Everyone wants to find a shortcut to lose weight. Yet even though we all want it quick and easy, time, focus and determination are required to get real, lasting results. Still, wouldn’t it be awesome if we could find ways to reaching our weight and exercise goals just a little simpler?
For eight months, I’ve been working toward a 200 pound weight loss goal. The last time I wrote about my efforts, I had lost 60 pounds in six months. Two months later, I’m now at 80 pounds gone in eight months. It’s been a lot of hard work, sweat, tears and small victories along the way.
I’m always looking for ways to take a little of the burden out of my journey: workout tips, recipes, and other useful shortcuts to help me along the way. I’ve been overwhelmed at how many resources are out there for anyone looking to have a quick-reference guide to help them live a healthier life.
Here are just a few of the “cheat sheets” I’ve found in my never-ending quest for ideas, inspiration and time-saving tips in my weight-loss journey. I hope they are useful to you as well.
1. Free Weight-Loss Apps
I track my food through the Weight Watchers plan. However, the key to my success has simply been tracking what I eat. You can do this for free thanks to a number of available smartphone apps.
The amazing folks at BodMinSou put together this cheat sheet that breaks down five of the most popular apps (including their own), features and pros and cons.
2. How To Make Overnight Oats
Overnight oats are a healthy way to get more fruits, protein and healthy carbs into your diet. However, the recipes floating around Pinterest can be overwhelming. This graphic designed by Fitfulfocus.com makes it look super easy and pretty darn delicious! I’m looking forward to putting this together this week!
3. Egg Substitution Chart
The debate about the health benefits of eggs continues. They are certainly a great source of protein, but many don’t like the cholesterol levels. People who eat a vegan diet also avoid eggs. But when so many recipes call for eggs, what do you do?
Swanson Health Products came up with this handy chart to give substitution options for people looking to swap out eggs in a recipe. Easy peasy!
4. Easy-To-Make Veggie Soup
Getting more veggies into your diet can be tricky — salad fatigue is real! Soups can often be a great way to boost your intake, but store-bought options are often high in sodium. For me, making soup from scratch can feel intimidating. This BodMinSou infographic on how to build a healthy vegetable soup makes it easy as 1-2-3.
5. Low-Carb/Whole Foods Swap Chart
Looking to move to a lower-carb lifestyle, but not sure where to start? My Fitness Pal posted this helpful chart on their blog suggesting simple switches like tortillas to lettuce leaves and lasagna noodles to zucchini planks. This would be a great one to print out, or save as an image on your phone, so that you have it with you on your next grocery shopping trip.
6. Best Arm Strengthening Exercises
It’s important to get in a few good cardio workouts each week, but strength training is essential to help burn fat as well. Decibel Nutrition shared a number of infographics to help people “master their muscles.”
In this reference sheet, the team broke down the muscles in the arm and what some of the best exercises are to get them in great shape.
7. 20-Minute Full Body Yoga Workout
If you’re new to yoga, then you might want to take a look at this chart. I love how the designers put an entire 20-minutes yoga workout with descriptions, time breakdowns and movement illustrations into one convenient resource! Well done, BistroMD!
8. 30-Day Abs Challenge
Looking for something to get your abs toned up? The Running Bug developed this 30-day challenge for abs, which breaks each day down into a series of shorter exercises. After so many planks, side planks, crunches and bicycles, we’re sure you’ll see a difference!
And don’t forget to take those rest days — they are just as important as your workout days!
9. Fat-Burning Evening Workout
So many people (myself included) once believed that you needed to bust a sweat for long periods of time to get results. But it turns out that short bursts of vigorous activity help the body, too!
For anyone looking to incorporate a shorter workout into their lives, the people at ChangesInSeconds.com posted a workout that can be done each evening in probably less than 10 minutes. Now, this doesn’t mean it’s easy: With exercises such jumping jack, planks and pushups, this workout gets your body moving!
Are there blogs, YouTube videos or Pinterest boards that you turn to for fitness infographics and tutorials? Let us know in the comments!