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In about 95% of cases, we all fall of the bandwagon when we make the New Year resolution of losing weight and getting in shape. So, as always, for those who do make the same resolution every year to:
Let’s start with why people make these resolutions at the beginning of the new year. Most times it is due to one of 3 reasons:
I am often asked by friends & acquaintances for quick fixes to kick-start their fitness journey (aka weight loss). They want the BEST combination of exercise and diet that’ll prevent their existing issues and help them keep their resolutions. Why the confusion? Ever tried searching “healthy diet” or “short & effective workouts to make you burn fat fast” online? If yes, haven’t you been overwhelmed with absolutely opposing information, found your head spinning, leaving you with a feeling that you know even less now than when you did before you started researching it? Wasn’t your next thought “never mind, let me stick to whatever I was already doing”?
So what makes us fall off the wagon?
On the one hand, people only start exercising after they’ve put on a considerable amount of weight (which takes some time to show up physically and on the scale) but on the other, they’re always in a big rush to lose it as if it should take much less time to go than it did to come.
Some only wake up when they’re diagnosed with a serious health condition & try to get their act together, yet I find that over 60% of them get complacent as soon as their condition is no longer a threat.
We all need to understand that just diet changes or exercise or even both are not enough to make a permanent, effective change. In today’s scenario where stress levels are so high and we are constantly on the move yet we lead very sedentary lives, we need to do more than that – we need to physically move a lot more than we do and be careful about the things we eat.
So, my first request is:
Some General Q&As that I have received from some readers.
MUST I eat breakfast?
If you wake up around noon – No!! If you get sick on eating first thing in the morning – again NO!! Eat when you’re ready. However, everyone needs a daily minimum number of calories in order to provide their body with the building blocks it requires.
If your goal is fat loss it’s imperative you get your minimum number of calories in which is often considerably more than most people imagine & currently eat, in which case the answer is YES!
Do Intermittent Fasting, keto, Paleo diets etc. work?
Yes. But then again, many things “work” despite not being your best option or even healthy in the long run – simply put – any change shocks the system and shows you results when you’re stuck in a rut but most times just getting back to regular eating habits after the binging season is over is enough to make you lose weight. Most “diets” only provide you with guidelines which enable you to restrict your caloric intake – IF, Keto, Paleo, etc. also all do the same.
How long/often should I work out?
Up to 45 – 60 min of steady state cardio 4 times a week at a rate of perceived exertion (RPE) at 4 on a scale of 1-10 (brisk walk, steady state swim) or up to 30 minutes of 5-7 RPE around 3 times a week along with resistance training 3 times a week.
Does lifting weights make women look manly or men bulky?
– No, it’s quite the opposite. In fact, women have much less testosterone than men, so they naturally can’t look muscular like men. While their weight may increase on the scale due to building lean muscle, they look slimmer. Men will look bulky if they’re training to bulk up, otherwise not.
Can I only work out at the gym?
– Heck no!! You can: – Play a sport– Run outdoors– Swim– Cycle– Get a good mat at home and a few light weights or pieces of equipment that you like using and train. – Go to a yoga class– Join a dance class– Get a personal trainer (a qualified person like me – to come home)– Make a small group and split the cost of getting a trainer/coach between all of you.
How soon can I lose 4-5 kg?
– The average person (65-85 kg), who is exercising regularly and eating clean 80% of the time, can lose approximately 0.5 kg a week by cutting approximately 500 Kcals from their diet. It can be accelerated even more but I don’t recommend quick fixes as we all know chances of binging increase. Plus, I always prefer a slower steadier rate of change which shocks the body less, thus, causing less disruption in your “normal” routine and which feels more sustainable for the long run.
– If it feels like too much work, it probably is and if its sustainable while giving results, you will kick yourself for giving up!