Thursday, August 16, 2007.
By Raphael Calzadilla
Have you been trying to lose body fat, but find it comes off about as fast as the walking pace of a turtle? It's time to make changes and get things moving in the right direction - downward that is.
I never recommend losing more than 1 to 2 pounds per week. The first few weeks of a diet you might lose more than that due to loss of water from decreased carbohydrates. However, within 2 weeks it should scale back to about 1.5 per week or so - some weeks a bit lower and others a tad higher. That's a lot of fat loss in the course of one year.
Even if you haven't been consistent, I have some metabolism-boosting tips that should help ignite some good, steady fat loss.
1. Eat breakfast - I'm always amazed at the amount of people who think they're doing the right thing by skipping breakfast. I always stress to my clients to think of the body from the inside out. The human body's main goal is survival. If it senses any type of emergency, it will do everything in its power to keep you alive.
If you sleep through the night and then deprive the body of food in the morning, what do you think the body is sensing at this point? That's right; it senses a potential famine and then holds onto stored body fat to keep you alive. I'm not exaggerating this point - this is exactly what happens. Remember, calories from food represent heat. Use the heat to rev your metabolism.
2. Increase your meal frequency - I want you to eat more often, but don't increase your total calories. For example, if you eat three times per day, break those three meals into 5-6 smaller meals and eat every three hours. Food can actually help burn body fat when it's used strategically.
When you eat a large meal, such as a big bowl of pasta, you raise your blood-sugar levels and the body increases its level of insulin. This only serves to make you fat! If you break your meals into smaller feedings it helps to control blood sugar - this puts you in a better position to lose fat.
3. Cycle calories - This is a technique I've used with several clients with amazing success. For three days, consume your minimum calorie requirement based on your height, weight and goals. Then, on day number four, increase your calories by an additional 400 (nutritious foods only).
For example, if you're losing fat by consuming 1,200 calories per day, simply raise your calories to 1,600 on day number four. This technique can actually get the metabolism racing and stimulate additional fat loss. Just remember the additional calories should come from good sources of protein, carbohydrates and fats - not pizza.
4. Drink lots of water - Remember what I said about thinking of the body from the inside out? Muscles and other tissues are made of approximately 80 percent water. If you limit your water intake, the body will retain water and make you feel like the “queen or king of bloat.” We all know how absolutely awful it feels to be bloated.
It doesn't take much for this to happen - the body only needs to be dehydrated by approximately 2 percent for this to take place. Drink 20 ml per pound of your body weight per day. Staying hydrated will release some excess water trapped in the body and most likely reduce your weight by a few pounds.
5. Break up your workout - Many people are pressed for time and the thought of exercise becomes another stress in their lives. With family responsibilities, work, financial pressures, etc., the thought of exercise is like a weight on their shoulders. However, research has proven that two short bouts of exercise per day will actually stimulate the metabolism more than one longer bout. Go for a brisk 15-minute walk first thing in the morning before work and then another one at lunchtime. Do this for 5 days per week and I know you'll see progress at the end of 30 days.
6. Exercise in the morning - If you can fit it into your schedule, exercise in the morning. People who exercise consistently in the morning find that exercise at this time regulates their appetite all day long. They don't get as hungry, and they start the day with a boost to the metabolism.
7. Perform cardio interval training - cardio interval training is simply short bursts of high-intensity exercise combined with more moderate intensity within the same workout. Studies have shown people who perform interval training twice a week (in addition to two other days of lower-intensity cardio) lose twice as much weight as those who do just a moderate cardio workout.
You can easily incorporate interval training into your workout by inserting a 45-second burst into your stationary-bike workout every four to five minutes. You can also add a 45-second super brisk walk to your treadmill workout in the same time frame.
Your body will be working harder and will be forced to burn more calories. In addition, you won't need more than 25 total minutes for your workout. Try to get two additional days during the week of lower-intensity cardio as well.
8. Drink green tea - Green tea has numerous health benefits, including weight loss. It's not 100 percent certain how green tea helps one to lose fat, but it appears to increase the amount of calories the body burns - not necessarily because of the small amounts of caffeine it contains but because of a compound abbreviated as EGCG.
Try several of these easy-to-use tips and start getting your fat-burning metabolism revved.
With thanks to Tescoediets.
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