Fat Loss Tip #6 – Accountability

Accountability

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One of the main reasons people “fall off the wagon” during a fat loss phase, or a when working towards a goal, is that they don’t set levels of accountability at the beginning and during the task.

What do I mean by this?

1) At the beginning, work out what you are doing and why.

This shouldn’t just be I want to lose weight, or be a bit slimmer. How much slimmer? How much weight do you want to lose, and when by?

You have to be specific. Something like I want to lose 6lbs by 20th October is a specific goal. I want to be able to do the button up on this pair of jeans or skirt, by 15th October is a specific goal. If you don’t set a specific aim, and an end date, you’re leaving yourself open to days of “Oh it doesn’t matter if I have this chocolate bar” or “Oh, I’ll start properly next week”. You must have heard those phrases before?!!!

By choosing a specific goal and a completion date you have your reason and you have your focus. This should then be your motivation during this period, and should stop you from straying. Each time you hit an “obstacle”, ask yourself “Will this help me to get nearer or push me further from my goal?”

2) Record your progress

Again, if you don’t record you’re progress you won’t really know what worked and what didn’t.

This means; keep a daily food diary of everything you eat and drink – this not only keeps you focussed on your eating habits but you can see trends, and where you may not have eaten enough, or too much, It also stops many people from eating that biscuit or cake, because it has to be logged – be truthful to yourself and this will be a powerful tool!

Record your workouts, and daily activities. This will allow you to see what you lifted, or how many repetitions you completed last time, so you can ensure that you beat, or do a bit more than the last workout. This progression will ensure your body is “overloaded”, and the stimulus needed to change is applied. If you lift the same weights for the same number of repetitions each workout, you are not progressing, and therefore you give your body no reason to change. The same applies if you’re performing intervals – look to “up” the resistance, speed, time or incline each time, so that your continually trick/overload the body to work a bit more than last time.

Recording your goals and your progress will be key to ensuring that you set manageable and achievable aims, and that you are continually moving on the right path to success, both physically and mentally.

Fat Loss Tip #5 – Healthy Snacks

snacks

A lot of people go wrong here, by making the wrong choices, either through a lack of planning or self-control.

How many times have you been hungry mid-morning or afternoon, are in a rush and reach for the nearest item, often something pre-packaged like a bag of crisps, chocolate bar or biscuit, or the vending machine?

The snacks are often high calorie, contain high levels of sugar (tip#1) and contain minimal beneficial calories. Chances are you’ll soon be hungry again in a few minutes and will reach for the next fix/stimulant.

Aim for snacks which are likely to keep you feeling full til the next meal, but also something that will be of benefit to the body, both in nutritional content and balanced for your insulin levels.

Great choices would be;

– chopped raw vegetables

– A protein bar or protein ball (see this post on my blog https://markpt.wordpress.com/2009/05/10/your-own-protein-bounce-ball/)

– a piece of fruit or some berries, along with a few nuts or a piece of goats cheese(this ‘good’ fat will slow the release of the fruit sugars into the body, minimising insulin release)

– Celery with peanut butter

– Oatcake or Ryvita with cottage cheese

– Small pot of greek yoghurt with berries and seeds

– Parma ham with melon

– Crudite with hummous

All it takes is some preparation the night before, and you will have no excuses for going “off-track” and you’re energy levels will thankyou for that extra prep!


Fat Loss Tip #4 – Exercise

Exercise

The best combination of exercise is resistance training (be it bodyweight or with weights) and interval cardio training.

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Resistance training will give shape to your body, by shaping your muscles and helping with fat loss. The more lean muscle tissue you have, the more calories you will burn at rest, due to muscle tissue being a living tissue which requires calories to function and exist.

By resistance training I’m not talking about 2kg weights that you lift for 15 repetitions and put down, under no more stress or strain than when you started! You should select a weight that fatigues the muscle (becomes hard to continue, with good form and posture) around 10-15 reps for women and 8-12 reps for men.

Also aim to perform full body exercises like pullups, dips, pressups, deadlifts, squats and shoulder pressing as opposed to using machines at the gym which fix you into a locked plane of movement and don’t give you functional movements, like daily life.

Also, stay away from bodybuilding routines whereby you work chest one day, legs the next etc. You will just be wasting your time and effort. Pick exercises that work the full body and aim for 3 times per week.

treadmill

Interval cardio training, is so much more effective than steady state cardio where you spend 30+mins jogging, x-training or cycling. You will burn minimal calories because the Intensity is not there. Aim to work hard (effort level 8/9 out of 10) for 30-60secs, and then recover at an easy pace for 60-90 seconds. Repeat this for 6-8 times and you’ll know the word intensity.

