Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Does Weight Watchers Work?

So, a while ago, I wrote a post on the pros and cons of Weight Watchers Online. Now I want to focus on Weight Watchers as a diet plan. There are a number of people who ask whether Weight Watchers really works. One thing that I always say when I read or hear someone ask about whether any diet works is that each person is different. Slimming World never worked for me but I know people who have lost and kept weight off from it. Weight Watchers is one plan that has worked for me.

What Is Weight Watchers?

Weight Watchers offers three main options to follow the plan. The first is to attend meetings on a weekly basis. While there, the leader or one of the helpers takes your weight and then spends about 30 minutes talking about something linked to the plan. The meeting topics are decided on by the head office so everyone following the plan goes over the same topic.

The second option is Weight Watchers Online, which was covered in an earlier post. Someone who signs up to this weighs themselves and tracks everything online. There is an online community available, which offers support, but there is no support from a Weight Watchers leader.

The third option is Weight Watchers At Home. This is similar to Weight Watchers Online, where the tracking is done by you and there is no access to a leader. However, there is access to an online community to help support you.

How Does Weight Watchers Work?

Each person gains a set number of daily and weekly pro-points. The daily pro-points are personal to each member and are calculated based on height, current weight and sex; breastfeeding mothers also gain extra daily pro-points due to the extra calorie need. The lowest number of pro-points someone will have is 29 pro-points. The weekly points are the same for everyone – 49 points per week.

It is also possible to earn extra pro-points through exercise. These pro-points are calculated based on the amount of exercise, the type and the intensity of the exercise. For example, running for 45 minutes at a high intensity will earn more pro-points than swimming at a low intensity for the same amount of time.

All foods have dedicated number of pro-points. For example, the majority of fruit and vegetables have 0 pro-points. The number of pro-points food has is dependent on the amount of protein, carbohydrates, fat and fibre. Generally speak, foods that are higher in protein and fibre but lower in carbohydrates and fat are lower in points.

Does Weight Watchers Work?

As a member, you are free to make your own decisions on the foods that you eat. The aim is to stay within the daily and weekly pro-points allowance. How you use the pro-points is completely up to you. Some members find that it is better to split the weekly pro-points up evenly throughout the week, while others find it easier to keep those pro-points for the weekend or for a special event during the week.

From personal experience, Weight Watchers does work. I’ve never stayed on it to get to my goal weight for various reasons – currently I am pregnant and unable to follow Weight Watchers. However, I have always lost weight while following the plan. I have also found it much easier to make better choices with food, which helps to keep the weight off afterwards. However, as I have mentioned before, everyone is different.

It is worth thinking about your goals when losing weight. One thing that I love about Weight Watchers is that you can set a goal weight but that is not something that you have to stick to. It is possible to decide that you have reached your goal weight sooner or decide that you want to lose more based on your personal experience; all Weight Watchers asks is that your goal weight is within a healthy BMI and that you have at least 5 pounds to lose when you start.

Whether you decide to follow Weight Watchers or you opt for another diet, it is important to look for something that involves changes to your diet and lifestyle that are sustainable for the long term. Weight Watchers helps to eat and live healthily, even after losing the weight. The idea behind this blog is to help you lose weight and keep it off and the best way to do that is to find a healthy eating plan and Weight Watchers may just be the option for you.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

How to Lose Weight Running

Losing weight successfully is about mixing a healthy diet with exercise. Going on a specific diet without changing your lifestyle will not help you lose weight and keep it off. There are a number of types of exercises that you can do to lose weight and one of the most effective options is to go running. The question is how you can lose weight running, especially as a beginner.

Take It Slow

The last thing you want to do is cause yourself an injury so if you are new to running, take it slow. Concentrate on being out for a set amount of time, whether that is 10 minutes or 30 minutes, and to keep moving. Some people find that they can run or jog the whole time while others will need to walk for some of it. Eventually, you will be able to lose weight running constantly for the duration that you initially set.

Mix the Type of Training

There are different types of training that you can do when it comes to losing the weight by running. The first and the most common option is a steady state run. This is a run at the same pace for the whole duration. It is usually done at 60% effort and commonly lasts for 20 minutes or more. This helps to build up stamina and endurance. As you get better at this type of running, you will find that you will be able to run for longer and will need to so that you successfully lose weight running.

The second type is interval training. This is when runners will sprint at maximum effort for a short amount of time and then jog or walk for a set amount of time. This process is repeated for a set number of times. It is extremely effective to help with losing weight since it will increase the heart rate and lower it in a short amount of time. This helps to burn calories while resting as well as while running. As you get better at interval training, you will be able to do more repetitions, sprint for longer or walk for a shorter period of time.

Another option is known as hill repetitions. This is similar to interval training but instead of being on flat ground, the sprint is completed up a hill and the walk back down it. The more practice you do, the quicker you will be to get up the hill and the more repetitions you will be able to complete uring a session.

Warm Up and Cool Down

Before and after any exercise session it is important to warm the muscles up and cool them down, respectively. This will help to increase the amount the muscles are able to stretch and will aid with avoiding injury. The majority of the warming and cooling down will need to be done on the legs but it is also important to think about the hips and the shoulders as these joints will move continuously while attempting to lose weight running.

Running is a high intensive sport and can take people time to get into it. It is possible to run on a treadmill but the best thing to do is get out and run outside; this could be around a park or the block. If you are new to running, it is worth taking it slow and building up the endurance and capability to avoid any injury while trying to lose weight running.