3 Steps to Kickstart Fat Loss!
If weight loss is your goal, read on and let’s take ACTION!. I’m sure you’ve heard it a million times but just in case, let me reiterate this fact: to reduce body fat, you need to consume less calories per day than you burn off per day consistently over time. This is called a Negative Energy Balance aka caloric deficit.
Yeah obviously, but HOW do you achieve this caloric deficit? Short answer:
1- Reduce your caloric intake by 500 calories per day to lose a pound of body fat per week.
2- Exercise via strength training at least 2-3 days a week plus a consistent schedule of walking at least 30 minutes a day (as I discussed here).
OK, but WHAT exactly should I be eating? And HOW MUCH?
Great questions! The answer is different for every individual, HOWEVER, if you follow these three steps, then you can get the information you need to get YOUR specific answers and finally be able to lose body fat sustainably.
1- Track your food intake for a week. NO ONE likes to track their food, believe me I get it. It’s tedious and sometimes you just want to eat in peace (or a piece of cake…) But almost anyone who’s been successful at losing weight has completed this step. Shooting for calorie goals or macro counts will do you no good if you aren’t even aware of what foods you’re actually eating and how they translate to your calorie count. (FYI you could also not be eating enough! More on that next time…)
Spend a week tracking your food, preferably with a food tracking app where all you have to do is enter the food you eat and then the app will auto-calculate your calories and macronutrient count. (I may be biased but the Here We Go Fitness App is PERFECT for such a task!) Don’t cheat or lie to yourself, track everything! Don’t forget about what you drink either. The hidden diet busters are almost always the juices, sodas, caffeine drinks, and alcoholic beverages we consume. Trust me, chances are you’ll be SHOCKED by how many calories and sugar you drink!
2- Aim for the caloric bullseye. This is the SPECIFIC answer to the question of how much to eat. You should eat enough to meet your daily caloric needs but be in a deficit for weight loss. To simplify this as best as possible, here’s a generic formula: Take your current bodyweight and multiply by 9. Then take that number and multiply it by 1.2 if you exercise 2 hours a week; 1.3 if you train 3 hours a week, 1.4 if you exercise 4 hours a week…
So for example, if you weigh 200 pounds and commit to exercise 3 hours a week, then you should consume 2340 calories a day to be in a caloric deficit (200 x 9 x 1.3). If you stick close to this total number of calories and be consistent with exercise, then you’re right on target to consistently lose body fat each week!
3- Protein Power & Natural Goodness. Consuming protein is not just about building muscle. Protein helps maintain your lean body mass so that when you consistently exercise, your body can focus on using fat stores for energy. Protein also helps you feel fuller longer. Protein also requires more calories to break down. Protein is your friend! YAY!
Fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, grains… all these are natural foods that will give you all the nutrients that your body needs. Choose these foods as opposed to processed and hyperpalatable foods that are high in calories because they are full of sugar and salt. These foods do nothing for you but trick your brain and taste buds to want more empty calories.
Every meal should have some form of protein and some “serving” of fruits and/or vegetables. Eat fruits and vegetables at will. I promise there are not many people in the world who have grown obese from eating too many fruits and vegetables.
1- Track your food.
2- Aim for the caloric bullseye!
3- Eat protein!
So let’s get to it! Any good nutrition or weight loss expert will tell you that just being consciously aware of the kinds of foods you’re eating and in what amount is the low hanging fruit (Here We Go Food Pun!) that you can attack first to get a handle on sustainable weight loss! So start there!
Stay tuned for more on fat loss tips. If you’re looking for a personalized and comprehensive fat loss and body transformation program, reach out to me and let’s get after it! If you’d like to use the Here We Go Fitness app, click below and sign up!