When I did my first Whole30, I made sure I slept a minimum of eight hours a night. At the end of my 30 days, I had lost a solid 20 lbs. I kept my sleep pattern up for the next year, and lost an average of 10 lbs per month. Then, once I hit around 175 lbs, I let my sleep numbers drop to about 6.5-7 hours a night, and my weight loss stopped. I had also allowed a post-dinner treat (called a dessert) to also come back into my diet which didn’t help matters. My weight hovered between 175-177 lbs for five months. After eliminating the dessert and ensuring I got my minimum of 8 hours of sleep each night, my weight loss kicked back in, and in the past month, I’m down 8 lbs to a solid 166.9 lbs. That’s just within TWO POUNDS from my FINAL GOAL!!!
In my experience, the following is a list of factors to successful weight loss (in order of importance):
- Diet. Eat good foods in the right amounts. Get rid of foods that are not good to you.
- Sleep. I put this higher than exercise, because you don’t need exercise to lose weight, but you can’t lose as much weight as quickly without sleep.
- Exercise. Move for 30 minutes. Doesn’t have to be running or hard cardio; just get the heart rate up for 30 solid minutes every day, or every other day.
I can’t say enough how important sleep is to losing weight. Some people think eating small meals throughout the day is the key to losing weight. Others think that drinking lots of water throughout the day is the key. There are those who think eating low-fat is the key. Others calorie count their way through a day in their bid to lose weight. I contend that a good diet (like Paleo!) coupled with exercise and SLEEP is the key.