Whether you’re a bodybuilder preparing for a show or just you’re trying to fit into some old clothes from college, achieving a thinner waist is probably something that you have in mind. Taking an inch off of it may seem like a difficult challenge, but it doesn’t have to be. In this article, we’re going to go over a variety of ways that you can get a thinner waistline and the healthy lifestyle that comes with it.
The best way to tighten up your waistline is to do it through diet and exercise. There are no magic belts, shirts, or other fancy ways of compressing your body that actually work. What has been proven to work is sustained weight loss through a healthy lifestyle change in diet and exercise. If that sounds complicated, don’t worry, it’s not. What it really means is making better food choices and doing more cardio. Now, I could write a million articles on different diets and various types of exercise, but I have to keep it to one, so I’m going to give you the overview.
For your diet, whether you decide to follow a certain set of guidelines like IIFYM, intermittent fasting, 5-2, etc. the main thing you want to do is stay under your maintenance calories, AKA your TDEE, total daily energy expenditure. Since the amount of weight you lose is dependent on the number of calories consumed is less than those burned, you’ll want to always create a daily deficit, from eating less and doing cardio. Eating less does not necessarily have to mean less food, however, as you will find that you can still eat what feels like a lot of food if you’re making the right choices and eating a balanced diet.
And for the cardio, there are all sorts of types: low-intensity steady state (LISS), high-intensity interval training (HIIT), sports, etc. It doesn’t matter what you choose as long as it helps you create a caloric deficit and it’s something you can stick to. Some people prefer not doing cardio, and some people prefer doing a lot of cardio. What you decide to do is ultimately your decision, but personally, I find that it makes cutting weight easier by increasing my caloric deficit while still allowing me to eat a little bit more. Over time, this method of losing weight will provide you with healthy weight loss and take inches off your waist so you look better than ever before.
If you absolutely must lose an inch off your waist quickly though, you’re not out of luck. While I always recommend creating a lifestyle that will benefit you in the long-term as it will yield far more satisfying results, if you need to drop an inch in a few days, I’ve got the life-hack for you. The method is used by all sorts of athletes who compete in a sport where weight is a factor and it’s fairly easy to replicate as long as you’re smart about it. To perform this hack, you’ll need some free time, a bath, sauna, or hot weather, and some electrolytes. If you couldn’t already guess, you’re going to sweat—a lot—but don’t worry, this method is completely safe, provided you do it right and you have no medical conditions that may interfere.
What I recommend is finding 30 minutes or so every day to do one of these things: sit in a sauna, a hot bath (you’ll want to set it a little bit hotter than comfortable so that you start to sweat), or in the sun (don’t forget your sunscreen!). By doing these, you will cause your body to sweat excessively, and over a couple days, the water weight loss can add up to a few pounds. The amount of time you are able to spend sweating out weight safely and the amount of weight you will lose are based on a lot of factors.
Depending on your body, you may be able to spend a little bit more time in the sauna, outside, etc. or vice versa. And if you’ve been cutting, you’ll already be holding on to a little less water than usual so you’ll most likely drop a little bit less water weight. Everybody’s body generally holds onto a couple pounds of water weight, however, so with a couple days of preparation, you should be able to manipulate your water weight to lose that inch and fit into your dress, tuxedo, etc.
You’ll also want to avoid foods high in sodium or carbs before you go to bed and on the day of your event as these will cause your body to hold onto more weight. Lastly, since you don’t want to become dehydrated, it’s important to drink electrolytes during your period of water cutting. Personally, my go-to is an 8 oz. glass of coconut water right after I step out of the sauna. I recommend skipping out on the sugary sports drinks and opting for these natural electrolytes as you will get more of the minerals that matter and less of the added sugars and other chemicals that don’t. In general, this method can be great for dropping weight quickly, but you must remember, it will not translate to permanent weight loss!
Both methods of losing weight can be helpful for trimming your waistline. If you’re looking at the long term and you want to choose the method that will not only create a healthier lifestyle but also allow you to lose weight and keep it off, I recommend taking a look at your diet and exercise regimen and seeing what you can clean up. If you need to get ready for a wedding or a weight-loss contest at your workplace that’s coming up shortly, however, then you can use the water-cutting methods I’ve described to shed some weight quickly.
Whichever method you choose, changing your lifestyle does not have to be difficult. On The Zone, you can find countless articles on a variety of health-related topics that can help guide you with your training and nutrition. Additionally, Myprotein offers a variety of products that can make the entire process easier, from whey protein and creatine to protein popcorn and cookies! These resources are here to help you achieve the body you want and feel great while doing so.