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Tips for maintaining your weight loss

Michele Borboa, MS is a freelance writer and editor specializing in health, fitness, food, lifestyle, and pets. Michele is a health and wellness expert, personal chef, cookbook author, and pet-lover based in Bozeman, Montana. She is also...

Keeping the weight off

You’ve changed your diet, started exercising, and have successfully lost those stubborn pounds. But now the real work begins: Maintaining your weight loss.

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5Keep moving

Daily exercise is essential for your health, whether you are aiming to lose, maintain or even gain weight. Yes, we know it's easier to repose on the recliner watching FitTV, hoping fitness will happen through osmosis, but the key to keeping slim is actually getting up and moving.

Physical activity burns calories, relieves stress (more effectively than a pint of ice cream), boosts your mood, and tightens and tones your bod. Make it a point to move every day, jumping in to a spin class at the gym, playing with the kids at the park or taking your dog for a walk. Determine activities you enjoy and do them, do them, do them.

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Having a fitness buddy or group will help you stay on track. You'll feel less inclined to grab a doughnut and specialty coffee topped with whipped cream if you know you have to account to others who are striving to eat right.
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6Lift weights

Instead of bicep-curling bites of cheesecake to your mouth or squatting in the pantry in search of a stray bar of candy, get your bod to the gym and lift weights. Resistance training builds lean body tissue, which burns more calories than fat tissue, and gives you a slim, toned, strong physique.

Bonus: Lifting weights will also boost your bone health. If you don't have a gym membership, buy a set of dumbbells, a kettlebell or even resistance tubing to use at home.

7Rally support

Convince your spouse, BFF, coworkers or a few neighbors to get on the diet and fitness bandwagon with you. Having a fitness buddy or group will help you stay on track. You'll feel less inclined to grab a doughnut and specialty coffee topped with whipped cream if you know you have to account to others who are striving to eat right. To boot, working out with someone else will make exercise even more enjoyable, so you will actually anticipate breaking a calorie-burning sweat.

If you need even more support, consider a weight loss program, such as Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, the low-cost TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) or a local weight loss center that will teach you how to maintain your weight loss while providing you with practical diet and fitness tips.

8Stay hydrated

Those midmorning hunger pains may actually be your body telling you it is thirsty. Dehydration not only fools you into thinking you should eat when you aren't truly hungry, but it also contributes to irritability and fatigue (which, in turn, can send you to the vending machine).

Aim to drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day, starting in the morning, to stay energized all day. Steer clear of too much caffeine -- it can contribute to dehydration. And while caffeine can send your energy soaring, it later sends your body into a tired nosedive.


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