Losing 25 pounds can make a dramatic difference to your physique. Losing 1 to 2 pounds per week is a safe, sustainable rate of weight loss, according to the Mayo Clinic. Losing 25 pounds in three months puts you right at the upper end of this scale, but it should be achievable with hard work, dedication and a structured plan.
Reduce your daily calorie intake by 500 per day. To lose weight you must be in a calorie deficit, which means eating fewer calories than you burn. To lose 1 pound each week requires a calorie deficit of 3,500, says April Merritt, nutritionist at the American Council on Exercise. You can do this by ditching high-sugar, high-fat snacks, switching to lean meats, fish and dairy products and reducing portion sizes.
Perform 500 calories worth of exercise every day. Reducing your calories by 500 each day through dieting will yield a weight loss of 1 pound a week, but to lose 25 pounds in three months you need to lose 2 pounds each week. Your other weekly pound can come from exercise. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends 300 minutes of moderate-intensity or 150 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic exercise each week. According to the Harvard Medical Schoo, activities such as running, cycling and swimming burn the most calories.
Add in two strength training sessions each week. When it comes to toning up and burning fat the best approach to weight training is to perform full-body workouts, says Marc Perry author of the "Get Lean Guide." Full-body workouts based around multijoint lifts such as squats, lunges, pushups and rows maximize calorie burn while building lean muscle, which increases definition and tone. Pick four or five exercises and do each for three sets of 10 to 12 repetitions using a weight that is tough but manageable.
Weigh yourself once a week to make sure you're on track for your goal of 25 pounds in three months. You should be losing 2 pounds each week to ensure steady progress. If you've lost less than this, then reduce your calories by 100 per day and increase your exercise sessions by five to 10 minutes. If you've lost more than 3 pounds each week, increase your calories very slightly to make sure you're not losing weight too quickly.
- Ask a trainer at the gym to help you with the full-body session exercises if you're not confident with the techniques.