If you do this, you'll lose weight. If you do that, you'll lose weight. If you don't do this or if you don't do that, and on and on and on.In addition, the number of weight loss programs, specialized foods such as Jenny Craig or Weightwatchers, and "gurus" out there who populate our late-night, early-morning cable television channels with visions of healthy, happy, weight-proportionate people joyously half-dancing, half-exercising to rhythmic, peppy music must number in the thousands by now.
As a "pastime" in which almost every individual has participated in at least once in their lifetime, losing weight and keeping it off can be incredibly frustrating and bewildering, leading to either hard-earned success or soul-deflating defeat. Before we knew how detrimental it was to carry extra weight, being overweight was not considered something to be obsessed very much. In fact, someone who was a little more than pleasantly plump was viewed as a member of the "privileged" class, someone who did not have to work for a living because they were either wealthy or had other people to do the work for them.
It has only been during the past one hundred years that fatness began to be perceived as something correlated with laziness, gluttony, and unattractiveness. Weight loss has been converted into something that once was thought to be frivolous and even weird into something that is de rigeur even for weight proportionate individuals today.
Fat loss supplements such as L-Carnitine and Yohimbine will assist you with losing weight and maintaining muscle mass and bulk.As a bodybuilder or athlete, you know the importance of maintaining a proper weight/height/muscle mass proportion, and undoubtedly practice a vigilant sort of attitude regarding the foods you consume. None of those high-fat, empty calorie, white flour/white sugar snacks for you!
But sometimes a few pounds manage to crawl into an area of your body and catch you off guard. This may happen from neglecting your workouts, or because you may have been indulging in some forbidden foods.
Now you need to get those pounds off in a quick and healthy manner. What do you do?
Tip #1 - Don't Believe Everything You Hear or ReadThe first thing you need to do is not believe most of the weight loss tips you read or are told about, since most of them are steeped in old wives' tales and folk medicine which emerged from times when there were no such things as clinical experiments and health technology. People had to rely on health tips that were based on observations made by the human brain, that intelligent yet slightly biased organ which prefers to imagine there are connections between things when none really exist!
So if somebody tells you that in order to lose weight you have to eat a bowl of oatmeal during certain phases of the moon, you'll know that this has come from someone's unconscious decision to correlate losing a few pounds with the moon phase because he or she ate a bowl of oatmeal during the full moon. Of course, we now know better about these kinds of erroneous "correlations" with the advance of health science, blood chemistry analysis, and knowledge of good and bad foods. Most of us will laugh at such assumptions when we hear about them. At least I hope most of us laugh at them!
Tip #2 - Eat Before You Go Grocery ShoppingOne well-worn bit of advice which is actually very true is to never go to the grocery store when you are hungry! It makes perfect sense, doesn't it? If you don't think this is a really valid statement, try shopping for groceries one day directly after eating a nice meal; then, a few days later, go to that same food market again and start meandering up and down the aisles while your stomach is growling.
Notice what you are putting in your cart? Notice that you mouth may be watering a bit and you are even thinking about ripping open a package of chocolate chip cookies before you've even paid for them? When you are hungry enough to feel extremely uncomfortable, this means your body is actively searching for a food source that is quick and high in energy.
And the ultimate easy to eat, energy-rich (albeit "bad" energy) food is junk food! Cookies, muffins, candy, cake, doughnuts - all those foods that you can grab and pop right into your mouth without any preparation whatsoever.
In a few seconds after eating this junk food, your stomach will feel better, your digestion will begin dissolving the food, and your body will absorb it with the voracity of a starving leopard. The instinct of hunger will stimulate these kinds of impulse purchases, especially when it is so easy to obtain exactly the kind of food necessary to quell its immediate desire, and it takes a really strong, disciplined person to fight against the chemical processes which are telling his or her body to "eat or die".
So remember to eat something before you go shopping for your weekly groceries. Even if you aren't hungry, grab a healthy snack such as some yogurt, a banana, or a small cup of cottage cheese sprinkled with walnuts, before going to the store in order to ward off any hunger pangs.
Tip #3 - Resist the Urge to Buy Junk FoodWhile you are on your journey through your favorite grocery store, another psychological trick you can use to lose weight is to resist the urge to buy junk food. If you don't buy any junk food, you won't be able to take it home and stash it in your cupboards!
