I'm coming back to you with a Motivation Monday. It's full on spring and we need to gear up for summer. Sure, it may be 30 degrees outside but that's alright because those nights are soon to be over and warm, breezy nights are to come. I for one am SO ready for warmer weather.
I have been rereading my ISSA text book and going over countless newsletters and other articles to continue to learn more about my profession as a personal trainer. One newsletter I received recently, is completely relevant to most of my clients goals these days... "How do I lose fat?".
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A simple way of practicing the negative energy balance is to pay attention to your BMR and calorie intake. I'll use ISSA's example.. If your BMR (Basal Metobolic Rate) is 2,000 calories per day. This is the the amount of calories you burn doing normal, day to day activies such as sitting, lying down, etc. Now, let's say you intake 2,500 calories within that 24 hour period. Without adding anymore activity to your day, this puts you at risk of gaining weight. Now add in a little exercise to where you burn 500 of those calories. You don't risk any weight gain, but you also won't have a chance to lose any weight as well. I'm not usually a huge fan of counting calories, but if you want to ensure a negative energy balance, it comes into play with your daily intake and exercise habits. For example, if you are to intake 1,800 calories for the day, and still burn the 500 calories previously noted, you are going to be meet that negative calorie deficit. With this said, however, you want to ensure that the calories you are consuming are that of healthy, proper nutrients.
Now that I've gone over what needs to happen to decrease body fat, here are some methods that are proven to enhance the mobilization of fatty acids for energy!
Method 1: Decrease Carbohydrate Intake
- There are countless myths and rumors floating around about low carb diets, but if executed correctly, they actually work! "In fact, 20+ quality research studies have shown them to be worthwhile and you can lose a potential of 2 to 3 times more fat while on a low-carb diet, compared to a normal low-fat diet".
- Sure you may be skeptical or you may think that "low carb" means taking out every type of carb there is in your diet.. But I'll go into further detail. Studies have shown, however, the several benefits of having a low-carb diet. For example: blood pressure becomes balanced, HDL cholesterol increases, insulin levels become balanced, blood sugar is stabilized, and an appetite suppressant effect happens.
- " Many researchers believe that the success of a low-carb diet is directly linked to insulin suppression." It regulates the production of insulin, keeps it low, while managing blood sugar as well. This mobilizes the burning of fat for energy.. hence.. weight loss!
Now that you have a better understanding for a 'low-carb diet', individual goals, genetics, metabolism, and other factors come into play when deciding if this route is best for you. For example, for those who are looking to gain muscle and strength, this may not be the best decision when it comes to consuming.
Method 2: Increase of Frequency, Intensity, or Duration of Your Workout.
- As a personal trainer, it is our duty to inform clients that it's not all about the caloric intake when it comes to fat loss. "The intensity of your workouts can mean everything and what you put into them is exactly what you’ll get out of them!" The more stress you put on your body (or muscles in general) requires more energy to be used, hence the higher chance of burning fat. If you constantly mix up your routines or add variations, you're more likely to burn even more calories.
- You can't repeat the same routine day in and day out if you expect to see results. You must always confuse your muscles to make them work harder, as well as gradually increasing the weight load or resistance amount. This will ensure lots of benefits from exercising including: fat loss, strength, stamina, mood, muscle hypertrophy, and much more.
Of course work out regimens differ from client to client, but keeping this method in mind is crucial if the ultimate goal is over all fat loss.
Method 3: Practice the Proper Timing of Nutrients
- This method tends to be more focused on those advanced clients who are accustomed to resistance training, weight lifting, ect, however, it can be useful to those who have individual goals and understand their calorie needs and macronutrient splits.
- "Nutrient timing refers to how certain nutrients are assimilated and handled during various times of the day." Research shows that carbohydrate tolerance is actually heaviest after a work out, meaning consuming carbs (specifically faster digesting carbs) after a heavy workout is highly recommended.
- Fuel during the exercise is dependent on the nutrients you consume prior to a workout. For example, a low carb, higher protein, higher fat meal before exercising will result in a higher percentage of fatty acids used as fuel.
You don't want to forget to keep healthy fats moderate and carbs low. After your workout, take the time to consume the fast digesting carbohydrates and you can rest assured knowing they will not be stored as fat, but rather utilized re-glycogenate the muscle and enhance recovery.
There are other methods to encourage fat loss, and each client is on a different, individual journey and the key is to find the one suited for said client. We all want results quickly and with these three methods, you are sure to reach your goals in a timely manner.
Look for more on leading a healthy and fit life, every Monday!
Have you tried one of these three methods? Comment below and let us know!