There are so many opinions out there on what’s the best way to lose weight. Hitting the gym every day is the answer if you ask your muscle bound friend. Or how about the Nutrition Guru you can’t seem to escape at the office? I’ll be her answer is “It’s all in your diet!” Cardio! Claims your running friend. Let’s face it, they’re all good options, but did you know that there are small things you can do at home to start the process now?
Let’s start by talking about the bedroom. And no, I’m not talking about sex. (Although you can burn anywhere between 70 to 100 calories during a good healthy romp. Personally, I think that counts as cardio as well. But I’m talking about losing weight while you’re actually asleep.) The first step is to make sure you’re getting a good night’s sleep. Set a bedtime and stick to it. People who go to bed at a consistent time every night burn more calories during the day. And try turning the thermostat down a little. When the air is below 66 degrees your body works harder to raise your core temp and it burns a few extra calories. Sleeping naked aids in this process as well. Plus… well.. if you’re already naked, that extra 70 to 100 calories we mentioned earlier? Well, you’ve got a head start!
Get Out Of The Kitchen
Once you’ve set your bedtime, make sure that you’ve finished your last meal of the day at least three hours before then. I close mine down at 8pm. No food after that. Period. If you absolutely must have a snack before bed, aim for something high in protein and low in sugar. A protein shake, a spoon of peanut butter or maybe some turkey? The high protein content will boost your resting energy expenditure and can also help your muscles repair themselves overnight. While we’re talking about food, make sure to eat your biggest meal of the day at lunch. Lighter meals in the evening are easier to digest and you’ll sleep better.
Right before you go to bed, try a nice hot cup of a caffeine free sleep tea. Chamomile, Turmeric, Lavender and Lemon Balm are all great teas to help you relax and sleep better. Check your local grocery store’s stock and try a few until you find one you love. Right before you crawl between the sheets, drink a big glass of water. This helps in digestion, hydration and in the event that you’re hungry from the Stay Out Of The Kitchen rule, it’ll fill you up and you’ll be able to fall asleep without listening to your stomach growl.
Did you know that peppermint is a natural appetite suppressant? Try putting a few drops of peppermint essential oil into a diffuser or sprinkling some on your pillow case. Vanilla has a similar effect, and you can even mix the two if you like. Find a combination that works for you.
Ok, I’m not saying no more exercise, what I’m saying is that please, do keep fit, but do it earlier in the day. Exercise wakes up the body and if you have an intense work out right before bed, you’re going to end up tossing and turning all night long. Hit the gym earlier in the day and try winding down just before bed, with some yoga stretches designed to relax you. Child’s pose, Happy Baby, Reclining Bound Angle and Reclining Twist are just a few that can help you calm, center and slip right off to a good night’s rest. This is a good thing because you’ve got a few pounds to shed while you’re sleeping!