If you've made the decision to lose 30 pounds, pat yourself of your back. Being overweight increases your risk of health conditions, such as sleep apnea, stroke, type-2 diabetes, cancer, and kidney, heart and fatty liver disease. In addition to this, it also negatively affects your appearance. To lose excess weight, make changes that you can maintain longterm so that once you've reached your target, you won't gain the weight back.
About Calories and Pounds
Weight loss at a gradual rate of one to two pounds per week is maintainable and safe, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. This means that you can lose 30 pounds in about 15 to 30 weeks. Understanding calories is essential if you want to lose weight. First, assess how many calories you consume every day, and then takes steps to create a caloric deficit. Since one pound of fat contains 3,500 calories, you must create a daily deficiency of 500 to 1,000 calories to start losing weight at the one- to two-pound a week rate.
Move and Sweat
Part of your caloric deficiency will come from exercise. Integrating physical activity is not only one of the best ways to lose 30 pounds, it also helps maintain your weight loss once you've reached your goal. The American Heart Association suggests doing moderate cardiovascular activity for 30 to 60 minutes on most days of the week. Activities you enjoy are the ones you'll most likely make part of your routine. In one hour, a 200-pound person can burn 416 calories by walking at a speed of 3 mph; 312 calories by bicycling at a speed of 6 mph; and 535 calories by playing tennis.
Don't Neglect Strength Training
Strength training is essential to prevent losing muscle tissue as you lose weight. As an added bonus, it also boosts your resting metabolism, because compared to fat, muscle uses up more calories to sustain itself. And so, strength training -- when combined with cardio and a healthy diet -- is also considered one of the best ways to lose 30 pounds. The AHA recommends resistance training on at least two days of the week. Work your arms, chest, shoulders, legs, hips, abdomen and back with free weights, resistance bands, weightlifting machines or your bodyweight. As you start to drop pounds, strength training will help your body reveal toned, lean and shapely muscles.
Eating Healthy Equals Weight Loss
In addition to exercise, you must clean up your diet and eating habits to contribute to your daily caloric deficit and 30-pound weight loss goal. Include whole grains, non-fat or low-fat dairy, veggies, lean protein and fruits in your diet. Eat four to five smaller portions throughout the day to keep hunger and cravings at bay, and replace high-calorie foods with soups, salads, veggies or fruits. Keeping a food journal and weighing yourself once a week can help you track your progress and detect pitfalls early on. For your safety, consult a doctor before setting out on your weight-loss journey.
- Weight-Control Information Network: Do You Know Some of the Health Risks of Being Overweight?
- National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute: Aim for a Healthy Weight: Key Recommendations
- American Heart Association: Losing Weight
- Effective Strength Training; Douglas Brooks
- American Heart Association: 5 Goals to Losing Weight