1. Eat fewer calories not carbohydrates
Many seem to be under the impression that as long as you are avoiding carbs, you can eat whatever you want. That is just not the case. If fat loss is your aim, you need to consumer fewer calories. Pure and simple. Cutting back your calories takes some effort. But so does everything in life worth having. Just be careful to not cut your calories too dramatically. That can bring your metabolism to a standstill. Choose foods with higher volume compared to energy density can help you relieve hunger.
2. Stop looking for a quick fix
Think about how long it took you to gain the weight you are trying to lose. It didn’t go on overnight, it won’t come off that way either. It is tempting to buy into those quick fixes or celebrity solutions but more often than not, they don’t work. You might see results at first but before long you have rebounded back to your starting weight. The only way to change your body composition is to change your lifestyle. You just have to make that decision and stick to it.
3. Eat less fat
Many people adopt low-carb diets thinking that will fix everything. Most low-carb diets, like the Atkins Diet, for example, allow foods that are extremely high in fat. You give up bread but can eat bacon with abandon. What these diets fail to take into account is the large amount of calories contained in these fats. Fat contains about 9 calories per gram which is more than most proteins or carbs. Calories still matter!
We are, in no way, telling you to adopt a low-fat diet. Going low-fat can be just as damaging as going high-fat. 20-30% of your daily calories should come from healthy fats like salmon, nuts, beef, and egg yolks.
Remember, eliminating (or dramatically reducing) one particular type of food will not get you where you want to go — at least not in a healthy way. You need carbs, and fat, and protein.
4. Stop drinking calories
It is better for your fat loss efforts if you are actually chewing your foods. Chewing and digesting solid food burns more calories than consuming food in liquid form. Try to limit yourself when consuming protein shakes, milk, juices etc. You don’t need to be replacing your meals with them or turning to them as snack option.
5. Train with more resistance
When you are losing fat, it is important to maintain your muscle. This maintenance will happen through strength training. Do not be afraid to increase the weight you are using.
6. Don’t overdo cardio
Most forms of cardio are useless for fat loss. This isn’t to say that cardio is bad, it has a very valuable place in your workout routine. But, excessive cardio can be counterproductive. Excessive cardio can lead to an increase in the production of cortisol which, among other things, leads to an increase in abdominal fat. If you are looking to add more cardio to your life but don’t want to go too far, try adding a long walk. Walks are great — both mentally and physically.
7. Run more sprints
Or intervals. When it comes to losing fat, your diet is most important. But once you’ve got that cleared up and your strength training is on point, it is time to add some intervals. You only need to add 2, twelve to twenty minute sessions a week.
8. Manage your stress
Stress produces cortisol. Cortisol increases your body’s fat storage. Most of us have hectic work, family, and social lives which means that even if our diet and workouts are perfect, we may hold on to fat. Make time, each and every day, to manage your stress. You may have to try a few things to see what works best for you but it is crucial. Make it as important in your daily routine as brushing your teeth!
- nixing your ‘to-do’ list
- doing yoga
- getting a massage
- listening to relaxing music
- going out in nature
Obviously that is a short list but you get the idea. Find something that will make you take a moment to just stop. A moment to just let go and breathe.
10. Get enough sleep
This is a big one! When you aren’t getting enough sleep, your insulin sensitivity decreases and your cortisol levels go up. This is not an ideal condition for fat loss. When you reach deep sleep, your body produces Growth Hormone and if you aren’t getting enough shut eye, you will miss the boost this provides. We cannot say this enough, if you want to lose fat, you need to get sleep. Period.
Here are some things you might try if you want to improve your sleep:
- don’t have caffeine after 12pm
- try working out in the morning
- turn down the lights in your house after dark
- turn off all your screens (your phone, tablet, computer and/or television) at least 2 hours before bed
- use the bed for sleep and sex only
- make your bedroom as dark as possible
- keep your bedroom temperature on the cool side.
- remove electronics from your bedroom
10. Stick to your plan
It doesn’t matter how great your plan is, it won’t work if you don’t stick with it! It is tempting to jump ship and start something new when you don’t think your current plan is working but if you are hitting all the points above, it should work. Stay the course. These things work, it is physiology.
Bodybuilders and field athletes are some of the leanest people going, and how did they get there? They are incredibly dedicated but they also tackle specific tasks each week.
- eat protein, vegetables, and starch each day
- never go too low on carbs
- strength train 3-4 times a week
- expend more calories than they consume
- manage stress
Try to be as active as possible. Stand when you can, walk when you can. Just move your body.
Fat loss isn’t easy but it is far from complicated. It will not be accomplished overnight but you can do it! We believe in you!
Source: ONNIT / BodyRock TV