12 Legit Ways To Lose Fat This Week

Get lean and toned for your upcoming goal, the safe way.

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"I swore they shrunk in the dryer, but nope: This became one gargantuan reality check," a client confessed about recently slipping on a pair of jeans that fit a little, um, snugly.

A great pair of jeans can become an awesome litmus test to keep your weight in check. Seeing a little bit of muffin top peaking out or feeling tight in the butt become red flags to ditch that excess fat stat.

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MORE: 12 Easy Hacks to Beat Your Worst Cravings

Vacations, reunions, and weddings are among the many reasons you need to burn fat fast. Fast as in, like, yesterday. You're not kidding around.

(Sculpt a strong, beautiful body with six different 20-minute workouts and a simple clean-eating plan with Prevention's Toning Transformation!)

Rather than resort to extreme-low calorie diets and other potentially dangerous tactics, employ these 12 safe strategies to get lean and toned for your upcoming goal.

If you're over 40, you need to do these 6 things to lose weight:

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Double up

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A protein shake becomes my big needle mover for fast, lasting fat loss. Want to crank up that loss? Have one for breakfast and another for lunch or dinner. I make mine by blending non-dairy, non-soy chocolate protein powder with avocado, unsweetened coconut milk, leafy greens (you want taste 'em), chia seeds, and some raw cacao nibs on top.

MORE: 28 Healthy & Easy Smoothie Recipes

Spike starchy carbs and increase non-starchy carbs

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Keep quinoa and other slow low carbs to one serving (1/2 cup) per meal while increasing your non-starchy veggies to eight to 10 servings (one serving is 1/2 cup cooked or one cup raw) a day. 

MORE: How to Cut Carbs for Weight Loss

Follow this meal formula

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Make your non-shake meal five or more veggie servings, one protein serving, and two fat servings. Mine might start with a big leafy salad drizzled with olive oil and red wine vinegar, followed by six ounces of wild-caught salmon (animal protein doubles as healthy fat), broccoli, and one cup of quinoa.

MORE: Citrus Wild Salmon With Mango Red Pepper Salsa

Eliminate fruit

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My favorite low-fructose fruits include lemons, limes, avocadoes, tomatoes, and olives. I love berries, but to really dial up fat loss, try eliminating them for a few weeks. If you must add berries in your shake, stick with no more than one cup. 

MORE: 70 Powerfoods to Supercharge Your Health

Don't snack

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Every time you snack, you raise insulin levels; a surefire way to store fat, so do whatever you can to quit snacking. If you must snack, make it one or more veggie servings, one fat serving, and two to three ounces of protein.

MORE: 8 Healthiest Foods You Aren't Eating

Nix hunger and cravings with these supplements

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Supplements aren't a magic bullet, but they can help when you want every ounce of fat-loss ammunition. One study found high-dose green tea extract created "significant weight loss" for obese women over 12 weeks. App Control combines therapeutic amounts of green tea extract with other science-based nutrients that help nudge fat loss in your favor. 

MORE: 10 Rules to Know Before You Start Taking Any New Supplement

Drink up (water!)

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Start with a 16-ounce glass upon waking and keep a filtered-water canteen nearby throughout the day. The only time I don't want you drinking is during meals, when too much liquid can dilute stomach enzymes that break down protein.

MORE: 5 Naturally Flavored Water Recipes

Aim for 50

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Epidemiological studies show people who eat more fiber maintain leaner bodies. That's among the many reasons I want you to work up to 50 grams a day from high-fiber non-starchy veggies, slow low carbs, avocado, and Extra Fiber

Crush hunger with this trick

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About 30 to 60 minutes before your meal, add a scoop of Extra Fiber or freshly ground flaxseeds to a tall glass of filtered water. You'll likely find you eat less at that meal.

MORE: 12 Foods That Boost Your Mood

Get fab sleep

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Want to wreck all your hard work burning fat? Neglect sleep. Studies show even a partial night's crappy sleep can knock your fat-regulating hormones like insulin way out of whack. More sleep means amped-up fat burning, so aim for eight or nine hours of quality, uninterrupted slumber every night.

MORE: Why You Need to Sleep to Burn More Calories

Do this fat-blasting workout fast

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Yes, you can get a fat-blasting full-body workout in just eight minutes. No kidding. My Fast Blasts combine burst training with strength training for the most efficient, effective exercise on the planet in less time than it takes to stand in a Starbucks line. Grab a free one here.

MORE: 14 Ways to Strengthen Your Body Without Working Out

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Keep stress in check

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Studies show elevated levels of your stress hormone cortisol can halt fat loss. Meditate, breathe deeply, get a massage, or walk your dog around the block. Figure out what works for you and do it. 

The article 12 Legit Ways to Lose Fat This Week originally appeared on Rodale Wellness.

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