If your goal is to lose the maximum amount of fat in the shortest period of time then I highly recommend training with weights at least three times per week. Why weight training? Well, there are several reasons:
Your workouts will not be boring. Doing cardio five days per week is not fun.
Each workout is challenging. You keep pushing your body further.
The workouts are much more demanding in terms of energy when compared to other types of training. At the end of the day fat loss is all about energy in and energy out. Instead of wasting your time and energy on doing exercises that make you burn small amounts of energy you should focus instead on performing big compound movements. Big compound movements such as squats, deadlifts, or bench press make large muscle groups work really hard. The bigger the muscle is the more energy it needs, therefore if you will focus on doing big compound exercises you will burn more energy which eventually means that you will lose fat quicker if your diet is in place!
Do cardio after your workouts
A lot of fitness gurus claim that the best way to get rid of unwanted body fat is to do cardio before your actual weight training workouts, but from my experience, I can tell that this is a big load of crap. You want to do cardio immediately after your weight training sessions because after an intensive weight training workout your glycogen stores (the main source of energy for your body) will be deleted and your body will be starving for more energy. If you will maintain moderate demands for energy by doing light cardio you will force your body to look for other, alternative, sources of energy – fats that are stored throughout your whole body. In a nutshell, by doing cardio after your workouts you will force your body to burn body fat.
Consume some whey protein immediately after your workouts
Proteins are building blocks of everything within your body: your skin, your nails, your hair, and most importantly your muscle tissue. When trying to lose weight you want to make sure that you give your body enough building materials otherwise you risk losing lean muscle mass. Trust me that is not the weight that you want to lose!
How many times you have seen or at least heard about people who have followed a very low-calorie diet for a long period of time and although they have managed to lose weight according to scale they essentially looked the same. This has happened because these people did not provide their bodies with enough nutrients.
Do not train small muscle groups
A lot of people who are new to fitness think that the best way to get rid of fat from specific parts of their bodies is to do a lot of isolated exercises that target those specific areas of their bodies where fat is accumulated. The fact is that fat loss cannot be localized! There are so many fitness gurus who claim that you can lose body fat from specific parts of your body, but the fact is that is all BS (well.. unless you are planning to visit a plastic surgeon).
Instead of focusing on doing small isolated exercises focus on big compound exercises.
Analyze your usual eating habits
It does not matter whether you want to get rid of belly fat or gain lean muscle mass nutrition is the single most important thing in fitness and simply by analyzing your usual eating habits, you can get a clear picture of why you have gained all of this unwanted body fat.
The fact is that the main reason why people gain body fat is simply because of bad eating habits. Over years they give their bodies too much energy which comes in a form of calories and this excess energy is transformed into fat that is later on stored throughout the whole body.
To start burning body fat you need to decrease your daily energy intake and one of the best ways to take your first step is to simply analyze your usual eating habits.
Simply grab a piece of paper and a pen, and track at least for a day what do you usually eat. Try to write down exactly how many calories, carbohydrates, fats, and proteins you are getting per day. At the end of the day, you will have a clear picture of your usual eating habits and these are the same eating habits that made you gain all of that body fat.
Now the next step you should take is to simply analyze the foods that you eat and try to intuitively take out the stuff that shouldn’t be there. I am talking about foods that are packed with useless calories, foods that contain a lot of simple sugars, and foods that contain a lot of fats.
Figure how many calories does your body actually need per day
Once you will have a clear picture of your usual eating habits the next step you should take is to figure out how much energy does your body actually needs per day. Simply use Google to find calculators to figure out the exact number of calories that you need per day and then compare this figure to your usual eating habits. I am guessing that with your usual diet you give your body way more energy than it actually needs!
At this point, all you need to do is simply adjust your eating habits so they would match the amount of energy that your body actually needs.
On off days to cardio first thing in the morning
Just like with doing cardio after your weight training sessions on your rest days you want to do light cardio first thing in the morning. Why?
Because for eight hours you have been fasting (sleeping) and during this period your glycogen stores got depleted yet again and when your glycogen stores are depleted your body is forced to look for alternative sources of energy. If you will manage to maintain high demands for the energy you will force your body to burn body fat.
Save your money and do not buy fat loss pills
Intuitively you might think that supplements play a major role in fat loss, but that is not the case. In fact, supplements are responsible for a small fraction of the results that you experience and this is why I highly recommend saving your money and do not spend money on fat loss pills.
Fat loss is all about energy in and energy out. Do you really think that by popping some pills you will magically lose weight? Of course not. That is why you need to focus on stuff that works and move one step at a time.
Use F.I.T.T. to avoid a plateau
There will be periods when you will hit a plateau: the weight on the scales will not be going down and in front of the mirror, you will keep looking the same. If this occurs make sure that you apply the FITT principle to your workouts. FITT stands for frequency, intensity, time, and type.
Essentially when trying to get in shape you never want your body to get used to your new diet or your new training program. You want to keep your body guessing and one of the best ways to do is to either increase the frequency of your workouts, intensity of your workouts, length of your workouts, or type of your workouts.
Have a clear fitness goal
I know that at this point you are probably thinking that all these body contouring services ‘shenanigans’, but the fact is that just like in any kind of sport, goal setting in fitness is very important. A lot of people only want to ‘lose weight’ or ‘get in shape’. The fact is that these are very vague and broad goals that will not help you to track your progress. Instead, you should clearly write down your fitness goals which could look something like this “Before 23rd of March I will decrease my levels of the body from 24% to 10% by training three times per week. By 23rd I will weigh healthy 172 pounds.”
This kind of goal will keep you focused.
Drink plenty of water
This one is simple. You are essentially made out of water. Every cell, every tissue within your body is mainly made out of water and you want to make sure that while you are dieting and while you are training hard you avoid dehydration by all means. You want to make sure that your organism runs smoothly and efficiently.
Remember that fat loss is all about energy in and energy out
This is probably the longest article I have ever written and to conclude it I would like to repeat that fat loss is all about energy in and energy out. Try to avoid complicated workout plans and complex diets and instead focus on basic eating and training principles. Focus on the stuff the works, take baby steps, move one step at a time and you will lose weight.