No junk or unhealthy foods in your house means you won't be tempted to eat any junk food. This is especially helpful at two or three in the morning when you wake up and suddenly remember that piece of red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting you bought is sitting down there on your counter just waiting to be tasted and savored.
Instead of a normal size dinner plate, use one that is somewhere in between a saucer and a dinner plate.
Tip #4 - Use a Smaller Dinner PlateOne more psychologically slanted tip for weight loss (this one may make you chuckle).
Instead of a normal size dinner plate, use one that is somewhere in between a saucer and a dinner plate. Smaller plates mean you will only have room for smaller portions of food, right?
Then, after you are done eating, give your empty plate to someone and tell them to hide it!
Tip #5 - Proper Protein Intake is EssentialAlthough everybody requires a certain amount of protein to maintain healthy body function, weight trainers need more protein than normal because of the tremendous amount of stress they put on their muscles, joints, and skeleton.
However, protein has also been shown to be a great promoter of weight loss for a variety of reasons. One is that food rich in protein is superior to promoting a feeling of being satisfied more than foods which are dripping with carbs or fats.
The flavors you taste when eating a sugar cookie and an eight ounce piece of chicken breast are certainly totally different, with one tasting more appealing than the other. But after eating the chicken, your stomach will relay messages to your brain which will in turn tell you that you have eaten the right food and don't need to eat anymore; whereas the messages sent by the cookie will tell you to "eat another cookie"!
Since muscles exhibit higher rates of metabolism than a chunk of body fat, it makes sense that the more muscle mass there is to shape your body, the more calories your body will burn while exercising. And by consuming more protein, which helps you feel fuller, you'll be less apt to eat additional food which may increase your appetite (empty calories such as white flour foods).
Weight loss in inevitable when you follow this diet plan, along with exercise, of course!
Tip #6 - Add a Little Whey Protein to Your DietOne of the best proteins you can eat in order to assist in weight loss is whey protein. Whey is a milk-based protein that is leftover after cheese has been made from milk, and is distributed in three different forms:
- Whey protein concentrate
- Whey protein hydrolysates
- Whey protein isolates.
Whey protein hydrolysates are used when conducting laboratory tests requiring whey because of the quickness this type of already-predigested whey is absorbed by the body. In fact, all whey protein is easily digested and contains all of the essential amino acids. Research with whey on its ability to promote muscle protein synthesis has had favorable results, with those who eat whey protein before and after a training session gaining more muscle strength and growth than those who did not include whey protein in pre-workout or post-workout sessions.
Whey seems to be better at satisfying your appetite more than other proteins, also, because milk proteins are partially comprised of glycomacropeptides, which are enzymes that enhance production of cholecystokinin (CCK). This is an important hormone involved in digestion which is sent into your system after a meal where it stimulates chemical signals that tell your brain you are full and don't want to eat anymore.
Several studies have concluded with the assertion that whey will assist people in losing weight, in addition to a regimen of exercise and a healthy diet. At the University of Oklahoma, researchers had two groups participate in a weight loss study using whey. One group took a whey supplement, the other didn't and both participated in a strenuous exercise program for ten weeks. At the end of the ten week period, both groups had lost weight but the group taking whey exhibited a significantly (statistically) higher reduction in fat mass (-9.3% against the -4.6% of the exercise only group).
Tip #7 - Lowering Stress/Cortisol May Help Weight LossIn the past forty years, the medical and neurological community has been conducting extensive research into the process of weight gain and weight loss - why some people become obese, why some people remain thin no matter what they eat, and why people can begin to gain weight when they have not altered their lifestyle. Numerous advancements have occurred in the field of neuroscience which has shed light onto the weight loss field and one major finding has to do with the hormone cortisol.
Beginning with instructions by the hypothalamus to the pituitary gland (which in turn stimulates the adrenal gland), whenever your body experiences an abnormal amount of physical or mental stress, the stress hormone cortisol has been the subject of numerous experiments and found to be one of the main perpetrators of weight loss and/or weight gain. Cortisol's co-conspirator in this process is adrenaline, and both are rapidly discharged into your body whenever you experience a "fight or flight" moment, part of an evolutionary adaptation which meant all the difference between survival and death in times when we were running around unprotected on the savannas of Africa.
