So you’ve indulged a little too much over Summer – we all have! No need to panic.
You’ve enjoyed yourself, had a few too many drinks, enjoyed your holidays and treated yourself to a piece of cake… or five.
Time to rev up your fat loss to kick-start a fresh routine. We’ve provided some tips that may help you get back-on-track with your goals.
1) Get plenty of sleep
An obvious point to many, but it really is important to ensure that you’re aiming for 8 hours sleep a night. I know that you will all have excuses about why you can’t do this, but sleep is the best source of recovery and building that we have.
With little sleep our body doesn’t rebuild and recover from the sessions the day before, and doesn’t work at optimum abilities throughout the day!
2) Eat high-protein meals
Protein: the building blocks of muscle! This is the nutrient that enables everyone to stay fuller for longer, whilst helping build and repair muscle.
The minimum (average) amount of protein you should take in per day is 1.5g/kg bodyweight (150g for a 100kg man).
Do eat as naturally as possible to avoid any excess calories from fats/carbs, e.g:
E.g: beef, turkey, chicken, duck, fish, venison, pork, lamb, exotic lean meats.
E.g.: Tofu, soya, green leafy vegetables, quinoa, beans etc.
However, this is still quite extensive and difficult to comply with, and that’s were protein shakes come in handy, with most powders providing around a whopping 25g per scoop!
3) Get enough of the Big Three: Zinc, Magnesium, Vitamin D
Get enough zinc, magnesium, and vitamin D — these nutrients can be extremely important for fat loss and metabolism.
✓ Magnesium has been shown to make cell receptors more sensitive to insulin – more commonly known as a supplement that can potentially improve the quality of sleep – although this will differentiates for everyone.
✓ Zinc has been said to have an important role in Insulin Health response, in addition to potentially contributing to immune function, creating new cells, processing carbohydrates, fats and proteins!
✓ Adequate amounts of Vitamin D is a vital nutrient that may help your muscles and organs work efficiently – such as your heart, lung, brain and liver! (1) It may also boost your immune system (2) – which is especially important if you’re eating a calorie deficit and training hard!
4) Eat a high-protein breakfast
Or eating a breakfast at all! It’s incredibly important to start the day off right, as for some, a delicious, satiating breakfast will provide a positive outlook for the rest of the day in terms of nutrition.
Why not try a 3-4 egg omelette? 1 egg contains 6g of protein, therefore in a 4-egg omelette you are getting 24g of protein. Alternatively, skip on the whole eggs and opt for an egg white omelette with some vitamin-rich vegetables, such as spinach and mushrooms for an extra iron boost.
If you’re not so keen on the egg idea, maybe try a nice bowl of oats, a scoop of your favourite protein powder and a handful of nuts/berries for a high-protein, satiating breakfast.
5) Stay Hydrated
An obvious, yet highly-ignored key point. Hydration is incredibly important when trying to shed excess fat – from flushing out toxins to preventing cravings and making you feel full if you attempt to reach for food through boredom!
Try to limit your drinks to black tea, coffee and lots of water – especially if you’re drinking caffeine due to being natural diuretics.
Make sure you are getting adequate amounts of water per day – even if it means adding flavourings/fruit pieces such as lemon and berries.
6) Eat Low-Glycaemic Carbs
Fibre-rich, low GI Carbohydrates are ideal for those who wish to shed excess fat or even on your journey to pack on some muscle!
Aiming to lose fat and build muscle?
To achieve your optimal fat loss goals whilst working to enhance your muscle growth, it is important to have a good amount of carbohydrates. The carbs will become your main energy source, whilst playing the role of manipulating the anabolic hormone insulin!
Low GI glycemic index carbs:
✓ Legumes, oats, rice
✓ Whole foods
✓ Sweet potatoes.
During a fat-loss mission it is recommended to consume High GI carbs (simple carbs) mostly post-workout in order to replenish glycogen levels and aid protein synthesis for effective muscle recovery.
7) Train intensely
Mix your training up: Look to do high intensity, high rep, heavy weight with your usual weights – circuit style workouts are great!
Push your body to the limit with 3-5 sets, 10 reps and minimal rest, 80% of 1 rep max.
This style of training, with the added effect of eating a high-protein diet should enhance muscle-building fat-reducing goals!
8) Add a conditioning programme
Look to finish your sessions with a short speed conditioning work out.
For example: look at 6 sets of 30 second sprints with a 4-minute recovery/60 sets of 8 second sprints with a 12 minute recovery (only takes 20mins).
This type of session would be better suited to the rowing machine rather than say, a treadmill. The treadmill tends to shorten hip flexors and fails to effectively fire your hamstring when running, therefore potentially leading to weak hamstrings and causing instability in your pelvis!
Take Home Message
Try a few of these tips to feel healthier, fitter and hopefully boost your fat-loss!