If you want to lose body fat as quickly as possible, you should try applying these four principles that will save you time and energy. As with any goal, it is better to do it right than to rely on short term solutions that don't last or gimmicks that will actually reverse the effects down the road.
Here are 4 principles that will enable you to lose body fat fast and keep it off for good:
1. Don't rely on crash diets or starving yourself. When you deprive your body of the calories and energy it needs to sustain its' biological functions as well as lean muscle tissue, you do two detrimental things. First, you put your metabolism into "starvation mode", where it tends to shut down and turn everything you do eat into fat. The body will respond in a way that it believes there is no food available and its' survival processes will take over and convert all energy, including protein into fat.
Second, you send your body into a catabolic state, where it will use your lean muscle tissue for energy. This creates atrophy, or loss of muscle on the body. In the long run, this is obviously not the way you want to go. A healthy diet consists of eating a meal or snack every 2-4 hours throughout the day. This keeps your metabolism active and your fat burning at the highest levels.
2. Add solid lean muscle tissue to the body. Because lean solid muscle tissue is metabolically active, you will want to add more of it to your body. What is the simplest way to add lean muscle to the body?
One, add a more comprehensive weight training regimen to your working out. The goal of any workout designed to increase muscle tissue is to break down muscle fibers so that they grow back stronger, more solid and defined when followed up with a proper nutrition program.
Two, adhere to a solid nutritional program to aid in the muscle building process. Make sure you are consuming adequate protein and a good balance of healthy carbohydrates and healthy fats. carbohydrates and fat, contrary to many public opinions, are actually very necessary to the muscle gaining process and are good for the body as well. You just have to eat the right ones and limit the forms of these two that are unhealthy, such as sugars and foods high in saturated fats.
When you add lean solid muscle to the body via an intense weight training or resistance training regimen, you have increased your resting metabolic rate, which enables you to continue to burn fat at rest, even when you're not working out and take a day or more off from exercise. More importantly, it enables your body to burn fat for the long run since natural lean muscle tissue tends to stay on the body as long as you are eating a healthy diet and exercising at least 2-3 days each week.
3. Create a "caloric deficit", but nor by starving yourself. The two best ways to create a caloric deficit are to change the foods you eat and to increase activity.
Many people consume what are called "empty calories". These calories consist of mostly of sugar, or any food with little to no relative nutritional value. These empty calories serve no true healthy purpose to the body, but they add up over time each day and week. Consequently, people store excess fat without getting the nutritional value found in many foods. What you need to do is consume a whole lot more "whole foods", especially vegetables and fruits that contain good amounts of fiber that aids in digestion and adds to your feeling of satiety, or stomach fullness.
Foods such as fruits and vegetables are also very low in calories compared with foods high in fat and sugar, but they simultaneously create less of a need to eat more to feel full. They are also highly nutritious, which will increase your body's natural energy levels, and low on the glycemic index chart, which will prevent your insulin levels from spiking, and this too will also aid in your stomach's relative feeling of satiety.
Increasing activity is also an excellent way to create a caloric deficit necessary for effective fat burning. It really comes down to the law of thermodynamics- how much energy (calories) are coming in and how much energy is going our, or being expended through exercise and metabolic rate increases. So here, you have two key ways coming together with increased activity.
First, as mentioned previously, weight bearing activity increases lean solid muscle mass on the body, which in turn will increase metabolism for the long run. Second, the energy you expend during any given workout, including increased aerobic activity will also combine to add to your total calories expended each day and each workout.
If you are working out and getting active 4-5 times per week for at least a minimum of 30 minutes like what is recommended, these calories add up, and combined with a healthier diet that naturally reduces unnecessary calories, will create the deficit where your body must lose fat and pounds. There are 3,500 calories in a pound, so you can do the math to reach the weight loss goal you want once you figure out how many calories you are burning + how many calories you've cut out with dietary changes.
One element that is hard to measure but will be there also will be the long term resting metabolic rate changes, which sort of serves as a bonus in this equation. You should always aim to burn at least 450-600 calories per workout just a a basic measuring guide. However, the more the better as long as your diet is on track with 5-6 small meals and snacks combined per day.
4. Eat 5-6 meals or more per day every 2-4 hours. As mentioned previously, this keeps your metabolism active and at optimum levels for fat burning to continue to take place. The last thing you want your body to do is start to tap into lean muscle for energy, as this will diminish resting metabolism for the long run. You must keep fats and carbohydrates as your body's primary energy sources to burn fat most efficiently, without losing any muscle and dipping into protein stores.
If you apply these principles, you will have done it right, and like anything in life, if you're not going to do it right, then why do it at all? When fat burning is done right, it leads to optimum health, optimum energy, improved strength, and overall health increases that lead to a better quality of life not just short term, but for years to come.