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As a Trainer we need to be more inventive these days in coming up with high intensity workouts that burn a large amount of calories and really give the metabolism a boost. I have seen it first hand and how this can help speed up the fat loss within a given amount of time. But as you begin to utilize higher intensity workouts, you have to start being on guard for overtraining or overuse injuries. That’s why strict nutrition with an aggressive calorie deficit is going to have to be a major part of any fast fat loss strategy. Unfortunately, very low calorie dieting has its own risks in the way of lean tissue loss, slower metabolism, extreme hunger, and greater chance of weight re-gain.
My approach with clients to long term weight control is to lose weight slowly and patiently and follow a nutrition plan that is well balanced between lean protein, healthy fats and natural carbs and doesn’t demonize any entire food group. To lose fat, you simply create a caloric deficit by burning more and eating less (keeping the nutrient density of those calories as high as possible, of course).
Helen followed the realfit program and got great results !
But to achieve the extraordinary goals such as photo-shoot-ready, super-low body fat or simply faster than average fat loss, while minimizing the risks, I often turn to a stricter cyclical low carb diet for brief “peaking” programs. I explain this method in my e-book.
The cyclical aspect of the diet means that after three to six days of an aggressive calorie deficit and strict diet, you take a high calorie / high carb day to re-feed the body and re-stimulate the metabolism. Essentially, this helps reduce the starvation signals your body is receiving. It’s also a psychological break from the deprivation which helps improve compliance and prevent relapse.
The higher protein intake can help prevent lean tissue loss and curb the hunger. A high protein diet also helps by ramping up dietary thermogenesis. A high intake of greens, fibrous vegetables and low calorie fruits can help tip the energy balance equation in your favor as fibrous veggies are very low in calorie density and some of the calories in the fiber are not metabolizable. Healthy fats are added in adequate quantities, while the calorie-dense simple sugars and starchy carbs are kept to a minimum except on refeed days and after (or around) intense workouts.
Remember that there’s no magic in faster fat loss, just math. All the new-fangled dietary manipulations and high intensity training programs that really do help increase the speed of fat loss all come full circle to the calorie balance equation in the end, even if they claim their method works for other reasons and they don’t mention calories burned or consumed at all yes faster fat loss IS possible. My question is, are you willing to tolerate the hunger, low calories and high intensity exercise for that kind of deficit? Do you have the work ethic? Do you have the supreme level of dietary restraint necessary to stop yourself from bingeing and putting the weight right back on when that aggressive diet is over? Or would you rather do it in a more moderate way where you’re not killing yourself, but instead are making slow and steady lifestyle changes and taking off 1-2 lbs of pure fat per week, while keeping all your hard-earned muscle?