How to "Get Skinny"
Posted by Girls Guide To on July 20, 2012 at 12:48 PM
So you want to get skinny. You want to lose weight. Losing weight is great if you have weight to lose and want to get a little healthier, but before you start to “get skinny,” you need to have an idea about what that really means for you. This is so important because you need to have a clear idea of what your clear and attainable goal should be.
Your Body Type
Generally, when we talk about getting skinny, we talk about women with an ectomorphic body type. These people have little body fat, little muscle, and a small bone structure. Ectomorphs are usually naturally skinny or find it easy to lose weight and stay small. However, not all of us are built this way. There are two other body shapes out there: mesomorphs and endomorphs. Mesomorphic women tend to have an athletic build and find it easy to build muscle. Examples of women built this way are Anna Kournikova and Jessica Biel. And last, endomorphs tend to have a curvy build and find it easy to put on weight…and difficult to lose it. As you can see, each of these body types means different things when you’re losing weight.
When trying to lose weight remember:
- The ease or difficulty of weight loss will depend on your body type. It sucks, but it’s true.
- What “getting skinny” means to you should depend on your body type. If you’re built like Beyonce or Kate Upton, I hate to break it to you, but you’re never going to look like Taylor Swift.
- Being realistic means you will achieve your goals, but “skinny” will mean something different to you than it will to anyone else.
- Healthiness trumps skinniness. Every time. Your first goal should always be to improve your health. Getting skinny is just a bonus.
So How Do You “Get Skinny?”
1. Determine your body type and choose a realistic role model. I am a curvy endomorph, so I stopped looking at Gwyneth Paltrow and started admiring Scarlett Johansson. If you can’t figure it out from the descriptions above, here’s a body type calculator!
2. Determine and keep track of your body fat percentage. Too little fat is just as dangerous as too much fat. In general a healthy range for women is 20 to 30 percent. Ideally, you should have your body fat measured professionally (most gyms will do this for you) but many scales now provide this information as well.
3. Determine your ideal body weight based on your build and body type. Be smart ladies and factor in your lifestyle. If you choose too low of a weight that requires hours of exercise a day and super low calorie intake, that’s not healthy or sustainable. I always ask myself if what I’m doing is something I’d be willing to do for the rest of my life.
4. Create a calorie deficit by lowering your intake by 15 to 20 percent of what you need to maintain your weight. Steer clear of crash diets and extremely low calorie intakes – they will actually slow your metabolism and hinder your weight loss efforts. In general, eat at least 1200 calories everyday.
5. Zig-zag your calorie intake. This means changing your calorie intake every few days. For example, after 3 days of lower calorie intake, enjoy one higher calorie day. This keeps your body guessing and gives you a little room to indulge – meaning you won’t cheat!
6. Eat small meals throughout the day to keep your metabolism humming.
7. Get in your cardio. You absolutely have to exercise. It will create a bigger calorie deficit and will improve muscle tone, meaning you will see more results, faster. In addition to revving your metabolism and making an strong a toned body, exercise is critical for maintaining cardiovascular health and fitness. So important!
8. And after you cardio, be sure to get in your resistance training. Dieting alone can result in muscle loss, which in turn decreases metabolism. Resistance training prevents this and helps you avoid being “skinny fat.” It truly is muscle that gives the body a healthy and tight appearance that we all want. (And trust me, you will not get bigger or bulky if you lift weights!)
9. Learn how to run. Running is an excellent way to get skinny, fit and fab because you can literally do it anywhere and at low cost. All you need is a pair of shoes and the open road! Try the Couch to 5k program – it’s the perfect way for beginners to start. (There’s even an app to guide you through workouts!)
10. Add HIIT (high intensity interval training) to your routine. It basically involves short spurts of intense, all out exercise separated by periods of recovery. If you really go all out, your sweat session only has to last 20 minutes, but it’s even more effective than much longer steady state workouts. This works best when mixed with more traditional cardio, so if you exercise 4 or 5 times a week, so 2 sessions of HIIT on non-consecutive days.
So remember, your “skinny” may not look like anyone else’s “skinny” and that’s perfectly ok! Your health and your body are completely up to you and you should be feel great about making any healthy lifestyle changes.