If you’ve been scrolling through the internet or talking to other people about how to lose weight or burn off excess fat you’ll of come across people who have got results doing a whole load of different things.
The more you look into health and fitness the more confusing everything gets.
You start to see that most information conflicts with someone else’s point of view or research.
Then you start to eat or exercise in a certain way until you hear some health professional or friend who tells you that you should do it some other way so you either do one of two things.
You start doing what they said you should do until the next health professional or friend comes along and the cycle repeats itself.
Or you get frustrated because no matter what you do it never seems to be ‘right’.
This leads you to always doubting yourself to think whether what you are doing is right or you simply don’t try because of overload paralysis.
Its an absolute nightmare.
There are so many subjects that can be delved into that once you get started it is literally an endless pit of information.
Should you train fasted?
What’s the best times of day to eat?
Do you need to eat every three hours?
What’s the best kind of cardio to do?
Should I be drinking smoothies?
What ratio of carbs to fats to protein should I be eating?
We have made a simple subject like fat loss so complicated it’s mind boggling. Even though we know a lot more about nutrition and the human body than we have ever known, we are still gradually getting unhealthier
So I pose the question, do you really need to know anything more about nutrition?
Fat loss is simple, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Its simple because you only have to do a few things right for fat loss to happen. It’s not easy because you need to be patient, it takes time and consistency is key.
To help make everything easy again I’ve put together a list of the only things you need to worry about when looking to lose weight.
These are things that no matter what someone has done to lose weight they’ve done these things whether they knew it or not.
They start in order of importance from the top. Once you’ve got the first habit down you move onto the next. Don’t tackle them all at once, I’d suggest spending a few days or a week on each one before incorporating the next habit.
Correct quantity of foods
Although the quality of the food you are eating is important to live a healthy lifestyle, the quantity is the biggest variable when losing weight. Always remember you can eat healthy and still put on weight. That’s what bodybuilders do.
Fat loss comes down to using up more energy than you take in, this is known as being in a calorie deficit. You can increase the total amount of energy burnt by moving and exercise more but the biggest variable is how much food you’re taking in.
To begin with you don’t need to count calories but you do need to lower the total amount of calories you’re taking in. This is done by keeping an eye on your portion sizes and reducing the amount of calorie dense foods you are eating.
Calorie dense foods/drinks are:
- Fast food restaurants
- Pre-made meals/foods
- Creamy coffee’s/latte’s
- Nuts, potatoes, pasta, rice, lentils
Cutting them down will lower your total amount of calories. If you stick to a regime of having breakfast, lunch, dinner and a little snack in between, whilst keeping an eye on your portion sizes and calorie dense foods, you’ll be on your way to burning off excess fat.
Eating the right kinds of foods
Although fast food and pre-made meals have the proteins, carbs and fats, a lot of them don’t have many vitamins and minerals in which will eventually lead you to have lackluster energy, concentration, motivation and health problems.
That’s why when you eat good, you feel good. And if you eat crap, you feel crap.
If you don’t feel good you’re not going to have the energy to workout and stay active which means you’ll be burning less energy.
Fast food and store bought foods are notorious for being high in calories so simply by making more foods yourself you’ll be increasing the quality of your foods and decreasing your calories without even knowing it!
All you need to make sure you’re doing is eating plenty of vegetables, some fruits, meats, grains and dairy to achieve this.
Increasing your activity level
The quantity and quality of foods you eat will make sure you’re taking in less energy. The next step is to increase your energy expenditure by increasing your activity level.
You can go to the gym, join group classes, start up a new sport, or walk instead of drive. Their is so much you can do to increase your activity level.
Doing a workout 3 times a week is the perfect start. Once you’ve got that routine going also look for the little things you can do.
If your job isn’t active maybe you can take the stairs instead of the lift or go for a walk on your lunch break instead of sitting down.
Any extra movement you can incorporate into your day is worthwhile and will add to the total amount of energy used up.
The small things really do add up. If you was to workout intensely for one hour you might burn around 600 calories. Do that three times a week and that’s 1,800 calories.
But if you divide that 1,800 calories, which you’ve had to work three hours for, over the hours you are awake a week that’s roughly 20 calories an hour extra you would need to burn which barely takes any time out of your day.
So if you’re tight on time just moving a little more every hour can have the compounded impact of a couple hours of exercise a week.
Build a little muscle
If you’re male, adding on some muscle will give you that masculine build and if you’re female adding on muscle will help give you the shapes and curves you want.
As well as adding on muscle will help you get the body shape you’re after it will also do one other thing.
It will help you burn up more energy!
Muscle uses up more energy than fat on a daily basis because it requires energy to move, whereas fat just sits on your body like a storage device.
The more muscle you have the higher your resting metabolism will be which equals more calories burnt every single day. It’s not a huge amount but it does add up!
To build muscle add in some resistance training into your week by either doing some weight based training or bodyweight exercises.
You might not want to add loads of muscle but you’ll definitely want to add some!
If you do those four things consistently and making sure you’re keeping them up, that might be everything you need and you won’t have to go any further. (read on though if you’re not)
What kind of results should you expect?
Losing any weight is a good sign but I know you want to lose it as soon as possible so on average losing anything from 0.5lb to 2lb a week is great. Sometimes you might stay the same, other weeks you might lose 1-2lb but on average 0.5-2lb is perfect.
If you are doing all of the above and are not losing 0.5lb a week then here’s the next few things you can do.
Food diary & count calories
Remember earlier we mentioned you can eat healthy and still not lose weight? This will be because your total calorie intake is too high. It can be surprising how many calories are in certain types of food that are technically healthy.
