If you're stuck in the same work-gym-home routine, this might be hard to believe. But losing fat forever isn't about spending another hour a day at the gym. In fact, it's about the little changes you make to your daily habits. Simply incorporate three or four of these into your life every day, and you'll melt off your fat easier and faster than you ever imagined possible—and much more enjoyably than that extra hour doing cardio.
Buy a TiVo
And only watch the shows you record. Let's face it: You generally watch several shows you don't really care about, and that's time you could be spending being active. By also fast-forwarding through the commercials, and watching only the shows you care enough to set a season pass for, you can cut your TV viewing—and the amount of time you spend on the couch—by more than a third. And dial your success up a notch with these easy ways to lose weight while you watch tv.
And avoid the bread bowl. If you can, anticipate the waiter and ask them not to bring it out at all. No bread bowl, no temptation. If you're ravenous when you sit down to eat at a restaurant, immediately order a side salad to tame your hunger with belly-filling fiber.
Nuts have a very high satiety power, meaning you can eat fewer of them and still feel full. And even though they're high in calories, those calories appear to be processed differently in the body. University of Michigan researchers found that men who added 500 calories' worth of peanuts a day to their diet gained no excess weight at all. Not big into peanuts? Use our handy guide to make sure you're choosing the healthiest nuts that can help you lose weight.
Do Sprint Intervals
Interspersing short, all-out sprints with brief periods of rest is the most effective form of cardio for fat loss, says Joe Stankowski, C.P.T. Try a 2-to-1 "work-to-rest" ratio. That is, sprint two times longer than you rest. So if you run a 150-yard sprint—a good distance to start with—in 20 seconds, rest 10 seconds, then repeat 3-7 times.
Check Your Mood
Your mood can have intense influence on your eating habits. In fact, the desire to snack may not be due to hunger at all, but rather the result of loneliness, depression, or anxiety. "Emotional eating is at the core of bad eating choices," says N.Y.C. psychotherapist Elizabeth Fagan, C.S.W. When you reach for a snack, make sure to take a minute to assess whether you're actually physically hungry or not. If not, try to pinpoint why you're eating. Over time, you'll learn to separate your emotions from your hunger.
Shop for One
If you have to buy cookies, chips, or other processed junk foods, buy the single-serving package—rather than the large, family-style bag. That way, when you eat the whole package—and let's be honest, you know you will—you'll at last have done a lot less damage to your waistline. If you're open to trying a healthier version of your favorite junk foods, try some of the clean snacks we tracked down.
Take a digital picture of yourself in your swimsuit. For each week of exercise and healthy eating, take another in the same outfit. Seeing even the small physical changes happening can motivate you to keep going when workouts seem hard and you really want a brownie.
Go the Distance
Perform intervals for a designated distance rather than a designated time. Otherwise, you'll be running shorter sprints as you get tired, reducing the number of calories you burn, says Cameron McGarr, C.S.C.S. End your run with a set of the best ab exercises to make sure your core is challenged and to turn more calories.
Never Forbid a Favorite Food
Here's a shocker: When a group of U.K. researchers told 30 women to avoid chocolate, then packed them into a room filled with the stuff, the women were much more likely to sneak a bite than individuals who hadn't been given the order. Blame the allure of the forbidden: The more you tell yourself you can't eat something you love, the more you're going to want it.
Sneak in Activity
There are plenty of ways to sneak in a couple minutes of physical activity. Though they might seem minute, they add up to a healthier, slimmer you. Pace around your office while talking on the phone; run into the bank to cash your check instead of using the drive-thru. When researchers at the Mayo Clinic fed a group of volunteers an extra 1,000 calories a day over the course of eight weeks, they found sedentary individuals gained eight times more weight than those who fidgeted a lot during the day. You don't even have to go outside to see results; there are plenty of ways to lose weight at home that can be done in 30 minutes flat.
Courtesy of Men's Fitness