Are you looking to up the ante of your weight loss results? Many people start off on their diet plan and see good results initially, only to be met with mediocre results as time progresses.
In order to achieve optimal weight loss, there are a number of things that you’ll want to ensure you’re doing in your approach. If you skip over these, you may still see results, but they may not be the best results you could be getting. If you’re going to put the effort in, don’t you want to see maximum results from that effort?
Here are seven important things you need to do for optimal success.
If you aren’t tracking calories, this is something that definitely needs to change. Tracking calories may be the most important thing that you do for your nutrition program. After all, it’s your calorie intake that dictates which direction the scale moves. With so many different tracking apps available for all mobile devices, there’s really no excuse for not doing this.
One thing to keep in mind is you want to stay at a few hundred calorie a day deficit of the total number of calories you burn in a day. (The most common mistake women make is they don’t eat enough and their body holds and stores as much as possible). If you aren’t sure how to find out how many calories you are burning check our BMR calculations HERE. Also, your calorie count does not have to be exact and it doesn’t have to be perfect every day. Go for a weekly average that maintains 200-400 average deficit over the entire week. This will make counting and stress levels down!!
Carb cycling a great approach if you want to see superior fat loss results. Even if you don’t carb cycle on a weekly basis, adding higher carb days into your diet periodically is important to help reset your metabolic rate and prevent the metabolic regression that can happen.
Certain hormones in the body – specifically one called leptin – are directly influenced by your calorie and carbohydrate intake. When leptin drops, your metabolism slows down and hunger ramps up significantly, which can make sticking to your diet plan that much more challenging.
Carb cycling, where you eat varying quantities of carbs throughout the week, or at strategically planned points in your plan, can help to reset leptin to a degree. This can aid in speeding up your metabolism again.
As you take your carbohydrates higher, you can bring decrease your fat intake to accommodate the nutrient change, but most people should still consume more total calories on this day.
Drinking enough water is a must if you’re going to optimize your weight loss results. Just when you think you’ve had enough, drink some more. That needs to be your new daily motto.
Having a good intake of fluids is important for combating hunger, increasing energy, establishing a good metabolic rate, and for keeping sugar cravings under control as well. But, the majority of those fluids should be water.
You may be filling your days with choices such as coffee or soda instead of water, which may not be fully hydrating you due to the caffeine content of these options. Likewise, alcohol will also not serve to hydrate you, so that beer after work is not doing you any favors.
Sleep is something that too many of us take for granted and then pay the price. If you aren’t sleeping at least seven, preferably eight to nine hours each night, it could be hindering your fat loss results.
Sleep deprivation is going to reduce insulin sensitivity, which leads to your body having a harder time processing carbohydrates, and a greater likelihood of converting those carbohydrates into body fat.
Research is also quite clear about the fact that insufficient sleep will lead to weight gain. This is usually due to the increase in consumption of food, especially in the late-night period. Those who aren’t sleeping enough may notice natural shifts in certain hormones that help control hunger and eating, which then essentially promote overeating and an increased calorie intake.
While fat loss primarily comes down to sticking to a solid nutrition plan (you can’t out-train a bad diet), what you do in the gym cannot be overlooked. Lifting heavy weights is important to seeing optimal results as this helps your body maintain lean muscle stores, which help increase the resting metabolic rate.
Muscle is the most metabolically active tissue in the body, therefore the more of it you have, the faster you’ll see weight loss results. Additionally, a solid weight training session will yield a much higher caloric burn than a cardio session will.
Many people make the mistake of either overdoing cardio or lifting lighter weights for higher reps. Neither of these will promote the type of results you’re looking for in the long run.
Another thing you need to focus on is getting enough protein into your diet. Protein is essential for maintaining lean muscle mass, and not getting enough will put you at a direct risk for reducing your metabolic rate and noticing muscle weaknesses creeping up. A handy trick to judge your protein intake is to make sure you’re consuming at least your body weight (in pounds) in grams of protein, if not slightly more. Of particular importance is using a quality protein source immediately after your training session to kick-start the repair and recovery process. UXO’s POST ISO & KAGED MUSCLE Re-Kaged is a perfect option for this. Drink it within the 30-minute window following your workout and you’ll notice faster recovery because of it. For others time of day, you can use a standard whey or dairy free option from Bowmar Nutrition. Find all of these PROTEINS HERE.
You can maximize your shred goals with a quality supplement designed to support weight loss. You can find a number of burners under the Weight Management tab in our menu and what one you go with really depends on if you want caffeine or not, and if you’re interested in pills or a powder. Legion Phoenix and Kaged Clean Burn (the silver one) are clean burners with no caffeine. Bucked Up’s Heat Hardcore comes in powder or capsules and contains a higher caffeine content and the rest stay pretty consistent in their caffeine doses. The one we would recommend in the middle there is UXO’s Natural Cut, which contains a higher EGCG percentage and doesn’t utilize ingredients that pull water out of your that can leave you dehydrated and jittery!
Succeeding at fat loss doesn’t have to feel, or be, impossible. Follow these seven tips and you’ll find your results move along smoother than before, and you might just enjoy yourself more as well.