Diet Plan To Lose 20 Pounds In 2 Months

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Diet plan to lose 20 pounds in 2 months combines all the best elements of other diets and throws out the bad. It’s a very simple 2 month diet plan that will allow you to lose 20 pounds effortlessly. This diet plan to lose 20 pounds in 2 months is based on highly effective elements there are also so many diets out there which tell you that they can help you lose 20 pounds in 2 months, but keep on deceiving you or they just leave you confused. In this article, I’ll give some useful tips on how to lose 20 pounds in two months.

A Good Diet Plan to Lose 20 Lbs. in Two Months

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If you have a more aggressive goal to lose 20 pounds in two months, it will require a combination of a strict diet and exercise regimen.

Image Credit: Westend61/Westend61/GettyImages

Weight loss goals vary by individual, but often people want to lose a certain amount of weight within a specific amount of time. If you have a more aggressive goal to lose 20 pounds in two months, it will require a combination of a strict diet and exercise regimen.

How Weight Loss Works

Weight loss is essentially a math equation: You lose weight when your total energy intake (calories consumed) is less than your total energy expenditure (calories burned).

Total energy expenditure (TEE) is made up of resting energy expenditure (REE, what’s needed for basic body functions), the energy used during physical activity, and the energy used during digestion. By adjusting your diet and exercise routine, you can affect the number of calories consumed and/or expended to create a calorie deficit result in weight loss.

Although calorie restriction can result in short-term weight loss, it is not a long-term body weight management plan. A study published in April 2015 in the International Journal of Obesity showed that after weight loss, body functions such as appetite regulation and metabolism adjust to accomodate for a smaller body size. Thus, you cannot keep cutting calories and expect to see the same weight loss results over time. Genetics also play a factor in an individual’s weight.

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Lose 20 Pounds

To lose 20 pounds in two months, you have you lose about 2.5 pounds per week. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), healthy weight loss is in the range of 1-2 pounds per week, as people who lose weight gradually are more likely to keep it off.

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However, it may be possible to achieve a 2.5 pound per week weight loss by eating smart and increasing physical activity. Consult a doctor if you have questions about what a healthy amount of weight loss is for you.

It has been widely believed that 3,500 calories are equal to 1 pound of weight. But an article in the December 2014 issue of the International Journal of Obesity found that the 3,500 calorie rule overestimates weight loss. Due to variations in factors including body composition, gender, age, height and amount of calorie restriction, weight loss is not linear like the 3,500 rule would predict.

Instead, researchers recommend a weight loss calculator that takes into consideration various factors to predict an individual’s weight loss each week. If you are doing a two-month weight loss challenge, dynamic weight loss calculators can help you estimate how many calories are needed to achieve that goal, for example:

  • Pennington Medical Research Center Weight Loss Predictor
  • Pennington Medical Research Center Single Subject Weight Change Predictor
  • National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases Body Weight Planner

Diet for Weight Loss

Not all calories are equal, so changing the composition of your caloric intake is important to losing weight.

In a review published in April 2015 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers concluded a higher-protein diet was linked to multiple benefits in weight loss. Increased protein is linked to increased energy expenditure, which can help you burn more calories. Protein is also more filling and effective in creating the feeling of satiety (or fullness) compared to carbohydrates or dietary fat, so incorporating more protein into your diet may help you eat fewer calories.

Another study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published in May 2013 found that a normal protein intake of 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight (as recommended by the Institute of Medicine) is important for initial weight loss and body weight management, however an increased level of 1.2 grams per kilogram of body weight can help maintain REE and fat free mass.

Good sources of protein include lean meats, seafood, poultry, yogurt and eggs, which are all considered “complete” proteins. Complete proteins contain all the essential amino acids your body needs. Incomplete protein sources, which are missing at least one essential amino acid, include plant-based foods such as vegetables, grains, legumes, nuts and seeds. However, you can eat various incomplete proteins to get the benefits of a complete protein source.

Eat Fewer Carbs

In an article in the November 2018 issue of the British Medical Journal, researchers found that participants on a low-carbohydrate diet (defined as 20 percent of total calories) had significant higher TEE than those on a high-carbohydrate diet (60 percent of total calories).