If you are having trouble losing weight, you might try some relaxation techniques in order to reduce any stress or anxietyWhile adrenaline boosts your energy and vigilance level, cortisone comes up behind it and kicks it in the rear to give it another boost to your metabolism, while also squeezing out protein-based glucose. But you don't gain weight just because scary moments happen to you every once in a while. What researchers have found is that being subjected to continuous, unalleviated stress will initiate a condition of cortisol overload in the body.
Cortisol is not meant to be continuously present in the blood; it was meant just for times of anxiety that require us to be at our most alert. This constant surge of cortisol induces constant glucose production and unfortunately, glucose is able to be converted into fat that is easily stockpiled.
Tests conducted on the effects of stress, cortisol and weight gain have revealed that when surrounded by an excess of adrenaline, fat cells stop reacting to adrenaline's fat-releasing ability. In addition, above average and sustained levels of cortisol will contribute to the retention of fat in a fat cell. As a result of all these hormonal interactions, an individual who is relentlessly exposed to high amounts of stress, especially psychological stress, will be at risk for gaining weight, heart disease, diabetes, and all the other harmful diseases which can be attributed to obesity.
Besides stress, an excess of carbohydrates in your diet can also add an unhealthy rush of cortisol and adrenaline because eating candy bars or drinking a lot of soda will produce an extreme insulin response which can generate an abrupt reduction in blood sugar (blood glucose). That, in turn, will trigger the HPA axis response (hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal) a physiological reaction well-known for causing the release of cortisol and adrenaline.
So if you are still having trouble losing weight with diet and exercise, you might try some relaxation techniques in order to reduce any stress or anxiety which may be affecting your bodily responses to weight loss.
Tip #8 - "HIT" Your Fat With High Intensity TrainingBy performing high intensity weight training and incorporating select weight loss supplements into your diet, you may find yourself quickly and efficiently shedding those pounds which somehow sidled right up to your waist or thighs and attached themselves like leeches before you know what is happening.
High intensity training (HIT) is a type of strength training which became widespread about thirty years ago due to the founder of Nautilus, Arthur Jones. HIT emphasize extremely intense, repetitive weightlifting in which the individual continues to perform until they experience total "muscular failure".
This physical punishment enforced on a weight trainer's body rapidly elevates the amount of noradrenaline and epinephrine, two hormones which head straight to receptors coating fat cells which are directly correlated to fat reduction. High intensity weight training also stimulates the manufacturing of lactic acid, which directly intensifies the release of growth hormone, another rapid and effective fat eliminator.
Tip #9 - Supplement With Yohimbine and L-CarnitineSeveral fat loss supplements will also assist you in losing weight but maintaining muscle mass and bulk. One is Yohimbine, an alkaloid found in certain tree bark, which produces stimulating and aphrodisiac-like results when consumed. Yohimbine has been utilized as an herbal dietary supplement and a doctor-prescribed medication used for treating sexual dysfunctions. However, one study indicated that Yohimbine may contribute to weight reduction in athletes.
Yohimbine can be found on the internet in the form of transdermal patches which may directly affect a loss of local fat deposits. Side effects from taking Yohimbine has been reported as minimal, with nervousness and rapid heartbeat being two of the most common.
It is best to take Yohimbine prior to weight training sessions because it will stimulate lipolysis (removing fat from cells) and elevate the amount of free fatty acid levels caused by lipolysis. Since exercising initiates the lipolysis process, people who are regular exercisers will enjoy a higher lipolytic rate as opposed to those individuals who do not engage in regular exercise.
L-Carnitine is another nutritional supplement/compound implicated in weight loss, which is a quaternary ammonium compound synthesized from lysine and methionine. Necessary as the primary cell transport for fatty acids from the cytosol to the mitochondria during the chemical elimination of lipids, L-Carnitine's main function is to control the release of energy from fat burning. Without it in our body, fat could not be transported to the mitochondria and therefore, could not be broke down into energy or weight loss.
Most of the research out on L-Carnitine points to its effectiveness as a weight loss supplement when used in conjunction with the proper diet and exercise regimen. Although your body does manufacture some L-Carnitine, it does not make enough to accommodate a weight trainer who wants to lose weight quickly.
In addition, make sure you eat plenty of red meat while taking L-Carnitine because vegetarians receive very little L-carnitine. This supplement is best used with a low sugar, low starch diet, with carb intake being under 50% of your total daily calories.