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Practical Steps to Natural Weight Loss

By: Debbie Sipe

You can try out just about any diet plan on the market, and the one thing that rings true with all effective weight loss plans is the fact you have to modify your current lifestyle if you want to lose weight.

It may mean increasing your current activity level, changing your menu, and cutting back on your calories. But there is no magic cure for weight loss that doesn't involve some work on your part.

The five steps listed below are steps you can take to take off the pounds naturally.

Step 1: Calculate Your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)

Your BMR will tell you know how many calories you need if you want to maintain your current weight.

Nutritionist can help you with a personal calculation, or you can use a generic, free online service. So if you need to consume 2,200 each day to maintain your current weight, try cutting back your daily intake by 300 and see if you even notice the missing calories.

Your physician or doctor can also help make a recommendation for you based on your height and current weight.

Step 2: Keep a Food Diary

If you want to lose one pound a week, you'll want to consume 3,500 calories less or burn enough calories that you create a calorie deficit. Step 3 Create an activity journal

Log the frequency of your exercise, the time spent, intensity level and the specific activities. I've said it in other articles, but it bears repeating...vary the intensity of your workouts and the activities. You may want to take aerobic classes a few times a week, then supplement the other days with walking or weight training, depending what your overall fitness goals are.

Step 4: Determine Your Burned Calories

Using your activity journal as a guide, determine your burned calories. Remember that lean muscle mass uses your food fuel more efficiently, but the heavier you are, the faster your metabolism is working. If you need to burn more calories, lengthen the time of your workouts, add more days to the week, or increase the intensity.

Step 5: Evaluate Your Progress

You need to evaluate your progress every 6 weeks or so. You should expect to lose between 1-2 pounds each week if you are on a natural weight loss program that simply cuts calories and increases activity. If using a product or supplement to aid you in your weight loss, you can expect to speed these results a bit.

Extra Tip: Remember that you don't want to starve yourself. Depriving yourself not only leaves you less likely to stick with a diet plan, but it forces your body to cling on to the calories you do consume.

Get started with Step 1 and remember, changing your life through diet and exercise is one of the best things you can do to ensure a long and happy life.

Debbie endeavors to encourage women over 40 to take care of their bodies and feed their minds with good positive thoughts. She shares her expertise on natural weight loss for women over 40 at her blog http://weonadiet.com .

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