For the last few decades losing weight was all about restricting food intake and adding lots of low intensity long duration activities in the hope of forcing our body to use up its fat stores.
We have all been conditioned by the billion dollar weight loss industry to believe that it was all about losing weight and it did not matter much as to what sort of weight that was as long as the scales were coming down and saying lower numbers.
But now we know better and understand that weight loss is not necessarily fat loss. There is a big difference – one is made up of fat, muscle tissue and water (weight) and the other is just body fat which when reduced solely is what is going to give us a tight sleek body.
If we just lose weight we tend to end up weak and flabby from the loss of precious muscle tissue and body fluids and feel awful in the process.
A fat loss program is not a weight loss program
Losing excess body fat is very different kettle of fish from just losing weight. A modern fat loss program focuses on balancing fat storing/fat burning hormones and is all about creating a healthy fat burning metabolism (the body’s engine) to burn excess fat from the body. To achieve this the quality of food in a fat loss program is very important. Nutrient dense foods are favored along with quality protein which is the basis of each of 4-6 small meals eaten every 2-3 hours.
You will even be eating more food than you think you should be but the reason for this is to boost your metabolism (your body’s engine) as it has to work much harder to process nutrient rich natural foods.
On a fat loss program processed non-nutrient foods are reduced or eliminated as it has been well proven the chemicals and additives used in food processing play havoc with the delicate appetite regulation hormones. Packaged, prepared foods work against our fat burning processes as they increase food cravings which make eating right much more difficult.
You can never call a fat loss program a diet in the sense that it involves harsh food restriction. Calories are reduced but only a fraction – maybe a hundred or two each day so you hardly notice it. The idea is to increase calorie burning through the use of proper strengthening exercise to tone up weak flabby muscles that have low energy requirements.
A fat loss program is about making your body more efficient at fat burning
You want your firm toned muscles back in the game working for you again like little factory workers gobbling up the excess fat every minute of the day and night. No matter whether you are exercising or simply horizontal on the couch watching TV or even sleeping they will be burning up to 15 percent more fuel (calories) each day.
This is how you will not only lose that excess fat weight but keep it off for the long term. On the old fashioned weight loss program the restriction of food was so cruel that the diet left one weak and tired after a couple of weeks. Sure the scales may have showed a large initial drop but once you fell off the diet (and we all did) the weight came back quicker than you ever believed possible as your body grabbed all the excesses it could and stored them in case you did some dumb dieting again.
A proper fat loss program is something that can be lived with long term and fits into your lifestyle without any major changes. A couple of strength training sessions each week will soon tone you up and boost metabolism and your small healthy meal plan will give you plenty of energy to do justice to your exercise program and put a some effort into it.
The best thing about a proper fat loss program is that is always gives you more, more food, more energy, more strength and more results. A weight loss diet on the other hand is about less, less food, less energy, less strength and a whole lot of misery.
Why we gain fat in the first place
As we age, our bodies tend to lose muscle mass. Without the proper exercise and nutrition, a person typically loses 5-10 pounds of muscle every decade after the age of 25 or so. If you are losing muscle, but maintaining your weight, you are actually just trading muscle for fat. So for most people, even maintaining the same weight you had a decade ago means you are losing ground. Your body is gaining fat and losing muscle, even if your weight isn’t changing.
The best thing about a proper fat loss program is that is always gives you more, more food, more energy, more strength and more results. A weight loss diet on the other hand is about less, less food, less energy, less strength and a whole lot of misery. Even worse, it takes less energy for your body to maintain a pound of fat than a pound of muscle.
So if you are losing muscle mass and gaining fat, it takes less and less food to maintain your weight. This makes it that much harder to even keep that number on the scale steady, much less actually build the body you want.
Clearly, you need to take a different approach to this problem. Your goal has to be to burn fat, rather than lose weight. Why? When you look at people with lean trim bodies, you are looking at someone who has a very low amount of body fat. The way they do this is by working out very hard, not by dieting.
The leanest people out there all exercise very hard. They work out long enough and hard enough to force their bodies to draw on fat reserves for fuel. They literally burn fat for fuel, pulling it out of the bodies storage areas and use it to power their workouts.
Combined with appropriate eating, the result is that they lose body fat. And here’s an added bonus. The kinds of workouts that do this best (think strength training) also force your body to strengthen your muscles. And that takes energy, which means their bodies burn fat to do the work even after the workout is over.
