The number of gimmicks, fads, and flat-out scams taking over the internet these days when it comes to weight loss is damn near criminal. Weight Loss should not be this difficult, but sadly you have been lied to numerous times so others can make a quick buck at your expense. In this article, I am going to lay out the most basic ways to drop the weight and keep it off.
EAT! Food will always be the most important aspect of any fitness journey. Unfortunately, too many diets are designed for a quick drop in weight to get you hooked then a plateau that last until you give up and gain more weight back than before (due to a massive loss in muscle mass). If you are looking to not just burn fat but actually enter a state of Health and Longevity here is what I suggest.
A: 4 to 6 meals a day. With this approach we will be counting snacks as meals (so 3 main meals and 2-3 snacks). I want you to eat often and never be hungry. You want your metabolism to skyrocket and burn fat all day and night. you also want to avoid any unhealthy cravings which is why eating often is key.
B: Eat a well-rounded and balanced diet. At no point should you even be concerned about math. Honestly, I hardly ever even suggest people weight their food. Here is how I would suggest you set up your plate. Let's say it's dinner time, hit the plate with veggies then add meat.... You're done, that's it - It is honestly that SIMPLE. Veggies and Meat. Now I will allow something that many would fight me on and that is BUTTER. Ideally, grassfed butter but I'm not about to drain your bank account. Why butter? Because the 100 calories of butter you put on your veggies is going to be a good amount of healthy fats that will keep your joints safe and provide other great benefits. Also, you need to enjoy what you eat, or it will not last. Plan veggies can get boring, and you may start developing cravings for foods you shouldn't touch. Keeping the plan enjoyable is a major factor here.
Another tip: SALT - Salt has so many great benefits but has been linked to unhealthy diets and it is completely WRONG. We don't have enough time in this blog to discuss why I suggest salt but it might come up in a blog later down the road.
Here is my view:
What we call SALTY FOODS is BAD because the foods we associate with SALTY FOODS is bad - it is not the salt, it is the junk food that earned the title Salty Food.
What we call BUTTERY FOODS is BAD - not the butter but the foods. I'm not saying to have 5 servings of butter per meal but enjoy life and flavor your food.
WORKOUT but workout using proven methods and not fads. Every year a new fad comes out and it is usually just an OK technique taken from the tried-and-true methods of the past. We have improved on fitness over the decades, but I don't believe that there is 1 definite answer to the best approach to weight loss.
Here is what tends to happen. Someone realizes that an approach like HIIT (High intensity interval training) gets the heart rate pumping and the body sweating, now we have HIIT classes and people get results for 3-4 weeks and then NOTHING. The next 3-6 months they keep going, get frustrated, give up, gain weight.
Someone else tries Tabata and does the same thing. Next person bootcamp, this keeps going on and on. What they failed to realize is that all of these training styles all come from basic fitness. Sure, you are going to find a style you enjoy and do it more but often than others but if you only focus on one style of training you will develop weak areas and stop progressing. All the styles I mentioned are great, but Tabata lacks what HIIT dominates, HIIT lacks what bootcamps dominate, and the cycle goes on and on. Stop chasing fads and start just TRAINING and TRAINING HARD. Utilize every great style of training but follow the method stated below:
A: Add weight training to your program and make it the main part of your program. Build that muscle. Muscle burns fat and calories All Day Long. Muscle is also crucial for health and longevity. Don't focus on cardio just because it makes you sweat. Focus on getting real results that last.
B: Increase intensity each week. Your body will adapt, don't allow this. As you get more fit you should be making each workout harder and harder (slowly).
C: End each workout with something that is High Intense but with purpose. Don't attempt to do 100 Cleans because your Crossfitting friend says it helped they get shredded and don't try to run a 5k after 10 years of sitting on the couch. Maybe try a Kettlebell circuit instead or add one of those methods I spoke about earlier and use them what they were designed for (HIIT and Tabata are perfect to end a workout, they are not perfect to be 100% of the workout 100% of the time). So, after a good 40 minutes of dumbbells and kettlebells go hit a solid HIIT workout on the bike and blast those calories.
Consistency! This is greatly important. You can't be successful if you don't keep going. This is a journey, and it is not a short one. That does not mean you should be consistent with your exercises to the point where it is the same workout each week. VARY often as you go and learn new styles. Post college when I really started getting into workouts, I made it a habit to learn a new burnout each week. I wanted to end my lifts different each time. The payout was great, I always shocked my body, and it paid off. When I say consistent, I mean you need to stay on course and keep pushing through. If you hit a slow patch, amp it up. Just keep going and learning new ways to crush each workout.
There you go. 3 Quick Tips - EAT - LIFT - DON'T QUIT