While John trudges through each workout he slowly loses faith. The naysayers might be right. What is he can't do it? John has tried all of the fad diets and infomercial "fat loss miracles," and he still hasn't had any fat loss success.
Frustration sets in. John tirelessly searches for articles and scours through fitness forums to see what he is doing wrong.
While he has a basic understanding of the principles that drive weight loss, John realizes that something is missing. He just doesn't know what.
If this story sounds familiar check out these 15 tips. They will help turn you into a fat burning machine.
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How to Become a Fat Burning Machine
#1 - Don't Use Fad DietsMost fad diets rely on the use of carb manipulation or starvation. These methods make it seem as if you've become a fat burning machine, but often the weight loss is caused by glycogen depletion. This burns off only a small amount of fat.
How many times have you heard your neighbor tell you about the "new diet" he is trying? A few days in and a few pounds down his motivation is high. 3 weeks later he is worse off than before their diet. Why? He's trying gimmicks when he really just needs patience and a more common sense approach.
#2 - Track Your Food and Calorie IntakeTracking how much food you eat is a must if you want to burn off extra fat. You may find that the extra glob of butter on your sweet potato, or that glass of milk you are drinking is preventing you from entering a calorie deficit.
Use food scales if you have to, or any other measuring utensils and tools that allow you to precisely calculate how many calories you are actually eating. You will likely find that you have been a little heavy-handed on some ingredients, and that your caloric intake is higher than you thought.
Here are a few ways to keep track of calories:
- Pen and pad of paper
- Word or Excel document on your PC
- App on your phone
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#3 - Eat More ProteinProtein is satiating, an essential building block for muscle and it stokes your metabolism. It is important to feel full when on a calorie deficit. This will prevent you from overindulgence which can ruin all that you've worked hard for.
Remember that calories are calories. Don't start adding protein without taking away from another macronutrient, such as carbs.
Here are some great sources of protein:
- Ground Beef
#4 - Eat More FiberThe average adult fiber intake in the United States is less than half the recommended levels. Like protein, fiber is very satiating and aids in energy intake control. It will also keep you regular.
Fiber supplements, fruits, vegetables, or beans are a great way to get extra fiber into your diet.
#5 - Eat More Dietary Fats
Contrary to the old myth that espouses "eating fats make you fat," You need to eat fats. They help you to burn fat and regulate hormones.
To really become a fat burning machine, decrease your carbohydrate intake, increase protein intake and increase dietary fat intake. Here are recommended foods that are high in dietary fats:
- Fatty fish like tuna, salmon, and trout
- Peanut, almond, and cashew butters
- Olive oil
#6 - Get More Vitamin DObesity, metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance and a concentration of glucose have all been found to have a relationship to low vitamin D intake/levels. This means that people who suffer from these ailments generally do not have enough vitamin D in their bodies.
Here are a few ways you can easily increase your Vitamin D intake:
- Eat more salmon
- Eat more tuna
- Eat more eggs
- Get out into the sun
My tip would be to get out in the sun more, and eat more fish and eggs.
#7 - Drink More MilkThere are many studies that show that drinking milk can have a positive effects on fat loss. Drinking milk has been shown to torch belly fat and increase overall fat loss in the body.
Milk is a great source of vitamins, nutrients, protein, and dietary fats. Milk is also cost-effective.
Add milk to your protein shakes for extra flavor, protein and dietary fats.
#8 - Eat Spicy FoodsEating spicy foods will literally turn you into a fat burning machine. Capsaicin is the active compound in chili peppers and has been proven to aid in the fat burning process. The thermogenic effect of capsaicin helps with fat loss and it promotes satiety.
Adding a little hot sauce or crushed red pepper to your foods, or supplement with a good thermogenic fat burner. This doesn't mean you can eat endless amounts of hot wings!
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#9 - Stay HydratedIt sounds cliché to tell you to drink water, but here's what happens if you don't drink enough:
- Lower energy levels - you won't want to get up and be active; this means less calories burned.
- Insulin production increased during dehydration.
- Reduced kidney function - you won't metabolize fat as quickly and efficiently.
- Metabolism slows down - you need to exercise more or eat fewer calories in order to maintain fat loss.
#10 - Try Carb CyclingIf executed properly, carb cycling can stoke your metabolism and stimulate massive fat loss. Carb cycling is simply eating higher amounts of carbohydrates on some days and lower carbohydrates on other days. Doing so promotes muscle growth and fat loss.
A few tips if you want to try carb cycling:
- Eat whole grains, rice, whole wheat pasta, oatmeal, or sweet/white potatoes.
- Skip sugar packed processed foods.
- Eat higher amounts of carbs on training days.
#11 - Try a Keto DietKetogenic dieting is an extremely effective way to force your body to burn fat for fuel. Ketosis is the natural process your body goes through to help you survive when food intake is low. It produces ketones, which is the breaking down of fats in the liver.
Aside from forcing your body to burn off body fat, a properly maintained keto diet comes with many other benefits:
- You feel satiated and stay full for a longer period of time.
- Once your body has adjusted, you will feel more energized throughout the day.
- Triglyceride and cholesterol levels will improve.
- Over time you can naturally eliminate type 2 diabetes.
#12 - Try Intermittent FastingIntermittent fasting is essentially skipping breakfast and restricting eating hours to an 8 hour window. Fasting itself comes with tremendous and numerous benefits, which are beyond the scope of this article. Regarding weight loss, when done properly intermittent fasting will help increase fat loss.
Intermittent fasting can be difficult at first. You may experience hunger pangs during the first several weeks as your body makes adjustments to this new eating lifestyle. But after this period you'll notice an increase in alertness, and will start burning fat faster than you can say "shredded."
Here are some of the ways intermittent fasting benefits fat loss:
- Helps with normalizing ghrelin levels which is known as the hunger hormone.
- Lower triglyceride levels.
- Increased memory function and alertness.
- Reduces inflammation.
#13 - Utilize High Intensity Interval TrainingHIIT is a form of cardio that alternates between intervals of short intense anaerobic exercise and recovery periods. HIIT training was used in the 1970s by an athletic coach named Peter Coe.
There are many ways HIIT training can help to ramp up fat loss:
- Increased aerobic ability
- Increased athletic performance
- Increased resting metabolic rate
- Lowers insulin resistance
- Skeletal muscle adaptations which enhance muscle fat oxidation
- Improved glucose tolerance
- Lowers the markers for cardiovascular disease
#14 - Become More Active Outside of the GymThe simple fact is the more active you are, the more calories you burn. If you are looking to ramp up your fat burning capabilities, find some activities you want to do outside of the gym.
Invite your friends and have fun while you shed those extra pounds.