Getting your body fat percentage down into those single digits is never easy, but here are FitLifeDXB’s five top tips to keep you on track.
TIP 1 – KNOW YOUR NUTRITION
Nutrition is the most important part of any active lifestyle. Keeping your diet well balanced is key to healthy weight loss. Many people see fats and carbohydrates as the enemy but they play a vital part in losing body fat. Your body needs the right fats (monounsaturated and polyunsaturated) to improve blood cholesterol and benefit insulin levels and blood sugar. These can be found in nuts, vegetable oils and fatty fish. Complex carbs are needed to maintain energy levels to allow us to workout/perform at our best. Carbohydrates in the correct amounts also help with our metabolism which aids in burning fat. Just try and keep the simple carbs (sugars) to an absolute minimum.
TIP 2 – STAY TOPPED UP
Staying hydrated is a key factor in leaning up as it allows your liver to metabolize body fat more effectively and for the muscles to perform at their best. The more water you take in the less your body will store which will give you that ‘dry’ look when your body fat percentage reaches single digits. The recommendation is between 8-12 glasses of water a day, but this can vary based on intensity of exercise.
TIP 3 – BREAK IT DOWN
Dieting for a show or holiday can be a long process lasting anywhere from 6 to 20 weeks. When you start dieting aggressively it can seem daunting, so instead of seeing it as weeks or even months break it up into smaller chunks. A technique that has worked for me is ‘carb cycling’, where I’d consume twice the amount of carbohydrates on two days of the week than the remaining five. This technique worked well for me as I’d only really feel like I was dieting for 2-3 days at a time before I was able to fill up on carbs. It is critical to understand the correct macronutrients you should be consuming before exercise with this technique.
TIP 4 – CONSISTENCY IS KEY
When your body is in a calorie deficit it has no option but to lose body fat, this simply means you need to burn more calories than you consume. We all have good days and bad days but staying consistent is when you will notice results. Some days you might struggle to stick to your diet plan or gym routine through family or work commitments, after all we’re only human. As long as the good days consistently outweigh the bad days and you’re quickly rectifying any slip ups and moving in the right direction, you will achieve your goals.
TIP 5 – SET INCREMENTAL GOALS
Having a goal is extremely important before starting on any journey involving fitness or health, whether it be to lose KGs on the scales, feel more confident with your body or even enter a physique competition. I also recommend my clients to set realistic, incremental goals that you can achieve on a regular basis and then re-set higher goals. When times get tough or you’re having a bad day or even week, remember why you started, what you’re doing it for and how motivated you were to begin with. Reaching goals can be very rewarding personally and makes you set the bar higher and higher as you progress.
Toby Richards Bio
Former Royal Marines Commando and nationally-qualifed mens physique competitor in the UK. Toby is the latest Trainer to join the rapidly growing team at FitLifeDXB and has a particular interest in physique training.