If your attempts to lose fat have stalled then don’t worry, you have a number of options ahead of you.
The key is to try one thing at a time. Everything you can do to burn fat is a tool, but if you use all the tools in your box at one time, then what are you left with if you plateau? Endless cardio sessions? Even less food? Pick one of the below, stick with it and make a sensible choice on the next step.
Reducing calories would be a good place to start if you are already eating ‘clean,’ consistently and exercising at least four times a week. However, don’t go overboard; a small drop of 100-200 calories from your daily intake would be a great place to start. See what happens, then make further adjustments.
You should never eliminate carbs without replacing at least some of the deficit with other macronutrients (fats and proteins) for more than three days. You can spend time depleting the body of carbohydrates, which can take around three days (body size dependant), forcing the body to use fat. However, you will need to follow this with a period of over eating to replenish your stores. This can actually be a fantastic way of dropping body fat fast, but we suggest you get some guidance on carb and calorie cycling from a specialist before you begin this method.
An awesome way of ensuring fat as your fuel source is by eliminating carbs from your diet (restricting your intake to fibrous green vegetables) and replacing the deficit in calories with more fat and protein. Using fat and protein as fuel is a good way to utilise your own stores of body fat (think belly and bingo wings), but this energy conversion system isn’t efficient and will require you to ingest carbohydrates at some point. The leaner you are the more frequently you can handle carbs. If you can’t see your abs, start off with 7-14 days of zero carbs. If you have never seen your abs and they are very well hidden under body fat you can probably spend longer without carbs.
Increasing the body’s fuel usage is another awesome way to use more calories, and working at a low intensity will ensure that your body is utilising fat as its main fuel source. When doing lowintensity and steady state cardio you should aim to get a good sweat and be able to hold a conversation, but be slightly breathless. Start with one session a week of 30 minutes, see what happens, then increase the session to 40-50 minutes before thinking about doing more than one session a week. These increases should be slow. Also, do your cardio separately to you weights sessions.
Training more often can be a great way to burn even more calories as your body fat gets lower and lower. Even training twice a day is something utilised by some people trying to get to single digit body fat percentages (photo shoot or physique show). But caution must be adhered as the more often you train, the more calories you will require and the more attention you will need to keep on your recovery. More training equals more stress and if you are already displaying signs of stress or over training – disrupted sleeping patterns, altered mood or drop in libido – it would be advised that you back off and rest more.
Sixty minutes is the limit. You may think longer workouts equate to more fat burn, but there is a trade-off. If you train longer than an hour, cortisol production continues to rise and starts breaking down more and more muscle. Get a high intensity hour done with limited rest periods.
Drinking a black coffee pre-workout can have the same effect as investing in expensive fat burners and pre-workout powders. All a fat burner does is accelerate your metabolism so you can burn calories slightly quicker, but what about the trade off? You will experience a crash from synthetic forms of caffeine and the amount of stress they put on your adrenals can leave you burnt out, doing more harm than good long term. I would only ever use these as a last resort when you have completely exhausted all other options (not yourself).
Someone that specialises in getting fast results in changing someone’s body shape would be a great choice if you are seriously committed to transforming your own physique. Pick someone with a proven track record of results and a wealth of knowledge and experience is a sure fire way to take the confusion out of dieting.