You’ve probably heard in the past that a calorie deficit is key to losing body fat and this is 100% true. In theory it all sounds so simple, however sometimes, the application can be much more difficult than the theory.
In this week’s article I’m going to share with you some helpful tips you can implement today to help you stay on track with your calories deficit. Personally, I’m a big fan of tracking the calories in my foods when looking to lose body fat - either tracking as I eat during the day or planning out for the week ahead in advance and sticking to that plan.
If tracking calories isn't for you though, I have other suggestions that may help you achieve your goal:
(1 ) Have a good amount of protein in your diet. Protein is useful for maintaining your immune function and also helps with growth and repair to support your training. Protein is also a more satiating macronutrient, meaning you may feel fuller for longer after eating protein compared to other food sources.
(2 ) Don't drop your calories too low. Work out your weekly calories with your coach and stick to them over the course of the week. Although motivation is high at the start of any diet or program, it can also lead to overreaching and perhaps going too extreme; especially in today’s society of instant gratification, impatience can sometimes be our downfall when approaching our goal. Slow and steady wins the race on this one.
(3 ) Keep well hydrated over the day; not only will a hydrated body be optimal for health, it will also assist with your digestive function. Thirst can also manifest itself as hunger, so keeping well hydrated can help keep those cravings at bay.
(4 ) Don't always focus on restricting energy coming into your body through food and drink - think about energy expenditure as well. Could you perhaps introduce more movement into your daily routine? Start with setting yourself a daily steps target and work your way up from there.
(5 ) Don't ban foods - if you tell yourself you CAN’T have something - the mind will tend to crave it more. It’s like that big red button saying “DON’T TOUCH” - you’re going to touch it, right?
(6 ) Eat plenty of fibrous foods (fruits, vegetables, grains etc ) - not only will it help your digestion but will also have a satiating effect on your appetite.
(7 ) If you are constantly struggling with those sweet treats around the house, tempting you, calling you to have 'just a little nibble' - try removing them from the house, or at best, keep them out of sight; out of sight out of mind. You could even tell yourself, if you want the treat, you can walk to the shop to pick it up. That way you get a little activity along the way!
Micheál Penston is the Head Coach at FM Fitness & Nutrition based in Westport, Co. Mayo. They specialize in helping busy men and women to create the healthiest versions of themselves through educating and empowering around all areas of their lifestyle from fitness, nutrition, recovery and behaviours. You can grab a free copy of the 5 Stage Health & Fitness Kickstarter or find out more about their online and in person coaching methods at www.fmfitnessnutrition.com or social media handles @fmfitnessnutrition