Raise your virtual hand if one of your new year resolutions (this year) was to lose weight. Now out of all of you who raised your hand, how many of you are getting started on that goal? If you have, congratulations; if not, I know the struggle.

In my case, whenever I think about losing weight, I end up with a boatload of excuses and sudden cravings for food that will add to the pounds, I am trying to lose. I realized that I was thinking about it too much. Losing weight, getting in shape, and being healthy should be like second nature. It is a lifestyle, and not a chore. My understanding of this concept did not happen until I noticed I was losing weight the most when it was not on my mind. Every time I eliminate my weight loss goal and naturally focus on being healthy, then my pants are practically falling.

So what is the secret? The secret is making small lifestyle changes that you don’t have to think about. I have a list of 9 ways you can lose weight without seriously trying.

#1. Drink More Water

Water should always be your drink of choice during the day. Water is what keeps us healthy, our hair growing, our skin glowing, and our waist slim. Our bodies need water to flush out those nasty toxins that contribute to holding waste and clogging pores. Water also helps us feel fuller longer, boost our metabolism, and ultimately decreases our consumption of food if we drink the proper amount. It is suggested that drinking two 16 oz glasses of water before each meal will prevent you from overeating. Slender Kitchen posted a very beneficial chart that will help you determine how much water you should be drinking a day.

#2. Dance like Nobody is Watching

Dancing is the best way to have a full cardio workout and have fun at the same time. In the morning and at night, play your favorite high tempo playlist and dance those pounds away. I promise you will have so much fun that you won’t even realize how many calories you are burning. My favorite thing to do is pull videos up on YouTube and try to mimic their dance moves.

#3. Get More Sleep

Lose weight while catching z’s? That’s right. Sleeping more can help you lose weight. A sleepy brain can cause you to make terrible decisions such as skipping workouts, indulging in sugary caffeinated drinks, and crave for high-carb and sugary snacks. You are also less likely to have increased hunger hormones with more sleep.

#4. Have Dessert

First, let me say that dessert does NOT have to be unhealthy. I’ve found that giving myself the freedom to eat dessert made me feel less restricted and made me crave it less. If I did decide to indulge, I always picked healthier choices that were just as amazing. Here is a whole list of amazing desserts that are healthy AND low-carb.

#5. Park Far Away

Let’s face it. Most of us have a habit of parking in the closest space we can find. Parking further away is a perfect way to get in some cardio without thinking about it. If you are not in the habit of doing it now, at first, it may seem like a little hike, but before you know it, the walk will seem like second nature. This is a great way to get you in the habit of walking.

#6. Eat More

We need to eat 5-6 times a day. That is meals, and snacks combined. Eating more will actually help you lose weight, but only if you are eating the right things. By right things, I mean, clean healthy foods and not junk. Our bodies need food to fuel our metabolism, which will help us burn fat. Never skip a meal because it can actually do more harm than good.

#7. Keep Healthy Snacks Near

Always keep healthy snacks nearby to prevent you from eating junk or overeating when you have a meal. Stock up on quick and healthy things to eat that you can carry on the go like nuts and fruit. You would be surprised at how much of a difference this will make.

#8. Low Carbs

If you are not very active, as an athlete or bodybuilder, eating a lot of high-carb foods can contribute to weight gain. If carbs are not burned right away, then they turn into sugar, which turns into fat. Try eating meals with a lot of protein and vegetables. Your body will start burning your fat for energy. Here are 101 low-carb meals that are easy, fulfilling, and very delicious.

#9. Plan More Active Dates

Start looking on Groupon and Google to find places in your area that you can go to for girl’s night or a date that requires physical activity. This will help you exercise without even thinking about it. Try rock climbing, golf or put-put, hiking, bike riding, or simply hit up your local dance club. You will have so much fun and burn so many calories in no time.

If you have any weight loss tips, feel free to share them with community here. I wish you well on your weight loss journey, and don’t forget to have fun!

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