Using an app like MyFitnessPal you can easily track your foods to see how many calories you are really consuming.
Here’s how you should do it:
- Work out how many calories you need to be consuming a day to lose 1lb a week (although not perfect, MyFitnessPal works this out for you).
- Weigh yourself on the first morning you start your food diary.
- Track everything you eat AND drink for 4 weeks.
- After 4 weeks weigh yourself again in the morning and see how it’s changed.
If your weight has gone up or stayed the same you’ll see your calories will have averaged slightly over what you was meant to achieve. Look through your food diary and see what foods you have been eating that stand out which are high in calories. Minimise these in the future and replace them with better alternatives.
If your weight has gone down you’ll notice you’ll of hit your calorie goal or gone slightly below it. If this is the case, carry on with what you are doing!
The reason you want to do this over 4 weeks and not 1 week is because fluctuations in weight happen for lots of reasons. Water weight, your sodium intake, and hormone levels. All of which has nothing to do with whether you’ve lost fat or gained it. By leaving a 4 week gap that should be enough time to get away from daily and weekly fluctuations. You can read more about how the scales can fluctuate here.
Side note: Don’t aim to go below the amount of calories you need for weight loss as over the long term this will be unsustainable and will cause cravings.
Up your activity level
Keep trying to up your activity level. Remember to try to bring other daily activities into your day like a 30 minute walk as it’s what you do on a daily basis that makes the biggest impact.
The more active you are the more energy you’ll use up and the higher your metabolism will be during that period.
Chill your beans! I know you’ve got a lot going on, long hours at work, the kids to look after, bills to pay and on top of that you’re now trying to work out every week but the stress is doing you no good.
Stress can really affect your bodies ability to function properly. It’s a huge symptom of headaches, can ruin your sleep pattern, make you feel more fatigued, cause food cravings and affect your hormones.
Being stressed causes the body to release the hormone cortisol. This is the body’s ‘fight or flight’’ response to deal with an imminent threat such as an attacking animal. Now though we don’t so much have animals trying to attack us but rather bills to pay, traffic jams, schedules to meet and hundreds of other situations that can cause stress on a daily basis.
You can read more about how stress can affect your efforts to lose weight here.
That is how you lose fat. You keep re giggling all those things until you are in that 0.5-2lb weight loss a week and that is all it takes.
No waist trainer, no fat burners, no magic shakes.
Simply do what humans have done for the last thousands of years to stay at a healthy weight. Stay active and eat well.
But wait, what about those who say you should lower your sugar, lower your fats, lower your carbs, eat more fiber, have super-foods, yada yada yada?
You’re doing it without even knowing it!
You’re already incorporating aspects of all of those points by eating natural foods, keeping an eye on your portion sizes and staying away from too much processed foods.Lower your sugar intake- You’ve done this by lowering the amount of processed foods, takeaway foods and store bought meals. Lower your fats- They say do this to make sure your not eating too many calories. As your sticking to your calories you’re doing this. Lower your carbs- You’ve done this by eating more vegetables, lowering process foods and your calories. Eat more Fiber- Yep, you’re getting that from all the vegetables your having. Have super-foods- Super-foods are just a fancy way of saying have foods high in vitamins and minerals such as the fruit and vegetables you’re having!
See you’re a winner without even knowing it! Keep it simple and the ‘complicated’ stuff looks after itself.
It’s all about consistency
These things take time, if you’re overweight or obese this isn’t going to be a 12 week fix. You need to make it a lifestyle shift to be able to carry it on.
It’s only fair that if it takes a lifestyle to get out of shape it takes a lifestyle to get in shape!
And once you reach your goal you can only sustain it by carrying on those habits you maintained to get there in the first place.
If you change your habits, you change your results.
So make sure you’re incorporating this around a lifestyle you can maintain.
Because if you do, you’ll not only get the body shape you’re after but you’ll also get all of these amazing benefits too:
- More energy to do the things you love.
- Healthier looking skin
- Less niggles and pains.
- More motivation
- Boost in confidence
- Reduction in anxiety and depression
- Uplift in mood
- Energy to do more things with your loved ones and friends.
That’s why fitness matters.
Because the quality of your life improves the with quality of your body and mind.
And yes of course you’ll have the body shape you’ve always wanted!
“But I know what I’ve got to do I just can’t seem to stick to it!”
If you keep over indulging on your meals, are not lowering your alcohol consumption, having fast food numerous times a week and are not sticking to the above steps to achieve fat loss then it’s the lifestyle factors that you need to be looking at.
By that I mean the people you spend the most time with and the habits you have built throughout your life are what are holding you back.
If your friends and family are eating healthy then that is going to drive you to do the same, but if they are the ones always suggesting to go eat out all the time and want to get drunk every weekend then that is also going to drive you in the that direction.
The lifestyle factors are normally the biggest problems people have when it comes to sticking to a healthy lifestyle over the long term and are the things that need to be addressed the most.
That’s why I created Reborn: The Ultimate Lifestyle Guide because most of us understand the above steps we need to take but it’s implementing them into our lifestyle which are the hardest parts.
Struggling to find the time?
Finding it hard to afford healthy food?
Can’t seem to make it a lifestyle?
Keep falling off track?
Not happy with your body and your self image?
If you need help with any of those points the mindset section of my guide teaches you how to get around all of those points.
Not only that but it has all of these amazing features in too:
- A complete mindset section to help you build the habits and lifestyle you want.
- Easy to understand nutrition
- 20+ simple but mouthwatering recipes
- Workout programs- Over 12 weeks of beginner, intermediate and advanced workouts to follow.
- Recovery and flexibility section
- FAQ section- All your questions answered.
- Unlimited email support from myself if you need it.