In my personal experience with training clients, fat loss is by far the most common practice, and here I explain how best to do it!
Firstly, and most importantly, don’t neglect strength training. Your primary goal here is to lose fat, not weight, and whilst losing fat you want to preserve, or even increase your muscle mass. This will give you that ‘toned’ look. Weight training also speeds up the body’s metabolism, even long after you’ve stepped out the gym, which ultimately means more calories burnt which is key to fat loss. So make sure you’re lifting weights (this goes for girls too).
Alongside lifting weights, don’t underestimate the importance of cardio. This should include both steady state and high intensity interval training. Steady state cardio is a continuous and steady effort, which should be done for 45-60mins. This is a form of training that will give you a sweat on and help the body to relax and recover after training. High intensity interval training (HIIT) is a lot more rigorous and includes short periods of intense exercise with less intense recovery periods. Depending on your current fitness levels these can be done from 10-25mins, make sure you’re giving it your all and it will definitely increase your body’s metabolism!
I would recommend, where possible, to be doing cardio fasted (on an empty stomach), as your body has no choice but to tap into your fat stores. This is because your body’s main source of fuel comes from carbohydrates, so by not consuming carbohydrates before your cardio your body’s next source of energy comes from fat, which is what you’re working your ass off to burn. So time those carbs correctly, wake up early and get moving!
Don’t stress it.
When you’re stressed, your body produces the hormone cortisol that encourages fat storage. By keeping stress free you’ll find it easier to reduce body fat. So be aware of your emotional state and try to find time to chill out.
Add more protein to your diet.
A diet rich in protein will only enhance fat loss. This macronutrient has a high thermic effect, so by simply boosting your protein intake you’ll be increasing your body’s metabolism and increasing the chances of burning fat more effectively.
Get your body moving more in everyday life.
Walk instead of catching the bus, or even dance on your next night out instead of standing by the bar. I personally always walk up those giant escalators in tube stations, rather than stand and look at everyone travelling in the opposite direction. Basically the more mobile you are, the more you encourage mitochondria in your cells to burn energy. You’ll be amazed at how much faster the fat drops off when you make small changes.
Reduce your calories.
Remember that with all this, ultimately to lose fat you’ll need to burn off more calories than you’re consuming. So make sure you’re reducing your calorie intake, by either eating less food or eating food that contain fewer calories.
About The Author
Sasha Green is a fully qualified Personal Trainer, Fitness Model and holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology. He practices what he preaches, training and living a healthy lifestyle, which he advocates to all his clients. His Personal Training company ‘Fit By Green’ is based in London.