With fad diets and new miracle cures plastered across our television screens daily and more recently promoted adverts constantly popping up on our Facebook feeds it’s not hard to see why weight loss has become one of the hottest topics worldwide…but what about fat loss?
Many people would assume that weight loss and fat loss are interchangeable terms but that is not the case and the team here at TSN hope to shed a little light on the topic to help you get closer to your fitness goals.
Understanding the Differences
There is a significant difference between goals of weight loss and fat loss.
Weight Loss - This means you wish to lower your entire body weight inclusive of bones, muscles, organs and body fat.
Fat Loss- is specific and means you want to reduce the fat content that your body carries. It is recommended that a healthy goal is 10-15% for Men and 15-22% for women.
The Common Problem with Weight Loss Diets
Instead of recognising the differences outlined above, many will think the solution is to eat like a bird, skip meals and run run run ….effectively starving your body of essential nutrients and energy it needs to function. Indeed this will guarantee you will lose weight, but you won’t change your body shape. What will happen is the longer this process goes on your body then turns to panic mode and begins to utilise your muscle stores for energy. Instead of being a tight and toned athletic shape, you become simply a smaller and mushier version of the shape you originally were – commonly referred to as “skinny fat”. Moreover these yo-yo diets are unsustainable and eventually the insatiable hunger, cravings and inconsistent energy combined with the savage muscle loss you have incurred often results in not only regaining the weight lost but gainer more fat then you had before you started.
Where to from here?
Often those among us under the impression we are seeking to lose weight are actually doing so because we carry too much fat. The first step is to forget the scales, body Weight can fluctuate daily and is influenced by a host of factors.
So how do I lose Body Fat?
• Focus on strength- strength training builds muscle and prevents muscle loss.
• Eat a balanced and healthy diet- aim to eat 90% unprocessed whole foods and try to avoid starchy processed carbs.
• Don’t fall under the misconception that cardio is the miracle cure- without strength training cardio training will encourage muscle loss.
Things to remember
You will most likely be gaining muscle while you are losing fat- especially when you become active in strength training. This is why you need to forget the scales. The scales may show little to no change in the numbers- fat is far less dense then muscle and therefore takes up less space on our bodies. Focus on how you feel and be realistic about time frames (generally allow 2 weeks for changes). There are a few healthy ways to track your progress; at the start take a full body photo and until the 2 weeks is up avoid staring in the mirror looking for a change, take measurements- neck, chest, arms, waist, thighs and keep a training log- weights going up means you are getting stronger and muscles are not breaking down.
Lastly - listen to what people say. You see you all the time and it is much harder to notice a change. They'll notice your body change more than you will and before long clothes will start to feel and fit differently too. Grow strength, grow fit and grow confident.
With our busy lifestyles and hectic schedules getting the nutrients we require is not always an easy task- especially around training. To perform at our best and build strength our body requires a careful blend of protein and carbohydrates. TSN is proud to bring to you a fantastic range of Protein blends and supplements to get you, fitter, stronger, and closer to your fitness goals.
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