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Fat Loss Fitness Uncategorized

5 Proven Ways To Break Through Your Plateau

It happens to us all. Everything is going great. You’re adding muscle and shedding pounds. You feel stronger and more confident.

And then…WHAM! It hits: the dreaded plateau.

Suddenly, everything is going wrong. You stop building muscle, stop losing fat, and stop progressing. It’s a state of homeostasis,where here everything stays the same.

At this point, many people get discouraged and give up. They back away from the gym and stop watching what they eat. In a few weeks or months, they rouse themselves enough to try getting in shape again. After some rapid progress, guess what?

Yes, they hit another plateau. And give up again for a while. Sometimes this cycle can repeat itself for years.

I have hit so many plateaus in my life but the one I remember the most is when I sat around 92 kg. I must have sat there for 2 years. Up to 93, down to 91, but 92 was it.
I thought I was doing everything right. But I wasn’t. I was doing the same thing I had been doing for as long as I can remember. As soon as I made the changes that were required, I suddenly shot up to 97 kg. This is where I comfortably sit right now and i’m stronger than ever.


What does all this have to do with you? Everything! My message to you is:

Don’t get discouraged, get off your plateau instead.

Here’s how.

  1.       Cycle Your Calories

If your goal is 3000 calories per day., That’s 21,000 per week. The normal gym goer would split this up evenly over 7 days. This makes life easy but also makes it easy to stagnate.

 

Instead, eat more or less each day depending on what you are doing that day.

For example, you might eat 3,400 calories on leg day and 2,900 on arm day and so on.

 

This helps to trick your body into believing it’s not losing fat or on a long term bulk. The result: more constant growth.

 

  1.       Periodize Your Routine

Or in simple terms, switch up things every week or so. Periodization has been proven to improve muscle growth and fat loss. How it works is as soon as your body starts to figure out what you’re up to, you change your routine.


A simple protocol would look like this:

Week 1: 5 reps

Week 2: 8 reps

Week 3: 10 reps

Week 4: 12 reps

Week 5: start over

 

This is basic version of periodization where you alter the rep ranges to target different energy systems and muscle fibres.


As you advance, you can switch up the exercises as well as the rep ranges.

This will keep your body guessing and promote constant growth.

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  1.       Fast

Fasting is extremely popular and for good reason. It cleans out old cells, helps regulate hunger hormones, and can slow the effects of some diseases.

 

The sort of fast I recommend is a 24-36 hour fast. I personally go for longer fasts between 3-4 days for health benefits that aren’t gym related.

During your fast your body will forget about what it’s been doing and start cleaning out old cells in the body to use as fuel. The duration without food also helps your body look to your stored energy to keep it alive.

 

After your fast, you will have reset your body and you can begin your normal regime again.

If your fast is longer than 2 days then once every 2 months is a good frequency. If you decide the shorter fasts are your thing then once a month or up to once a week can be beneficial.

 

  1.     Work Harder

We can become the villain in our own story. We get comfortable and stop treating each workout with the intensity it deserves. Instead we look for something else to blame whether it be genetics, age, work, your bad knee etc.

 

Make sure you are giving every workout your absolute best. You should feel like crawling out of the gym.

 

My favorite way to increase intensity is to add dropsets to each exercise.

 

To do this, simply take the set to failure, drop some weight and go again. It will feel like someone has a blowtorch to your muscles.


5. Forgive Yourself

Plateaus are inevitable. Whether you like it or not, it will come. It happens to all of us. Whether you are a professional athlete or a weekly gym goer, you’re still human. The important thing is to keep going and say: “okay, what now?”

 

If you’re a lady who is sick of counting calories or isn’t sure how much you should eat, click here:  http://ethanhyde.com/ccd-landing-page/

 

 

 

Categories
Fat Loss Fitness

6 Rules For Fat Loss

Fat loss is an interesting topic. Everyone has their own method and rules for it. Don’t eat this. Don’t train that.
Those rules work for them. They don’t work for everyone.
One of the keys to fast fat loss is understanding your goal. The goal of fat loss is to look good.
When done right, you can increase strength and muscle size.
The flip side is a lot of muscle wasted and you end up feeling like crap.
After years of testing these methods on myself and my clients, I have come up with 6 rules that stand out above the rest.
 
1. Rest Less
 
If your goal is to burn fat then your rest period should reflect that. Resting for 2 minutes after performing 10 reps doesn’t cut it.
Let’s say you perform 10 reps or even 15. That takes around 20-30 seconds to complete.
If you rest for 2 minutes, that’s 4 times longer than it took to complete the set. Far from optimal. That means that at most you are only working out for ¼ of your time in the gym.
Long rest periods have their place but most of us have lives we need to get back to. We are short on time and want to be in and out after 30-45 minutes.
I like to keep rest periods between 30-90 seconds depending what I have done.
 
