Updated: Sep 30
Often it’s not a lack of enthusiasm that stops us – it’s being unsure HOW to get the results we want.
I see it all the time with Physique Shaping – it’s my specialty and I have spent 40 years learning the science of physique shaping and health.
Key tips for a toned body that you’ll be proud to show and that will turn heads:-
1. Calories in – Calories out is true to a degree – but also watch the macros!
The best guide is AVOID PROCESSED FOODS – they are generally packed with Calories / sugars / bad fats. Examples: Bread, pasta, buns, burgers, pizzas
Also watch out for the “white stuff” – bread, flour, rice, dairy, cereals (flour), muesli bars, potatoes (even sweet potatoes), rice
WHY (a) and (b) you ask? – these all spike blood sugar – which spikes insulin – and insulin is a hormone that regulates blood sugar – it also tells fat cells to store fat, and prevents stored fat from being broken down
2. DON’T slow your BMR down (this is a classic mistake)
Your Basal Metabolic Rate is the amount of energy you burn at rest – i.e. basically just to survive. Our bodies are clever – in prehistoric times, when food was scarce, the BMR would slow down to conserve energy – and allow the body to store as much fat as possible when food was eaten – to have reserves for the upcoming famine
See where this is going? . . A strict diet becomes a vicious cycle – Eat less – BMR slows – More fat is stored on less intake – so you eat less . . . repeat cycle
The key is to keep the BMR up with appropriate nutrition (see point 1) and appropriate exercise (see next point)
3. Build muscle (or at least maintain it (Classic mistake #2!)
Most people don’t have enough muscle because our lives are sooooo sedentary compared to our ancestors. We have evolved to be active!
The saying “Use it or lose it” is true – muscle will shrink (atrophy) if not used.
As muscle is lost, the BMR slows – muscle is living tissue and needs energy (Calories) – so if you lose muscle, your BMR drops (see point 2)
Conversely, if you BUILD muscle, you INCREASE your Caloric requirements.
This means that for the same amount of food, you now burn more Calories and some of those might come from your fat stores
But there is a catch! – See next point
4. Don’t go catabolic! (Classic mistake #3)
Points 2 and 3 can result in going catabolic
This means that your body actually eats its own muscle!
This generally happens when: Calories are too low – and energy demand is at a high rate. In these circumstances your body does not have time to burn fat (it’s a slow process that requires Oxygen) – BUT your body CAN burn muscle quickly for energy. (this is an evolutionary adaptation for emergencies – i.e. your early ancestor was starving, but also in dire circumstances and either had to fight or run – their body created the energy needed quickly by burning (catabolizing) muscle – better to just lose some muscle than the entire being! Right?
So how does this relate to the classic mistake 3? – Simply because many people go on a low Calorie diet and then exercise frantically (ie as if they are running from a bear! – their body doesn’t actually know there is no bear and they are in the comfort of Your World Fitness on a high tech machine with a TV and music for entertainment – it still acts as if it is starving and trying to survive a bear attack!
5. Don’t “Lose weight”
What . . ? Huh . . ? . . . .Are you confused?
Ok you might actually end up losing weight but your FOCUS has to be losing FAT!
Your objective has to be to build muscle and burn fat – so your fat percentage drops
If you build the same amount of muscle as the fat you burn, you will be the same weight but a little smaller (muscle is more dense than fat)
If you gain more muscle than the fat you burn, you will gain weight – but your fat percentage will drop (fat percentage = fat kg / Total weight kg)
If you burn more fat than muscle built, you’ll drop weight (this is actually the most common scenario because most of us have way too much fat)
See the common theme with all of these? Lose fat – Build muscle
6. Build muscle! – RESISTANCE TRAINING
Resistance training is the most effective means of changing your body shape, raising BMR, building muscle, burning fat, maintaining the health of joints, tendons, ligaments, building strength, improving your hormones, regulating blood sugar, toning and shaping muscles, being firm and toned, and feeling good
Like to know more? For a no-obligation consult, book in here. I'll confirm with you prior.