Mustafa Adnan

I lost a lot of weight and kept it off – here’s how

Weight loss can feel like an impossible challenge. But it isn’t. Still, that doesn’t mean it’s easy. I lost 40kg, and I’ve kept it off. My weight loss journey was not easy, but it wasn’t impossible either. Every body is different, but after some trial and error, I figured out what works for mine.

Being a full-time worker can be draining for anyone who prioritizes their health and fitness as much as their career. Health should come first, which is why scheduling a time during the day for physical activity is crucial. High intensity interval training, or HIIT, and weightlifting were my weight loss journey go-to’s and they continue to be part of my routine.

More than the exercise, what helped me lose weight was maintaining a healthy and well-balanced diet. Experts are constantly reinforcing the importance of a consistent healthy diet, yet we still underrate it. I can truly say that diet and a healthy pattern of sleep have much more impact on your body and well-being than exercise alone.

You can train for five hours every day, seven days a week, but if you are not consistent with your diet and sleep, you will not get the results. I cannot emphasize enough that the secret to weight loss is to stick to a well-balanced healthy diet. Don’t get attracted to fad diets; find the diet that is right for you – one you can maintain. Maintenance and consistency are the key to any healthy lifestyle.  

A morning fitness routine

Every weekday, I do some HIIT before heading to the office. Sometimes, I run outside, other times I do a circuit.  My target for the morning is anywhere between 30 and 45 minutes, depending on how much time I have.

Morning exercise is extremely beneficial for anyone starting their fitness journey. Although it may be difficult for many of us to wake up extra early and go on that run before a long day at the office, the reward that it comes with outweighs the difficulty. Morning workouts help you feel fresh and alert, helping you power through your day, while getting closer to achieving the body you aim for.

After work, I make sure to rest at home for an hour or two before going the gym and focusing on weight training. We all know staying hydrated is very important, but it is even more so when you do HIIT and heavy weightlifting. I make sure to drink water throughout the day so my body is hydrated when I put it under the stress of training. I aim for 5 to 6 liters of room temperature water.

A consistent diet and lunch from home

During the week, I bring my lunch from home. Although there are many good healthy meal delivery plans now, it’s easier to control my diet when I’m in charge of the food I eat. I’ll typically eat a meal consisting of a protein and vegetables, with some complex carbs on the side, like whole grain rice or quinoa. I avoid snacking, but when I do, I opt for a healthy snack, such as a piece of fruit, some yogurt, a clean protein bar or a piece of dark chocolate. When I arrive home from training, I make sure to eat a well-balanced meal that will fuel my body. I try to focus on eating vegetables and protein to support muscle recovery.

Take one to two rest days

I repeat this routine between four to six times a week and try to take one to two days’ rest, usually during the weekend. On my days off, I give myself a break and relax my diet and fitness regimen. Having a day or two off from training and a strict diet plan is an essential element for anyone who is on a fitness and healthy well-being plan. It allows the mind and body the opportunity to rest and recharge, which is necessary to avoid getting discouraged.

Losing weight and maintaining a healthy lifestyle is not easy, but if you take it day by day you will get there. is for every body and mind in the UAE. This magazine is all about moderation, making small changes, little additions and the odd subtraction.



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