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10 Things You Need To Know To Lose Body Fat

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10 Things You Need To Know To Lose Body Fat

Wanting to lose weight is too broad of a claim. In almost all cases, what you actually want to lose is body fat. It’s only that excess layer of soft fat that’s hiding your sexier physique! Resorting to drastic weight loss methods will sacrifice your precious muscle mass, leaving you looking (and feeling) starved and weak. This is certainly not a desirable result for women either!

So, we need to lose body fat while preserving existing muscle mass to reveal a fantastic figure. Here are 10 essential tips to help you reach that beach body you deserve!

1. Don’t Starve Yourself

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    In order to lose body fat, you must be eating less than you are burning. In other words, you need to have a caloric deficit.

    Experiment with your diet to find your maintenance calories, i.e. the amount of calories required to maintain your current weight. When you think you have found it, reduce it by 500-800 calories per day. Cutting calories to dangerously low levels will lead to muscle loss with fat staying put! Use a calculator to estimate a good starting point.

    2. Be Careful With Cardio

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      With your diet on point, cardio can speed up fat burning by using up extra calories. However, getting carried away will actually hurt your progress. Too much intense cardio in a caloric depict can turn your body catabolic, shedding muscle over fat. This will also make you feel depleted, flat and tired!

      To lose body fat as fast as possible, use cardio, but limit it to a maximum of 3 x 30min sessions per week.

      3. Start Weightlifting

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        Yes, that’s right, weight lifting is actually a great way to supercharge fat loss! It’s a common misconception that it can only be used to build muscle. In this case, you can use it to maintain muscle mass and burn a significant amount of calories.

        For best results pick a popular barbell routine (such as “Strong Lifts”). These full body movements will engage the most muscles at once and burn off fat like a knife through butter!

        4. Control Your Carbs

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          Low carb is not the answer for everyone. However, many can benefit from cutting carbs and boosting protein/fats. But depriving yourself of carbohydrates for too long can lead to muscle loss and generally feeling lifeless. Manipulate your carbohydrates primarily before and after your workouts for best results!

          5. Allow Yourself Time to Transform

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            Don’t set unrealistic expectations; otherwise, your impatience will force you into dramatic measures. Depending on how much body fat you need to lose, commit to at least 3 months of solid commitment to the cause. You may well look like a different person!

            Make sure you track your caloric intake, weight and before/after photos.

            6. Eat a Grapefruit Before Sleeping

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              Now, this may sound like one of those bogus claims, yet medical studies have actually found grounds for grapefruit’s metabolism boosting abilities. Try squeezing or eating a fresh grapefruit every night before bed!

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              7. Are You Hungry? Good!

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                If you are dieting correctly you are going to feel hungry at times. Otherwise, something has gone wrong in the calories department. If you’re severely restricting your calories and suddenly don’t feel hungry anymore, your metabolism has slowed down. However, you need a fast metabolism on your side to help with fat loss efforts.

                You should feel moderately hungry when you wake up and between meals, but not excessively. A weekly “cheat meal” can be used to fire up your metabolism once more!

                8. Be Careful With Weight Training Volume

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                  Weight training is a double-edged sword. Yes, it helps to preserve muscle mass while dieting, but you don’t want to over-train or injure yourself. When you’re in the gym, work on maintaining your strength levels and push gently. You should not be doing extra sets, going to failure or going there more than 3 times per week!

                  9. Get Plenty of Rest

                  Dieting can have an effect on sleep; it can be harder to sleep if you feel a little hungry. However, 8-10 hours of quality sleep per night is vital, many of fat-loss processes occur during this time.

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                  Consider taking a melatonin supplement to help you get to sleep. Otherwise, you could save a small carbohydrate dense snack, such as oats, for before bed. So long as your total daily calories are in check, this will not hurt progress!

                  10. 3 Drinks To Boost Your Metabolism and Lose Body Fat

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                    If you can drink only these three beverages for 99% of the time, you will be able to lose body fat faster than ever.

