Everyone at one point or another wants to lose weight or get “ripped.” Some of these people succeed in their goals and strive to keep improving. However, many fail miserably and make excuses as to why they didn’t succeed. I believe most people truly do know how the basic principles of losing weight work. They just don’t have the proper drive or skill to put their knowledge to work for them.

After being asked numerous times by friends or members of my gym what could help them lose weight, I decided to make a brief list. I posted this list on the walls of my gym. I broke it into three main sections—nutrition, training, and goals. I then took this list and handed it to members or friends and family the next time I was asked this question. I believe this simple list can help many more people with their struggle with weight loss so here are those basic tips. Hopefully, they can help you.

Nutrition is a huge part of losing weight. It isn’t just about cutting calories like so many think. It’s also about what you consume. You must know what to eat and when to eat it to get the best results. By simply changing just your diet, you can burn pounds of fat and lose it faster than with your normal diet alone.

Here are several quick tips that can help any basic nutrition plan:

·        Count your calories for a week so that you can find an average of what your caloric intake is. A pound of fat equals 3500 calories. If you cut 500 calories a day, that’s one pound per week.

·        Spread your diet across the day. Instead of eating three meals, eat the same amount in 5–8 small meals and make breakfast your largest meal. This makes your metabolism stay active for longer periods of time.

·        Limit the amount of foods that you eat after 8:00 or 9:00 p.m. They’re unnecessary.

·        Cut out refined sugars such as sweets, candy, and all sodas.

·        Increase your water intake. Water will flush your system out and make your body function more efficiently.

·        If you’re going to cut carbs, remember that they’re your main source of energy. Uptake a little more proper fats to keep energy levels steady.

·        Don’t take in more protein than needed. Excess protein is turned into fat and stored in the body. For most people, around 100–200 grams of protein per day is more than enough. Why do you think bodybuilders always have a hard time losing those pounds when they’re pounding 300–400 grams of protein or more a day.

·        The vast majority of supplements are just full of junk so I suggest that you stay away from them. After one serving, are you really going to increase your metabolism, activate heat shock proteins, activate dormant muscle fiber, curb your appetite, lose two percent body fat, and get a bicep pump of 189 percent? Yeah, right.

·        Remember, you don’t need to starve yourself to lose weight. Your body still needs calories for energy and to function. If you start depriving your body of too many calories, it will make losing weight harder because your body won’t want to lose the little that it has been given. Imagine a sponge. If you give it only a tiny bit of water, the sponge retains everything, but if you give it a lot of water, a great deal can be squeezed back out. Your body works this way also.

Training is the other piece of the puzzle. While nutrition is essential, so is a good training program. This will go hand in hand with your nutrition and really help you lose weight. The thing with training is that you want to train smart and hard, not just hard. By trying out some of these simple tips, your training for weight loss will improve and so will your results.

·        Interval training (short breaks) will burn fat by keeping you fatigued and by using more muscle fibers. Using barbell complexes such as squats and cleans will be of great aid using this method.

·        Lift heavy weights. Lifting heavy at the beginning of a workout will recruit more muscle fiber and fatigue your body at a faster rate. Use low reps of 1–5 per set when going heavy. After that, go for volume and super sets.

·        Make your workouts more intense by trying to finish in an hour or less. This will make you really push your body and burn fat. Don’t kill yourself trying to do this though. Ease into it if you have to. Safety first.

·        Anaerobic work is key. Look at a sprinter versus a marathon runner. Sprinters are more cut up because they do much more intense bursts of energy than long, drawn, aerobic work. The marathon runner’s body will actually start storing fat to give him energy to run longer. The point is you don’t need to spend an hour on the treadmill. Run sprints, do bench hops, run the stairs, do gorilla jumps, and do up-downs like in sports.

·        Save your cardio and ab routines until the end of the workout. Save your energy for weight training to build maximal muscle and finish with fatiguing cardio. The more muscle your body has, the more fat your body will burn to feed those muscles for the energy that they need.

Everyone has goals for weight loss. Some may want to lose a large amount of weight while others may not. Make your goals unique to you so that it fits what you desire. By having clearly defined goals, you have an exact expectation of what you want, when you want it, and how you want it. Make sure to push your goals but keep them attainable so that you will succeed with old goals and strive for new ones.

Here are some simple things to think about:

·        Set realistic, short-term goals to achieve your long-term goals. Don’t just make a goal to lose 20 lbs. Make small goals like losing 2–3 lbs per week, and in three months, have a goal to be 20 lbs lighter. Those short goals aren’t overwhelming and can be tracked easier, inspiring more effort and vigilance.

·        If something stalls in your weight loss program, switch things up. Try something different in your diet such as eating more vegetables. Switch something in your lifting. Instead of doing the bench, do incline bench, chest flys, or dips. Switching exercises every 2–3 weeks will keep your body guessing so that you keep seeing results.

·        Make a clear plan or program and stick with it. It’s not easy to lose weight, but it’s easy to give up. Don’t. If you stick with it, it will payoff. Like the old saying goes, “Nothing worth having is ever easy.”

I hope these tips can help you with your weight loss goals or at least set you on the right path. It’s time to make your goals come true. There will always be temptations to hold you back or people who get in your way. But think of this quote when the going gets tough—“You must show no mercy…nor have any belief whatsoever in how others judge you…for your greatness will silence them all.” —The Ultimate Warrior

Elite Fitness Systems strives to be a recognized leader in the strength training industry by providing the highest quality strength training products and services while providing the highest level of customer service in the industry. For the best training equipment, information, and accessories, visit us at www.EliteFTS.com.