It’s one of the biggest industries in the world and when you scrutinize weight loss in detail, it’s really no surprise. Over recent years it’s become more and more unfashionable to be fat.
In fact, it’s never been fashionable. It’s just that recently, probably over the last couple of decades, the media really have started to scrutinize bodies and there now appears to be a definite “right” and “wrong” way to look.
Sure, we could go into all of the health implications and for some of you guys, that might be exactly why you’ve stumbled across this article. However, more and more of you will be reading this for appearance reasons – you just want to look better. You don’t want the bulging belly, you want to ooze sex appeal, and feel your confidence soar.
Unfortunately, there’s a big chance that you will have already come across hundreds of products that have attempted to sell you a “secret” weight loss formula. If you’ve already parted with your money for such products, you’ve probably already found out that there’s no hard and fast way.
There’s a reason we don’t all have beach bodies – it does take work, and there are no shortcuts.
Nevertheless, let’s not kid ourselves – losing weight and keeping that weight off is most definitely possible and you can achieve it courtesy of some tweaks to your lifestyle. Let’s now get to work and forget the fads and start concentrating on the advice that has been proven, by real scientists, to work like a charm.
What do we mean when we talk about “weight loss”?
First and foremost, we need to start with a few clarifications. When we talk about weight loss, most of us just picture someone who doesn’t look overweight – their whole body is in proportion and appears “healthy”.
However, there are multiple ways to look at the subject.
If we scrutinize it, weight loss can actually mean a number of things. You could technically lose weight whilst shedding your fat, water, glycogen and muscle levels. There, you’ve lost weight – but really, you might not have lost the right type of weight.
Instead, the better way of looking at weight loss is seeing it as “fat loss”. You don’t want to be losing muscle, as this can boost your appearance no-end – you just need to be losing that ugly fat which causes so many problems that we all know about.
Now is also probably the time to add a point about some of the “fad” products we have already touched upon. Some of these, like detoxes, may make you lose a drastic amount of weight in a really short space of time. Unfortunately, this is body weight and over time, it will return.
Even though the scales might seem a little healthier, you won’t have lost body fat and you’ll start to pile the pounds on at record speeds.
What is proven to be the most effective way to lose weight?
Ok, now we’re into the meat of our guide – the part that will show you how you can lose weight, no questions asked.
Unfortunately, as we’ve kept reiterating through this page, we’re not going to recommend a magic pill. It just doesn’t work like that.
Instead, what we’re going to recommend is something called a caloric deficit.
If you’ve already heard this term we apologize – but the truth is this is the only weight loss method that is proven to help you keep your waistline down, for the eternal future.
If you haven’t heard the phrase before and you’re eager to find out what it is, the good news is that it’s actually a really simple concept to grasp.
It merely revolves around the premise of consuming fewer calories that you burn away. When we talk about burning away, we don’t necessarily mean that you need to hit the treadmill. Your body will be constantly burning fat through the day to survive – so you just need to consume an amount that doesn’t surpass this.
If you believe that you have already tried this approach and not lost any weight – you’ve not done it correctly. Every scientific study that has ever been conducted has shown that this approach works and in truth, the process just makes sense anyway.
If you believe it hasn’t worked for you it’s because you haven’t tried it for long enough, or you didn’t get the math right (i.e., you were still consuming too many calories).
Does this mean you should only be concentrating on calories?
Not at all. After all, you could be stick-thin, but an extremely unhealthy person. For the purposes of this guide we’re only focusing on losing fat, but in terms of preserving your general health you of course need to be consuming the right type of foods.
Theoretically, you could live on fast food and still lose weight. This will work if you ensure that you are burning off more calories than you are consuming. Would it keep your overall health in-check? Absolutely not. Hopefully, you understand the point we’re trying to make about a caloric deficit though – it’s absolutely crucial in the whole weight loss equation.
How do you cause a caloric deficit?
Following on from the above, the million dollar question is how exactly do you cause a caloric deficit?
Fortunately, the methods that you use are actually as simple as the whole concept itself. Generally, there are three options that can help you here:
Option #1 – Exercise and burn more calories
As you’ll soon find out, you don’t necessarily have to do lots of exercise to lose weight – but it can help. The process here is exactly the same and if you don’t change your diet, but start to do some cardiovascular or metabolic training, you will start to lose weight as you will be immediately burning more calories.
In other words, it’s the sure-fire way to bring your fat levels down and cause that deficit.
