Weightloss 101: Basic Tips For Beginners
I know first hand that there’s so much bad advice on the internet… When I was a complete beginner and wanted to lose weight, I thought it had to be all-or-nothing, so found all these obscure diets and workouts that made me feel miserable, and I remember thinking that maybe losing the weight just wasn’t for me.
If being fit and healthy was supposed to feel so miserable, I’d rather be fat!
Thankfully, I didn’t give up and now I’m here to help you avoid making all the same mistakes I made.
If you’re a complete beginner looking to lose 20+ kilos, this article was written for you!
Your reasons for wanting to lose weight can be many:
You want to feel more comfortable in your own skin
You want to be able to move more easily
You have joint pain caused by your excess weight
You’re tired of being unhappy about your body and you’re ready to make a change
You’re worried about how your current lifestyle affects your health so you want to improve it
You want to get pregnant but first, you want to improve your health and fertility to ensure as healthy a pregnancy and delivery as possible
You recently had a baby and you’re looking to lose the baby weight
If this is you, at this point, you’re probably wondering: “How do I best start losing weight?”
This is where so many people make their first mistake!
A quick search on the internet will give you many ways in which to lose a lot of weight fast! And you’re feeling super motivated, so that seems like the best way to start, right?!
Most of those crash diets and agonizing workouts will leave you feeling hungry, exhausted and unsatisfied. As soon as that motivation and willpower of yours diminishes (which it will, eventually. Willpower is like a muscle, there’s a limit to how much we can use it before we need to rest.) your hunger will lead you to give up on your plan and go straight back to your old habits. You’ll feel defeated and validated about the fact that a healthier lifestyle just isn’t for you.
But this couldn’t be further from the truth. The only problem is, you’ve picked the wrong approach.
An attitude of “all-or-nothing” towards health and bodyweight will not result in lasting change. Experience has shown over and over again that people who achieve the most success on their weight loss journeys accept that small changes have more benefits and, surprisingly, produces immediate improvements when it comes to health and well-being.
Instead of a crash-diet, you need a program that is rich in nutrients, protein, fiber and sufficient in calories. A plan that will effectively reduce your appetite, improve your health, balance your hormones and increase your metabolism. Such an approach will effectively make you lose weight.
The same goes for exercise. Going for an all-or-nothing training style will leave you sore, exhausted and injured. Instead, start with light exercise and slowly increase intensity and duration as your fitness level improves. Below you’ll find a more in-depth description of how I recommend you start out with exercise if you’re not used to being physically active.
So now that I told you what NOT to do, I’m ready with a better solution. If you follow the simple guidelines below, I promise you’ll start feeling the benefits such as less or no knee pain, better sleep and more energy within just a few weeks!
There are only 2 KEY POINTS points to focus on:
KEY POINT NUMBER 1: Focus On Simple Nutrition Habits
Rule Number 1:
You can make dieting incredibly complex, or you can make it very simple. most often, when I work with clients looking to lose weight, I always start out by focusing on one simple nutritional rule: Eat whole foods!
Cut out the crap! Ditch the processed foods and just eat simple, wholesome ingredients. As much as you want, as often as you want.
Rule Number 2:
When you’ve established a habit of eating nutritious, fresh food (usually after 1-3 weeks) we continue to the second step.
Now we apply some simple, easy-to-follow rules:
Eat vegetables at every meal
Eat protein at every meal
Rule Number 3:
Include some healthy fats in all meals (especially important for women)
Include starchy carbs in 1-2 meals daily, one of them being the first meal after your workout
That’s it! Keep it simple, guys!
I promise that if you’re currently overweight and not paying any attention to nutrition, that’s all you need to do to see great results with your diet!
KEY POINT NUMBER 2: Consistency over Intensity In The Gym
You don’t need to exercise to lose weight, but I recommend it. It will speed up the weight loss and improve your health significantly in the process.
If you want to go to the gym you can, but you don’t have to! Even a 20-30 minute walk 3 times per week will give you significant benefits compared to no activity at all. Walking outside will also give you fresh air and expose you to sunlight, which will increase your mood and overall well-being.
If you do want to go to the gym I recommend starting with 2 x 30-45 minutes per week.
Do a 5-10 minute warm up on your preferred cardio equipment, then go lift some weights. Free weights are great, machines are great, bodyweight exercises are great! You don’t even have to get out of breath or start sweating for your workout to be effective. It’s just about moving!
Basic Beginner Workout Program:
A: Warm up: 10 min. cross trainer lvl. 5-8
B: Glute Bridge 3×15
C: Bench Squat 3×15
D: Machine Seated Row 3×15
E: Machine Chest Press 3×15
F: Cool Down: 10 min. bike lvl. 7-8.
Rest: Rest for 45 seconds between sets.
This program is very safe to do, even if you have joint pain or other weight-related issues. By doing this program you will get 20 minutes of moderate cardiovascular exercise and strengthen all the big muscle groups in your body. The full program can be completed in around 45 minutes if you stick to the 45 second rest periods.
How to do the workout:
Warm up on exercise A, the cross trainer, for 10 minutes. To begin, start pedaling so the machine turns on, then press “Quick Start” and choose your level. Usually, level 5-8 is a good warm-up resistance for a beginner, but feel free to decrease or increase resistance so it fits you. You should feel your heart rate increase but you’re still able to speak in short sentences.
After the warm-up is completed, continue to exercise B.
Complete 15 repetitions of the glute bridge (click on the exercise for video) and rest for 45 seconds before you repeat. Rest for 45 seconds again before you complete the third set of 15 repetitions. Then move on to the next exercise.
Continue the same way with exercises C, D and E before you finish with F: 10 minutes on the bike. It should feel a bit harder than your warm-up on the cross trainer, but you should feel like you could still go harder if you wanted to.
- All machines usually have bright colored adjustment levers that you can use to adjust the machine to fit your proportions.
- On exercises where you can choose the weight, the weight should be heavy enough to fatigue our muscles within 15-20 repetitions, but not so heavy that you struggle to complete the 15 repetitions with the full range of motion. A rule of thumb is that the weight should feel moderate until about 12th repetition, and then the last 2-3 repetitions feel heavy, but you’re still able to complete all 15.
- You can always start slightly lighter and increase the weight as you get more comfortable with the machine.
If you found this blog useful and would like me to write more content like it, please let me know in the comments below!