When it comes to getting lean, we all know how important the kitchen is. If you are consuming junk, the chances of you reaching your goals are slim to none. In addition, you can’t sit around hoping and praying that body fat will magically disappear. The combination of both exercise and nutrition are your best bet for dropping pounds quickly. However, there are other factors that can come into play as well to help speed up the process. Combine all of the below into your regimen and lifestyle to lose fat and get lean. The concepts below aren’t difficult, but there may be some planning involved. Each one of these concepts allows you to measure your progress and fill in the gaps. When you are able to see concrete numbers and plans that are shown below, you are able to make the adjustments necessary to move you closer to your goals rather than leading you blindly.
- Know your numbers
Do you know how many calories you are taking in each day? How about the number of calories you need per day in order for you to lose weight? No clue? This is where an app like MyFitnessPal can come into play. Regardless of if you have an iPhone or Android device, in the respective app store you will find a free download of the app.
This app is a great way to figure out your numbers and get yourself on track. If you don’t know how many calories you are taking in each day, the chances of you staying under your maintenance intake is slim to none. The app will help break down your calories as well as your macros to give you a better understanding of where you are at any given point of the day and what you need in order to hit your caloric and macro goals.
Also in the app, you are able to input your weight and body fat as well and have it track your progress. It will produce a graph of your progress over time so you can see how you are progressing with your weight loss goals. MyFitnessPal takes the guesswork out of things and even allows you to scan barcodes when you are tracking the foods that you eat—making the app extremely user-friendly. You can’t ensure you’re on track without knowing where you are with your numbers.
Livestrong also has a similar app which can additionally be used on devices such as the Apple iWatch (similar to MyFitnessPal). The app can be found in the various app stores for free and mimics many of the same features mentioned above. One cool feature is that you are able to view short workouts on the app to follow. This is an added benefit if you aren’t sure where to start or if you are looking for something new to try. This app gives you another option to choose from in order to help you reach your goals.
- Prior proper planning prevents poor performance
Meal planning is extremely important to your success, especially if you are the type of person who has problems losing weight and finds themselves eating unhealthy food choices more often than not. Many times, individuals find themselves roaming through the kitchen looking for something to eat in a hurry. We’ve all been there. You open the fridge and can’t seem to find something you want to eat. You know you should find a healthy item, but your stomach is rumbling and yelling at you to just grab something. Generally, this leads to consuming an unhealthy food option. You walk over to the pantry, find a bag of chips, and devour handful after handful until reality hits you that this should be the last thing you’re eating to hit your goals. We get it, you aren’t alone. But, there is a solution—meal planning. And it’s easier than you’d imagine.
When you meal prep (possibly on Sunday’s for the entire week ahead or at least part of the week), you have the ability to have healthy meals readily available to be consumed at any given time. The idea is to prevent the need to “figure out” what you’re going to eat for a meal. If it’s ready and prepared, there’s no excuse to stray away from your plan.
This can be especially important for those of you who always seem to be on the go and frequent fast food restaurants to grab a quick bite to eat. By having meals ready to go on a whim, you’ll never have the excuse of needing to stop at a fast food joint for a meal. Simply pack however many meals you will need for the day in a cooler and out the door you go, ready to get after the day.
It’s ideal to pack meals in something such as Tupperware, or something that keeps the meals confined and sealed to prevent spilling as well as maintain freshness. If your Tupperware has sections, that will also make it easier to put full meals together without everything mixing together if it gets moved around in a bag or cooler during transport or accidentally knocked over.
- Incorporate compound movements
A compound movement is an exercise that involves more than one muscle group. For example, the squat is a movement that works the entire lower body in one single exercise. This is different than an isolation exercise such as the leg extension that only hits the quadriceps and negates the hamstrings and calves. More muscle activation means more calories burned. More calories burned means more fat being used as energy.