Look to increase this period, and the intensity you work at over time. Aim for 2 interval sessions a week, and on top of the resistance training you will be building a training routine that will get results!

Check my You Tube account at www.youtube.com/MarkRaynsfordPT for some example workouts.

Fat Loss Tip #3 – Caffeine

caffeine

Everyone loves a cup of coffee as a pickup. Be it in the morning, pre workout, or mid-late afternoon for that final ‘work burst’.

The problem here, is that caffeine is a stimulant. It stimulates the adrenal glands, which in turn produce adrenalin, which gives you this buzz.

It can have a time and a place, but if you’re drinking more than 2 cups of coffee a day, regularly, you could well be on the way to adrenal fatigue. This is where you adrenal glands, cannot produce any more andrenalin, and your body starts to break down, often resulting in illness due to a damaged immune system, and more. Not only this, but caffeine can stay in your system for 6 hours, so if you’re drinking coffee after 4pm in the afternoon, chances are it will affect your sleep pattern, in turn upsetting your hormonal balance, and your bodies wellbeing. Count fizzy drinks, and alcohol in the list of stimulants, sugar as well, and that’s a lot of stress being placed on your adrenals. Burnout will be inevitable.

Drink water and green tea which contains a lower caffeine content, and more antioxidants, and give your body a rest. Most people live on stimulants and resort to these any time the feel sluggish, whereas chances are, you’re whole diet is causing you to feel sluggish, and if you don’t adjust the root cause, you’ll continue to be reaching for the stimulants and in turn, breaking your body down.

Fat Loss Tip #2 – Alcohol

alcohol

The quickest way to consume a large number of useless calories, and to spike you’re insulin levels is through drink.

There is around 180kcals in a glass of wine or a pint of beer. All of these calories are useless to the body, and provide no nutritional value at all. Take 3 of these (a small night out for most!) and you get 540kcals. Seeing as though most people only need to cut back around 400kcals a day to lose weight, you can see where a couple of glasses of wine a night can affect your weight. Alcohol also sends to cause bloating in most people, raising cortisol levels, and in turn, through long-term drinking you will store excess fat on your stomach and face.

fizzy drink cans

Fizzy drinks are another artificial form of drink– a can of coke is around 120kcals, but contains around 7 heaped teaspoons of sugar – a lot of damage to your teeth and a massive insulin spike, ready to store excess carbohydrates as fat!! Remember these are just drinks, not the extra food and drink you consume during the day! I wouldn’t like to think what some of you consume on a weekend………

I’m not saying remove alcohol from your diet completely, but just be aware that each drink you have contains empty calories, and will add onto your daily consumption. If you‘re looking to cutback calories, then these should be the first to remove, if you’re consuming them regularly.

Stick to water(2+litres per day) and green tea(2+cups per day), not only will the body function better, but your skin will look clearer, energy levels will be higher, and you’re body will work more efficiently as it transports nutrients around the body, and removes toxins.

Fat Loss Tip #1

OK, first day’s tip……

Cut back on sugary and packaged foods

sugar

Sugar is one of the worst “foods” you can consume if you’re trying to lose fat. Every time you eat sugar, you get a massive sugar rush into the bloodstream (the energy high), this releases insulin, a hormone from your pancreas which regulates blood sugar levels, and pulls this sugar from your blood stream, for your own protection.

If you’re carbohydrate stores are full (in your muscles and you liver, as carbohydrates are used for energy) they will store this sugar as fat. If you don’t have an active job, you are unlikely to be burning many calories, therefore everytime you eat something sugary, you are increasing your fat stores….simple as that. This includes, cakes, biscuits, sweets, fizzy drinks, ice cream and packaged foods as below.

Check the ingredients of a product – where it says carbohydrates, below it will say, “Of Which Sugars” pay attention to this figure……5g is about 1 level teaspoon…..you will be surprised!!

packagedfood

Packaged foods often fall into the sugary department, as they often contain high levels. The other thing they contain are non-natural foods. Checkout how often wheat is included in something packaged, words you struggle to pronounce. Basically it is man-made, and something the body cannot process into nutrients, and therefore will turn into fat or a toxin in the body.

Eat foods that are natural, and minimise sugar and processed foods – you’ll be surprised at your elevated energy levels alongside a flatter stomach, better skin, and a healthier digestive system.

Top Fat Loss Tips!

Starting tomorrow I will be running a Top fat loss tip everyday this week,  to help you achieve your results.

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See you back here tomorrow! ;-))