Losing fat and getting lean is all about time. It’s going to take time to get you where you want to go, but you need to make sure that you get a few things right.
With that in mind, I’ve written these tips to help you achieve your goal.
1.High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is performing repetitions of a series of high-intensity exercise bouts followed by rest periods, builds fitness and decreases fat faster than extended training.
Training explosively on a treadmill, stationary bike, rowing machine or elliptical trainer will build endurance.
While it is uncomfortable, you can increase endurance, power and strength in only a fraction of the time it takes to do a traditional aerobics workout.
Scientiﬁc studies show that HIIT builds endurance, maximal oxygen consumption, increases muscle glycogen and enhances mitochondrial capacity (The powerhouses of the cell are the mitochondria). (Nutrition Action Health Letter, December 2012).
A Canadian study found that six sessions of high-intensity interval training on a stationary bike increased muscle glycogen by 20 percent, muscle oxidative capacity by almost 50 percent and cycling endurance capacity by 100 percent.
The subjects made this fantastic progress by performing four to seven repetitions of high-intensity exercise on a stationary bike and exercising only 15 minutes in two weeks.
Other studies showed the value of high-intensity training for building aerobic capacity and endurance and losing fat. (Strength and Conditioning Journal, 35(5): 41-42, 2013)
Researchers from Newcastle University in the United Kingdom found that high-intensity interval training (HIIT) decreased liver fat, total body fat and improved liver enzyme levels in middle-aged patients. It also increased aerobic capacity. HIIT improves physical ﬁtness rapidly and enhances metabolic health. (Clinical Science (London), published online August 11, 2015
A simple method is to do 4 to 8 sets of explosive exercises on a stationary bike, treadmill, rowing machine or elliptical trainer for 30 seconds at 90 to 100 percent of maximum effort. Rest three to four minutes between sets so that you are fully recovered.
High-Intensity Interval Training improves fitness quickly, change body composition, promotes fat loss and reduces liver fat.
2. Train Fasted
People who perform recreational-level aerobic training burn about 10 to 15 calories per minute. Calories burned remain elevated after exercise— depending on duration and intensity. Japanese researchers found that 24-hour fat burning is more significant following exercise on an empty stomach than exercising after a meal.
Research subjects exercised for 60 minutes at 50 percent of maximum effort, either after or before a meal. Digestive status did not affect 24-hour caloric expenditure. Burn more fat exercising on an empty stomach. (Metabolism, published online January 11, 2013)
Aerobic exercise helps to burn fat and Diet helps to achieve the maximum fat loss. For example, consuming carbohydrates before and during exercise1 makes carbohydrates the primary fuel source while suppressing the burning of fat.
While increased ingestion of fat2 stimulates energy production by fat burning at the same time suppressing carbohydrate usage. Nonetheless, the consumption of high-fat foods will restore the fat consumed during exercise, reducing the loss of body fat.
Exercising in a fasted state prevents the fat burned from being restored as body fat.
A study 3 showed that endurance training in the fasted state over six weeks for one hour at 70 percent maximum capacity led to intramuscular fat breakdown (muscle fat) in both fast and slow-twitch muscle fibres.
This finding shows that exercise in a fasted state causes the muscle cells to burn fat for fuel.4
As a result, if exercise is combined with fasting to optimize the burning of body fat and following meals are low in calories and fat, a negative fat balance will occur, promoting lower body fat.5
Working out fasted increasing fat burning for 24 hours and prevents the fat burned from being restored as body fat.
3. LIMIT NON-NUTRITIVE SWEETENERS
Non-nutritive sweeteners don’t contain any calories. Diet drinks have been around since the early 1960s, yet obesity has consistently increased since then.
An interesting study on mice from Oita University in Japan showed that consuming sugar-sweetened water increased blood sugar levels in the animals while drinking water containing nonnutritive sweeteners triggered reduced blood sugar levels.
However, animals consuming the non-nutritive sweeteners gained body fat and increased leptin and triglyceride levels.
These animals also experienced decreases in uncoupling proteins in brown fat, which decreased metabolic rate and promoted fat deposition.
This study provided some insight into the reason that chronic consumption of diet sodas encourages weight gain. (Metabolism Clinical and Experimental, 63: 69-78, 2014)
Non-nutritive sweeteners reduce metabolism and promote weight and fat gain.
4. AEROBIC EXERCISE
Aerobic exercise can enhance muscle protein synthesis, particularly in older adults with increases in abdominal fat— according to a study of adults with organ and abdominal fat.
Researchers examined the effects of low-calorie diets and low-calorie diets plus aerobics on body composition.
Both groups lost weight and inches, but the diet plus aerobics group was able to maintain muscle mass.
