The 48-Hour Weight-Loss Jump Start
Can You Really Lose Weight in 48 Hours?
The short answer to what you really want to know: no, it's unlikely you'll lose any real weight in 48 hours. "Experts recommend a safe level of losing two pounds per week," says FITNESS magazine's Fitness Director, Mary Christ Anderson. "One pound equals 3,500 calories, so to lose a pound in two days, you'd need to eat 2,500 fewer calories" -- a crash diet that, really, no one should ever attempt.
However, it is possible to start developing healthy exercise and eating habits in just two days, which will set you up to drop the weight that you want -- five pounds, 10 pounds, or more.
To start, make a "plan of attack," suggests Harley Pasternak, celebrity trainer and creator of The 5-Factor Diet. Draft a grocery list to buy enough grub for 5 small meals a day. You'll also want to schedule when you'll eat and work out, just as you would write down a hair appointment or a dinner date.
Need some extra incentive? Pick up some new workout gear. "A new pair of athletic shoes can give you that extra push to be active," says Pasternak. "They can act as a catalyst between the mind and the body to increase motivation and improve performance."
Or go grocery shopping (see shopping list on page 7) for the ingredients you'll need for the next two days' worth of meals. When Dawn Jackson Blatner, an American Dietetic Association spokesperson and FITNESS advisory board member, as well as author of The Flexitarian Diet, checks out of the grocery store, her cart's half-full of produce -- a strategy that bodes well both in the long-term and the short-term.
The reasons to eat vegetables are plentiful:
- Veggies have 20 calories a serving. All other foods have 3 or 4 times the number of calories.
- They have a high percentage of water, so you can feel full from eating them.
- They have a lot of potassium in them, which can help regulate blood pressure and fluid in your body.
For the time-strapped, "Go to the store and buy vegetables that you can eat off a veggie tray," suggests Blatner. "Also, buy vegetables that you can grill -- zucchinis and squash -- and add the vegetables to everything you eat."
These moves can help put you in the right mental state. So stock up the pantry and dust off those running shoes -- your 48-hour overhaul starts now.
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