How to Get Shredded By Summer
As summer makes its way back into our lives, it’s time for us to knuckle down and put in some work.
In order for you to get shredded, you’re going to have to burn off some fat — starting now will put you ahead of schedule.
All of these tips need to be used together. For the sake of being human, simply trying to improve in all of these areas will get you there. Changing lifestyle habits takes time for you to break and relearn new habits. As we go, life can tear us down, making it difficult not to go back to the same old ways.
Related - 8 Week Get Shredded Workout
So let’s jump into these tips.
Time to Get Shredded
#1 - You’ll Need to Set a SMART Goal
Creating a goal and a plan to achieve that goal is hands down the most important step you need to do — this is the most crucial step to anything.
You can read any self-help book or any content that encourages you to do anything and they all say have a goal. I really never understood why you needed to create a SMART goal before you could achieve anything.
A SMART goal is a goal that is specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound. “I want to lose weight” is not a SMART goal, “I want to lose 40 pounds by my birthday,” is.
When your goal is “I want to lose weight,” all you are telling yourself is that you’re fat and you know it. It doesn’t drive you to achieve any measurable tasks, it doesn’t inspire you to try a new physical hobby or food, and you technically will never “finish” trying to lose weight.
So create a SMART goal.
Mine is to lose 75 (more) pounds by my birthday. So, I want to weigh 199 pounds by September 20, 2019. That’s an average of 2 pounds per week, and as I type it I feel more empowered and ready to accomplish it.
Go soul searching, get some guts, and create your goal. Make it something you can measure your progress as you go along, make sure you can attain it.
I personally feel 75 pounds in nine months is going to be really hard, but it is attainable. I wouldn’t try to set a goal that’s not safe to try to hit. But don’t be afraid to aim higher than you really think you can get.
So far, I’ve lost 126 pounds.
Once you have your goal, you need to ask yourself every time you choose to do something if it’s going to get you further from your goal or closer. I recently went to my favorite Mexican spot here and I sat there drinking water while everyone else stuffed their faces.
It sucked, but I kept reminding myself that I won’t reach my goal on my birthday if I screw up.
#2 - Check Your Diet
What you eat plays the biggest role in your health. Exercise, in general, is to improve your overall health — it is just a bonus that it helps you lose weight by burning more calories.
If you still eat more calories than you can burn, you’re not going to lose weight. So starting at the root of your problem is best. Check out our TDEE calculator to give you an idea of how many calories you burn per day.
The best thing about this round of losing weight — I haven’t really exercised much.
First thing’s first, start logging what you eat now. This isn’t the time to be judgmental about what you’re eating; you just have to start logging it all.
I personally like MyFitnessPal because logging food is as easy as searching their database or even scanning the barcode. Once you get used to logging your food as you eat it, you will have an up to date status report on what you can eat.
You’re going to need to spend time in that kitchen cooking. Buy yourself a nice set of everything, pull up Pinterest for some recipes, and learn how to cook. It will be the best time investment you’ll ever make.
Buy fresh produce, fresh meats, and keep the processed foods to a minimum. I generally follow an 80/20 rule, where 80% of my calories come from nutritious sources, while 20% can come from whatever.
My sinful treats are Halo Top ice cream and sometimes I’ll make oatmeal no-bake cookies.
Learn how to cook and you will be able to recreate your favorites with nutritious foods.
#3 - Start Training Properly
Simply speaking, there are a lot of ways you can train. You can do bodyweight exercises, you can go to the gym and do a workout routine, you could sign up for an aerobics class, or you can simply start running and hiking on your own.
Whatever physical movement you choose, you need to put your focus and effort into it. Even though I told you I’ve lost my weight even without exercising, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t.
If you can, start going to the gym three to four times per week. When you go, you should focus on compound movements like squat, bench, and deadlift, and you should keep the rest periods low to increase the intensity.
You basically want to train your whole body, so an upper/lower split, push/pull/legs split, or even a full-body routine all will work well. Perform the exercises with great form, strive to increase the weight you can lift, and you’ll see results.
#4 - Move More
Along with resistance training, you really want to get up more. I had ankle surgery in 2010 and my feet and ankles have never been alright.
The more you can get up and move, the better you will feel. Getting out into the sun, being social, and getting your sweat on all improve your mood and will add years to your life.
Walk more, park at the end of the parking lot, take the stairs, and strive to move more than you sit. This is a hard one for me.
#5 - Always Monitor Progress
During your journey, you’re going to have to take measurements of your progress.
At a minimum, you need to log your food intake, how much you exercised, and record the weight on the scale.
If you want to take it one notch further, take your waist, chest, and thigh measurements and buy yourself some body fat calipers.
Be consistent with your measurements on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. This is going to give you the information of whether your actions are helping or hurting your progress.
#6 - Tweak and Adjust
You shouldn’t change anything within the first few weeks just so you can get a baseline on your performance. After the initial period of starting, you can start assessing your strengths and weaknesses so you can tell what is working.
This is the time to manage your macros, play with your calorie intake, add or remove cardio, or try a new workout routine.
Consistency is key.
#7 - Create Healthy Habits
The difference between someone who makes weight loss and living healthy a lifestyle change versus someone who loses weight and gains is back are habits.
The first time I lost 120 pounds, I tried to out-exercise my eating. It worked for a while… until I got depressed. Then old habits came back in and I gained more than I lost. And fast.
Now, I’ve pretty much gotten over fast food, I don’t crave sweets, and I prefer eating nutritional foods over processed foods. I haven’t really given any foods up; I just plan and keep my calories in check. It’s not hard to skip out on the bread when you can get another 6 ounces of meat instead.
Break your bad habits, they are holding you back. Forge new healthy habits and repeat your goal as often as you can. It can help keep you from returning to old ways.
#8 - Remain Consistent
Putting all of this time into learning to cook, learning how to exercise, and improving your health is a waste if you can’t remain consistent.
You don’t need to be perfect, you need to be consistent. I have a lot of issues, but my consistency has allowed me to pinpoint them. Start logging everything you can and being as accurate as you can.
Go to the gym regularly, don’t go over your calories, and put emphasis on building healthy habits.