People trying to lose weight should exercise and cut calories. The exercise will keep muscle mass that will help prevent weight regain. (Obesity Facts, 7: 26-35, 2014)
AEROBICS IMPROVE BLOOD FATS
Elevated blood levels of cholesterol, low-density lipoproteins (LDL) and triglycerides, and decreased levels of high-density lipoproteins, increase the risk of heart attack and promote poor metabolic health.
A review of the literature led by Larry Durstine from the University of South Carolina concluded that aerobic exercise improves the blood fat proﬁle by decreasing total cholesterol, the cholesterol HDL ratio and triglycerides, and increasing HDL and the LDL and HDL particle sizes.
Exercise also helps improve related metabolic factors such as blood pressure and body composition. (Current Sports Medicine Reports, 13: 253-259, 2014)
Aerobics and calorie reduction lower blood fats and improve muscle protein synthesis.
5. INTERMITTENT FASTING
Consuming about 600 calories per day for a couple of days per week, followed by a regular amount of calories is a beneficial way to promote fat loss. Eating like this is a form of intermittent fasting.
This approach results in the loss of fat by activating the energy-sensing molecule AMPK, by consuming only 600 calories per day.6 Another benefit of intermittent fasting is improved muscle growth.
This is because intermittent fasting reduces caloric consumption for a brief time, which dramatically decreases intramuscular fat stores.7
The decrease of fat within muscle tissue has been shown to enhance the muscle cell’s response to the muscle-building hormone insulin8, which drastically increases muscle protein synthesis, supporting more significant muscle growth.9
Intermittent fasting promotes fat loss and muscle growth.
6. VITAMIN D
Vitamin D is produced naturally in a reaction involving sunlight. Vitamin D can is also consumed in the diet by eating fatty ﬁsh, mushrooms and supplements.
Vitamin D supplements combined with 12 weeks of weight training improved body composition and increased power output in overweight young adults— according to a study led by Andres Carrillo from Purdue University.
Researchers supplemented 4,000 international units of vitamin D per day. They found improvements in peak power output and waist-to-hip ratio, but no effects on calorie intake, blood sugar regulation, lean mass, fat mass or muscle strength.
Up to 75 percent of people in the United States are vitamin D deﬁcient, which increases the risk of colds and ﬂu, heart disease, diabetes, cancer and low bone density. Vitamin D levels are dropping because people have reduced sun exposure to prevent skin cancer. (Clinical Nutrition, 32: 375-381, 2013)
Studies have shown low levels of vitamin D are linked to poor bone health, muscle weakness, deﬁciencies in reproductive hormones, low aerobic capacity and increased body mass index (the proportion of weight to height).
A Korean study showed that vitamin D triggered fat calorie loss in fat cells exposed to vitamin D. Vitamin D also affected genes that affect fat cell formation, fat breakdown and fat use as energy. The vitamin reduced C-reactive protein which is a marker of inﬂammation.
The only health claims allowed by government agencies for vitamin D are reducing the risk of osteoporosis, preventing inﬂammation and promoting normal muscle function. (Nutrition, 32: 702-708, 2016)
Vitamin D burns fat and increases fat loss.
7. HIGH PROTEIN
Consuming a high-protein diet containing 1.6 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight (0.72 grams per pound) helps maintain muscle mass during weight loss.
Researchers from the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine in Natick, Massachusetts compared lean mass and fat loss during weight loss and weight maintenance.
The people consuming the recommended protein intake of 0.8 grams per kilogram of bodyweight (RDA), two times RDA (1.6 grams per kilogram) and three times RDA (2.4 grams per kilogram). Consuming 2.4 grams per kilogram of bodyweight was no more effective than 1.6 grams.
Increase your protein intake when trying to lose weight or maintain lost weight. (The FASEB Journal, published online June 5, 2013)
Another study found that high protein intake (3.4 grams per kilogram of body weight per day) plus a periodized weight training program for eight weeks showed more significant decreases in body weight, percent fat and fat mass than a group consuming 2.3 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight.
There were no differences in fat-free mass. Previous studies showed overfeeding protein without weight training did not alter body composition.
The researchers concluded that intensely training athletes would benefit from protein intakes higher than two grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day. (Journal International Society Sports Nutrition, 13: 3, 2016)
Caloric restriction, high-intensity weight training and intervals, and high-protein diets caused substantial changes in body composition in only four weeks— according to study.
Participants reduced calories by 40 percent and consumed either 2.4 grams of protein (HP, high protein) or 1.2 grams of protein (LP, low protein) per kilogram of body weight per day. The intense exercise was performed by both groups for six days per week.
The low protein group lost eight pounds of fat and gained 0.2 pounds of lean mass in four weeks compared to 11 pounds and 2.5 of lean mass in the high protein group.
