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Ironically, this can actually obscure your metabolism-boosting efforts, because you want your body to start the catabolism process, but if your body is efficiently working, it won’t dig into its reserves (e.g. fat cells) in order to provide you with the energy you need.

So the trick is to keep variety in your workouts. Many people choose to cross-train. It targets different muscle groups, but it keeps your body from finding a groove whereby it tried to help you by slowing down your metabolism.

Remember, your body doesn’t read books like this. It doesn’t need to, and it doesn’t care. It has no clue that a speedier metabolism is “good” or “bad”.

Balancing work, family, hobbies, and other commitments often means that our lifestyle isn’t so much a choice, as it is a necessity, but we can do little things that help speed up our metabolism.

Get on the Wagon
Do you know people who carefully choose low-fat, low-calorie meal choices, are very disciplined when it comes to resisting the Chef’s Special pecan pie for desert, yet order a glass or two of wine with their meal?

These people are undermining their efforts to boost their metabolism.

Studies show that drinking alcohol with meals actually encourages over eating, which means more calories that need to be burned away or transformed into fat.
Many people are simply unaware that many alcoholic drinks are laden with calories, almost as much as sugary soft drinks.

A bottle of beer or a cocktail is a few hundred calories. Wine is less, but still adds your calorie count. The tip here isn’t to stop drinking alcohol altogether, but to be aware that it’s adding to your calorie intake.

Most of us don’t have as much control over the amount that we sleep as we should. Work, family, education, housekeeping, and so many other tasks can literally prevent us from getting the amount of sleep that we need.

Experts tell us, getting enough sleep actually improves metabolism. People who are constantly sleep deprived, typically find that they have less energy to do regular, daily activities.

As a result, sleep-deprived people often lower their own metabolism. They simply don’t have the strength to break down food efficiently, particularly carbohydrates. This is a very difficult issue, because many people can only find time to exercise by borrowing from their rest time.

For example, after a long day of work and dealing with family and home commitments, a person may find the only time they have to exercise is late at night. So what should you do?

Ultimately, it’s a question of balance. Naturally, if you’re willing to exercise, and your doctor agrees that it’s healthy for you, then you’re not going to get fit by sleeping instead of exercising.

Yet, if you steal time away from your sleep in order to exercise, you can actually do more harm than good, because the following day, you won’t have enough energy to digest what you eat. The answer to this catch-22 lies in balance.

You don’t have to work out every night. Or perhaps you can integrate a workout into your life during the day, maybe at lunchtime or right after work.

Most fitness clubs are open very early, some are even open 24 hours. You can also get some fitness equipment for your home and workout there.

If you find you have trouble sleeping, this can also negatively affect the speed of your metabolism, because you won’t have enough energy the following day. Insomnia and other sleep disorders are very common problems.

Some non-medical tips to help you fall asleep include:

o Don’t eat late at night
o Try drinking warm milk before bedtime
o Don’t turn on the TV at night
o Try yoga or other stress-relieving practices
o Try having a warm bath before bedtime
o Don’t exercise close to bedtime, your body can become so energized that it doesn’t want to sleep.

We briefly noted yoga in the list of Things to Do above, and that brings us to another key influence of your metabolism, stress.

Do this before sleep and lose pounds!

Experts believe stress can send unwanted signals to our body, signals that lead to slower metabolism. Essentially, when the body is under constant stress, it releases stress hormones that flood the system. These stress hormones actually tell the body to create larger fat cells in the abdomen. The result can be both increased weight and a slower metabolism.

Some easy stress relievers are:

• Walk more
• Listening to relaxing music
• Meditate
• Practice yoga
• Eat non-stimulating foods (e.g. no caffeine, no sugar, and so on)
• Re-center yourself and de-stress

So there’s a link between how much stress you experience and your ability to break down cells and lose weight.

If you don’t want to relax, because you don’t have the time, your stressed-out life is probably playing a role in your weight gain or your inability to lose weight.