827blogIt’s not easy losing weight without walking. Your legs comprise over 50% of your body’s muscles. When you don’t move them, you’re burning a lot less calories. A lot.  In fact for some of us who use wheelchairs full-time, it’s almost impossible to lose weight. Or at least we think so.

The truth is that it’s totally possible to lose weight if you’re a wheelchair-user.  I’ve seen it is my own two eyes having witnessed dozens of wheelchair-users around the world who’ve lost weight, changing their lives (and life-spans) for the better.  If you’re currently struggling with weight loss, here are some awesomely effective ways to lose weight without standing up.

CrossFit CrossFit is a huge fitness craze right now and it’s based on military exercises; truly sweat exerting exercises such as climbing a wooden wall (with a rope no less) and jumping over, lifting a huge tire over your head, jumping rope, basic moves such as pull-ups and squats, shoulder presses, rope climbs, runs with weights and a whole lot more. Is it easy?  Heck no, and that’s why it’s perfect for wheelchair-users.

And yes doing CrossFit while you’re sitting down is totally possible, as Chris Stoutenberg, a paraplegic from Ontario, Canada completely proves.  He has a whole Youtube channel profiling his adventures in wheelchair CrossFit, and holy heck is he in amazing shape. He is a living proof CrossFit is an amazing work out for wheelchair-users. What it does is burn an insanely high amount of calories in a short amount of time; if you can take the heat that is. Check out Chris’s videos http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MZT6hK09Y64

Low-Cal Diet You’ve heard this for years, low calorie is the only way to go to seriously lose weight, and it’s absolutely true. But the problem is that it’s one of the hardest ways to lose weight. Eating low calorie means no heavy dressings, melty cheeses, no more copious amounts of bread; it’s a restrictive lifestyle. However I found this weight loss method to be not that torturous if you just take the time to figure out low-cal foods that you actually like.

I absolutely love spicy foods and acidic vinegrettes.  I will put this on my vegetables so they taste better, and then I will roast my meats; one of my favorite and healthy ways to eat meat.  The truth about this diet is that you can lay in a bed and not move a muscle and this weight loss method will work simply because at the end of day it’s all about math. If you lower the amount of calories you eat, you will lose weight.

Zumba This dance-inspired workout is definitely a fitness craze for the ladies, but the guys can get in on the fun too. It’s like aerobics, but with Latin attitude, and it’s all about moving what you got; or in the case of someone with a disability, still moving what you got.  You may not be moving your legs as part of the Zumba moves, but if you can get your upper-body into it you can still lose a lot of weight moving your upper body around like a crazy person to high-tempo Latin beats.  Plus, it’s super fun.

And don’t forget, adding yoga as a secondary physical activity can be one of the best ways to help your body lose weight. Stretching, aligning your joints and muscles, breathing correctly, all of this can help your body buzz with good energy.

Use a wheelchair? How have you lost weight?