Calories in VS Calories out
Weight loss is really a simple thing. You need to burn more calories than you consume. So if your body uses about 3000 calories each day, you will want to eat 2500-2700 calories. This forces your body to use your stored fat for energy.
To figure out how many calories your body uses each day, you will need to write down everything you eat. Write everything down in a spreadsheet, and you can find nutrition facts at Nutritiondata.com or other sources. You will want to write down Calories, Fat, Carbs, and Protein for everything that you eat. Do this for a few days so you can find the averages.
If you are currently maintaining your weight, you will want to drop your daily calories by 300-500. This will allow you to lose about 1lb per week. This is the best way to do it; if you lose 2lbs or more per week, you are probably going to be losing muscle along with fat (unless you are REALLY overweight, then you can drop weight faster in the beginning).
So if you weight 180lbs and you are maintaining your weight, eating 3000 calories per day, you will want to eat 2500-2700 calories per day instead. Track your weight, and if you are losing 1lb per week, keep eating 2500-2700 calories. If weight loss slows, drop your daily calories by 200-300.
Try to eat at least 1g of protein per pound of bodyweight each day. So if you weigh 180lbs, try getting at least 180g of protein each day. It’s usually pretty difficult to get that much protein from regular food, so this is where protein shakes help. Protein powders are also usually cheaper than protein sources of food like chicken breast. Remember that your body can turn protein into carbs or fat, but not the other way around, so you NEED to eat protein!
Here’s a list of some good whole foods to get your protein from:
Chicken (boneless skinless chicken breast especially)
Turkey (Jenny-O ground turkey is a good lean alternative to fatty ground beef)
Fish (canned tuna or baked/fried fish)
Milk – just keep in mind that fat free milk still has quite a bit of sugar
Eggs (the white part has most of the protein, the yolk has most of the fat)
Fat is good! I know, you’ve been conditioned to think that fat is bad, but it isn’t. It’s very important for a lot of things… just trust me, I don’t feel like going into detail here. Try to make sure you are getting healthy fats though. Trans fats are a no-no. Unsaturated fats are the way to go (think nuts and avocados). I also think saturated fats are good, but if you are getting them from beef, try to make sure the beef is organic. The hormones and antibiotics used in non-organic beef collects in the fat cells especially. A better source of saturated fat would be egg yolks.
Here’s a list of some good fat sources:
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Nuts – Almonds, Walnuts, Macadamia nuts, Pistachios, Pumpkin seeds, Peanuts
Eggs ( the white part has most of the protein, the yolk has most of the fat)
You are going to want to limit your carbs when trying to lose weight. Especially limit carbs that don’t have many micronutrients (like rice, oats, anything from grains/flour) Sweet potatoes are a great gluten-free carb source with plenty of micronutrients.
Fruit have a lot of sugar, but they also have a LOT of good micronutrients. Go for it.
Vegetables are going to be your friend when you are losing weight. Vegetables have the most nutrients and least calories. You really can’t eat “too much” vegetables, so fill up! Leafy greens are especially good for you health so try to eat some spinach, broccoli, or kale every day.
Some good carb sources:
Fruit – bananas, apples, grapefruit, melons, pears, berries
Potatoes (especially sweet potatoes aka yams. The orange ones)
Oats (if you’re new to bodybuilding, yes this means oatmeal)
Rice (brown rice is preferred over white rice)
You might have heard people say 6 smaller meals per day is better than 3 bigger meals per day. Basically, what I believe, is that as long as you hit your calorie requirements each day, the number of meals doesn’t matter. Maybe you’re work schedule only allows you 3 meals per day. Maybe you find it easier to split all those calories into 6 meals. Just do whatever is easiest for you, as long as you get your required calories.
If you are burning 3000 calories per day, you don’t necessarily have to drop your calories to 2500-2700. You could excercise more. If you exercise more and burn 500 extra calories per day (so you burn 3500 total calories) and you keep eating 3000 calories, it is basically the same thing as not exercising and dropping your daily calories by 500. So you kind of have a choice, would you rather eat the same and exercise more, or exercise the same as your are now, and eat less?
It’s also pretty difficult to tell how many calories you burned during exercise (even though there are apps that claim to accurately tell you) so that makes it a bit more difficult.
A thermogenic is a supplement that will increase your body temperature, almost literally “burning” the fat away. These supplements contain stimulants, which will increase your heartrate, which is why your body temperature increases. So since your heart is beating faster, you are going to burn more calories, without changing your diet or exercise.
So if you are burning 3000 calories per day normally, maybe you will burn 3500 calories per day with a thermogenic supplement (thermogenics affect everyone differently).
Another great benefit of these supplements is the energy and “feel good” mood they give you.
There are a LOT of really good thermogenics, and these are just a few: USP Labs Oxyelite Pro, Nutrex Lipo-6 Unlimited, and iForce Nutrition Dexaprine.
These are just what they sound like – they make you less hungry. Most stimulants also have appetite supressant effects in addition to their other benefits. But there are also some non-stimulant appetite supressants.
Some appetite supressant supplements are Biogenetic Laboratories Razberri Ketone Slim, and Applied Nutriceuticals Lipotropin-PM.
Non-stimulant fat burners
These supplements encourage fat loss through different pathways. They are not stimulants, so you won’t get the “jitters” but they still help you lose fat.
Some good non-stimulant fat burners are Top Secret Nutrition Jitter Free Fat Burner and Cellucor CLK.
As always, if you have any questions please leave a comment here or on our Facebook page, or email me at [email protected]