Promise yourself to at least once in your life to get as lean as possible, to see your all of your abdominal muscles and have lines and definition you never thought you could see before and finally accomplish it.
This is the regime for reaching body fat percentages below double digit levels while Losing only fat and maintaining muscle.
Let me break this down for you because I've done this for hundreds of people.
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There are certain factors that must be considered when designing your program, though there isn't one exact protocol that will work for everyone. Each person will respond to the diet and exercise differently, so you must make progressive adjustments to reach your goals. The bottom line for everyone is, however, to maintain and energy deficit without losing lean mass, until you reach your goal.
First, determine the appropriate daily caloric intake for yourself. It should be based on the following variables:
- Body Statistics (lean body mass)
- Current Caloric Intake (prior to beginning contest preparation)
- Current Level of Training (time and intensity)
- Current Body Fat Percentage (how much you must lose)
- Amount of Time Remaining Prior to the Contest Date
The goal here is to keep the caloric intake as high as possible, for as long as possible, so you may obtain optimal results from each workout. Attempting to get "in shape" by simply reducing caloric intake causes the body to adapt to the reduction by wasting muscle tissue.
Rather than reducing calories in an effort to reduce body fat, increase your level of cardio respiratory activity during the allotted time. The body's response to a combination of weight training, cardio respiratory activity, proper nutrition and training results in preservation of lean muscle tissue and a reduction of body fat.
The first priority is to get down to single digit percent body fat within the first eight weeks. This goal should be fairly easy to accomplish. Begin with the following questions:
- How many calories are you consuming on an average day? (example: 4000)
- How much cardiovascular exercise are you doing? (example: very little)
- Has your weight been stable? (example: yes)
- Are you following a proper weight training protocol? (example: yes)
- Calculating the proper intake of calories for each day, and adjusting meals as the weeks progress.
Now, you can determine the proper percentages of protein, fat, and carbohydrates and the number of calories you consume. Assume you require 3500 calories per day to begin losing body fat at 25% protein, 55% carbohydrates, and 20% fat. The first alternation could be to reduce fat intake to 16-10% percent of your daily calories while consuming the same amount of calories which is "more quantity" of food.
Adjusting energy intake and output through exercise:
The goal is to burn the greatest amount of calories during and after exercise. Once the body adapts to the current workload (No longer losing fat, or slowing down) it MUST be altered. The goal is weekly progression towards your goal.
Attempt to help accomplish TWO things with alternations:
- Expend more calories during exercise.
- Make adjustments in your food intake so you continue to burn extra calories throughout the day.
A measurable reduction in body fat should take place every 2 - 3 weeks. Do not make any adjustments if you are making significant progress. When or if your progress (body fat reduction) slows dramatically or stops, the workload (caloric output) must be altered.
Reducing caloric intake is usually the LAST option. As much as possible, use exercise adjustments to maintain that deficit (within time constraints, workload, performance, etc.).
Everyone loses fat at different rates and with varying amounts of physical activity. The goal is to increase caloric expenditure in a progressive way to continue to reach a low body fat percentage in the healthiest way possible.
My past clients have been consistent in losing two pounds of fat per week for dropping 1% body fat each week and maintaining all of their muscle as they progress into a contest. Then in the final weeks before the event manipulating their bodies to drop the excess water weight and coming in tight and conditioned. This has worked over-and-over for literally hundreds of people.
Have you ever heard of me "coaching" people and my long list of testimonials? NO, only a handful of people give me credit that have retired from competing... WHY you may ask? Because I never want to steal anyone's thunder, take credit for other's hard work, and the only time I stand on stage holding someone's hand is when I raise it when they win in a competition! Nobody should ever take the credit of your results besides yourself.
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Your Personal Muscle Building & Fat Loss Coach,