The problem in today's fitness industry isn't that there isn't enough fat loss information out there, it's the opposite — there's too much.
It all seems like it conflicts, everyone says different things. Most of them are wrong. For you, the reader, it can be frustrating and exhausting trying to sort through all of the crap out there.
It's the same with my in-person clients: The first thing any client ever asks me is always "what about this meal?" or "what if I ate this?"
Over six million people have come to this blog with searches like "What did ________ celebrity eat?" or "What is ________ celebrity's workout?"
Everyone wants to know what to do.
I'm going to give you the simple, clear, rules to the game, so you've got "what" handled now and forever. And having "what" handled, saves you time, energy, and gives you a short-cut to your fat loss results.
If you want to change your scale weight – it's all about quantity of food. If you want to impact how lean and "toned" you are, it's about getting stronger and eating better quality of food.
And if you want some combination of the two, maybe lower scale weight and getting leaner, you want to look at all three: Quanity of food, quality of food, and how strong you're getting in your workouts.
It's useful to look at it like this, especially since the cliché is the woman who thinks she needs to lose 10 pounds, but really could stay the same weight and just lean up — we wouldn't need to look at quantity very much, we'd be looking at quality of food and strength.
Or the guy who needs to lose 30 pounds — he doesn't need to be nearly as concerned about quality (at first) or even strength, so much as just getting his quantity of food under control.
While each client may need to look at all three a little bit, I'm a big fan of focusing on what the one thing that's going to get you the biggest results right now.
So lets take a look at the three elements, in the order people normally ask:
Workouts are 1/3 of the equation. The mistake people make is that they treat the workouts like they are the whole deal.
The #1 thing you need to know about your workouts: They should be reasonable. It's about doing workouts that are maintainable for the long term.
Workouts that crush you are totally unnecessary for fat loss. And worse, really ass-kicking workouts trick you into thinking you don't need to work on the food.
Your main workout focus should be getting stronger: Harder pushup variations, heavier kettlebells for squats and swings, getting your first pull-up, deadlifting more, ect.
That being said, there's really no hurry. If you add a rep here and a rep there, and move up a kettlebell size in a few months, that's all you need to do. Because of the big jumps between kettlebells, adding reps is a great way to bridge the gap and measure progress.
Lastly, it's a smart idea to periodize workouts. If all you did was do easier workouts at the beginning of each month, and harder workouts at the end of the month, that would be a smart way to periodize your workout program. Simple: Do less sets of each exercise the first week, and add a set each week, doing the most sets at the end of the month. Then re-start the cycle the next month.
The body responds really well to cycles of intensity and volume. The body will crash and burn if you try to kill yourself in the gym all of the time.
Getting stronger is about getting you leaner.
2.) Quantity of Food
This one is a loaded topic, because the media is stupid and cruel. Magazines, books, TV, internet — everyone wants to tell you that quantity doesn't matter. They do this to sell magazines, books, and TV shows.
They come up with sensational headlines, because if you watch they get advertisers. If you click, they get ad revenue. It's about getting you to look, it's not about educating you.
If if was about educating you, they would all say this: Every bit of research we've ever had on losing weight shows clearly and indisputably that the only factor in losing scale weight is how much food you eat.
Quanitity of food is about scale weight.
3.) Quality of Food
This has become a ridiculous hornets nest the last couple years. So lets simplify A LOT.
There are no black and white rules. It's a continuum.
If you eat fast food for lunch every day, you don't need to worry about going gluten-free or zero carb. Maybe just focus on making yourself a sandwhich.
If you having trouble working protein into your diet, you don't need to worry about going 100% Paleo. Maybe just look at adding some eggs or cottage cheese or greek yogurt to your breakfast. Even a protein shake (gasp!) would be a good step forward.
If you haven't eating a green vegetable since you were 8 years old, you don't need a vegan juice fast. Maybe buy some frozen broccoli, and add it to a meal once in a while.
I've gotten clients results on EVERY popular diet out there right now. I actually don't care which one you like, they all work.
We ease our way into better quality a little bit at a time. People get GREAT results adjusting quality in stages.
Whatever you think the "perfect diet" is (again, it doesn't matter which one), you don't need to be at the perfect diet next week. You just need to take one small step closer to it.
I'll tell you a dirty little secret — my clients take one step closer to perfect every week… and most of them they hit their body composition goals before they ever get to the "perfect".
Quality is about getting leaner.
So Now That You Know What, Focus on How
Now that we've got the "what" completely clear, we can get to actually making a difference for you — and that's all "how".
We can start to dig in on how the leanest people don't get distracted by the newest diet (what) or the newest workout (what), they put all of their energy into their food habits (how) and their workout schedule (how).
Focusing on minute details of what to do is actually a stalling technique. The more time you spend on little details, the farther you'll be from your goals.
People who are rockstar lean don't have any diet secrets, they have better habits. And so we're going to dig in on what it looks like to work on your habits. Which is why I love the hashtag #habitsnotdiets
Now that you're clear on what – you can focus on the only game worth playing — changing your diet habits.
We're Give Away Free Chapter of Fat Loss Happens on Monday
Most people fail because they take on too many habits or they take on the wrong habits. We'll show you exactly what the right habit is for you, and how you can actually make it work in your life.
Obviously it's THE book on diet habits. Really cool, it's already #5 on Amazon's weight training chart, and it isn't even out yet!
Fat Loss Happens on Monday will be released on Friday, November 28th. We're doing a package and a sale on the On Target Publishing website.
For those that don't know, Laree (up to the right) is my amazing editor!
Also features, of course, the Legendary Dan John. Getting to do a book with one of the most respected strength coaches in the world was pretty awesome =)
Fat Loss Happens on Monday is available for pre-order now – click here to pre-order