2. Metcon
 
This ties in with resting less. My metabolic conditioning workouts in SHRED21 are for ultimate fat loss in less than 30 minutes. These work due to their ability to boost your metabolism, increase fat burning hormones, and burn more total calories. This sure beats wandering around the gym for an hour trying to decide what exercise to do next for chest.
Try this:
60 seconds of pull ups
50 seconds of push ups
40 seconds of squat jumps
60 seconds of leg raises
50 seconds of med ball slams
40 seconds of burpees
As fast as possible.
 
3. Add a finisher
 
I love adding finishers to my workouts. I see it as one last shot at getting the absolute most from my workout.
These will often burn more calories and provide more benefits than my actual workout!
HIIT sessions are great separate to my normal workouts. Although, I will tag an extra 10-15 minutes onto my workout and go for gold.
 
Try these finishers:
 
Deadmill Sprints: Turn the treadmill off and sprint flat out for 20 seconds. Rest for 60 seconds and repeat for 10 rounds.
Deadmill and Burpees: As above but increase the rest period to 90 seconds. In each rest period, perform burpees. The first round will be 10 burpees, the second will be 9. Keep going until you reach 1.
Battle Rope Slams: Jump and slam as fast as possible for 25 seconds. Rest for 40, repeat 8 times.
Cycle and Overhead Press: Sprint on the bike for 25 seconds. Immediately jump off and grab some dumbbells. Complete 40 overhead push presses and get straight back on the bike. Repeat for 5 rounds and record your time.
 
4. Always move
 
Your rest periods are great for recovering but there is a more useful way of using that time.
Research has shown that staying active during your rest period has a long host of benefits. These include, fat loss, increase of muscle gain, and strength increases.
This is a key protocol I include in my SHRED21 42DAY workouts.
Next time you hit the gym try adding in 30-60 seconds of running, skipping, or abs. If you are training legs, you could add bicep curls or leg raises.
Your active time in the gym is already limited, don’t waste anymore.
 
5. Perform compound exercises
 
Large compound exercises should already make up the bulk of your workout.
When it comes to fat loss, these larger movements will burn more calories. The reason is they use more muscle. The more muscles required for a movement means more energy used.
Large exercises such as a deadlift have an amazing effect on anabolic hormone levels. Yet another reason to include them.
I still like to perform isolation work. When I do, I generally super set these or perform a giant set. This keeps me active and the calories burning.
 
6. Be consistent with everything else
 
Going hard in the gym is one thing. Backing it up with sleep, nutrition, supplementation, and recovery is another.
Knowing when to eat and what to eat are vital for fat loss. What’s even more vital is knowing how to sustain your hard-earned results.
All too often, we follow a plan, get great results, and then what? There is no plan. We can’t keep dieting forever but if we add food back to fast we will get fat right? What if we add the wrong foods? Even fatter!
By controlling your workouts, nutrition, and rest, you will not only look amazing. You will perform better than ever and get to keep everything you have worked so hard for.
This is the cornerstone of SHRED21. It’s not about the fat loss you experience. It’s not about getting fitter and stronger than ever. It’s about maintaining those results for as long as you want and not putting the fat back on.
 
 
Categories
Fat Loss Food

7 Things To Do If You Are Not Losing Fat

 

  1. Caffeine:

Caffeine gets a bad wrap from people relying on it or chugging down energy drinks all day. Caffeine is found in lots of fat burner supplements as well as pre workouts. There is good reason for this.

Caffeine has been praised for its ability to enhance sports performance and improve body composition. (Acheson et al., 1980,  Goldstein et al., 2010)

Start with around a 200mg dose to evaluate your sensitivity. Those that drink lots of coffee each day may use up to 400mg before a workout. This can be bought in a pill form from your chemist.

 

  1. Revaluate your plan:

Are you even following a plan or simply going to the gym and working out? If it’s the latter then it’s time to knuckle down and get yourself a proven plan that delivers.

If you are currently following a plan and it’s not working, perhaps it’s not the plan for you. Maybe it’s not intense enough…maybe it’s too intense. Is it geared towards building muscle or is it focusing on fat loss? I always train for muscle growth and performance and add cardio for fat loss.

 

  1. Eat more protein:

Chances are you are not eating enough protein. Protein is great for dieting because it’s very hard to gain fat from over eating it. Studies have shown that those that eat extra calories in the form of protein gain less, if any fat than those that eat extra calories from carbohydrates.

The reason for this, protein requires more energy to digest. This means that for every 100 calories you consume of protein, roughly 35 of that is used just to digest it!

 

  1. HIIT It:

Let’s face it, steady state cardio is dead. There is enough science that proves that you can get away with 10 minutes of HIIT versus 40 minutes of jogging/walking on the treadmill.

HIIT is hard though. It should not be fun to do. Use a spin bike if you have never done HIIT before and start with 30 seconds of absolute maximum effort. By the time you hit 20-25 seconds, your legs should be struggling to move the pedals and by the 30th second should bring you to a halt. Rest for 2 minutes and do it again!

