Photograph by Michael Zittel @Serrbiz
Yes, you’ve read that correctly, you don’t necessarily need to lift stuff, visit the cardio area, or take an aerobics class to ditch those extra pounds of belly-jelly. Luckily for those of you who dislike the concept of gym-going, you never have to feel self-conscious, silly or downright embarrassed again in a setting that doesn’t make you feel comfortable.
Instead, you can design one heck of a nutrition plan, stick to it religiously, and find a more inspiring physical activity to kickstart your fitness goals. All it takes is a little bit of imagination, some effort and perhaps some trial and error before you decide what’s the best blend for you!
1. Walk it off
Still, this doesn’t mean stopping at every window to look at those summer sales or soak in the sunset, both of which are intoxicating. Studies have shown that brisk walking, the kind that practically leaves you breathless, is as effective a tool for losing fat as going to the gym.
Get yourself some comfy sneakers, a pair of leggings and a snug tee, and all you’ll need to do is pick a route. If you live near a park, all the better because time spent in nature benefits your overall well-being. At first, aim at that infamous half an hour per day, but for better results, don’t be afraid to up the mileage.
2. Hit the HIIT
On the other hand, sticking just to a walking routine will likely end up boring, and your body might hit a plateau after a while. Complementing your new walk-to-work (and back) lifestyle with an occasional HIIT session can further empower your weight loss.
Luckily, the internet is teeming with various instructional videos with dozens of different combos of bodyweight exercises to create the perfect high-intensity program. Several times a week of different HIIT sessions, and you’ll be burning the extra fat very efficiently, while at the same time toning your muscles and becoming stronger.
3. Dance the calories away
Salsa, Zumba, hip-hop, you name it, it will likely be a mighty item in your weight-loss arsenal! YouTube is also chock-full of videos to guide you through your home workout, but you can also join a dance class and break a sweat on a regular basis with the help of the extra motivation of a group setting. You’d be surprised just how strenuous a modern jazz ballet class can be!
Then again, if you’re daring by nature or just want to flirt with your wild side a bit, pole dancing has become quite popular in the last few years. Weight-loss is one of the main reasons, but it’s also tremendously fun, challenging on your entire body and helps you gain confidence, as well.
4. On board!
Another weirdo on our list, but becoming more popular by the day – skating is not just a way to re-awaken your inner child, but also shed those pesky pounds. According to professor Michele Olson, the sport is surprisingly powerful for cardiovascular endurance, where just your regular board-pushing can burn up to 12 calories per minute, not to mention trying those complex stunts.
However, safety first! Make sure that you’re well-equipped with high-quality skateboard hardware and any protective accessories you might need. Then you can proceed to cruise the streets, join a skate park and look as cool as a cucumber.
Last, but not least, your diet plays a pivotal role in your weight-loss regime. No matter how much you dance, skate or run, the effects will fail to emerge unless your diet is tailored to suit your goals without harming your healthy nutrition.
In most cases, that means you need to eat fewer calories than you consume (about 500 is the healthy limit), and choose nutrient-dense foods to be your sources of healthy carbs, fats, and lean protein, in the right time intervals, accompanied with proper hydration. Choose your munchies carefully, craft your exercise routine, and watch those pounds melt away!