People join gyms for lots of reasons. Some people want to be fit and healthy enough to be able to play and enjoy time with their children without being out of breath after 5 minutes.
Some join so they can create a body that causes their partners jaw to drop to the floor (Come on admit it, no one is judging here!).
However, a lot of peoples primary reason for joining the gym is because they’ve become disillusioned with how they look physically and want to lose body fat.
No matter what your goal is, it hurts me like you wouldn’t believe if after a period of time people say they haven’t achieved their goal and don’t know where/what to do next.
Each and every person that comes to S&P, we want to help you achieve your goal just as much as you want to achieve it.
I wanted to write this piece to provide some information which may be holding you back in your attempt to drop the body fat and help you get on the right road to achieving your goal.
- Your not eating enough calories
I wanted to start off with one of the least obvious to some people. When people start off on their road to dropping the body fat, they literally cut down to eating 500 – 1,000 calories a day.
Whilst initially (if your lucky), this might help lose a few lbs here and there, but soon enough you will crash high speed into a brick wall and wonder what the hell has happened?
You see when we drastically cut calories out of our food intake, our metabolism basically begins to shut down. By doing this, it becomes very difficult for our bodies to shift body fat as it begins to hold onto every little scrap of food to survive and perform everyday bodily functions.
For the majority of people, cutting out ALL the processed crap replacing it with high quality protein, good sources of carbohydrates and fats (Yes, I did say fats, not all of them are bad for us) and drinking more water for a consistent period of time alongside a good training programme will yield the results your looking for.
Do this truthfully for 4 weeks and get back to me if theres no progress, then we can look more in depth at what needs to be done!
2. Your drinking too many protein shakes
This one is mainly for the fellas, a lot of the time I get asked what is the best protein shake to have. For some reason us guys think that the answer to our problems lies within a serving of protein powder mixed with water or milk.
Your average person requires between 0.8 – 1g of protein per lb of bodyweight. So, for a 80kg man this is around 176g of protein a day.
Your average scoop of protein powder has around 18-20g of protein in. You tell me how you think this small serving of protein powder is going to make you look like the Rock or for our girls, Beyonce.
Remember what protein powder is, its a supplement to our nutrition. Give me someone who follows the cleanest nutrition plan in the world with no supplements vs the person who has the worst diet and the best supplements. There is only one winner.
Have one shake after training, anything else is unnecessary for people wanting to lose weight.
3. Your not managing stress properly
Forgive me if this point sounds like me telling you how to manage your life. You probably have one or multiple areas that require your attention/love/consideration on a day to day basis such as partners, children, work, bills etc.
Sometimes these areas become a lot for us to deal with successfully and our bodies produce a hormone called cortisol during these stressful periods. High cortisol levels lead to increased body fat storage.
Dealing with stress has to become part of our daily lifestyle to combat the negative effects it can have on our progress. Theres multiple ways of helping lower your cortisol levels and its about finding which ones we find the most beneficial to us, for example…
- Learn to say no
- Cut out the negative people in your life
- Make time for laughter every day, life is too short
- Get regular massages
- Schedule more time with friends
- Turn the lights down and listen to The Weeknd
4. Your not getting enough sleep
Another area which can lead to an increase in the hormone cortisol is a lack of sleep.
Sleep is a critical part of the process as when we are resting our bodies are recovering and repairing.
Getting better sleep makes us feel better within ourselves. Feeling better within ourselves then helps us perform better whether thats at work, the gym or in life.
- Avoid caffeine after 12pm
- Turn down the lights in your house once dark outside
- Make bedroom as dark as possible
- Make sure your the proud owner of a good bed. We spend around 1/3 of our life in bed, so may as well have a good one!
- Don’t look at your phone/computer 2 hours before bed (I’m still working on this one!)
Sleep is usually the easiest area to get right and can have a compound effect on your results.
5. Stop looking for the latest fad
Losing weight doesn’t happen overnight I’m sorry to say. How long did it take you to get to where you are now?
I’m willing to bet it didn’t happen over the last week. So why do we think that we’re going to reach our desired level in a such a short amount of time.
Adopt a lifestyle change, not a quick fix.