The study showed that high-intensity exercise plus caloric restriction triggers significant changes in strength and body composition and that the changes are most notable during a high-protein diet. (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, published online January 27, 2016)
A high protein diet changes body composition by speeding fat loss and preserving muscle when losing weight.
The Hitachi Health Study in Japan found that sleep-deprived people had higher body mass index, waist circumference, and surface fat than people who slept seven to nine hours per night.
They used CT scans to precisely measure abdominal fat and fat around the organs. Age, physical activity, smoking, drinking or health status did not inﬂuence the relationship.
They concluded that short sleep duration was linked to total body fat, abdominal fat, and surface fat in Japanese men.
Many studies related inadequate sleep to obesity, but scientists aren’t sure why. (International Journal of Obesity, 37: 129-134, 2013)
Lack of sleep has been linked to reduced blood sugar regulation according to researchers from Charles University in Prague. Inadequate sleep increases the risk of premature death from all causes and cardiovascular disease.
Sleep interruptions increase the risk of type two diabetes and metabolic syndrome, which are a collection of symptoms that include abdominal fat deposition, high blood pressure, insulin resistance and abnormal blood fats.
Sleep interruptions interfere with signalling pathways that control blood sugar.
See your doctor if you have problems sleeping or if you snore. It could save your life. (Diabetology & Metabolic Syndrome, 7:25, 2015)
Lack of sleep increase can increase abdominal fat and the risk of type 2 diabetes.
9. Lift Weights
Resistance training stimulates the muscle cell to incorporate new muscle proteins, leading to gains in muscle. Consequently, resistance training translates into signiﬁcant increases in daily calories burned because muscle tissue is metabolically active and increases in muscle mass tend to increase the energy.
In fact, an increase in muscle mass of two pounds boosts calories burned by approximately 20 calories per day. (American Journal of Human Biology. 2011;23(3):333-338.)
Now, while this amount may not seem like very much, it can have a signiﬁ cant impact over time, especially if you keep lifting weights and putting on more muscle.
For instance, let’s say you can add 10 pounds of muscle after hitting the weights hard for a few years. Well, that increase in muscle mass would translate into an additional 100 calories burned per day, which is equivalent to roughly 36,000 calories consumed per year.
Since a pound of fat is equal to about 3,600 calories, the expenditure of an additional 36,000 calories per year is approximately equivalent to 10 pounds of body fat that you won’t accumulate.
Many studies that show the tremendous impact that weightlifting and muscle growth can have on fat loss.
For example, a study showed the enormous potential that high-intensity resistance training could have on weight management by having a group of young, overweight adults engage in three lifting sessions per week. Each session involved one set of three to six repetitions using nine different exercises with weights that were in the high-intensity range of 85 to 90 percent of the one-repetition maximum.
All subjects increased total-body strength by approximately 50 percent while showing impressive increases in muscle mass of around 2.7 percent.
Also, the subjects experienced a signiﬁcant increase in their overall metabolic rate, increasing 24-hour energy expenditure.
Interestingly, this study also looked at the ratio of carbon dioxide exhaled and oxygen consumed, also known as the respiratory quotient, by each test subject.
The result was pretty impressive because it showed that resistance training lowered the respiratory quotient, which indicates that the body increased the use of fat as an energy source.
Seeing that muscle is the primary target organ for burning fat, this result makes complete sense, as resistance training increased the amount of muscle, resulting in higher utilization of fat for energy.
Altogether, the increased energy expenditure and preference of fat for energy seen in this study offer compelling evidence that high-intensity resistance training is a beneficial way to minimize body fat. (Medicine and science in sports and exercise. 2009;41(5):1122-1129.)
Resistance exercise not only trims down body fat, but it may also keep the fat off after losing it.
Body fat is kept off because after losing weight, the body tends to reduce energy expenditure, burning fewer calories because you have a smaller amount of muscle mass, which burns a lot of calories because it is very active metabolically. Of course, this is where resistance training and its ability to increase muscle mass can have a considerable impact on maintaining weight loss as it can reverse, or prevent, the loss of muscle tissue and therefore preserve regular energy expenditure rates.
According to a study recently published resistance exercise can stop unwanted pounds from reaccumulating.
In this study, when subjects lost approximately 15 percent of their body weight, resistance training efficiently prevented the fat gain while subjects that did not train regained more than 70 percent of their fat loss. (Obesity (Silver Spring, Md). 2010;18(4):690-695.)
Also, a second study found that subjects who trained with weights were able to maintain a large percentage of the fat they lost for the entire two-year period of the study.(American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 86. 566-572. 10.1093/ajcn/86.3.566.)
Lifting weight speeds metabolism which results in burning more calories, fat loss and keeping the fat off once lost.
So there you have it, 9 tips that will take your results up a notch and help you burn fat.
If you haven’t joined one of my programs yet, now is a great time to start. Together we will get you focused on your goals with my results-driven method.
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