Shedding weight and carving muscle to look lean is a process that takes time and effort, but if done correctly, it can completely transform your body's appearance.
With summer just around the corner, the Shred Season is not far away. Whether you've been slowly cutting all year or you're still working off some of those extra kilos you're looking to drop, now is the time to kick-start your weight-loss goal and achieve the body you want in time for summer.
To help you reach that goal in a healthy manner without all those quick tips and shortcuts, we've gathered some of the best fat-loss tips from athletes of and health professionals to help you gain definition and achieve your goals in a healthy and proven way. Let's take a look!
1. Consume fewer calories
Regardless of your nutrition, exercise plan and supplements, consuming fewer calories than your body burns is an essential key to reducing weight, it's really that simple. Be honest with yourself about your nutrition, we are all guilty of it. You might think you're doing all the right things, eating healthy, but if you aren't seeing progress in your goals, most likely there are some calories you're consuming daily that aren't being accounted for.
2. Add in HIIT
Steady-state cardio definitely plays a role in dropping weight, but if you prefer to turn it up a bit, look towards to high-intensity interval training otherwise known as (HIIT) for more effective fat loss. Not only does it accelerate fat loss when compared to steady state cardio but it encourages people to change up the way they implement cardio. For example get your cardio in with real heart racing movements eg. Get off the treadmill and pull a sled instead.
3. Drink more water
Water is one of the most effective tools for shredding muscle. Our liver, which processes fat, relies on high amounts of water to function properly. Dehydration definitely inhibits the fat-burning process and actually stops the process of fat burning to some degree.
Look to incorporate eight around two litres of water per day, however this is dependant on your weight level you may need more. An easy way to determine whether you need to increase your daily water intake is to observe the colour of your urine. Yes, thats right, If it’s pale yellow you are drinking adequate amount; however, if it is dark shaded, you might have to increase your H2O intake.
4. Lift heavy weights
Contrary to the popular notion that's floating around, lifting lighter weights and increasing reps is not the be all end all way to shred muscle. The heavier the weights are, the more energy you’ll need to lift it, so you’ll burn more calories. It's really that simple. This comes with a caveat however, make sure to always pay attention that you are using the correct form, as it can prevent many injuries you certainly want to avoid.
5. Prioritise Sleep
This is ultimately on of the biggest factors to achieving most of our fitness goals. It's easy to put all your fat-loss focus on nutrition and exercise, however don't underestimate the importance of quality sleep.
If you're doing everything "right" but aren't seeing results, you should check your sleep habits. "Aim for between 7-9 hours each night for optimal results, however again everyone is different. Listen to your body and rest accordingly.
To help promote a deeper sleep, or REM sleep consider taking a hot bath before bed, turning down the temperature in your room, and making the last hour or two prior to sleep an electronics-free period. You may even want to track your sleep patterns with an app or a compatible fit-bit or watch to measure your time spent.