After more than 20 years of helping people train to improve their physical and mental well-being, this question is “silently” asked. “Can I lose weight?” That means so many different things to so many different people.
The definition of healthy weight loss is around or just under 1% of bodyweight on a weekly basis. That means for a 100kg person it will take around 11 weeks to lose 10kg. To lose 20 kg it might take 23-25 weeks. With the world so focused on “short term” gratification now, that is a long time! Right now, mostly if you want something you can choose “express” versions and it gets here fast!
Not so weight loss. Getting their fast means generally losing muscle mass, which is NOT a good long-term solution. The research is very much focused on building muscle to lose body fat, which is the right approach.
So, are we asking the wrong question? The question therefore should be: “Can I lose body fat?”
So, here are three really basic rules for what you should try to do:
- Do work that can be classified as resistance or weight training at least 3 times per week. You have to start easy or low intensity for the first 4 weeks if you have not done it before, to help your brain and body adapt together to the movement patterns. This might seem silly as you will not “put on” muscle if you do not train hard enough. True, however your body, unless you are a genetic freak will not put on muscle for between 0-8 weeks anyway, because the whole goal of neuromuscular adaptation is to increase the syncronisation of your brain and body to activate more muscle tissue. Once you challenge the activation process hard enough, it “motivates” your body to grow more muscle to add strength. When you grow muscle, you have to burn more calories to keep it, so you will burn more body fat at rest especially.
- Cardio is not BAD! But, to gain more muscle you want to work up to short sharp bursts of work, called interval training. There is nothing wrong with walking, jogging, rowing, swimming though. Anything that increases your aerobic capacity will help you push harder in the gym to gain more muscle anyway! And it burns calories, which is useful when trying to do our third point.
- Calorie Deficit. What is this? Eating less total calories than you are expending. The make up of these calories though is very important if you are trying to lose body fat without losing muscle content. You have to consume protein, to help your body decrease hunger, but above all else to keep your muscle content intact and growing if possible.
Does this sound kind of complicated?? The short version is that it is. People do PHD’s in this stuff and it frustrates us so much to try to get the “perfect” recipe of work, nutrition and rest time for someone to maximise the results. So, if you are trying to do it on your own and you are not doing “well” at it, then do not despair. Often it is just tweaking 1 part of what you are doing that can make a difference.
Nutrition is at least 70% of weight loss. How hard you can help yourself go in the gym is almost the other 30% on its own. Resistance training is what I call the hidden key for most people 🙂
If you want or need help, you can either make a time to come and visit one of our Exercise Physiologists or Performance Coaches in our facility, or we can do this all remotely via video-conferencing. A disclaimer, we do not prescribe nutrition. We let Dietitians do this! We can definitely recommend some great people in this area if you need.
However, we do provide structured programming for fat loss. We can do this through our training app, which has all the videos and information you need to crush your training to achieve your goals. We absolutely love a challenge, and we are passionate about transforming self-belief and physical capacity with unrivalled care. Our job is to work for you to help you. We treat everyone as they come.
To contact us please call 4927 8190 or email email@example.com with some information about you and how you would like us to help you and we will contact you to arrange a time.