Getting a tight, toned, lean stomach by summer time may feel impossible, but trust me, there’s enough time to accomplish it if you stick to the right game plan.
It’s not simple, nor is it easy, but if you commit yourself to it everyday, you WILL get the body you deserve come this summer.
Check out this guide & stick to it these next few months, and watch your body transform before your eyes.
Rule #1 – Leanness is Affected by Body Fat & Muscle Mass
The more fat tissue you have under your skin, the less lean you are – simple as that.
When you lose fat, you become leaner.
But there is one other side to this “leanness” coin: muscle mass.
Take two people – let’s say they’re twins and they weight exactly the same (let’s say 180 lbs) and have the same body fat percentage.
If twin A loses 20 lbs of fat (and weighs 160 lbs) , but twin B loses 30lbs of fat & gains 10lbs of muscle (and weighs 160lbs, too) – which twin do you think will appear leaner?
Twin B will definitely appear leaner, because this twin, despite weighing the same, has less fat and more muscle on his or her body.
So not only do you want to lose body fat to get lean, but you also want to gain (or at least maintain) muscle.
Rule #2 – Lose Body Fat via Caloric Deficit
Body fat is a storage vehicle for excess energy.
Think of it as a fuel tank on a car. People who have extra body fat simply have large fuel tanks filled with gas.
And what do we need to do with that fuel?
Burn it off, of course.
To get rid of fat, you need to be in an energy deficit – also known as a calorie deficit.
You need to eat less calories than your body requires to survive, so that it taps into your fat for the required energy.
In this deficit, you’ll slowly but surely lose that body fat.
Rule #3 – Don’t Only Rely on Dieting to Lose Fat
You can simply achieve a caloric deficit by eating less and not introducing exercise (which burns more calories), but by doing so, you’re forcing yourself to have to eat very little.
What happens when you eat very little and don’t exercise?
You feel like crap all the time.
You’ll have less energy.
Your mood & cognition will go down.
You might not sleep as well.
You’ll lose muscle mass.
Exercising has its benefits outside of burning calories, and using that to allow yourself to eat a bit more food will do wonders for your health, mind, and appearance.
Rule #4 – Strength Train to Hold Onto Precious Muscle
In the past point, I highlighted that zero exercise results in lost muscle.
We already know that muscle mass is important in dictating how lean & tight our bodies appear, so we better do all we can to hold onto it.
So, is any exercise fine for maintaining or growing muscle? Sure, anything is better than nothing.
But the absolute best exercise for your muscles would be strength training.
It can be bodyweight exercises, dumbbell exercises, barbell exercises, kettlebell exercises – it doesn’t matter as long as you’re getting stringer over time. And by stronger, I mean moving heavier weights.
Rule #5 – Don’t try to Out-Exercise a Poor Diet
One can theoretically eat 4000 calories worth of pizza, beer, and cookies, and run it all off plus some.
But besides for football players and marathon runners, does this ever really happen in real life? Can someone really get lean & fit eating a ton of bad food?
The answer is a big fat NO.
If you were to try this, here are three likely scenarios that’ll happen as a result:
A) You’ll get injured from exercising so much. How will you then burn off all those calories?
B) You’ll underestimate how much you’ll need to do to burn everything off.
C) You’ll lose all interest in exercising. But cookies … cookies are forever.
You’ll end up gaining weight no matter what.
Rule #6 – Set Milestones & Hold Yourself Accountable to Them
Now that all that’s been said, it’s time to figure out how much weight you’re going to want to lose and by when.
As a rule of thumb, losing more than 2lbs of fat per week is difficult and not sustainable.
If you weight 200lbs, and want to get down to 160lbs, that means you’ll need at leas 20 weeks to do so.
Let’s say that will serve as your milestones – each week for the next 20 weeks, you want to weight 2lbs less, and by week 20, you want to weigh 160lbs.
Now that you have all the tools, it’s time to start eating less, exercising more, and weighing in weekly to track your progress.
If you’re losing 2lbs a week, then you’re on track
If you’re losing more than that per week, you can probably ease off the gas and give yourself a break.
And if you’re losing less than that, you might want to exercise a little bit more or eat a little bit less.
Just keep checking in week after week and make adjustments as needed.
Once 20 weeks is up, you’ll probably be at 160lbs.
If you’re looking to transform your body & health in the New Year, we invite you to one of our Free Starting Point Sessions, where we’ll review your goals & help you come up with the game plan to get there.
To schedule yours, click here!