A quick fix (Juice plus, Herbalife, any other shitty short term solution) will always rebound in a horrific way and put any weight you lost, back on. Think about it why haven’t these solutions been around a long time?
There nothing scientifically special about them at the end of the day. They will be replaced by the next fad at some point and the cycle will continue.
Your better than all of that shit and I want you to live a better life than one which is based around juice drinks
6. Stop moaning and making excuses
This is my biggest pet hate! I should have made this number 1 really, quit all the excuse making and commit to the process.
The moment you make the decision to make your life better is the moment you should clear all negativity from your mindset. Nothing positive comes from being in a negative mindset.
Fuck your excuses.
Be truthful and honest to yourself.
Honestly if we could step back and hear ourselves when we talk like this, we would be ashamed. I see training especially at a place like S&P a privilege and the majority of the people I see achieve results have a positive mindset and work their arses off without ever complaining.
I’ll give you an example of one of our very own. Matt Shanahan. I remember when he walked through the door for the first time.
His positivity was breathtaking. He comes into the gym each and every session, inspires, motivates and trains like theres no tomorrow. If he was ever having a bad day, he wouldn’t show it.
His results speak for themselves, he has BECOME one of the strongest guys in the gym, is dropping body fat and continues to be one of the most humble guys I have met.
Think about the effect your positivity can have on the people around you. A simple “Come on Dave, crush this next set” can play wonders to somebodies application to their training and the vibe will spread
7. Track Progress
Such an easy thing to do. At the start of your journey take some photographs of yourself, note what you can currently do (how many press ups? Chin ups? Good quality bodyweight squats? etc) then after a period of time you can look back on them and see what progress has been made.
The worst thing to do is to start something and not have any recollection of where you have come from.
Sometimes you see people feeling disheartened about their so called lack of progress, but if they had tracked from the start they would have realised they had lost a considerable amount of body fat, can now perform a couple of chin ups and 10 good quality bodyweight squats.
8. Your training too much
I’m going to stick my neck on the line a little here, some of you guys are training far too much.
I’ve spoken to guys in the past and they train 3 times a week at S&P, 5 times a week at a commercial gym, jog round Stockport twice a week and then swim 100 lengths at their local pool on the weekend.
Think about how much stress this exercise is putting on your body? How can your body perform at its best in the gym when its never at 100%.
Training so much also means that you begin to neglect important areas which play a key role in dropping body fat like we have touched upon. You have less time to buy/cook meals. You spend less time with your family and your stress levels increase as you worry about your lack of time with them. You can see where I’m going with it.
If the overload of training isn’t helping you produce the results you want, go back to training HARD 3 times a week.
9, 10, 11, 12..… Believe and Follow The Plan
I want this point to stand out and stick in your mind.
Your very fortunate that your training programmes are produced by one of the very best group of guys working in this industry in the UK.
Fat loss is very simple process. People just struggle to stick to the steps as their such a drastic change to their usual lifestyle.
Wait, you mean I have to stop eating a takeaway every Saturday and Sunday? Yes
Hold on, your saying I have to consistently train 3 times a week and give it my all? Damm right
Be the person who never misses a meal. Goes to bed earlier to give your body more time recovering and repairing for the next training session. Spend more time performing some form of recovery technique every day such as massage, hot baths, stretching/soft tissue work.
A lot of the changes sound simple to do in writing, but they separate the winners and the losers in the battle against body fat.
Heres the basics to nail every single week! Get these consistently right and we can begin to build:
- Eat quality protein sources at every meal
- Drink plenty of water every single day
- Sleep 8-10 hours
- Train hard 3-4 times a week
- Expend more calories than you consume
- Stress less
- Cut out the processed crap from your calorie intake
Your training represents an hour of your 24 hour day. The rest of your day is dictated by the choices you make.
I hope this helps you guys, like I say it sounds very simple in writing. But, its up to you to implement this in your life and reap the benefits that it represents. Once you find some consistency, theres a snowball effect and you will become unstoppable!
Any questions or anything that you would like more clarity on, don’t hesitate to leave a message below.
(S&P Body Transformation Coach)
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