Fat loss. These two words are on most people’s lips at all times in the fitness industry. It’s likely a lot of you reading this right now are dying to lose some body fat and become leaner. You’ve probably already tried loads of quick tips here and there, but they just don’t seem to work. I'm right aren't I?
The problem is, you’re looking for quick answers, rather than searching for sustainable ideas that you can implement into your daily life.
It's too easy to fall for the next big thing in fitness because every media outlet, including TV and the internet shout it from the rooftops as the best. Remember, the majority of these campaigns build on people jumping on board, spending their hard-earned cash based off these alleged "success" stories.
Even research data can be confusing and not conclusive on what's the best way to lose fat. There was a smaller research study conducted among overweight-to-obese post-menopausal women that suggests the best way of losing fat is combining goal oriented nutrition habits with physical activity (10.8% lost weight). Hey that sounds familiar!
However when separating the two aspects, those who only followed a diet but haven't changed their activity levels experienced an 8.5% weight loss as opposed to those who exercised, but haven't changed their nutrition habits (2.4%).
Even though these results cannot be applied to the whole population, they show a trend which is why I created this ultimate fat loss priority list for you to test. What can you lose? Just make sure you follow it long enough to understand its effect on your body. And by long enough, I mean months, not days. These are the exact same priorities we promote within or Get REAL Challenge coaching group. Here they are:
Your number one priority needs to be nutrition. If you haven’t got a good diet, then nothing else matters. The key here is to try and keep your food intake low enough for a caloric deficit, but still get a lot of good nutrients in your system such as protein and carbs.
Portion control is key, and whether you go down the calorie counting route or use other methods to limit how much you eat, remember, even a healthy meal can jeopardize your fat loss goals if you eat too much of it.
Losing fat is all about getting your body into a caloric deficit. This means you burn more calories than you consume. Your diet takes care of the calories entering your body, and physical activity helps burn more calories.
Preferably you should complete goal specific resistance and strength training regularly, 2-3 times a week. Strength and resistance training speeds up your metabolism and helps you burn more calories way after your workout is finished.
Cardio alone will not have the same benefits, but any exercise is better than no exercise. Another very important factor is that you enjoy what you're doing so you will keep doing it for the long term.
Most people are unaware of how important sleep is to fat loss. When we get less than 7 hours of sleep consistently, it can open a whole different can of worms.
Your hormonal balance will suffer and cause hunger pangs and cravings making you more prone to eat fast food, sweets and more importantly more calories pushing you out of a calorie deficit. Besides your recovery from exercise and your daily activities will also suffer. Get at least 7-8 hours of sleep every night consistently.
#4 Stress Management
When you’re stressed, what’s the first thing you think of to calm yourself down? Comfort eating. People reach for a tub of ice cream after a long day to try and make themselves happier. We crave that sugar spike for a moment of peace from our stressful lives.
However, this will just lead to excess calorie consumption and fat gain. But, if we learn to control our stress levels - through meditation, yoga or whatever that can help you chill your beans. Then, we won’t have these cravings, and we can avoid comfort eating.
#5 All the extra stuff…
Everything else comes under here and to be honest if you master the first four points, you are onto a very successful fat loss journey already. If you can add something more, that'll be just some extra fuel to boost your progress.
Added cardio exercise, more focus on meal timing, supplements to help with your vitamin and mineral intake, physical therapy for recovery, and any specific methods that require extra attention and potentially money from you may help to achieve your goals faster, but if the basics are not in order, you will be disappointed.
So, if you really want to start shredding those pounds, then think about everything on this list. They’re numbered in order of importance, so make your way through them in this order to see the best fat loss results.
Do you feel you need more specific advice based on your unique goals and lifestyle? Check out what the Get REAL Challenge can do for you or simply send me a message to see how I can help!
I am a wife, mom, grandma & former professional “diet and exercise hopper" who understands the challenges of being 40lb overweight after having children & the damage repeated sense of failure can cause to your confidence and self-esteem.