By Phil Stevens
I don’t like Cutting Fat! Who does? But it ain’t as bad as people make it out to be.
Restriction, dieting, eating less then you need to sustain yourself, your training, your strength and hard earned muscle. No, its not fun, but in reality it isn’t that darn hard.
Not as hard as many make it out to be, and really unless your looking to get to extreme leanness its pretty damn easy and anyone who has been in the game any amount of time can tell you it’s a far cry easier then putting on an above average amount of lean mass or strength.
It’s not an experience I would call enjoyable by any enjoyable stretch of the imagination but I will share a few tips that I have employed and you can to make your next phase of cutting some pudge a lot easier and hopefully as well a lot more productive and in turn shorter.
It’s Just Food…
Mind set / a back bone. The number one thing I hear, and I just HATE hearing from people when I am cutting fat is “Gawd How Do you Do that? How do you stay so committed?” How do you not have the cake at a birthday party? How do you go from cramming anything and EVERYTHING you want plus some in your pie hole one week getting ready for a meet to not even a taste the next. Oh!!!! I cant do that the cravings are just too bad, I can’t handle them I have to have a little of this or little of that. To calm my nerves and what not.
COME ON!!!!!!! How weak are you. It’s friggin food, it not like you’re a crack addict. Show some spine, some will power. Food is an inanimate object and people have some how given it more power then it deserves. Social power, and in some cases physical power. Are you really going to sit there and tell me a HO HO has more spine then you? You had a craving and Just couldn’t resist the UNRULY all-powerful snack cake or cookie.
First thing you got to do is simply want what your goal is commit to it and just accept it. You don’t have to label the food BAD, or EVIL. “Bad Bad cookie” Just label it what it is food, and if its not on your menu right now for the goals at hand you just say?? Um NO and you don’t have it. It’s that easy, try it next time. Instead of dwelling on a simple mass of calories and letting it waste minutes of your day and cause undue stress from so called craving honestly ask yourself if you’re going to let a snack cake have more power over your actions then you.
Protein your Protein and Stay Hydrated!
This is nothing ground breaking and don’t claim it to be. I won’t waste your time going into all the specifics of why one should eat protein and stay hydrated if one needs to know that there are literally thousands of documents and articles written on the importance of each by myself and those much smarter then I in the field of nutrition. Look a few up, or ask some direct questions on the forum or the next Iron Radio Broadcast (www.ironradio.org) What I will do is give a suggestion I have used that couples the two habits of getting your protein in and staying hydrated.
A 1 Gallon diluted protein shake. Plain and simple every single day when I am cutting calories below my maintenance I make a HUGE 1 gallon diluted protein shake and sip on that all day long. I know the importance of getting a steady small stream of protein to keep amino rich blood and halting undue muscle catabolism, That and hydration need is increased even more so due to the lower general carb intake it is of vital importance to keeping as much lean mass as I can. Let alone the facts that both habits keep you satiated and performance up, waste products flowing out etc..
Just take a gallon container. I use an empty milk jug and add 3-5 scoops of your favorite protein dependent on your protein needs. The drink away al day to keep both these staples of dietary habits in check. As an option I add a bit of pure sucralose and stevia for sweetness and salt to keep one of my crucial electrolytes in balance during the periods of HIGH hydration and loss of sweat from adding activity.
Going Green is the latest craze as I’m sure you’ve heard and it should be when dieting as well. But Im talking about a different green. Im not talking about recycling your used tampons so they can be used to make a new space aged coating for the space shuttle so it moves through the sky more efficient and doesn’t burn so much precious fossil fuels I’m talking Veggies.
Once again people give food, fuel too much power and they label certain foods as breakfast foods and certain ones NOT, and in general somehow veggies are in the not category. I say a food like veggies that we know is a great food for when trying to shed fat due to its high fiber and micro nutrients content then it should not only be a breakfast choice but a breakfast staple. We should start out one step ahead and have a nice big serving at the first meal of the day. Yeah, it aint hash browns, biscuits and gravy, or captain crunch but it is serving a HUGE purpose in or current goals eat it.
