Almost everyone has attempted to lose weight at one time or another, and if you are like most people, you try to find the best strategy to help you reach your goal. Weight loss can be very tricky because there is no magic formula that works for every person.
Each individual has their own set of unique circumstances, metabolism, lifestyle, and maybe even some underlying conditions that can affect how their body responds to weight loss initiatives. You learn a lot about yourself when you attempt to lose weight, and trying to find the correct combination of strategies that will work for you as well as the motivation to carry on when things get tough is no easy task.
Some people search the internet for how to lose 15 pounds in 2 weeks or for the latest fad diet, but these methods are not safe or sustainable. Today we are going to talk about strategies that can help you lose 15 pounds safely and promote the formation of new habits that will last a lifetime.
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How Long Does It Take To Lose 15 Pounds?
There is no definitive answer to this question because everyone is different. You may wonder if it is safe to lose 15 pounds in a month or if it would be better for you to try to lose 15 pounds in 2 months. Since each person begins their weight loss journey with a different starting weight, their rate of weight loss will differ.
Usually, heavier individuals lose weight faster than those who weigh less, mainly because their larger bodies need more energy to function, which makes them burn more calories even when they are at rest. When two different people set out to lose 15 pounds and they follow the exact same plan, the heavier person will usually lose more weight initially, and they will lose it faster.
Weight loss is not a straightforward process, and many things can influence an individual’s ability to lose weight and keep it off. It can be a combination of genetics, their health status, hormonal imbalances, their lifestyle, and any other underlying conditions that may be present. A heavier person may be able to lose 15 pounds in a month without it negatively affecting their health. One to two pounds a week is the standard that most experts agree is a good rate of loss to shoot for. So according to that standard, it is quite possible to lose 15 pounds in two months.
How Hard Is It To Lose 15 Pounds?
Losing 15 pounds might be much harder for someone who is only 20 or so pounds away from their goal weight. When you are closer to your ideal weight, your body resists losing more because it has a “built-in” instinct to survive, and it does all it can to keep your weight stable. As you get closer to your ideal weight, the harder it may be to actually lose any more because your body slows down the rate at which it burns calories to conserve your energy. In order to lose those last 15 pounds, you might need to try new strategies, or become more diligent in your calorie counting, or ramp up your physical activity a bit more than someone who has substantially more weight to lose.
What Are Some Strategies That Will Help?
Losing 15 pounds may seem like a huge challenge, but with some smart strategies, it can be done. Here are some tips that you can apply in your life that will promote weight loss and enhance your health.
12 Steps to Losing 15 Pounds
- Stay away from crash diets; they are not sustainable, and many of them are dangerous. Instead, focus on making small, realistic changes such as:
- Paying attention to what you eat;
- Stop drinking sugar-filled drinks;
- Fill up on veggies and protein;
- Avoid processed food, fast food, and junk food;
- Do not eat foods full of sugar (cake, cookies, etc.).
- Increase the amount of physical activity you do. There is no need to run a marathon but find something you like to do, whether it is dancing, playing a sport, or just walking. As long as you are moving your body more each week, you are on the right track;
- Drink lots of water. This is an area where many people fall short, but drinking water is super critical to your health and to your weight loss efforts. Water has zero calories and actually helps to curb your appetite and helps you burn calories more efficiently. Even slight dehydration can slow down your metabolism and impede your exercise efforts;
- Get enough sleep. This is another area that people often overlook because they do not understand how a lack of sleep can backfire on their weight loss efforts. When you are overtired, it can cause certain hormonal and physiological responses in your body, which can actually influence your food choices and how much you eat. Getting enough rest can help support healthy weight loss and make it easier to make healthy food choices;
- Avoid foods that are considered simple carbs, such as candy, baked goods, sugar cereals, foods with added sugar, etc;
- Eat more complex carbs because they can help you when you are trying to lose 15 pounds in six weeks or within a few months. They take longer to digest and help speed up your rate of digestion so your body doesn’t retain all of the calories you consume. Foods like oatmeal, brown rice, or whole wheat are all beneficial in these ways and also contain many important vitamins and nutrients;
- Do not buy foods that will sabotage your new healthy habits. If it never finds its way into your house, it is harder to be tempted;
- Pay attention to what you are eating and how much. Mindlessly eating gets us all in trouble, and we do not even enjoy what we do eat. If this is a hard area for you, then keep a food log of everything you eat. Stopping to write everything down may slow you down just enough for you to change your mind about eating. It can help stop us from eating out of boredom or emotional eating. Find something else to do if you are bored or upset, such as listen to an audiobook while you take a walk;
- Keep healthy snacks that are pre-portioned and ready to go. If you are like most people, when you want a snack, you want it now; you don’t want to have to take time to prepare it. It makes grabbing something unhealthy so much faster and easier. If you have carrot sticks and hummus snacks already packaged up so you can grab them and go, it makes it easier for you to make the healthy choice. Once you trade out the sugary, highly processed snacks for healthier ones, you will notice that your cravings for unhealthy choices diminish;
- Try to strike some balance in your life to help ease your stress level. Stress makes us hold on to extra fat and can impact weight loss efforts big time. Find something you enjoy doing that can help relieve stress. It may be jogging or simply getting in the shower and singing at the top of your lungs. There are a ton of resources on the internet that can give you some ideas of things you can do;
- Find a buddy to keep you on track. Sometimes going on a weight loss journey with a friend can make it easier to reach your goals. You can help keep each other honest and provide encouragement when things get tough;
- Give yourself grace. Do not expect yourself to get it right every day. There are more benefits to changing your habits and living a healthier life. Besides the number on the scale, think about how you feel or if you have lost inches anywhere. Muscle weighs more than fat, so you have slimmed down in some areas, even though the scale is not reflecting as many lost pounds as you would like. Celebrate the small victories, and if you mess up, don’t let it derail you; it happens to everyone. Just get back on track and don’t give up.