Try to incorporate as many compound movements such as the squat, deadlift, bench press, and standing shoulder press as you can in each workout to optimize your time in the gym, get stronger, and get lean. If you plan on combining compound exercises with isolation exercises during a workout, complete the compound exercises first when you are fresh, and finish off your workout with the isolation movements. This will ensure you will have the most strength and gas in the tank to complete the core, more difficult compound movements before moving onto other areas of your workout.
- HIIT it hard
While not everyone is a fan of cardio, it’s a necessary evil in order to help lose fat and get lean. The problem arises when old school thinking comes into play where everyone believes they need to live on the treadmill or bike all day in order to burn fat effectively. Thanks to the advent of HIIT cardio, you don’t need to stay on a piece of cardio equipment for 60 minutes to burn fat. With HIIT (high intensity interval training), you have the ability to burn body fat nearly 50% more effectively than a low intensity steady state (LISS) and in less time. HIIT also gives your metabolism a boost which will help you not only burn more calories when engaging in HIIT cardio, but also throughout the rest of the day as well (even while at rest).
If pounding the pavement outside and enjoying nature is your thing, an example of your HIIT cardio session can be something as simple as sprinting for 30 seconds, followed by a recovery walk for 60 seconds. This cycle can be repeated 10 times to fulfill a 15-minute HIIT cardio workout. The premise of HIIT is to have intervals of high intensity (near maximal levels) as well as lower (more along the lines of active recovery) intensity combined into one intense session. Time is valuable, and with HIIT cardio, you are able to minimize your time spent exercising while maximizing your results.
To make things even easier, there is an app called Seconds—Interval Timer for HIIT, Tabata Training by Runloop Ltd. It allows you to set up the number of sets you want to complete, how long you want your active and recovery phases to be, and can even assign music to intervals or play it in the background during your workout.
- Drink like a fish
No, we aren’t talking about asking the bartender for another round. Instead, we are talking about proper hydration through the help of H2O (water). Dehydration can not only affect mental cognition, but it can also trick your body into thinking it’s hungry. The average human adult body is made up of on average around 60% water. Things such as your heart and brain are made up of around 73% water, and your lungs are around 83%. Simply put, your body can’t function without water.
Consuming enough water throughout the day (especially post workout after you’ve worked up a sweat) is extremely important. Drinking water throughout the day can help boost your metabolism, help you feel satiated and minimize hunger, cleanse your body from waste and toxins, and will also help with water retention and bloating. Get lean and help burn fat by staying well hydrated. Grab a water bottle and keep it with you. Sip from it throughout the day and fill it several times to ensure you are staying properly hydrated.
If you were interested in a simple app to help track your water intake, I would recommend something like Daily Water Balance Tracker by Grassapper LLC. It gives you up to date details on how much water you have consumed thus far (you input how much water you drank) for the day and how much more you need to reach your daily requirements. You are able to have customizable reminders set to alarm you of when you need to drink water to ensure you aren’t falling behind for the day. You are also able to check how you’ve been doing historically by checking your 7-day or 30-day review.
- Ergogenic aid with ErgoShred
When looking for a little extra boost, an edge to shed unwanted body fat that you’ve been storing, many will turn to fat burners. Why? Because they work—but not all of them. You need to be very careful when choosing a fat burner to help you achieve your specific weight and fat loss goals. Most fat burners on the market today include caffeine and other stimulants. This is added to enhance energy levels as well as endurance to aid in the performance of your workouts, allowing you to push a little harder and burn more calories. There are several other ingredients that can be added to help convert fat to a usable form of energy and even increase body temperature to aid in burning calories and fat.
With that being said, ErgoShred was designed with your fat burning goals in mind, and therefore ErgoGenix created a product with the ability to boost metabolism, decrease hunger, increase fat loss, and protect lean muscle mass from being broken down as an energy source.
The formula found in ErgoShred gives you everything you need in order to turn yourself into a fat burning machine. With the ability to give you sustained energy without a crash, you’ll be able to push yourself harder in the gym—allowing you to achieve your fat loss goals quicker. When looking to lose fat and get lean in a hurry, there’s nothing better than ErgoGenix ErgoShred. Add it to your regimen and start seeing and feeling the difference!