Maximize your weight loss efforts with these weight loss tips and fitness tips.

You hear the same old weight loss tips over and over again: "Eat well and exercise." Isn't there more to it? Indeed there is! We reveal proven diet tips and fitness tips to lose weight, keep it off and stay healthy and motivated.

Three Diet Tips

  1. Eat nine servings of summer fruits and vegetables daily. Packed with vitamins A, C and E, phytochemicals, minerals, carbs and fiber, produce is healthy, filling, and naturally low in calories and fat. Enjoy it at meals, snacks and before/after exercise to stay full, feel energized and lose weight, says Seattle-based nutritionist Susan Kleiner, R.D., Ph.D.
  2. Drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water daily to stay hydrated, maintain energy and lose weight -- more if your workout routines take place outdoors or strenuous, says Kleiner. "To build muscle and increase metabolism, you need to burn fat. And you can't build muscle and burn fat if you're not well hydrated," she says. "Drinking plenty of water will help you feel full and keep you energized for exercise."
  3. Use lowfat cooking techniques. Avoid frying and sauteing with butter and use slimmer techniques like steaming, baking, grilling (the barbecue is ideal for this), or stir-frying.

Two Fitness Tips

  1. Do at least 20 minutes of cardio four times a week. A short duration of high-intensity activity in your cardio workout routines will elevate the heart rate for two to four hours, says Kevin Lewis, a certified personal trainer and owner of State of the Art Fitness in Woodland Hills, Calif. A good cardio workout, such as an hour of moderate hiking or cycling burns about 300 calories and 380 calories respectively. Or try a new sport (in-line skating, surfing) to break out and work muscles you don't normally target.
  2. "Weight" it out. Just two 30-minute total-body strength training routines a week will strengthen and build the muscles you're working and increase your metabolism, Lewis says. "The goal [for strength training routines] is to build lean muscle mass, which will result in a bigger calorie burn," he says.

[header = More great weight loss tips and tips for cardio workout routines from Shape.]

Here's how to modify your cardio workout routines and strength training routines for great results.

  1. Break it up. Only have time for half of your usual hour-long workout? Go anyway, or do two 30-minute cardio workout routines or strength training routines during different times of the day, Lewis says.
  2. Train for a marathon, mini-triathlon, or backpacking adventure to take the focus off weight loss and put it on gaining strength, speed and/or endurance. You'll lose weight naturally if you balance your calorie intake and stay committed to your training.
  3. Ward off exercise boredom by alternating gym workout routines, trying new machines and classes (yoga, Spinning, Pilates, kickboxing) or heading outside for hiking, biking, etc.
  4. Listen to your body. If something doesn't feel right-you experience muscle cramping, develop chest pains, become overly fatigued or winded, feel thirsty, lightheaded or dizzy -- stop and, check it out. If rest doesn't seem to relieve your concern, talk to your doctor. That way you can catch potential health problems early rather than risk injury and lose all momentum, Lewis says.

Plus, here's the last of our highly effective weight loss tips.

  1. Set a goal. Figure out why you want to shed pounds (and whether you even need to) and make sure it's a healthy and realistic goal, Kleiner says. Being able to say "I lost weight!" can be just as rewarding as fitting into your slimmer jeans.

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