 

  1. Ditch the processed foods:

Did you know that your body absorbs a higher percentage of calories from peanut butter than it does peanuts? If you were too consume 100 calories of peanut butter, you would absorb around 95 of those calories versus around 60-70 from eating raw nuts.

The more processed the food, the less work your body must do. This allows your body to digest it faster and absorb more.

 

  1. Eat some raw foods:

When food is cooked, more often than not, more calories are released. Eating raw foods means consuming less calories. Just choose your foods wisely. I can’t imagine a raw steak tasting very nice…

 

  1. Stand up:

You can hit the gym each day but if you are sedentary all day then it will be very hard to not store fat. Daily movements account for up to 40% of the calories we burn. Your gym session doesn’t even burn that much.

This can be as simple as adding a 30 minute walk to your lunch break, avoiding elevators, riding a bike to work, or getting a standing desk.

 

Categories
Fat Loss Fitness Food

4 Hard Truths About Abs

Everyone has once had the strong desire to have their abs showing. We all have abs. Some people’s just have a bit more soft protection covering them. People who are often lean tend to want to take things a step further and drop below 9% body-fat and have that “cover model” look. There is nothing wrong with that but just know these hard truths first.

Hard Truth 1: The diet that lost you the first 10 kilos is not the same one to lose the last 2-3 kilos.

Your body was quite happy to let go of the excess body-fat because it didn’t need it. The last few kilos…that’s a different story. Your body is quite happy hanging onto this fat and for good reason. It will provide energy when food is scarce and it also helps keep hormone levels high. Dropping too low as bodybuilders do is not healthy. They are “supplementing” with lots of things that prevent their hormone levels dropping.

Solution: The last few kilos will be the hardest. I have a simple method for achieving this. It is far from easy, especially if you are near 100kg like I am. The good news, it works. I don’t like to count calories either so it fits in well with my life.

 

Hard Truth 2: You may struggle in social situations.

Everyone is having a beer…not you. Everyone is digging into that birthday cake…not you either. It is much easier to maintain your weight than it is to lose it. What this means is, once ydreamstime_xxl_38153514ou have reached your goal weight, then you can be more flexible. The exception to this might be a refeed day or after an intense leg session. You could then indulge in that slice of cake (just 1) or enjoy an extra serve of chips.

Solution: I always look at dieting like this. If you are making great progress then you can indulge a little. If you are not making any progress then perhaps you should go without.

Hard Truth 3: You might have to give up some hobbies to train.

This one is different for everyone. I train once or twice a day for 6 days per week. This doesn’t leave a lot of time for many other things. The thing is, most people you see on Instagram or Facebook don’t simply do a weights session and BAM they have the perfect body.

They might do an hour in the morning, an hour at night, and a tonne of meal prepping each day. This isn’t ideal for the person who works 9 hours a day. It’s great if being fit for Facebook is your job. Most of us will struggle.

Solution: I like to find ways around problems or obstacles as I prefer to call them. My cardio lasts at maximum 20 minutes. My weights session will be around 45 minutes. I can easily chunk these two into the same workout. I won’t end up looking a ripped Facebook model but I will look amazing. I will still have abs showing. I also have other methods that take even less time but deliver the same result if not better!

 

Hard Truth 4: It feels great to have achieved what most people won’t.

Not sure this is a hard truth but I wanted to lighten to mood a little. Abs take work. They take dedication. They require effort 7 days a week and 24 hours a day. The good thing is that when you take your shirt off and someone makes a comment about your six-pack, it feels pretty damn good. Your new six-pack won’t stick around unless you work on it. Having a six-pack for a week is simple. Keeping it for months on end is the hard part. You know what makes it easier? Seeing it.

You will naturally want to work hard to keep it because you are proud of yourself.

Solution: Not sure this needs one. Work hard and follow a proven plan to get a chiseled core and keep it.

 

 

Categories
Fat Loss Fitness

HIIT Cardio Blaster

Cardio can be dull. It can even be ineffective.

Most trainers will have you doing burpees and skipping and call that cardio. That’s cool but I think my cardio is better.

Just because your heart rate is up does not mean you are doing HIIT. HIIT requires an all out effort. Very few exercises can actually achieve the result that HIIT is designed to deliver.
See below my squat jumps have a twist to them. For one, I am using a TRX cable to propel me higher. Try it. It’s great for not only burning fat but also building that teardrop muscle (vastus medialis) that we all love. By using the TRX cables, I can also get a lot deeper into the squat allowing me to recruit more muscle fibres and increase the distance I need to travel. By using my arms to assist, I can get higher and incorporate more muscles.

I also picked the rower, cycle, and battle ropes because they allow me to go all out and leave nothing in the tank.

Share this page/post so we can teach more people about how to do HIIT the real way and actually get the results we all desire.

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