A common question we get asked is ‘how do I lose this fat from around the belly, legs or bum.’ And the answer isn’t ‘train the area you want to lose fat from.’ Unfortunately, we have learnt that doing 100 sit ups per day isn’t going to reduce body fat and give you that 6 pack. However we do know which methods do work!
Being in a (slight) calorie deficit is going to slowly (but sustainably) lower body fat levels throughout the whole body. Our fat cells contain two receptors which when activated, start to metabolise & are then broken down for energy. In some areas of the body our fat stores contain more Alpha receptors than beta receptors (we won't go into too much detail). Unfortunately these receptors are slower to become activated and you can guess where these are usually located. The belly, thighs and butt! This is why when you start to lose weight, you will always notice it in your face, arms and chest first.
Okay so now we know a little more about why that stubborn body fat is so stubborn. But what can we do to reduce it?
1. As just mentioned, being in a calorie deficit is vital. Follow the tips we’ve already given you and stay 200-300 kcals below your maintenance requirement. This will allow you to taper them down over time and continue losing weight / body fat and eventually that stubborn fat. You can ensure this by tracking your calories using an app like myfitnesspal or by getting a specific diet plan. (ask us for more details)
2. Drinking water! This has soo many effects on energy levels and fat loss! Drinking a glass of water before each meal will make a significant difference. Water is needed for digestion.. no need to talk about dry food trying to pass through our body... secondly, it increases our metabolism. Our energy systems use water when breaking down fats for energy, so keep topping it up to ensure fat loss is maintained. Drinking water suppresses your appetite! Try drinking a glass of water next time you want a snack and see how you’ll forget about that biscuit! Water hydrates the muscle cells, and these need to be hydrated for performance when exercising. Drinking more is going to increase your performance which is going to increase your energy expenditure!
3. Training methods. The newest hype in training for fat loss is probably HIIT training. This is because it allows us to burn a similar amount of calories in 30 mins than you would in 60 mins of steady state exercise (a brisk walk or jog.) Also there is a few added benefits from HIIT. High intensity interval training causes ‘excessive post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC)’ Don’t worry about that word, just remember that HIIT causes you to continue burning calories at a faster rate for a long period of time after training. Another training tip is too train heavy when you can. This could be just using a heavier kettle-bell, or slam ball in your workout. This increases your work output, thus increasing energy expenditure. It also causes a few other clever things which help with stubborn fat loss. Retaining muscle mass is one, and this helps in a few ways. The more muscle mass we have, the more calories we burn daily!
4. Green teas, herbal teas and caffeine! You’ve probably heard that drinking certain teas can help reduce body fat, and the evidence is controversial. However, these is a place for them during a fat loss period, but if you don’t like the taste, I wouldn’t bother. Green teas contain catechin which can speed up the metabolism. Along-side this, it also contains caffeine which can do the same, with the added benefit of increasing exercise performance. The effects of drinking tea may only be small, but small effects over a long period of time could lead to significant changes in your body!
5. Finally the key to reaching any goal in fitness, nutrition and life... is CONSISTENCY! Being consistent with training (we’ve got you covered), consistent with eating, consistent with water and getting a good night’s sleep and maintaining low stress levels are all vital. A dip in consistency in any of the above could be enough to hinder or stop your fat loss!
Hopefully that helped you understand a little bit more about your body! Stay consistent, hydrated and active especially now when we are isolating and limited with activities.
We are mixing the types of our live classes for you to get the most out of them :)