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Fat loss VS. Weight loss

Sorry, no muscular definition here. Skinny fat!

Often I have heard people discuss how much weight they have lost. At times I have even seen people drop 20-30 kilos of weight and become "normal" weight. Yet I barely see any added definition on their bodies. Their arms, legs, back show no cuts. I am sure you would have noticed this in your friends, relatives or maybe even yourself if you have lost a lot of weight.

Even after losing a lot of weight some people lack a toned look. Their tummies are still bulging, arms still flat and smooth. This is primarily a result of the pure "weight loss" mentality that people have. They just focus on the numbers that they see on the scales. If they loose 5 pounds they are happy. Even if that 5 pounds contained 2 pounds of muscle it does not bother them. Thus they keep loosing weight which includes muscle loss too. So by the time they reach their ideal weight, they would have sacrificed enough muscle to not become lean and ripped.

On the other hand if most of your weight loss is pure fat, then you will end up toned, lean, and hard. You would look more like your favorite movie star, model, athlete, rather than skinny fat. So the important thing that you must keep in mind when trying to slim down is to focus on fat loss and not focus solely on your weight.

The next point is that how can one understand if they are losing only fat or losing muscles too? The simplest way to understand this will be to keep checking if your body is getting more defined with the weight loss. If you can see your muscles better with weight loss then you are doing it right. on the other hand if you are still staying soft while getting smaller then you are loosing muscle along with fat.

To ensure that you do not lose muscle while slimming down follow these points:

1) Lift weights- you need to lift weights to hype your metabolism and reduce bodyfat. Weight training is also essential in preserving your muscles during a fat loss phase. Now by weight training I do not mean the type where you lift 1-2 kg dumbbells for 25+ reps. I am talking about intense lifting in the 6-15 rep range.

2) Eat sufficient protein- protein helps to control hunger and is essential to maintain muscle during a fat loss phase. How much protein you will need is something that you must find out by trial and error. Start with around 1 gm of protein per kg of bodyweight everyday. If you lose muscle on this number then increase protein intake.

3) keep slow long distance cardio to minimum- slow long distance(SLD) cardio is famous for causing muscle loss. It involves running, cycling slowly for very long distances and time. keep your cardio workouts short and intense. You can do SLD training, but do not do it for more than 2 days a week if you have to., and use it more as a recovery workout rather than your main one.

4) Do not starve- starvation is the fastest way to lose muscle and preserve fat. During a starvation phase your body starts trying to save fat for future needs and burns up muscle tissue to produce energy. Eat some healthy snacks like raw nuts, fruits to avoid starvation. And yes, controlled fasting can be helpful (though not necessary to lose fat), but if you fast for too long then your body goes into a starvation mode, so be careful.

Follow these important points in your fat loss program and lose fat to get ripped.

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