What you will learn
– You can lose weight and gain fat at the same time and vice versa. (you re-read it again hein?)
– Losing weight is not and will never be an exact science.
– You are wasting time if you use the same weights as your last workouts.
– You don’t want muscles? You don’t want to be ‘’too strong’’? You will never lose weight and you probably wont go very far.
Nothing but the truth facts and fitness fallacies and how not to make and repeat the same mistakes when you want to lose weight.
1. If you are in the beginning process of better health and losing weight, you will be pleasantly surprised at how fast the weight can come down. An average of 10lbs in the first few weeks but hang on, the ride will be full of ups and downs after that.
2. If you are a weight lifting virgin, your body will often react very fast in the beginning as well, seeing muscles and shapes fairly fast. You will think that anything is possible, almost too easy.
3. This honeymoon phase will only last a few weeks. Things will only get more complex from here.
4. You can lose weight without losing fat.
5. You can stay at the same weight while losing fat and gaining lean muscle mass.
6. You can gain weight while losing fat.
7. Complex isn’t it? So stop freakin’ out over the weight on the scale.
8. In your home, you have a thermostat that sets the temperature between 18-22°C. To cool the house, you open a window. However, your heating will do everything it can to bring back the temperature to it’s initial settings which is 18-20°C. What the hell does this have to do with losing weight? Keep reading.
9. Our body has an integrated thermostat, which regulates our metabolism. Your weight fluctuates between 120-125 lbs on average. When you end up weighing more than 125lbs, you start having symptoms like cravings, tiredness, joint stiffness and the usual weight gain consequences. Too long into the high normal and your body will see it as its new normality.
10. If it goes lower than 120lbs, survival mechanism kicks in. The metabolism will slow down and will become more efficient at storing energy to go back to its normal setting/weight. It will take a lot more time for your body and lots of effort on your part for your body to recognize it as the new normal.
11. Small and constant progress is the way to go when losing weight.
12. Low calorie diets are the most destructive diets around in my opinion. They enforce bad dietary habits and make people perceive diets as punitive.
13. Eat to leave, not live to eat.
14. Food is what gives you health and energy.
15. Take your breakfast for example. It has the power to be the image and how your body will function throughout the day. A study[i] examined the effects of a low-GI (glycemic index) breakfast, a high-GI breakfast and breakfast omission on cognitive function in adolescents. They concluded that a low GI breakfast improved cognitive functions greatly when compared to the high GI breakfast.
16. Aside from starting your day right, it has on the other meals of the day. You will have more control over your cravings and since your motivation is at its best, you’ll make better choices throughout the day, keeping your efforts on the right track. Another study[ii] was made on young children and they found that when kids were fed a low GI breakfast, they were less prone to overeating on their last meal of the day.
17. So for those who thought that they were doing something good by skipping breakfast, you are actually making things worst. You are helping your body become better at storing energy as fat.
18. We recommend that your breakfast be low in carbs (like fruits with a low glycemic index) and rich in protein. Just this little change will quickly improve your metabolism and prevent health conditions, mostly related to a healthy metabolism and immune system[iii].
19. Now that you know protein should be the core of your diet, how much would you need? The recommendation varies between .75 to 2 gr per pound of weight a day. Why such a wide range? Different lifestyle requires different needs.
20. As for fat and carbohydrates, I won’t get in the details because once again, Different lifestyles require different needs.
21. Writing that 50% of your calories should come from carbs would be irresponsible on my part since most people tend to overeat them. For those who already abuse carbs, giving them more or the same would lead them nowhere.
22. What? Protein makes you gain weight? Fat? Wait, you gain muscle mass too easily with protein? Science has proven this myth wrong so many times.
23. Protein is very important for those who have an active lifestyle, especially for those who are actively working on their strength and conditioning. As in point #19, some will often believe the excuse that they gain an extraordinary amount of muscle as soon as they eat a little more protein. So this next study is for them.
24. The goal of this study was to determine the effects of a diet very high in protein (4.4g / kg/j or 2 gr per pound) on the body composition of those who practice strength training. Consuming 5.5 times the recommended amount of protein has no effect on body composition who maintained the same type of workout during the study. It is the first study of its kind that proves that a high intake of protein does not make us gain fat.
25. Additionally, here is the position of the International Society of sports nutrition on protein and exercise. Numerous studies support the claim that individuals who exercise regularly require more protein than sedentary individuals.
26. Protein intake in the range of 1.4 to 2g /kg per day for active people are not only safe, but also, lead to better performances.
27. Under a nutritionally balance plan and rich in nutrients, high protein intake is not an issue for kidney functions and bone metabolism in active people with good health.
28. Post workout nutrition (protein shakes) is also very important to maximize your training potential so you can recuperate faster, boost immune function, growth and to keep your well earned muscle mass.
29. Under given circumstances, Amino acids, the building blocks of protein such as BCAA’s can improve performances and recuperation.
30. Another problem you will encounter in your quest to lose weight is the one of calories. Is it that important to count every single calorie? How much should I eat? What is the best diet to lose weight?