                    1. Coffee – The caffeine boosts metabolism and helps you feel energized
                    2. Green Tea – Contains many beneficial antioxidants that support weight loss
                    3. Water – Essential for all manner of body functions but also boosts metabolism

                    Featured photo credit: Leeroy via stocksnap.io

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                    Joseph Summers

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                    Last Updated on September 8, 2021

                    10 Fitness Excuses You Need to Stop Making Now

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                    10 Fitness Excuses You Need to Stop Making Now

                    “You can have results or excuses. Not both.” – Anonymous

                    Human beings tend to only ever do as much as they absolutely need to.

                    Motivational speakers call this innate trait laziness, biologists call it efficiency. Either way, the fact remains: we are evolutionary wired to minimize time and energy wherever possible.

                    And this is not necessarily a bad thing. If we weren’t wired this way, we probably wouldn’t have survived this long as a species.

                    Back in our caveman days, before supermarkets, calories were worth their weight in gold. For cavemen, trying to actively burn off calories would have spelled certain death.

                    In this light, our fitness excuses make total sense. Our reptilian brain comes up with believable sounding rationalizations to stop us from burning off our precious calories; to minimize time and energy.

                    Unfortunately, due to our present access to highly calorific foods, the fitness excuses that once ensured our survival, now send us to an early grave.

                    Below I’ve provided the 10 most common fitness excuses our reptilian minds trick us into believing and why, ultimately, they’re all nonsense.

                    1. I don’t have enough time.

                    This is probably the most common fitness excuse of them all.

                    First off, when you say you don’t have enough time, what you’re really saying is “I don’t have enough time for that”. 

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                    Do you really think that if you were to add up all the time you spend watching TV and surfing the web throughout the average week you couldn’t replace any of it with a workout?

                    A 30 minute workout takes up 2% of your day.

                    Don’t ask yourself how much time you’re going to waste by working out a few times a week. Ask yourself how much of your life you’re going to waste being unfit and overweight.

                    2. I’m way too tired to workout.

                    Your mind, when it comes to exercising, is like a spoiled child. If you give in to its demands without a fight, it will see weakness and prey on it often.

                    If you miss one planned session, you’re much more likely to miss the next. The biggest journey always starts with one step and the biggest failings always start with one step backwards.

                    You need to show your mind who’s boss. You won’t always have lots of energy when you go to the gym but that doesn’t matter. The only thing that counts is showing up and giving it a shot.

                    If you’re too tired to workout, change your sleeping habits, not your workout habits.

                    3. But exercise is so boring!

                    You don’t want to exercise because it’s boring?

                    So you find brushing your teeth, taking showers, styling your hair and getting dressed highly entertaining? No. We do these things because we have to. We accept them as part of life.

                    The people who never miss a workout are the ones who view it just like brushing their teeth. Complaining about it is just pointless. To be successful sometimes you’ve got to do things that aren’t as fun as watching your favorite TV show. That’s just life.

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                    If don’t enjoy your workouts, you don’t stop working out, you just workout differently. Try crossfit, martial arts, hiking, body building, powerlifting, running, or swimming. Try music. Try anything, but keep showing up.

                    4. I have no motivation to workout.

                    If you think you need motivation to train you’re already half beat.

                    What you really need is meta motivation: the motivation to train even when you’re not motivated. If you rely on your feelings to decide whether to workout or not, you never will. As you know, your feelings are designed to keep you caged up in your comfort pit.  Your feelings want you to be safe, not successful.

                    That said, there is a trick you can use to get yourself motivated to workout, and it’s  backed up with research. It’s called ‘the few minutes’ principle.

                    The basic idea is that procrastinators often put off doing certain things because the size of the task in front of them seems too overwhelming. By deciding to just go to the gym for a ‘few minutes’ you’ll often see the workout through to completion.

