accomplish if you got up an hour earlier each day?
Granted, it takes some getting used to…
Especially if you’re not a morning person. The first few mornings won’t be easy. But if you force yourself to stick with it for a few weeks, you’ll find that it gets easier and easier. You’ll even end up enjoying it!
Another advantage: you burn more fat in the morning, especially when you skip breakfast from time to time.
* Tip #4: Write down what you eat
In the past (especially when I was a student), I used to keep a journal in which I wrote down everything I ate and drank. It was very tedious and time consuming to count all those calories.
So when someone told me about a free online journal to track calories, activity and progress, I knew it would be much easier.
To lose weight, counting calories is not enough. You also need to pay attention to the balance of macronutrients. Keeping a food diary helps you become aware of all the junk food you eat without realizing it.
* Tip #5: Don’t eat at your desk
When you want to lose weight but don’t have the time, you sometimes try to grab a few minutes here and there. By eating at your desk, for example. Stop it!
Try to take the time to eat and enjoy your meals. You’ll be more aware of how much you’re eating and you’ll chew your food better. Most people are so busy at work that they eat more than they realize.
Step away from your desk at lunchtime and into the kitchen or an empty meeting room where you can relax and learn to eat intuitively. Intuitive eating is about taking time to enjoy your food and gaining control over your feelings about eating (especially helpful for people with eating disorders).
* Tip #6: Don’t sit when you can stand
Most people sit all day at work. Do you have the opportunity to work standing up? If so, do it!
A 2018 meta-analysis (an analysis of the results of previous studies) found that standing instead of sitting for six hours a day can not only prevent weight gain, but also promote weight loss. More than 46 studies were analyzed. It was found that people who stand burn more calories because they move more often
* Tip #7: Spend less time on social media
Do you have any idea how much time you spend on your cell phone each day?
Be critical of yourself and look at what is consuming your time.
How many times have I heard people complain that they don’t have time to exercise or take care of their fitness. Yet I see them constantly on their smartphones.
The scariest aspect of smartphone addiction is that it can affect our physical and mental health, our social relationships, and our productivity.
Are you constantly glued to your phone? If so, it’s time to limit Facebook, Instagram or YouTube. Focus on what really matters.
* Tip #8: Play sports with other people
It’s one thing to drag yourself to the gym, but going alone is often even harder.
It’s not always easy to motivate yourself when you have a busy schedule. But luckily, there are solutions. Why not ask your co-workers if they want to run or go to the gym with you during their lunch break or after work? Your workplace may have a gym where you can work out together.
Having a workout buddy can give you the boost you need to stay motivated.
Turn off your phone or put it on airplane mode for a few hours a day so no one can disturb you. Only use it when you’re doing something good for you or productive.
* Tip #9: Pack a lunch when you travel
Most companies nowadays offer a lunchroom to their employees. When you want to lose weight, it is very difficult to face the temptation of junk food on a daily basis. Especially when you didn’t bring anything to eat. After a while, you give in to the rumbling of your stomach.
This also applies when driving or using public transport. So take enough food with you when you travel. Think fresh fruit, rice cakes, hard-boiled eggs, celery sticks, etc. Or better yet: prepare your meals in advance