31. The most common advice around is to cut 100 calories a day to lose 10 pounds on a one year span. The math behind this logic is that 1 pound of fat equals 3500 calories so 100 calories a day times 365 days equals a 10lbs loss. If it was only that simple…
32. Your physiological profile, genetics and intestinal flora have an enormous influence on weight loss from the same calorific deficit. For that reason, no one can calculate exactly how to cut 100 calories, let alone keep this accuracy over prolonged periods.
33. In diet mode, your body will adapt fairly quickly to the calorie deficit and will turn on all the systems that will make it easier for you to conserve energy. He really doesn’t like the fact that you are starving.
34. The best method is to combine a healthy and balanced nutritional plan and an individualized strength and conditioning plan[iv].
35. You must eliminate the word Diet because of the flaws we associate it with. Restriction, elimination, starvation, sadness, etc. Nutrition should be health oriented and associated with strength, energy, fullness, happiness, fulfillment and so on. It’s all a matter of perception but it also has a lot to do with the method and diet used.
36. Aim for greater habits; this is the key for success. Find the culprit of the problems, those that can kill 2 birds with one stone and switch it with a good habit that will lead you to greater goals. Unfortunately, it is easier said than done.
37. For example, late night snacks causes sleep disturbance and is often the problem when people have a hard time to get up in the morning. Lack of appetite in the morning and mid day cravings are the result of sleep and leptin disruption, which is caused by late night cravings. You see how you can kill two birds with one stone?
38. On a diet, recognizing what can break you into cheating is of the utmost importance. If only we could eat for health, eat when we are hungry and until we are full, many health problems would be solved. The word diet should be eliminated from our vocabulary.
39. Eating what our body recognizes such as protein, carbs and fats (nothing that comes in a box or processed) can only bring us health and great conditioning. This article is already too long to go in details so I urge you to hire professional to guide you through the process of a great nutritional plan.
40. Back to training, Due to the fact that 70% of your results will come from what you eat, what you do in the gym will help you keep those results, and keep them coming.
41. The most important principle when you lose weight is to aim for FAT LOSS, not only weight loss. The weight you lose will be an indication of how healthy you’ll be and how long you will keep the fat off, assuming you are losing fat off course. Go back and read point 4,5,6 and 7.
42. Fat loss will be beneficial for your metabolism. No one needs dead weight. Aiming at losing weight at all costs will often result at water and muscle loss, which does niet for your metabolism. Prioritizing fat loss has the potential to improve your metabolism and your hormonal system.
43. This is the main reason why it is essential to combine nutrition, habits and strength training to lose fat (yes you will lose fat and gain muscle at the same time).
44. Your workout should never be the exact same as the last one in terms of weights or intensity or rest periods. Beat the principle of adaptation (yes, adaptation is everywhere). You don’t have to increase by a lot. The kaizen principle, which is small progress every single workout leads to big results. A few factors that influences your workouts are the type of muscle fiber, intensity, muscle dominance, hormones, proportions, muscle insertions, neural efficiency to name a few. Going to the gym is not all of it.
45. You will, at one point or another, choose the easier path. This is where you’ll see your progress stall. But let me tell you for a fact that this is absolutely normal because you can’t go all out, all the time. What you have to do though is to maximize your gym time and make your workouts productive. Spending time on the easier exercise or only working body parts you want to improve is a waste of time. Spot reduction is impossible. However, changing your silhouette by gaining muscle and losing fat is possible.
‘’You can’t target fat loss. Fat loss is systemic’’
46. Cardio OR weights, or cardio WITH weights, which one should it be? Combine both for faster results.
47. You heard that running is the best way to lose weight? As you train for longer runs, your body adapts and gets better at it. You have to run more to burn more, but still, he will always get better at it. Google HIIT, half the time and bigger results. More on this in the next articles.
(adaptation again, I know. If our bodies didn’t have that ability, we would still be trying to light fires and live in caves. Paleo diet would be the real thing though)
48. You want to start Monday? It is the worst day of the week to start anything. Why wouldn’t you start on Saturday or Sunday when you have time? All you have to do is prepare your food for a few days, rest and go to the gym!
49. Having a great training partner is the best way to increase your results in the gym. Get a partner that is stronger than you. It is the best way to leave your ego at the door. The only person you have to impress is yourself.
50. Each movement we do, simple or complex, is a sequence of skeletal muscle contractions woven in a transparent way between each other through a complex interaction between the muscles of the body and the nervous system. You do not want muscles? You will not go very far.
[i] Cooper SB, Bandelow S, Nute ML, Morris JG, Nevill ME. Breakfast glycaemic index and cognitive function in adolescent school children. Br J Nutr. 2012 Jun;107(12):1823-32. doi: 10.1017/S0007114511005022. PubMed PMID: 22017815.
[ii] Warren JM, Henry CJ, Simonite V. Low glycemic index breakfasts and reduced food intake in preadolescent children. Pediatrics. 2003 Nov;112(5):e414. PubMed PMID: 14595085.
[iii] Kamada I, Truman L, Bold J, Mortimore D. The impact of breakfast in metabolic and digestive health. Gastroenterology and Hepatology From Bed to Bench. 2011;4(2):76-85.
[iv] Antonio J, Peacock CA, Ellerbroek A, Fromhoff B, Silver T. The effects of consuming a high protein diet (4.4 g/kg/d) on body composition in resistance-trained individuals. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition. 2014;11:19. doi:10.1186/1550-2783-11-19.