It’s not easy getting lean—at least for most people—which is why fast fat loss is always a hot topic. Most of you reading this probably want to uncover your abs sooner rather than later…
So to get you on the rocketship to ripped, here are our top-5 fat-loss blast-off tips–from diet to training…
1) Eliminate junk food—most of the time
You may think this is a no-brainer, but you’ll be surprised at how those few chips, sodas and cookies on a regular basis add up (look at a cookie package, and EACH cookie—about two bites—can pack 125 calories! Eat 8 and that’s about half your daily calorie intake, 1,000 calories).
Notice that we said to eliminate junk “most of the time.” That’s because allowing it once or twice a week will prevent over-the-top binges. And besides, a loose-eating day, with a higher-calorie jolt, prevents your metabolism from slowing down, so it’s a good thing. (There’s more on calorie zig-zagging in our diet and nutrition guide, X-treme Lean.)
Also, a common mistake is to make a gigantic calorie cut all at once. Many people get so motivated to lose fat that they starve themselves right off the bat. That causes your metabolism to slow to a crawl, and your body thinks it’s starving—it hordes fat and burns your hard-earned muscle. That’s when you get so frustrated that you give up….
The lesson is to reduce calories gradually, and the first action is to eliminate junk food—most of the time.
2) Tone down alcohol consumption
A few beers or cocktails every so often won’t hurt, but if you do it regularly, you turn off fat burning. The reason is that your body burns off alcohol first—it becomes your energy substrate…
So as you’re burning off the alcohol, what happens to the food you eat? It’s merely surplus calories going directly to fat cells. Not good! That means when you do choose to drink, don’t eat a lot while you indulge.
3) Slow down the negative stroke of your reps in the gym
On at least one set of your big compound exercises, use a 1 1/2-seconds-up, 4-to-6-seconds-down tempo. For example, on bench presses, fire it up, then slowly lower it down on every rep. Emphasizing the negative creates more muscle trauma, and that’s a good thing for fat burning…
That’s because it takes energy to repair muscle damage. Your metabolism kicks into gear for the entire recovery process—usually about two days or more after your workout. So you’re burning fat 24/7—yes, even while you sleep. Exciting stuff! (For more on this phenomenon and how to apply it, see The Ultimate Fat-to-Muscle Workout.)
4) Go for the burn to end each target-muscle workout
The best burn-inducing exercises are continuous-tension isolation moves, like leg extensions for quads, pushdowns for triceps, and cable flyes, crossovers, or cross-ups (pictured below) for chest…
By keeping tension on the target muscle throughout the set, you block blood flow. That occlusion creates muscle burn, which in turn enhances your natural growth hormone output. [Can J Appl Physio. 22:244-255; 1997]
GH strengthens muscles and connective tissue, but it’s also a very POTENT fat burner. That means muscle burn can help fuel the bodyfat churn. End each bodypart with at least one set of a continuous-tension exercise, and make that set long enough to set fire to the target muscle—at least 12 controlled reps.
5) Do a short cardio session after each weight workout
You burn off the sugar in your bloodstream with 30 minutes to an hour of weight training. That means any activity right after immediately taps into bodyfat…
In other words, right after your weight training is prime fat-burning time. All it takes is 15 minutes on a treadmill or stationary bike to make a serious dent in your fat stores. It’s the most efficient fat-burning cardio you can do…
Those top-5 tips are giant steps to getting you ripped: 1) Eliminate junk food most of the time, 2) tone down your alcohol intake, 3) slow down the negative stroke in the gym, 4) end each bodypart with muscle burn, and 5) do a short cardio session after you lift…
Start today and you’ll be amazed at the attention-grabbing physique that will start to peak in a few weeks. Soon you’ll be smiling when you peel off your shirt and hear, “Man, where’d you get those abs?”
Special Discount Fat-Loss Offer: Get our diet-and fat-loss e-book, X-treme Lean, together with The Fat-to-Muscle Workout and X-traordinary Abs e-books at a special limited-time low price. Click the Triple-Shredded Combo Offer and get on the rocketship to ripped today.
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson
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