1. Maintain a calorie deficit. Fat loss follows a simple rule: if you burn more calories than you consume, you’ll burn fat. To lose 1 pound of weight a week, you need a daily 500-calorie deficit.
2. Use progressive overload. I maximize muscle growth by progressively making my workouts more difficult.
There are 3 ways to do this:
• Increase weight
• Increase duration
• Increase intensity
3. Don’t emphasize cardio. Cardio isn’t the key to fat loss that everyone makes it out to be. It’s great for your mind, heart, and lungs, but cardio only burns calories while you move. Lifting weights helps you burn calories during the day and while you sleep at night.
4. Track your calories. You can’t improve what you don’t measure. Counting calories keeps you accountable and helps you avoid overeating. Use scales and measuring cups to accurately track everything you eat (including drinks, sauces, and oils).
5. Eat more protein. Protein is made up of amino acids that repair and build muscle tissue. The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn. If you want to lose fat, you have to build muscle. A good rule of thumb: eat 1g of protein per pound of body weight.
6. Cut processed sugar. Processed sugars lead to rapid spikes in your blood sugar levels. This causes your body to release insulin, which inhibits fat burning. Processed sugars are also calorically dense, making it difficult to maintain a calorie deficit.
7. Drink more water. 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated. Chances are, you are, too. Before you drink coffee or have a meal, drink a glass of water. We recommend about half of your bodyweight in ounces per day.
8. Eliminate alcohol. Alcohol is poison and disrupts your body’s metabolic processes. Instead of burning fat, your body will burn alcohol first and it makes proper recovery and sleep near impossible and if you’re like me all you want to do is eat after drinking.
9. Walk more. Walking increases NEAT (non-exercise activity thermogenesis) aka the amount of calories you burn outside of formal exercise. Plus it reduces stress and makes you feel better overall.
10. Get proper rest. Rest days are just as important as exercise. Your body needs rest to recover and repair in order to restore energy and build muscle. Regardless of your fitness level, taking regular breaks and rest days is a critical part of the journey.
11. Fix your sleep schedule. Sleep is an essential part of fitness. Your body produces amino acids that promote muscle growth during REM sleep. Get 6-8 hours of sleep every night to maximize muscle growth and fat burning.
12. Find a program that works for you. The best program is the one you can follow consistently. Be realistic about how much time and energy you can dedicate to your training.
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