Ever wondered why after exhausting practically every approach in the rulebook, your body refuses to let go of those last few blobs of stubborn fat?
What could you possibly be doing wrong? You've got your diet dialed in, you're strictly following the plan prescribed by your personal trainer, you've even gone as far as to put a permanent ban on all comfort foods.
Even though the science of weight loss is evolving at a rapid pace, some folks do not get to reap the benefits. Can we squarely blame it on genetics or a lack of motivation perhaps? There is more to it than meets the eye.
Mixing it Up
While it holds true that each one of us is built differently, experimenting with certain parameters under the right circumstances, can yield remarkable results. Parameters like nutritional timing, time of workout, and varying your nutritional values at fixed intervals. To give you a better understanding, let's put that last one under the spotlight.
Take the Zig Zag Route
Stick to one particular exercise routine for too long, and naturally, your body adapts. It refuses to burn fat stores as effectively. While it's important to keep your body guessing and introducing variations from time to time, one co-factor that's often overlooked is how you're going to get your calories in.
Most of us know that carbohydrates are most readily available to burn for energy, then protein, and eventually stored fat. An interesting fact: fats, as opposed to carbs and proteins, are the densest in calories, and unless you're playing around correctly with the macronutrient values, you will not be tapping into those fat stores, ever!
Here is an example of how you get your body to burn calories more effectively, and using fat stores as energy:
Week 1 and 2 – You up the protein, lower the carbs, and increase healthy fats (EFAs, Omega 3s etc.) to compensate. We have a 50:30:20 ratio.
Week 3 – Increase the protein further, cut back on the carbs to induce a state of “ketosis” and increase healthy fats as well. This would look like 60:20:30.
Week 4 – Reduce the protein, increase complex carbs and keep fat ratios the same or lower. I.e. a 40:50:10 ratio.
By forcing the body to adapt and rely on varying values, you are keeping your metabolism fired up throughout the month.
Some Interesting Facts about Macronutrients
- A high protein diet, coupled with complex carbs and healthy fats gets your metabolism revving faster.
- Before and after workout, rely on a mix of fast digesting protein and carbs to keep your lean muscle tissue saturated, without gaining fat.
- Your nighttime meal should be an ideal mix of slow digesting protein, complex carbs, healthy fats and fiber.
Stop Beating Yourself Up
Hard dieting or simply starving yourself while working out like a mad man, will not only burn you out eventually, but it will also cause certain health and mood disorders as well as immune deficiencies. While we're on the subject, you should also know “spot reduction” is a myth and has no real benefits: you can now stop doing endless crunches and leg raises.