The Seven Secrets of Weight Loss
When embarking on a weight loss program people will almost always focus on just one or two of the seven necessary components needed to achieve their goal. In order to maximize ones weight loss results they must combine all seven components. I like to call these components the "Seven Secrets of Weight Loss" do to the fact that they are almost never explained in simplistic terms to the average person making them somewhat of a secret. Below you will find a brief description of the seven secrets that will help you achieve maximum weight loss.
Each of the seven secrets represents the seven necessary components needed to achieve maximum weight loss.
Secret #1 (Proper Mind Set)
A proper mind set is an essential part of any successful weight loss program. You must first ask yourself why losing this weight is important to you. Write it down so you can read it aloud to yourself every day. Make a commitment to yourself to follow through with what you start. Create a schedule for your meals and workouts. By scheduling something it will become reality. Without a proper mind set, a true commitment to succeed, and plan of action it will be very unlikely that you will reach your goal.
Secret #2 (Caloric Intake)
A decrease in caloric intake and an increase in daily activity will create a natural caloric deficit which is the foundation of all weight loss. Reducing your calories can be achieved by eating smaller portions, increasing the quality of your foods and eating small meals about every three hours to regulate blood sugar. The regulation of blood sugar levels will keep you from getting hungry and making poor food choices.
Protein portion sizes should be about the size of your palm. Carbohydrate portion sizes should be about the size of your clinched fist. Vegetable portions sizes should be about the size of a small handful. Combine a protein with a carbohydrate to make a small meal. Add a serving a vegetables to two of your meals. In addition it is recommended that you have an Omega 3 fatty acid food source with one meal per day. (See food quality for Omega 3 sources)
Secret #3 (Food Quality)
Quality food choices are usually low in calories and loaded with a variety of vitamins, nutrients, anti-oxidants, and fiber which are the building blocks of a healthy lean body. Some quality foods choices include lean proteins (egg whites, chicken/turkey breast, fish, etc.), quality complex carbohydrates (sweet potato, oatmeal, brown rice, bran cereal, etc.), vegetables (broccoli, green beans, asparagus, spinach, etc.) and Omega 3 fatty acid sources (flax seed oil, canola oil, salmon, tuna, walnuts, etc.).
Secret #4 (Water Consumption)
Consume at least 8-12 glasses of water throughout the day or a ½ ounce of water per pound of body weight. Water is the most important nutrient in the human body and has many benefits involving weight loss. Proper hydration will increase the amount of oxygen in the bloodstream which in return will increase the body's fat burning ability and overall energy output.
Secret #5 (Meal Frequency)
Eat five to six smaller meals spread approximately three hours apart over the course of a day. Your body only has the ability to process so much food at one time. By eating smaller meals every three hours you will never overload your body with fuel (food) yet there will always be fuel (food) to burn do to adequate frequency. Meal frequency will also regulate blood sugar levels which will ease hunger.
Secret #6 (Resistance Training)
Muscle is the primary part of your body that burns calories from fat stores. Resistance training will improve the conditioning of your muscles resulting in an increase in metabolism. Metabolism is often defined as the rate at which your body burns energy (including fat stores) to sustain itself. By improving the condition of your muscles you will burn more calories 24 hours a day, seven days a week and help in the reduction of body fat. It is recommended that some type of resistance training be performed at least 3 times per week focusing on all of the major muscle groups.
Secret #7 (Aerobic Training)
Aerobic training perform at intensity of 65% to 80% (Target Heart Rate Zone) of ones maximum heart rate will use fat stores as a primary source of fuel. Aerobics training is a great way to increase your daily calorie expenditure while using fat stores as a primary source of fuel. Perform aerobic activity 25 to 45 minutes 3 to 6 times per week. Aerobic exercise for fat loss is most effective when performed first thing in the morning before a meal or immediately after resistance training.
Target Heart Rate Zone
220 - Age x .65 = BPM (Beats Per Minute) 65%
220 - Age x .80 = BPM (Beats Per Minute) 80%
(Perform aerobic exercise at a heart rate between 65% and 80%)
In conclusion we must all remember that we are all individuals with different genetics. In some cases results may vary due to hormone imbalances or other medical conditions. The seven secrets of weight loss are the components that will drive you towards your genetic best and vastly improve your overall health.
Craig LePage, CSCS, NASM-CPT
Precision Fitness, Director
Craig is a well-known Fitness Professional in the Charlotte, North Carolina area and is the Director of Precision Fitness Mooresville. He has been helping people reach their fitness and wellness goals for more than 12 years. His credentials include a Bachelors of Science Degree from the University of Bridgeport Connecticut, CSCS credentials from the NSCA and a Personal Training Certification from the NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine). Craig has written for Charlotte, NC area Newspapers, authored his own fitness & nutrition program and is a frequent guest on a Charlotte area radio show that focus' on health and wellness. He has recently co-authoring a golf specific exercise book (Play Better, Longer - Golf) and is also working on a book of his own that should be available sometime next year.
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