If you’re someone who is focusing on weight loss, the many diet programs and exercise choices can feel overwhelming. Today I have the pleasure of sharing an article which my trainer, Tallon Martin head trainer at Headwaters Racquet Club has written for us. Tallon is inspiring! He is a firm believer in quality nutrition and physical activity. If you’d like to stay in touch with Tallon, follow him on Twitter or Instagram, you’re sure to be inspired! You can also keep up with the folks at my gym on the Headwaters Racquet Club Page, Twitter or Instagram.
Unfortunately nothing in this world comes easy and we have to work extremely hard mentally and physically to achieve our goals. Whether, that be family, business or physical health if we not put everything into it we are not going to get there. Putting in 50 percent usually results in failure and usually puts ourselves into a bigger pickle than before. This article will outline the pathway to successful weight loss and improved energy.
I’m not going to sit here and type “eating celery and running on the treadmill til you pass out” is the best way, it’s one of the worst. With these tips you will work hard, but not starve yourself and only good will come out of following this pathway. So let’s get started!!
Weight Loss and the Pathway to your Goal
- Clean Eating– You will not lose weight on a crappy diet, you have to eat a well-balanced meal plan high in protein, and vegetables. We want to stay away from breads and stick to carbohydrate enriched foods such as quinoa and rice.
- Eat Often– This will help prevent the bingeing we all do when we starve ourselves and feel like we can eat all of McDonalds. Also eat more often helps increase our metabolism, allowing us to burn that fat a lot easier than starving ourselves which slows our metabolism down.
- Prep– With weight loss there has to be a lot of prep work. Spend an hour on Sunday and cut up all you fruits and vegetables and plan out the meals you will make throughout the week. If you can make some of those meals then, great do it. As the week goes on the stress of life will catch up to us we get lazy, and make those “convenient” yet awful food choices.
- Drink Water– Drinking water as often as we can help us keep focused on our weight loss goal. Every time you grab a glass it is a reminder that you are trying to lose weight. Being hydrated also allows our liver to properly function, when we are dehydrated our liver is taken away from its main function to help support the kidneys and hydrate us. The main function of our liver is to process the store fat in our bodies and use it for energy. (Not a bad reason to grab a glass of water now as your reading this article!!)
- Sleep– Depriving our body of sleep only has negative effects, mainly insomnia which can lead to hallucinations. When it comes to losing weight lack of sleep will hinder your effort and more importantly your results. When we are sleep deprived our muscles will fatigue quicker, resulting in poor performance aka less weight lifted or fewer calories burned. It also increases our Cortisol levels which is the hormone we release when we are stressed. It’s also called the “muscle wasting” (not good!) hormone and the more lean muscle mass we have the more calories we burn. 7-8 hours of sleep is a must!
- Strength Training– this is what builds muscle and just like I previously stated, the more lean muscle mass we have the more calories we burn. When it comes to physical activity this is the most important aspect of fitness when dealing with weight loss. (Yes! that’s right running on the treadmill for days on end is not the answer). Lifting heavy weight’s doesn’t mean you’re going to “bulk” up; you will tone and get stronger. The only way to bulk up and look like a body builder, is to eat like a body builder. Stick to full body workouts with multi joint exercises (like squats, push ups and rows). These are our big movers and big movers= tons of calories burned.
- High Intensity Anaerobic Interval Training– aka interval resistance training. Here you will be doing short intervals approx 20-30 sec of work where you put everything you have into it. This can range from running to medicine balls slams or just straight up a squat with your body weight. This challenges our muscles and depletes our cells of oxygen forcing our cells to work extremely hard to recover and get ready for the next interval. This way of training is very time efficient, because 30 minutes is all you will truly need. I find 30 seconds on and 30 seconds of is the most efficient, but if you’re just starting a 30/45 or 30/60 split maybe perfect for you. You will work your butt of during this style and you may feel like you’re not going to burn as many calories in 30 min as you would in 60 min of running. Here’s the thing with this style of training it’s what happens after that is so important, “The after burn” is what we what. What happens here is our metabolism is just cooking for approx 36 hours after this workout, so not only are we eating cleaner and more often, our metabolism is working full throttle transferring our stored
- Proper Nutrition Recovery- We need to repair the good muscle damage we did during our workouts and immediately afterwards is the best time. Bringing some kind of protein/recovery drink for after your workout or grabbing a healthy protein shake at your gym will boost recovery. The quicker we get it into us the quicker we start to recover. Protein helps rebuild muscle and remember muscle burns fat!
- Rest between workouts– Ideally you want 2-3 strength style workouts and 1-2 interval resistance training workouts within a given week. You want to alternate the styles of workouts, don’t do a full body strength style workout on back to back days. Our muscles need 48 hours between strength workouts. An Interval workout will require light weight and attack the heart more than attack your muscles which allows you to alternate between the two.
- Support System– Losing weight is very hard and honestly it’s more of a mental battle than anything. Telling people about your weight loss goals will help keep you accountable or having a friend with you will support and motivate you as well.
Remember this is a life style change and it will be hard. I’m not going to butter it up for you, but following these tips and having a good support group with you will make it so much easier. When you think about it, this life style change will take 8 weeks of consistent work and then it turns into a habit. 8 weeks compared to the 26 years (I’ll use my age for example) I’ve been on this planet is a pretty small amount of time. If this truly is a goal in your life, don’t let anything distract you from it, stay focused and trust me the results will come and happiness will be achieved!