How I don’t care eat it as a side item like at dinner, or get creative and put it in a shake, an omelet or other. It really doesn’t matter just start he day with a BIG serving of the green stuff and see how it helps you shed the lbs.
Cardio, NEPA, whet ever get your butt moving do more then you were yesterday. Plain and simple start doing more simple activity then you were prior to trying to lose fat and it will add up. It doesn’t have to be complicated. It doesn’t have to be the next greatest cardio craze that promises to rip the fat off you, just do something. Preferably something you enjoy, find fun. If you can lose time, laugh and enjoy what your doing al the better and al the more effective it will be.
I prefer to mix it up, Play a sport, go for a simple walk, a hike, a bike ride, a swim, row, throw things, drag things. Take part in anything that simply has your doing something. It all counts, doesn’t have to be complicated and again it doesn’t have to, and shouldn’t SUCK. If I have something planned and dread doing it, or really hate the thought of it, FINE, I’ll do something else. Its OK, just do something, whatever you find the least Crappy.
Now if your just being a wuss and making excuses, then sure sometimes you have to just suck it up and do it and get it over with, It wont take long and wont be the end of the world. Likely once your done it wont seem like that much and you’ll be glad you did, but Just do a little more then last week, it doesn’t have to be a ton, it all adds up.
Kiss a Fish…
Or smell like you did. Taking fish oils will be the last little tip I recommend. Again, by now this shouldn’t even be something I have to suggest, and I definitely wont go into great detail as that’s be done again and again. When cutting fat even more so then in your daily routine I suggest you really load up on the fish oils, for a good size male I say 10-15 grams a day. I personally take 12-15 that’s aside from any fish I eat.
The benefits are vast from general health on the cellular level, to really aiding aches pains and lubricating joints while your on a hypo caloric diet. They also have the effect of aiding in fat burning, cognitive function possibly helping when you would be a bit cloudy from the lowered energy intake and raised expenditure. Thinning the blood a bit getting nutrients flowing in and out of bodily tissues more readily and aiding in cholesterol.
Get a BIG tub and start them TODAY make it a habit and if you have a fat loss phase planned you might think about starting to load up a bit higher a few weeks prior to get a bit ahead of the game.
I am going to keep this very brief and simple. Im my experience you have 1000’s of choices in how to train when you want to shed body fat. Literally any program can be used for both training to lose fat or pack on mass the biggest difference is the diet and your NEPA / Cardio. That said in my opinion you have two choices that are best and will lead to the greatest fat loss to lean mass preservation.
#1 GO heavy, brief and frequent. Get in pick one maybe two BIG compound moves do it hard and work up to the 90% zone or higher and get OUT
#2 Go Heavy, Go Long, But very infrequent
Get in the gym Hit it HARD again big compounds lifts work up to heavy sets in the 85%+ range. Hit he whole body and hit it hard. Then rest. Two simple bare bones but hard sessions a week is Plenty with this route.
These two are by far the best. Why? #1 you need to go heavy. Nothing is going to convince your body that it is a MUST to keep the precious lean mass that you have built like lifting near maximal loads. You don’t have the energy intake for lots of long hard sets and tons of reps, let alone the fuel to recover form such sessions. Blitz the body give it a reason to hold onto mass but do minimal muscle tissue damage and get out. Use the diet and moderate cardio and NEPA to target the fat loss.
These tips are easily applied real world basic bones tools anyone can use when they are looking to shed some body fat and they want to sway the success a bit more in their direction. Most people don’t need to worry getting caught up in the minutia that they do over complicating things and breaking things down to exact calories and exact macros. If they employ simple good nutritional habits and add on a few tips and tools like these they can make great success and likely make it further and faster toward their goal then if they had went a more invasive route.
Get Strong! Stay strong!