Today I am taking a page out of Steven Covey’s book by talking about the big rocks and little rocks of fat mass loss. If you’re not familiar with the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People (which I highly suggest as a good read), a subject discussed is the concept of placing big rocks (important things) ahead of little rocks (less important things). So here is a list of the 7 big rocks you should do before you bother yourself with the minutia and gimmicks of fat loss.
1. Caloric Deficit – Consuming less that you are burning is obvious, but often it’s forgotten as the MOST IMPORTANT part of fat loss. Who cares if your eating healthy if your eating way too much healthy food?!?! That’s why I prefer to do a 3 day dietary log with my clients to see what their eating and if it’s way too much. Even though many calorie calculators are off by as much as 25%, it’s a very good place to start to make sure your in the ball park. And if you’re wondering how many calories you should be eating, a good equation to go by is body weight in pounds x 12.
2. Eating whole, unprocessed nutritious foods – This one also abides by the KISS principle. Eating veggies, fruit, and high quality protein (as in not hot dogs), is a foundation principle. Now eating like sh** here and there is fine. We all do it. And if you say you don’t then you’re a dirty rotten liar. But the key is to make it here and there and not a staple of your day to day life. A good place to start with this big rock is the produce section.
3. Protein and Essential Nutrients – The cool thing about protein is that it both builds muscle, and fills you up. So in my opinion the more the merrier. However, with an RDA set at .8g per kg per day, most people simply just don’t realize their not getting enough. A good rule of thumb here is eating 1g per pound of body weight. As for essential nutrients, if your not eating a balanced diet you may want turn to a small rock by considering a quality multivitamin supplement.
4. Consistency/adherence – The answer is no. I don’t feel like exercising everyday. But it’s become a habit of mine so now it’s just something that I feel like I need to do. To keep my self going I choose exercises that I can do, that are fun, and that are never the same as the week before. The same goes for diet. Choosing foods you’ll actually buy, prepare, and eat, consistently is key. But keep your self sane by setting an upper limit of 20% “junk” calories per day.This way you can actually enjoy life a little 🙂
5. Water – Not to beat a dead horse, but drinking plenty of water is important. Drinking .5oz per lbs. per day is a good place to start for this one
6. Avoid Losing Weight Too Fast – Yes there is such a thing, and it’s a bad thing. One to two Lbs. per week is a solid strategy.
7. Exercise – Well this is a no brainer. Build muscle by exercise, and lose fat by concentrating on diet. These two intermingle a lot, but again this is the general rule of thumb.
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