This is a guest post by Robin Reichert
Your metabolism plays a key role when it comes to losing weight and keeping it off. The term metabolism means the process of converting calories into energy. A fast metabolism allows you to burn more calories, and less fat gets stored, whereas a slow metabolism has the opposite effect of storing more fat and burning less calories. Thankfully, there are some very easy and effective ways to boost your metabolism.
1) Eat more often
I know this may sound strange to some people, but your metabolism tends to slow down when you don't eat often enough. If you are one of those people that skips breakfast or goes all day without eating until just before bedtime, then more than likely your metabolism has suffered a serious blow. When you wait too long to eat, your body thinks you're starving so calorie burning slows way down and your body stores more fat in preparation for the next famine. So, your body goes into survival mode to ensure you don't go too long without vital nutrients for daily energy needs. On the other hand, your body will kick up the fat burning mechanism when your start consuming small portions of nutrient-dense foods every 2 to 4 hours.
2) Stay Hydrated
The human body consists of roughly 75% water, and all of your organs and tissues are primarily made up of water. Your organs need to be properly hydrated to not only function at optimal capacity, but also to help you burn fat and maintain a healthy metabolism. Drinking at least 64 ounces of water every day will not only facilitate your weight loss efforts, but also help your body to transport oxygen and nutrients into cells, help organs absorb nutrients better, regulate body temperature, protect joints and help cleanse your body.
3) Lift Weights
Most people engage in cardio training to boost metabolism and lose weight, but you should also include resistance training to round out your fitness routine. The more lean muscle tissue you have, the higher your metabolism. Your body requires more energy to maintain lean muscle, so you will burn more calories all day long. Do your cardio three to four days a week for at least 30 minutes per session, and then do your resistance training on two non-consecutive days each week for a minimum of 20 minutes per session, preferably on your non-cardio days. Make sure you work all of your main muscle groups, such as your chest, back, shoulders, triceps, biceps, quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes and calves.
4) Give Up Sugar
Too much sugar means that your body will automatically go into fat storage mode. Consuming sugar causes your blood-sugar levels to fluctuate erratically, which can eventually lead to insulin resistance and the diseases that tend to follow, such as Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Instead of reaching for that sugary treat, try consuming more low-glycemic foods such as lean proteins, fresh fruits, leafy green vegetables, and nuts and seeds. You'll find that when you make better food choices, your cravings for sugar will diminish substantially. Remember... the more sugar you eat, the more you will crave it.
5) Drink your green tea!
Green tea is known for its fat burning, metabolism-boosting benefits. It contains less caffeine than coffee and is loaded with cancer-fighting antioxidants. The antioxidant compounds in green tea, such as catechins, have a thermogenic effect on the body, which increases your body temperature to shed more fat. Antioxidants also help to reduce inflammation to help ward off chronic disease and cell damage.
Robin Reichert is an AFPA certified nutrition consultant, AFPA certified personal trainer, Beachbody coach and freelance writer specializing in health and fitness. She has been involved in the health and fitness industry for over 10 years. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of San Francisco and a Master of Science in natural health. Her services include both in-home personal training and online fitness coaching. To find out more about the Beachbody coaching business or some of Beachbody's most popular fitness programs, such as P90X or Insanity, you can visit her blog and/or website at http://www.trainwithmeonlinetoday.com