1. Swim Your Way To Fit
Sure, it’s super important to stick to a healthy menu to maintain your weight, but if you want to tone up any wobbly bits, exercise is key. Hot and humid days turning you off the gym? Trade your regular workout for a refreshing morning swim. If you alternate slow, medium and fast strokes, you’ll yield a greater calorie burn that a boring old steady-paced swim.
2. Eat In Season
Nothing screams Chinese New Year more than some fresh oranges or tangerines. Fruits are high in antioxidants and low in sugar so your tummy will definitely thank you for scoffing them. Plus, according to a study by the Harvard School of Public Health, eating citrus fruits, especially lemon and grapefruit, can boost your metabolism and therefore increase your weight loss.
3. Set Targets
There’s nothing like plain old pressure to keep you focused on your weight loss goals so planning to slim down for Chinese New Year is actually a positive when its comes to dropping a dress size. In the lead up to it, try setting yourself small, achievable goals that you can cross off daily to help you stay on track. For example, vow to stop drinking fizzy drinks for a day.
(Read more: 10 Hidden Dangers Of Soft Drinks And Sparkling Water)
4. Go Slow
While it’s tempting to jump on the fad diet bandwagon to lose those last few kilos, there are way more sustainable quick fixes. Try downsizing portions at your main meals or swapping your afternoon treat for a platter of raw vegetable sticks with a group of friends.
5. Set Limits On Where You Eat
Eating somewhere other than the kitchen or dining room isn’t recommended, because when you link food with a specific cue (like a room) it can trigger the desire to eat even when you’re not hungry and that’s not good. Think about the times when you’ve visited a movie theater and you buy popcorn to munch on just because it’s there and you’ll understand why it’s best to stick to certain rooms when it’s chow-time.
6. Drink Green Tea
If you look at the label of almost every commercial weight loss and fat burning supplement, chances are that you will find some kind of tea there as an ingredient. Green tea, in particular, contains high antioxidant doses of catechins, which helps kick-start your metabolism so you can burn fat faster.
(Read more: Sweet Potato Tea Could Be The Secret To Fast Weight Loss)
7. Be Trolley Smart
Festive periods may be awesome (woohoo public holidays!) but they can often lead to late-night snacking, so instead of grabbing chocolate, chips, and dips, make sure your fridge is stocked up with not only healthy seasonal fruit but also natural yogurt and homemade salads from instant good-for-you light meals and snacks.
8. Master Your Order
Now that the Year of The Rooster is approaching, reunion dinners and meet-ups with friends and relative have been shifted into overdrive. But if you’re eating out more than once a week, order wisely. Choose light meals like fresh grilled or steamed fish with vegetables or a side salad, over a bowl of fried noodles, to help beat the bloat.
9. Follow An Eating Schedule
If you’re thinking of skipping a meal or two in the hopes of speeding up your weight loss, please don’t do it. Your body needs a regular supply of nutrients to run properly. Allowing large periods of time to pass before fueling yourself up can lead to undesirable physical symptoms, such as headaches, lethargy, intense hunger, and overeating.
(Read more: A-List Celebs Share Their Body Slimming Tips And Tricks)
10. Get A Little Help
…from the other fit people around you, that is. It’s a given that teaming up with a buddy is a lot more fun than slimming it out alone, but it also practically guarantees better results, according to a study by Stanford University. So recruit a friend who also wants to drop some kilos before Chinese New Year to help keep you focused on your weight loss journey.
(Text by Louise Pyne, bauersyndication.com.au / Additional reporting by Natalya Molok)