Sometimes the demands of modern life play havoc with our lifestyle. We know we should eat healthily to fit into a size 10 dress. However, after another late night finish we overeat at dinner time and go straight for the carb heavy comfort foods. We have our exercise plan prescribed by the friendly Fitness Advisor at the state of the art health club, which we have been to at least three times…in the past two months.

Life is a bitch, and does its upmost hardest to keep us from looking like Jessica Ennis Hill. Kick life into touch with these 12 useful tips, which can help break unhealthy habits and facilitate a shift in our metabolism!

Surprising Ways to Burn Calories

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1. Ditch the lifts and escalator

Whether we are in the office, or making our way into the train station for the dreaded morning commute; we are presented with the choice of climbing the stairs or going for the jam packed lift or overcrowded escalator. Be a maverick; ditch the escalator and engage in some very gentle exercise, as you will most likely be sitting all day as it is.

2. Give up your seat for a fellow passenger

The bus journey to work presents us with the perfect opportunity to sit down and reflect on the horrible prospect of a long day of meetings, phone calls and more meetings. Sitting down in a hot overcrowded bus only lends itself to promoting fatigue and thoughts of still being under the duvet.

3. Don’t abandon your lunch break

Whilst the prospect of not leaving your desk to get a report finished can seem overwhelming, being surgically attached to the computer slows our metabolism down, as well as hinders our creativity and thought processes. Take fifteen minutes to leave your desk, venture outside and grab some fresh air, along with a Starbucks Frappuccino.

4. Wash the car

Say goodbye Mr Carwash and don some marigolds. Washing your own car is not only inexpensive, but can be considered quite sufficient aerobic exercise. An hour of sponging, waxing and hovering can burn just as many calories as a half hour jog.

surprising ways to burn calories

5. High intensity interval training (HIIT)

Short sharp intense sessions of 20 minutes, where you alternate between jogging and sprinting, can burn far more calories at rest. This is a result of the body preferentially using fat as an energy source during the recovery phase.

6. Exercise during the ads break

Make use of the monotonous advert breaks during EastEnders by engaging in some light exercise. The adverts, which tend to last a good four minutes, should give you time to complete a set of burpees, press ups, body weight squats, and a set of the plank with no rest in between.

7. Engage in the tranquillity of your garden

Mmowing the lawn, picking some dandelions and planting some pretty tulips can count towards your weekly target of five 30 minute exercise sessions. Some light gardening can also have incredible stress relieving qualities due to the bright colours of plant life, being away from the noise of other people, and shunning electronic devices like the laptop.

8. Don’t neglect mid-afternoon snacking

Going from 12.30 at lunchtime till 8:00 in the evening is not a smart weight loss tactic. Not only does going for excessive periods without food actually slow our metabolism down (the body staves of muscle tissue for energy), but this also encourages overeating at our evening meal, and reduces blood sugar levels to impair decision making and concentration. Healthy snacks include fruit, nuts or a protein shake.

9. Eat protein with each meal

Eating more protein improves satiety by controlling gut hunger hormone ghrelin. This is also linked to better control of blood sugar levels, and improved muscle heat production (thermogenesis), which regulates metabolism. Eating more protein also improves muscle tone, which improves how our body assimilates nutrients. Eating more protein also means eating fewer carbohydrates which can lead to weight gain through hyper insulin levels. For some calorie burning protein combos, check this out.

10. Don’t skip breakfast

Clinical studies have indicated that ‘breakfast skippers’ tended to snack more on sugary treats, and have a higher waist to hip ratio. Engaging in breakfast helps control our appetite by keeping blood sugar levels in check so that we are not tempted by the office chocolate machine. How our body assimilates nutrients (insulin sensitivity) is more efficient earlier in the day, which helps facilitate metabolism.

delicious snacks help you eat less calories

11. Step by step

Mmeasure how many steps you walk with a phone app, such as Walkroid or Footsteps. Set yourself a bench mark of 10,000 steps daily to guide you in burning an extra 200 calories a day. Hitting this target can easily be achieved by getting off the bus two stops early, or ditching the elevator.

12. Avoid late night TV viewing

A wide plethora of scientific literature has documented how television viewing hinders our waistline. Not only does late night TV viewing encourage snacking, but exposure to artificial light late in the evening can increase levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which encourages weight gain. This combined with over arousal of the sympathetic nervous system can lead to ‘sleep resistance’ through down regulating sleep hormone melatonin, as well as a satiety hormone leptin.

Stay sexy and lean by pairing these 12 ways to burn more calories with our fat shred vegetarian weight loss diet plan!

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Pollyanna Hale Health and Lifestyle coaches
Lost 13 Kg in Total
Mel, 32y Location: London, United Kingdom Working with Pollyanna changed everything. I lost 13kg, got toned and have more energy than ever! Get same results!

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Lost 45 Kg in Total
Chris, 50y Location: London, United Kingdom Lost 45kg after the age of 50 and now competes and wins physique competitions and runs marathons Check our weight loss plans