The 5 Principles of Fat Loss
There are five principles that your plan needs in order to lose fat and maintain a desirable body forever.
You’ve probably noticed that I have used the terms “fat loss” and “weight loss” interchangeably.
That’s because they typically happen together. If you’re losing weight, you’re likely losing fat and vice versus.
But if your plan is off, or you aren’t focused on the right things, you can end up losing weight from muscle, which is the last thing you want to happen while you’re leaning own.
The goal is for all or most of your weight loss to come from fat, and following these fundamentals will ensure that’s what happens.
Principle #1: You Absolutely NEED To Be In A Calorie Deficit.
A caloric deficit is when you consume fewer calories than the number of calories you need to maintain your current
body weight. A calorie deficit can be created by reducing the number of calories you consume daily.
In order to burn fat, you must be in a caloric deficit, period. No way around it.
Let me stress that again: being in a Caloric Deficit is literally the only way to burn fat.
There are two ways you can do this:
- By eating fewer calories than you consume on a daily basis.
- Burn/expend more calories than you’ve consumed in a day through working out. The most effective way to get in a “caloric deficit” is by adjusting your diet. Yes, Diet is way more effective than exercise when it comes to burning fat. Actually, you can lose weight without doing any exercise at all. Check this out, jogging 1 mile burns about 100 calories, on average. Which seems pretty good, until you realize that there are about 100 calories just 2 Oreo cookies. This is why it’s much more effective to focus on just eating fewer calories than trying to run calories off. Let me make this clear, I am NOT saying you shouldn’t workout. In fact, let’s say if you have some extra baggage and you focus on dieting only, without working out.
A combination of consuming fewer calories and adding in some cardio is ideal.
No deficit, no weight loss.
Principle #2: Focus On Food Quality
Whether your goal is fat loss or improved health, most of the calories you consume should come from micronutrient-dense whole foods. (i.e. fruits, vegetables, legumes, grains, nuts & seeds, etc.)
This will ensure you’re getting plenty of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, all of which are essential for good health and a properly functioning metabolism.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t have “fun” foods like ice cream and cookies…
Fun foods make life more enjoyable and your diet sustainable
Leveraging portion control, moderation, and the strategies outlined in the Stay Social Strategies course, you can enjoy “Fun” foods and still lose fat.
But how much healthy eating is enough?
As highlighted in the Built By Plants Nutrition guide, we recommend following The Rule of 80/20.
If roughly 80% of your calories come from healthy, micronutrient-dense whole foods, it’s okay for the other 20% or so to come from “fun” foods like chips, chocolate, and cookies, etc.
When you use this rule, don’t stress about being exactly 80% whole foods and 20% “fun” foods. It may vary, depending on what’s happening in your life. other times 90/10, 70/30. What matters is that you’re staying focused on eating whole foods most of the time and keeping “fun” foods in moderation.
Principle #3: You NEED To Eat Enough Protein
Like we talked about earlier, protein is essential but especially while dieting.
Why? Well, when you’re restricting your calories, it will automatically cause you to consume fewer macronutrients (Carbs, fats, Protein).
Unfortunately, when we lose weight, we aren’t just losing fat. We’re losing fat, muscle, water, etc.
By eating enough protein, it’s helping you retain your muscle mass and works to prioritize most of the weight loss comes from fat and not muscle.
Also, it has a high Thermic Effect of Food.
Thermic Effect of Food, or TEF, which refers to the number of calories our bodies use to digest food. About 25% of the calories from protein get used during digestion whereas carbohydrates use ~9% and fats use ~3%.
Lastly, protein is filling, this becomes more and more important once your hunger levels rise from eating in a calorie deficit.
Principle #4: Train Consistency
In short, resistance training is an essential part of losing fat. Let’s say if you have some extra body baggage and you focus on dieting only, without working out. Once you actually start losing weight, you will just look like a smaller condensed version of what you do now. Just pocket-sized, with no actual shape, tone or definition, which is fine if that’s what you’re after.
But when you start to develop your muscle, it gives guys the strong physique they’re after and gives females the curvy body they desire, respectively. Also, just by having more muscle on your frame, you burn more calories throughout the day!
Nutrition controls how much weight you lose, while resistance training determines the type of weight that you lose and how your body shapes as you’re losing weight.
By following a well-designed resistance training program — like one of the many available to you in the Pocket Coach, you’ll be able to build and maintain muscle while you’re focused on losing fat.
Principle #5: STAY CONSISTENT, Remember… It’s a Lifestyle.
The majority of us make dieting way more difficult than it needs to be. Whether it’s trying to do HOURS of cardio every day, ONLY drink smoothies, detox diets, eliminating foods that they think are “Bad foods”, and/or reducing calories to ridiculously low levels.
Diet and exercise extremes are a recipe for failure.
You want to replace those words with Nutrition and Training.
Trying to lose fat with extreme, restrictive approaches will eventually cause you to give up and regain the weight back as the approach you took to lose the weight was not something sustainable and you didn’t enjoy it. This is the never-ending yo-yo dieting cycle.
Focus Only on What Really Matters:
- Be in a calorie deficit
- Eat real food (most of the time)
- Get enough protein
- Control your food portions.
- Train on a regular basis