Looking to drop a little body fat after the Holiday Season…? Here are 10 tips to get you back on track…
1) Calculate how many calories your body needs to consume to maintain your existing weight. This is called your maintenance calories. (Search Google with “calorie needs” and you will find a few different calculators to help you with this)
2) Initially deduct 10% off the total maintenance calories. Drastically reducing your calories will result in muscle and water loss – not fat loss.
3) Divide you calories over 5 or 6 meals rather then 2 or 3. You should aim to eat every 3-4 hours.
4) Cut out all simple carbohydrates (except straight after exercise, eat whole grain, high fiber foods.)
5) Exercise at least 3 times a week, doing 30 minutes of cardio to a reasonable level of intensity. Always do a decent amount of resistance training. Heavier lifting is the key. This will help to create the calorie deficit and encourage your body to lose fat.
6) Make simple replacements in your diet, Sweetener in place of sugar, diet drinks in place of full sugar drinks, use leaner cuts of meat etc. At first, these changes may be difficult but you will get used to them and make vital calorie savings every day.
7) Drink plenty of water – at least 2 liters of water every day – if you are dehydrated your body will be less efficient and will make fat loss more difficult.
8) Try to eat meat and vege’s more than anything else. Yes, even at breakfast.
9) Keep a food diary to monitor how many calories you are consuming – it is very easy to over eat. The best plan is to write down what you’re GOING to eat first, versus eating first and documenting after.
10) Supplementing your diet can make fat loss easier. A diet high in protein can help preserve muscle (more muscle means an increase in metabolism). There are also some fat loss supplements available which help boost your metabolism, this is useful as your metabolism may slow during extended periods of dieting. To prevent this, stick with a plan that lasts anywhere from 5 to 12 weeks. After 12 weeks, don’t fall completely off the wagon, but enjoy yourself for a while but don’t stop working out regularly. Maybe you shift your focus to getting stronger, improving your skills like speed, power, balance, agility. Try to mix things up to prevent plateaus.
If you’re not having fun and improving the way you feel about yourself, you’re doing it wrong.
Take pictures of yourself for accurate comparisons. More often than not, if you’re doing it right, the scale will not be the best way to measure your results. As they say, pictures are worth a thousand words…
Keep it simple. Train hard and often. Eat to support your training, not body fat.