We’ve all believed certain things in life that unfortunately prove to be false. Good things that make life easier. I don’t mean believing in Santa Claus, or the Tooth Fairy, or whatnot. I mean believing in things that we really thought we were right about. It didn’t matter what people told us because we knew we were right! But… I’m about to tell you 3 things that you may not want to know. Things that you may practice and swear is true. But, unfortunately, are myths.
“Lose 10lbs in 3 Days!”
No. You’ve seen the advertisements. Promises of a quick 10lbs if you buy their product. Only they have the “magic pill” of losing weight. It may be the newest, or the oldest, fad diet of weight loss. And it’s all for a “low monthly price of ….”.
Sorry but it won’t happen and here’s why. It’s not fat your losing. It’s water weight. In other words, you’re dehydrating the very body your trying to improve. Will the scale say you lost 10lbs? Maybe. Is it a permanent weight loss? No. Is it sustainable? Absolutely not. Are you healthier? Hard no! We all know our bodies need water. Water keeps our skin looking healthy, our muscles working for simple daily living, and most important it keeps our internal organs functioning. Once you dehydrate yourself you’ve lost the very battle you started. And in a blink of an eye, you’ve gained those few pounds back because your body knows what’s sustainable before you do.
Try this instead: Lose 10lbs in 6-weeks. It’s healthy to lose 2-3lbs per week. And it won’t be water weight. At this pace, you’re losing fat (if you’re doing it right by eating healthy!). Don’t be in a rush and fall for “The Beach Body in a Week!”. Take your time and do it right and fall for “The Beach Body Next Season!”
“All you need to do is more cardio!”
So now you’ve decided 10lbs in 3 days is wrong and you’re going to get those pounds off in a more sustainable, healthier way. And you’re going to do nothing but cardio because that’s the way you lose weight.
Sorry but no. Cardio is great for your heart and lungs. You need cardio. Your heart is a muscle and you have to work it. But it’s not the best way to lose fat. The best way to lose fat is by gaining strength. When you gain strength, your body burns more calories and burns them longer. Don’t get me wrong, spending an hour on the treadmill will burn calories. However, anything you do, even sleep, burns calories. But, you will burn more calories after an hour of picking heavy things up and putting them down than running on a treadmill. The more muscle you have, the more calories you’ll burn while at rest. The more calories you burn at rest, the more fat your body burns. The more fat you burn, the better your body feels and looks. Skinny isn’t sexy anymore. Strong is sexy.
“Eating fat will make you fat.”
Ok, now you know! You’re going to lose those 10lbs in several weeks and you’re going to lift weights and get cardio in at the same time! And… you’re going to watch what you eat and not eat fat!
No, don’t do that! Your body needs fat. It needs carbohydrates and proteins too. Think of your body as a machine and the macro nutrients (fats, carbs, and proteins) as its fuel. Without fat, your body isn’t getting all the fuel it needs and it won’t perform properly. Without fat, your body loses heat. Fat insulates those well hydrated organs you have now. Fat also gives you energy to lose the very thing you’re trying to get rid of. Instead of cutting out fat from your meals try eliminating the type of fat (yes there are “good” fats) and the amount of fat you’re taking in. And while you’re doing it, look at the amount carbohydrates and proteins you’re taking in too. Try portion control instead of cutting out a very important nutrient. Do you want that cheeseburger and piece of cake you love? Ok, but make it a small cheeseburger and a small piece of cake. Throw some avocado (a healthy fat) on that burger instead of something else. Be creative. Enjoy it. Don’t overdo it and don’t stop it completely because there’ll be a day when you’ll have it again. Depriving yourself of eating certain things you’ve loved all your life isn’t sustainable. You grew up loving it and you’ll grow old loving it too.
So, now that I’ve changed your mind on what not to do, how do you lose fat? There’s actually a very easy way to lose weight. No matter if you believe in these myths or not. The truth is if you want to lose fat you have to eat healthy and burn more calories than you take in. That’s it. Nothing else. Calorie deficit.
Rusty Monkres is an ACE certified personal trainer who incorporates Strength Cardio and Core (SC2™) in his training to achieve strength, hypertrophy, and muscular endurance