Weight loss is the number one goal for many people every January, the one that many people do wrong during the first months and then they rush into a crazy nonsense diet to get those extra kilos before summer.
Most people want a realistic healthy solution, and that exists. There is a real, effective, long-term solution but it requires a mindset and lifestyle change. To be fit.
THE GOAL – LOSING WEIGHT OR LOSING FAT?
Losing weight isn’t necessarily what we all want, it implies losing fat and losing muscle.
If what you want is to get a more “toned” physique what you should want is to maintain or increase muscle mass and lose fat. When you put on muscle, you will put on weight but is the kind of weight we want. In other words we want to lower the body fat percentage while keeping or increasing our muscle mass.
WHY SHOULD WE BURN FAT?
Not only we want to lose fat for aesthetic reason but for health reasons. Extra fat causes inflammation on our body, especially our joints, they are carrying extra tissue that doesn’t help our body move like muscles do. Losing weight can prevent diabetes, lower your bad cholesterol, bring down triglycerides, lower blood pressure, stop sleep apnea, reverse insulin resistance… the list goes on and on.
THE INFALLIBLE METHOD
Like we mentioned earlier if you want to have a fitter body forever it’s about a lifestyle change. Reject the “diet for 3 months” mentality, a fit body requires wanting to be healthy inside and out. Requires commitment, determination and some structure.
A clean diet is the most important thing, always, even when we are trying to put on weight.
In order to lose fat is the first thing you have to figure out. You can’t never out-train a bad diet, no matter how intense your training is. Moderation is key, obviously you are able to eat a cookie every now and then, eat out, go to the cinema… But everything in moderation.
If you want to lose weight you have to be realistic, you don’t need to follow a diet as strict as bodybuilders in their shedding phase but the cleaner you eat the faster you’ll see results. If you know you have a sweet tooth look for fit recipes to replace your guilty pleasures. Most of them taste amazing and you won’t feel restricted.
To reach any fitness goal we recommend a clean diet, eating only real foods like we mentioned in our last article: 5 TIPS FOR A HEALTHY DIET. If you want to so a strict cut you should calculate your calories and macros based on your BMR, to know your maintenance, cut, and bulk macros and calories. Before considering lowering your calories, we recommend you to do some research or go to a specialist. Not everyone’s diet is the same, we all have different bodies and different goals.
Your resting time is gold, this is the second most important thing when it comes to any journey if you are exercising. When you work out and don’t get enough rest time you won’t be able to recover from your training. You’re going to get overtrained and your adrenals are going to get worn out.
Too little sleep will spike your cortisol levels, causing stress and giving a signal for your body to conserve energy to fuel your next activities. In other words: you’re more apt to hang on to fat. Your body won’t respond properly to insulin and will struggle processing fats from your bloodstream, so it will end up storing fat.
Rest time will also allow your muscles to recover from your last training session, repairing them and giving you energy for your next workout.
If you want to drop fat you need to workout hard, in order to be able to workout hard you need to sleep.
There are a lot of different ways to strength train based on your goal. A way to summarize what strength training is doing to your muscles is :
- Breaking down the muscle tissue so that your body will heal and rebuild the muscle back stronger. You see, our body hates being told it can’t do something. When you break down your muscle fiber it comes back stronger; when you try to do that thing again, it will succeed.
- As you start to increase the repetition (rep) range, you increase the glycogen storage in the muscle. This is where you get your increased size from.
If you have an Apple Watch we recommend you use the Juicelous App. You’ll have access to multiple programs without paying per program, explanations and videos of every exercise and THE BEST THING: The algorithm understands your movement while working out, meaning it will count the reps for you as you perform them and will give you an immediate feedback suggesting exercise speed and weight lifted.
Last but not least it will analyze your data and tell you how much stronger are you getting while the weeks go on.
Click the image below for and start today!
STRENGTH TRAINING FOR FAT LOSS?
This is not the most popular solution when people want to lose weight although it can burn as many calories or more than cardio.
First things first: Cardio on it’s own will shrink down both your fat and your muscle, your body is trying to lose overall weight, and we covered that before, we just want to lose fat.
But, how is strength training better? A larger engine burns more fuel, larger muscles burn more calories and more fat. So the stronger you are the more food you need.
While cardio also burns calories and fat when you are performing it , a high rep strength program training will accelerate your metabolism after exercise (or EPOC “Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption”)
Well designed strength programs can elevate your EPOC or metabolism up to 38 hours after the workout. Whereas once you stop your cardio activity you will stop burning calories as well.
WHAT IS HIGH INTERVAL TRAINING ?
If you are new to High Interval Training it’s a fairly simple concept: work harder, not longer. You exert maximum effort through quick, intense bursts of exercise followed by short recovery periods. These intervals will get your heart rate up and burn more fat and calories in less time and more effectively than LISS
After your 30 minute strength training is recommended to perform a 10-15 minutes interval training. This is much more effective than running at the same paste for 30 minutes.
For fat loss is better to do 10 minutes of 30 seconds of sprinting at your max and 30 seconds total rest, than 20 min of jogging at a steady state.
If you are just getting started 30 sec can be an eternity, you can sprint for 10 seconds and walk for 50 during 10-15 minutes.
In a couple of weeks you’ll be able to sprint for 15 seconds and walk for 45 seconds.
If you hate running or typical cardio you can also perform HIIT with jump squats, burpees, kettlebell swings.. there are a lot of options but make sure that most of your exercises are based around bigger muscles.
INTERVAL TRAINING FOR FAT LOSS?
We already said that HIIT burns fat better but, how?
Studies have shown that improves insulin sensitivity by 23-58%. This is crucial because insulin sensitivity helps fat loss. If your body is insulin resistant it’ll have more and more trouble losing fat.
Dr. Len Kravitz, one of our favorite exercise psychologists, explains that HIIT also increases EPOC. This translates into higher and longer post-exercise caloric burn”
Not only that but high intensity interval training will spike two key hormones which play a very important role in fat loss: Epinephrine and norepinephrine.
These two hormones are responsible for driving lipolysis, which is the breakdown of fat. Interestingly enough, a study from the Journal of Obesity noted that HIIT may play an especially key role in decreasing abdominal fat stores—that visceral fat that surrounds the organs in your stomach, and coincidentally, the area so many of us struggle to lose weight around.
As you know is impossible to spot fat reduce but it’s possible to burn fat more effectively.
TRADITIONAL CARDIO OR LISS
LISS or Low Intensity Steady State like jogging or elliptical is as the name suggests any form of cardio exercise where you maintain the same low-intensity cardio pace for a set period of time.
As we mentioned before it’s not the most effective way of fat loss since you will probably lose muscle too. You can perform LISS if you enjoy it, because it’s also healthy, but only after you’ve done your strength and interval training.
We hope you have a better understanding now about why eating less and go running twice a week won’t give you any long-term results and what can you change and why to have a successful fat loss journey this year.
Don’t hesitate to leave a comment down below letting us know your thoughts or experience on this field.
See you next week!