Carbohydrates are an important source of energy for your body, especially if you are physically active. To help lose 20 pounds in two months, you should try to limit refined carbohydrates such as white rice and pasta and focus on fiber-rich, complex carbohydrates such as beans and whole grains.

Dietary fiber can also reduce hunger, decrease caloric intake and help prevent weight gain. For a two-month weight loss challenge, include good food sources of fiber in your diet, such as high-fiber cereals, beans, avocados and apples with skin.

Consume Less Sugar

In a review and meta-analysis published in the British Medical Journal in January 2013, individuals who decreased their consumption of free sugars (sugars added to food as well as the natural sugars in honey, syrups and fruit juices) and sugar-sweetened beverages lost body weight. This was due to reductions in overall caloric intake; when subjects replaced high-sugar foods with low-sugar alternatives, the same body weight changes were not found.

In addition to being linked to obesity, eating too much sugar can also increase the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease. The CDC recommends adults limit their intake of added sugars to 10 percent of total calories.

As part of a two-month weight loss challenge, an easy way to cut down on your sugar and calories is to eliminate soda and fruit juices from your diet and replace them with water. This can help you consumer fewer calories in general, which is helpful with weight loss.

Increase Water Intake

Proper hydration is important for overall health and body function, but there is also some evidence that water can help you lose weight. In a study that appeared in the July 2016 issue of the Annals of Family Medicine, researchers found that increased inadequate hydration was linked to elevated BMI and obesity.

The daily recommended water intake (water from both food and beverages) is 91 ounces and 125 ounces for adult women and men, respectively. Individual needs vary by climate, age, gender and activity level.

Exercise for Weight Loss

The CDC recommends that adults who want to maintain their weight engage in 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity per week. This can be spread over the week and you can mix both moderate- and vigorous-intensity activities. To lose weight, you should increase this amount to help create a calorie deficit.

A moderate-intense activity is defined as an activity where breathing and heart rate are accelerated but you can still have a conversation. These could include a brisk walk or casual bike ride. A vigorous-intense activity is one where your heart rate is up and your breathing is hard. These include running, swimming laps, hiking uphill or high-intensity interval training (HIIT). The CDC has estimates of calories used in a variety of moderate and vigorous activities.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans also recommends adults do muscle-strengthening activities at least two days per week. In addition to burning calories, regular exercise can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some types of cancer.

In an review published in October 2013 in Progress in Cardiovascular Diseases, researchers found that calorie restriction is more effective than physical activity for weight loss. However, physical activity has other health benefits and can help increase TEE and prevent future weight gain.

Sleep for Weight Loss

A lack of sleep has also been linked to obesity. An article in the May 2013 issue of the American Journal of Human Biology showed that sleep deprivation can lead to increased caloric intake and weight gain. A lack of sleep (generally, fewer than six hours of sleep) can lead to decreased physical activity and lower energy expenditure, which can also lead to weight gain. Thus, an important component of a two-month weight loss challenge should include a good night’s sleep.

Lose 20 Pounds in 60 Days: Sample Weight Loss Plan

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If you’re looking to lose 20 pounds in 60 days, it is recommended to spread this weight loss out evenly over the 60 day spread. Your body functions best when it loses no more than 2 pounds a week, possibly more when you’re just beginning your weight loss routine. To lose 2 or 3 pounds a week, you will need to adhere to a strict plan in which you consume a nutritious and low-calorie diet, while engaging in physical activity each day.

Since you will be incorporating a great deal of exercise into this weight-loss plan, you shouldn’t consume less than 1500 calories a day to sustain your energy. Below is a sample weight-loss plan that includes food and exercise recommendations:

Mini Meals

To keep your metabolism burning fat all day long and to prevent yourself from overeating at a given sitting, you should eat several mini meals throughout the day instead of 2 or 3 large meals. Your body has trouble digesting large portions of food at once, and anything excess gets stored as fat. Therefore, if you continuously feed your body small and nutritious portions of food throughout the day, you’ll remain satisfied and keep your metabolism working at its maximum capability.

Food Groups

It is essential to consume a well-balanced diet, as your body requires nutrients from every food group. You need to incorporate carbs, lean protein, fruits, veggies, non-fat dairy and small amounts of healthy fats into your diet. You need to carefully choose foods from each group, and ensure you’re making the right choices. Your carbs should consist of whole grains and fiber, and your fats should come from healthy sources like avocados, nuts and olive oil.