Option #2 – Tinker with your diet and consume fewer calories
For those of you who don’t particularly want to hit the gym, or go on a morning run, this option might be more suited. Simply look at what you are eating now, and start to cut out foods. If you’re eating 3,500 calories per day, try and cut out 500 calories. It will cause a 500 calorie deficit and you will start to lose weight.
Option #3 – Use option #1 and #2 together
Unsurprisingly, you don’t have to stick to just one of the options. It’s possible to mix them up and still cause that elusive calorie deficit. If you burn 500 calories on the treadmill, and also eat 250 calories less during the course of the day, you’ve just caused a caloric deficit of 750.
The great thing about caloric deficits is there is no “right” way to use. All three of the above approaches are guaranteed to work if you use them properly – and it’s just up to your own personal circumstances on what you decide to do.
For example, if you work long hours and just don’t have time to go on a run or purchase a gym membership – it goes without saying that controlling the caloric deficit with a diet is the only solution.
On the flip side, if you’re looking to lose a large amount of weight, it might be easier to incorporate exercise and tackle your fat loss from multiple angles.
The choice is yours.
Looking to create a caloric deficit with exercise? Read on.
If you’ve decided to create your caloric deficit with exercise, we should add a little pointer for you.
If you’re looking to lose weight, cardiovascular and metabolic training are the two fastest ways to achieve this.
However, as well as losing fat, these two training methods will also eat into your muscle. If you want to guard against this, you should be looking towards some sort of strength training.
Strength training will help you keep your muscle, whilst losing fat at the same time. It perhaps won’t help you lose overall weight quite as quickly, but if you’re looking to completely fine-tune your body then this is undoubtedly the best option.
Most guys like to show a bit of muscle – so it’s definitely worth considering if you are considering the exercise approach to losing weight.
Is there any approach that can help you lose weight even faster?
Some of you will have been eagerly anticipating this section – every guy on the planet wants to lose weight at record speeds.
In truth, there are some ways – but they are by no means sustainable.
For example, you could temporarily reduce the amount of water in your body. This actually contributes to a large proportion of your body weight and if you turn to things like fasting and various detoxes, it’s actually very easy to achieve.
Of course, losing water isn’t sustainable – and it’s certainly not healthy in the long run. Over time, you will start to regain the water and wham – you’re stuck in the same boat.
The only sensible way to lose weight quickly is by relying on a large caloric deficit. If you are currently eating 3,500 calories per day, you may decide to drastically reduce this amount by 30% to quickly lose the weight. Some men, who aren’t perhaps bothered about the speed in which they are shedding the pounds, may only cut it by 10%.
However, let’s conclude this section with a word of caution – be extremely careful when it comes to significant caloric deficits.
If you reduce your caloric intake too much, you can start to experience nutrient deficiencies, body image and even mood problems. A drastic change is likely to prompt more problems than just a minor one, so it’s best to gradually chip away with a small caloric deficit than attempting to go gung-ho from the beginning.
As a general rule of thumb, most people will be able to lose between 0.5-2lbs per week. It also tends to be easier to lose weight if you have more to lose in the first place.
You’ve lost the weight – now, how do you keep it off?
Perhaps the most problematic issue for a lot of dieters is actually keeping weight off for the long-term.
Well, now’s the time to give you a very simple (but probably disappointing) answer. In other words, you’ve got to use an approach which you can maintain for a long period of time.
Don’t turn to fads, drastic and unrealistic changes or anything else along those lines – a constant, sustainable approach to eating is the only way forward. The big rule is not eating more calories than you are burning away.
You may need a larger caloric deficit at first, but over time this could potentially be lowered. Your main aim is getting yourself to a position where you aren’t consuming too many calories, but still doing it in a way which is enjoyable and is able to be maintained for the long-haul.
A closing summary
Losing weight is easy – it’s just that many of us make it so much more difficult than it really needs to be.
There is no need to turn to fads, pills or anything else. Our message is simple – turn to a caloric deficit and you will be guaranteed to reduce your waistline. If you turn to certain types of training as well, you may even put on a bit of muscle.
Sure, some diets may tell you to avoid certain types of food, eat ‘x’ amount of another type per day and so on. For some people, these may work excellently. However, in terms of an approach that works for everyone, nothing has ever surpassed the caloric deficit. It’s simple, measurable and something that literally every guy will be able to adopt immediately.
Furthermore, this is an approach which you can control – if you don’t want to do exercise, you don’t have to. If you don’t want to change your eating habits, you don’t have to. It’s all about getting your calorie consumption in order.