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AN EXPERTS GUIDE ON MALE FAT LOSS
THE ULTIMATE FOUNDATION FOR SUCCESSFULLY MAINTAINING A LEAN AND MUSCULAR PHYSIQUE
Trimming down and maintaining a lean and muscular physique is a sure-fire way to increase how well your clothes fit, which can have a huge and obvious impact on your overall style. The downside? Trimming off a few extra kilos of fat is often much easier said than done (something that many of you would agree with, I’m sure) – which is exactly why I have put together this ultimate fat loss guide. Now, a bit of a disclaimer before we get started: while the fat loss process can actually be very simple, it will never, ever, be easy. It takes hard work, dedication, some genuine changes in lifestyle and sometimes supplementation. But if you are prepared to take the first step and implement those changes, then you can be assured of your own fat loss success.
1. Perform heavy weight training 2-3 times per week
Now, this may go against conventional wisdom, but that doesn’t make it any less effective. Our metabolism (AKA the amount of energy we burn to survive) is heavily dictated by the amount of muscle mass we carry on our body. You see, muscle mass is what we consider active tissue – which ultimately means that it uses energy to survive. With this in mind, by increasing the amount of muscle mass you have (even slightly), you can cause huge increases in your metabolic rate. This means you will burn more energy every single day, irrespective of any additional exercise levels. Not to mention the fact that actually building muscle is integral to obtaining that heavily desired ‘V-shaped’ physique that so many of you are working towards.
2. Consume a serve of lean protein every single meal
Again, while telling you to eat more of something may sound just a little bit counterintuitive; but hear me out for a second. Firstly, protein plays an integral role in recovery after exercise, where it is used to build and repair muscle and connective tissue. If we are performing regular strength training (which we should be), then we need adequate protein available to recover and build new muscle tissue – which invariably increases our metabolic rate, thus contributing to fat loss. Secondly, protein has the highest satiety rating of all the macronutrients – this means that per calorie, protein makes us feel ‘fuller’. As a result, eating protein increases the satisfaction you feel after a meal, while also reducing hunger cravings after eating. This will lead to less snacking throughout the day, which obviously contributes to fat loss in an extremely positive manner. And finally, protein also has the highest thermic effect of food (TEF) of all the macronutrients. This means that the body has to use energy to break down and digest any protein that you consume, which can further contribute to the amount of energy you expend on a daily basis. In short, protein promotes fat loss – so eat it regularly.
3. Perform high intensity interval training (HIIT) 1-2 times per week
HIIT is pretty much that act of performing short bouts of high intensity cardiovascular activity, which are separated by short bouts of low intensity cardiovascular activity. So, a very simple example of HIIT session may be 30 seconds running at a fairly rapid pace (e.g. 90% of your top speed) followed by one minute at a very light jog – which could then be repeated for a total of 21 minutes (or 14 intervals). Now HIIT offers us some serious benefit as not only is it pretty time efficient, but there is also evidence to suggest that it helps you burn calories both during the session, as well after the session has been completed. You see, as HIIT places the body under high amounts of physical strain (good strain, of course) it requires a slightly longer period of recovery. This means that the body must work overtime to actually maintain and contribute to this recovery process. This results in an increase in metabolic rate for up to 48 hours after the session has been completed. And as a bit of a bonus, HIIT can easily be applied to any exercise modality, and tailored towards anyone’s individual level of fitness – meaning that you can make it as enjoyable as possible by adhering to your own exercise preferences. All of which makes it a much better option for promoting weight loss than our regular steady state cardio.
4. Start drinking green tea
Green tea is actually one of the most commonly drunk beverages in the entire world – and for very good reason. The consumption of green tea has shown to have a number of positive effects on health, in which it can protect against cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and even Alzheimer’s. But even more impressive is its effect on fat loss. You see, drinking green tea on the regular has been shown to promote fat loss through two distinct mechanisms. Firstly, it improves your body’s ability to break down and metabolise fat so that it can be used for energy. And secondly, it causes an increase in your body’s metabolism. In a very similar fashion to increasing muscle mass, this causes a subsequent rise in the amount of energy you use at rest to simply function. Through these two potent fat burning mechanisms, green tea can promote some serious fat loss over time. It is important to note that 2-3 cups of green tea per day appears to be the sweet spot here, with any more than that being somewhat unnecessary from a fat loss perspective (although you are more than welcome to drink more if you’re into that sort of thing).
5. Avoid liquid calories like the plague
Sugar sweetened beverages (such as soft drinks and fruit juices, for example) are some of the unhealthiest substances on the planet. They are literally full to the brim with sugar and contain a huge amount of energy per serve. Additionally, they register extremely low on the satiety index – meaning that they do not make us feel satisfied in any manner after consumption. There is a fairly obvious reason as to why an increased consumption of these beverages have shown an increased rate of fat gain and an increased incidence of obesity. So pretty simply, by avoiding these types of beverages you can limit any unnecessary energy intake and the associated weight gain – so avoid them at all costs.
6. Knuckle down on sleep
Our final point is arguably the most important. You see, sleep is absolutely integral to maintaining a high quality of health and maximising weight loss. A lack of sleep has been shown to wreak absolute havoc with your hormone levels, in which it has been shown to increase cortisol secretion tenfold, while causing an associated decrease in testosterone production – the result of which leads to massive declines in energy levels combined with rapid fat gain. In this situation, fat loss becomes near impossible. With his in mind, you should aim for anywhere between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night. This will ensure your hormone levels remain well regulated, while also ensuring that you can recover effectively between your training sessions.
Fat loss doesn’t have to be complex – but it will not be easy. The key steps outlined in this article provide the ultimate foundation for successful fat loss. Seriously, if you take the time and adhere to these closely, you will be well on your way to building a lean and muscular physique. So, take that first step and take your body to the next level.