Sample Menu

Below is an example of what a healthy day of eating looks like:

  • 7am : an egg white omelet with veggies and half of a banana
  • 11am: non-fat yogurt mixed with natural oats and berries
  • 1pm: grilled veggie sandwich on whole wheat bread with avocado and mustard (no mayo)
  • 3pm: carrots and other raw veggies with hummus
  • 6pm: grilled chicken breast or fish with spices and veggies
  • 9pm: apple with a tablespoon of peanut butter

Cardiovascular Exercise

Your weight-loss plan should include at least 5 days of cardio in order to burn calories and benefit your heart. You should aim to work out for 30 minutes to an hour during each of these sessions. Anything that elevates your heart rate and causes you to sweat can be considered cardio, whether it’s jogging, swimming, hiking, biking or simply speed walking around your neighborhood.

Strength Training

Strength training is an equally important part of your fitness plan, in order to tone your body and build lean muscle mass. The more muscle your body contains, the more efficiently it will burn calories…even at rest. Start off lifting 3 to 5 pound weights and gradually increase the resistance. Try engaging in other strength training moves, like squats, while lifting weights to increase the intensity. Strength training should be performed at least 3 days a week.

Cardio helps you burn calories, improves your endurance, and helps ensure you have a healthy heart. But you also need to be doing strength training.

I know, you’re looking to lose weight not create the body of a weightlifter!

In short, muscle cells burn more calories than fat cells. The greater your muscle mass, the easier it will be to burn fat and look toned.

You should aim to have three strength training sessions a week,

Again you’ll need to start light and gradually increase the weights you’re using.

Here are some good exercises to start with:

  • Barbell squats
  • Weighted lunges
  • Dumbbell bench press
  • Tricep dips
  • Pull-ups
  • Push-ups
  • Deadlift
  • Farmers walk
  • Planks

Your aim is to complete all of the above exercises three times a week.

Each exercise should be done for 10-12 reps.

Complete them as a circuit and take a 2-minute rest before repeating the circuit twice, creating three sets of 10-12 reps.

You should start with a lightweight that enables you to complete all the sets, 5 lb is fine.

Add a little more each week to increase the difficulty and build your muscles.

You can check out this free workout for some more inspiration.

Strength training for older guys requires a different approach to exercise and muscle building.

Flexibility Exercises

Don’t forget about flexibility exercises, as they will also tone your body and help prevent your muscles from enduring injury. Yoga and Pilates are great flexibility exercises to engage in that will not only give you a great stretch, but will help you lose inches as well.

Your 60 Day Weight Loss Plan

In 60 days you can comfortably lose between 16-24 pounds, potentially more if you’re currently heavily overweight.

To help you get started and achieve your goal of how to lose weight in 60 days, adopt the following approach.

Days 1-10

  • 10 minutes cardio of your choice every other day.
  • Complete the strength training exercises every other day, (ideally opposing days to the cardio). Start with a 5 lb weight and see if you can hit 10 lbs by the end of 10 days. It’s OK just to do one set of each exercise.

Days 11-20

  • 20 minutes of cardio every other day.
  • Strength training exercises every other day. Continue increasing the weight and aim for 15 lbs at the end of this 10 day period. You should be aiming for two sets now.

Days 21-30

  • 30 minutes of cardio every other day.
  • Continue strength training aiming for 20 lbs by the end of your first 30 days. However, it’s more important that you do three sets. If this means that you can’t increase the weight yet that’s fine.

Days 31-40

  • 30 minutes of cardio 4 days a week. Ideally, do two days, rest one day, then do another two, with two days rest.
  • Strength training three times a week. Three sets should now be your norm, and you can start increasing the weight according to your abilities.

Days 41-50

  • 30 minutes of cardio five days a week. Try three days on, one off, two on, and one more rest day.
  • Three sets of 10-12 strength training reps, and keep trying to increase the weight you’re lifting. If you can do three sets of 10 reps, you’re ready to increase your weight, even if this means doing two sets of 10 reps and one set of 3 reps.

Days 51-60

  • Keep going! You should have built a habit now, and you’ll want to keep doing your cardio and strength training, pushing yourself to lift more or run further.

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