The Lazy Person’s Guide to Losing Weight

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Everyone who has a few pounds to lose knows what they have to do to reach their ideal weight, but for some of us, well, that just seems like a whole lot of work! Not that we have a problem with work, but that’s exactly the problem. We work all day, sometimes late into the night, we need to pay bills, take care of the kids, take care of the house, take care of the dog, so when it comes to thinking about cooking from scratch or heading back out to the gym for an hour…well, you can just forget it. A night on the sofa with Netflix sounds a lot more enticing.

Now, that Netflix marathon sounds really good, but chances are good that you really aren’t interested in all the things that being overweight (and eating those cookies) will bring you: things like heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, and diabetes.

Want to combine the two and get the best of both worlds? You can! You may never be a swimsuit model or look buff like Donald Driver, but you can lose some weight and make healthier food choices. It’s not as hard as it sounds. Let’s start by checking out snack time (which is our favorite time!) and start by making some better choices. Ready?


1.  Water

You are already rolling your eyes, we can see it from here, but wait, it’s not what you think. Sometimes we think we are hungry, when the truth is we are actually only thirsty. One study listed in the journal Physiology and Behavior showed that at least 60 percent of the time, we are mistaking our body’s signals for thirst as hunger. So for beginners, the next time you think you are hungry, before you eat anything, drink an 8 ounce glass of water. That’s it. Wait for about 10 minutes and if you still feel hungry, you can eat that snack, but chances are that you are going to pass on that cookie. If you want to take it a step further, try drinking one glass of water before each meal. Studies show that you will eat about 90 less calories at mealtime. All those little calories add up, you know!


2. Think Japanese

Not Japanese food- think like the Japanese. They have an expression “hara hachi bu” which means, “Eat only until you are 80 percent full.”  On average, when you practice this, you can save about 300 calories every single day. It might be hard to judge that 80 percent level so take your time. Stop eating about ¾ of the way through your meal and wait about 10 minutes for your brain to tell your stomach that you’re about full.  Don’t stuff yourself, and save a bunch of calories.


3. Jazz It Up With Jeans

Wear jeans and tennis shoes every chance you get. Studies show that when people were allowed to wear more casual clothing, rather than suits, skirts, uniforms, and high heels, they greatly increased their physical activity. Scientists say that keeping things casual even just once per week could mean that you consume about 6,250 calories less each and every year. That means you could lose as much as 1.8 pounds every year.


4. Go Text Yourself

Health Promotion Practice published an online study that showed that people who received weekly texts reminding them of their daily calorie “budget,” along with motivational emails, made better food choices and lost more weight than those who did not participate. So set up labeled alarms on your smartphone or get a friend to be your weight loss coach, sending you friendly texts offering support.


5. Take a Nap

Isn’t this just the best piece of weight loss advice you have ever read? We mean it! Getting enough quality sleep is vital for losing weight. In fact, one study showed that getting less than 6 hours a night could undermine your weight loss efforts by as much as 55 percent! Getting broken sleep or insufficient amounts of sleep throw your hormones out of whack, including the ones that tell you when to eat, and tell your body when to store fat. Sometimes the best weight loss move is to move to the sofa and take a nap.

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OK, now that you know all of the best tips for eating to lose weight the lazy way, let’s look at other ways you can lazy daisy your way to getting a bit more healthy.


1.  Don’t Run a Marathon

That’s right. We are officially giving you permission to NOT run a marathon if you don’t want to. Nothing kills the desire to exercise more than doing something you don’t want to do. However, you do need to implement some exercise into your routine. There are lots of ways to do this. First, do something you love. Even if it’s just playing soccer ever Sunday with your kids or your friends, that’s a great start. You can dance in your living room or take a nice walk with your neighbor every afternoon. Whatever it is, make it something you like to do. Then do it as often as you can. It’s that simple. No rules, no expensive equipment, no gym to drive to. Just do something you love as often as you can. That’s an exercise plan everyone can stick to!


2.  Don’t Weigh Yourself

If you want to get discouraged, weighing yourself every day, or even every week, is a sure way to do it. You should focus more on eating more healthy foods and moving as much as you can, not on that number on the scale. Really.


3. Take Baby Steps

Don’t try to do too much at one time, that is a recipe for disaster. Depending on just how lazy you love being, you can make one change each week or one each month. Write out some of the changes you would like to make that you feel you would actually do. Perhaps write one change each week (or month) somewhere prominent so that you can see it to remind yourself. If you forget one day, don’t worry, just start again the next day. Baby steps will eventually add up to cover large distances over time.


4. Try New Get Togethers

Ever notice how many of our get-togethers with friends or dates involve food? We go out to dinner, or have appetizers and drinks or go out for ice cream or coffee and cake? Why not try to do something different? Instead of going out to dinner with your friends, why not invite them to go for a walk? Or to come over to your house for a game of Twister?  Instead of coffee and cake, you could go to a yoga class or even just go to the park for a walk then watch the kids play on the swings? Take your dogs to the dog park or play on the playground equipment yourself! Anything that keeps you from mindlessly eating and/or gets you moving is a great plan!


SEE ALSO: 10 Easy Changes to Your Meals to Lose Weight


5. Think Positive

If you think you can’t do it, you won’t, that’s the truth. Our subconscious minds have a funny way of listening to (and believing) everything that we say. If you say that you will never lose weight, that you will always be fat, or that you gain back every pound you lose within a few months, all those things will come true. So start thinking that this IS possible, because it is. You aren’t lying to yourself, you are stating a fact. If you were locked in a room with only water and no food, you would lose weight after a while, so it’s not that you can’t lose weight, it’s that you believe that you can’t lose weight. When you think you can’t lose weight, you sabotage yourself so that this comes true. You stop exercising because “it doesn’t work for you,” you start eating potato chips rather than grapes because “you could gain weight drinking water.” Stop all that negative self-talk and talk to yourself the way you would talk to a good friend.