And there’s yet another bonus. The additional toned muscle tissue their bodies build to requires extra calories to maintain itself. So their bodies burn more calories round the clock, even when they are not working out. That makes it easier for them to stay lean as they have turbo charged their metabolism.
What the bathroom scales tell you about Fat loss, Weight loss or Inch Loss
1. The number on the scale includes everything – muscles, fat, bones, organs, fat, food and water. For that reason, your scale weight can be a deceptive number.
2. If you are doing proper strength training exercise, you may build lean muscle tissue at the same time you are losing fat. In that case, the scale may not change even though you are getting leaner and slimmer.
3. As mentioned above, the scale can’t tell the difference between fat and muscle. That means a person can have a low body weight, but still have unhealthy levels of body fat.
4. If you step on the scale and you are unhappy with what you see, how does that make you feel?
You may question everything you are doing, wondering why you even bother at all. Focusing on weight may overshadow the positive results you are getting such as fat loss, more endurance and higher energy levels.
There is a big difference between losing weight and losing fat. Your goal should never be to lose weight, but instead should always be to lose fat. When you lose weight, you lose a little bit of everything – fat, muscle, fluids, and organ size. You want the majority of your weight loss to come from fat, not the other stuff. If you are only concerned with seeing a smaller number on the scale, you may be losing valuable muscle instead, which will result in long-term weight – meaning fat – gain.
Body fat testing
To determine whether you are losing weight or fat, perform a body fat test. If you are a female who weighs 150 pounds, with 35 percent fat, you’re carrying around more than 52 pounds of fat. Ideally, a healthy woman will be around 25 percent fat, or about 37 pounds, so a loss of 15 pounds of fat would be required to reach a healthier level. Say you lost 20 pounds total, but only 10 pounds of it came from fat stores. You would still be at an unhealthy 32 percent fat. To reach the 25 percent body fat level, all 20 pounds must come from fat.
Dehydration not real weight loss
One of the quickest weight loss tricks that has nothing to do with fat loss is from being dehydrated. If you lose weight because you are dehydrated, you have only lost water, and those pounds will come right back. Don’t fool yourself into thinking those pounds are really gone. You still have just as much fat on your body as before. In fact, without hydration, the muscles will shrivel up because water keeps them plump and vital, leaving you lighter, but without any energy or strength.
Gain muscle to burn fat
When losing weight, the way to lose just fat is by adding strength training into your fitness program. Don’t try to lose weight simply by performing ‘cardio’ type activity. The pounds you lose through cardio will come right back if you stop the cardio without muscle mass to keep the weight off.
Don’t worry about bulking up or gaining too much muscle. For the majority of the population, it’s simply not a concern. When you add toned muscle tissue, you improve the body fat composition ratio, which is the main goal. Keep in mind the big appearance we so dislike is caused by too much fat, not by too much muscle. Muscle is your friend and the number one tool to fight against excess body fat so always keep that in mind.
When you begin performing strength-training exercise regularly your muscles will firm up. Muscle tissue weighs more than fatty tissue, so you may lose inches while toning but not lose pounds. It may be because you have gained more toned muscle while losing fat, but your body will look more toned and trim.
Losing muscle slows metabolism
Losing weight other than fat is unavoidable, but the loss of muscle mass will cause a rebound effect that leads to weight gain. Muscle is metabolically active and lights your furnace, keeping your metabolism brisk and burning calories. Even when you are sitting on the couch, you burn more calories if you have more muscle mass on your frame. So losing muscle means your furnace slows down, your metabolism gets sluggish and the weight keeps on coming.
Lose fat to get healthy
Losing weight can leave you looking like a smaller version of a fat person because you have no muscle tone underneath your skin. To look like a fit, lean, healthy person, losing fat and having muscle is absolutely necessary. Hit the gym.
When you create your new strong, lean, slim, healthy body doing it the right way you will look and feel fantastic. And the best part is your body is going to be doing most of the work while you simply get on with your life. There is no better or effective way of reclaiming your feel-good slim body than a targeted fat loss program. The sooner you get started the sooner it will happen for you.
Isn’t it time to throw away all the false statements you’ve accepted about dieting and exercise and learn what it really takes to take weight off and keep it off for good…
“Rebound Free Weight-Loss” can help you do just that…
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