Anonymous asked: Hey Jon! My name's Cory and I was just wondering if you could give me some tips to minimise my body fat?
I'm 18 and go to university but try to fit in as much cardio like swimming and jogging that I can. I also do crunches, squats and leg lifts almost everyday but still have little success.
I kind of think it comes down to my diet, I tend to eat less than what is recommended but always try to eat lots of vegetables (i'm a vegetarian) but probably not enough protein to help with muscle development. I'm also a huge chocolate fan and due to my lack of calorie intake somedays, can cause me to binge of high sugary foods other days. It's a horrible cycle and would really appreciate any advice to help me get out this!!!!! thank you! you're blog is an incredible inspiration!
Hi Cory! You’ve asked a great ? that I’m sure would be of interest to other people. It’s actually a very complex issue but here are the basics. Body fat is essentially stored fuel resulting from consuming more calories over time than you expend. Therefore, getting rid of it requires both offense & defense. Offense means increased caloric expenditure to burn your existing fat, primarily through cardiovascular exercise - running, biking, swimming, skating, cross training, etc - about 60-minutes/day, 3-4 times/week. Defense would mean preventing the food you eat from becoming turned into new fat. You do this by eating enough calories to provide energy, but just slightly less than what you are expending. Typically, a 500 calorie/day deficit is a reasonable goal. Any larger of a deficit could be counterproductive. So for example, if a person burns about 2,500 calories/day they should shoot for eating 2,000 calories/day to expect healthy weight loss. These 2,000 calories should be divided into 4 or 5 meals spread throughout the day, with slightly larger meals in the morning and smaller meals at night. