Struggling with fat loss? You’re not alone – lots of people have trouble with this, but here are the three most important things to take into consideration for true, healthy, sustainable fat loss.
Notice I say fat loss and not weight loss – the two are very different. If you lose weight you want to make sure you minimise the amount of muscle lost – after all, you want to look as good as you can right?
However you decide to go about it, make sure you incorporate the three things below and you’ll not only look great but you’ll feel great too.
- Energy deficit
This is calories in vs. calories out. If you’re not in an energy deficit then no matter what you do you won’t achieve your goals. This is the single most important factor when it comes to fat loss. In other words, for fat loss to occur you need to be eating less than you use.
But how do you know? First you need to calculate your maintenance calories. This is the amount of calories needed to stay the same weight. Try this calculator here. Everyone is different of course, but this will give you a good place to start from.
Next, you need to then set a realistic and achievable deficit. Start with 10% below maintenance. Essentially you want to be losing fat whilst eating as many calories as possible. Only when fat loss stalls do you then need to think about maybe increasing your deficit to get it going again.
- Adequate protein
This is all about keeping your muscle. When you’ve had fat loss you still want to look good, yes? Losing weight without thinking about maintaining your muscle means you won’t look your best when the weight comes off. Eating enough protein and exercising regularly, (see below), can help prevent this from happening.
Protein also has a lot of other benefits, including being highly satiating, meaning you stay fuller for longer.
You should aim for about 2.3-3.0g protein per kg of lean body mass for fat loss. A good protein powder can help you meet your daily targets in a convenient and tasty way.
- Resistance exercise
In addition to getting enough protein to fuel your muscles you also need to provide them with a reason to stick around.
This is where resistance exercise comes in. It’s essential for fat loss as it not only helps to burn calories but, crucially, it plays a major role in keeping your muscle mass.
How do you go about this? Well, you could use anything from traditional weights, to resistance bands, to kettlebells. Pick your favourite and get working!
So if you’re aiming to lose fat then make sure you follow the three golden rules outlined above. You want to make sure that you’re eating below your maintenance calories but also that you’re getting enough quality protein and working those muscles out.
No matter what you do, as long as you’re mindful of these three things, then fat loss and not weight loss is an achievable goal. You can do it!