                    Are you motivated enough to train for two minutes? That’s all you need.

                    5. I have kids to look after.

                    One day your kids might have someone to look after too: you.

                    Don’t burden them with an ill parent when they have their own kids to look after. And don’t be the kind of parent who tells their kids exercise is good for them but doesn’t follow their own advice. Kids are smarter than that.

                    If you’re really struggling with managing your fitness and your kids, combine the two. Find a field and play frisbee for a few hours, go swimming, take a walk around the lake and feed some ducks. There are so many fun and cheap ways to exercise with your kids, the only limits are your imagination.

                    You kids should be your biggest reason to exercise, not your biggest excuse.

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                    6. I don’t have anyone to train with.

                    What you’re really saying with this fitness excuse is that you don’t have anyone to talk with while you train. If you’re training properly, you won’t need to talk.

                    Don’t get me wrong, having a training partner is great but here’s what you’ve got to understand: most people first meet their training partners at the gym. The reason you probably don’t have anyone to train with is because you don’t have many friends who train. Like attracts like.

                    By becoming someone who regularly trains, you’ll start attracting people into your life who also value health and fitness. You have to earn your training partners, they don’t come free.

                    7. I don’t feel very well.

                    After you get into the habit of overriding your fitness excuses and working out regularly, the thought of missing a workout starts to drive you insane. When I broke my jaw in two places the doctors told me I couldn’t lift heavy weights for three months. What did I do? I lifted light weights instead. Train smart, not hard.

                    At some point in our lives we’ve all pretended to be ill so we could skip a day of school. Some of the better actors among us probably blurred the lines in their mind between real symptoms and those imagined. It’s easy to exaggerate things when it fits our agenda.

                    If you’re really sick, I don’t recommend you train. But feeling a bit tired or achy – that’s no reason to skip a workout.

                    8. The gym is too expensive or far.

                    If you think you need a gym to achieve your fitness goals, you’ve been seriously misled.

                    The world is your fitness playground. Ever watched a training scene from a Rocky movie? He chases chickens, runs up steps, punches meat, and chops wood. Many people cite these scenes as their favorite.  Something about training dirty and raw resonates deep within us.

                    There are whole fitness subcultures dedicated to working out outdoors, and without formal equipment. Ever heard of Calisthenics, Tai Chi, Yoga or Parkour? Look them up.

                    If you want to put on muscle, try some typical strongman training like chopping wood, flipping tires, lifting barrels. Remember, if it’s important enough to you, you’ll find a way. Arnold Schwarzenegger made his own gym equipment out of chairs and sticks for the first year he trained. He claims he gained 25 pounds of muscle from doing this.

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                    9. I don’t know how to train properly.

                    If you’re reading this article, you’re obviously more than capable of figuring this out. The internet is brimming with routines and training tips. This site alone will give you more than you need. Read these 10 tips for better workouts, perfect for beginners.

                    However, it’s important that you don’t get too engulfed in the theory of ‘training properly’. Like most things in life, you learn best on the job. Ask people in the gym to show you how to use proper technique, then practice through action.

                    People love giving out tips. You might even get a training partner out of it.

                    10. I feel intimidated by the fit people there.

                    This is normal and everyone has this when they first start out. The environment is new, everyone there looks like they know what they’re doing. You feel like you’re in someone else’s home.

                    The number one reason you feel intimidated when you go to the gym is because you don’t go enough! If you started going regularly you’d get used to the place, the people and your fitness would improve. Everyone knows training improves your confidence. Just stick with it. It’s something you’ll laugh at a few months down the line.

                    Anyone can get in great shape. Anyone can become fit. But very few people ever do because they give in to their natural inclination to minimize time and effort.

                    Stop making excuses and just stick with it for two months. After that you’ll be finding excuses to workout even when you do have important stuff to get on with.

                    Featured photo credit: United Artists, Chartoff-Winkler Productions via Rocky (1976)

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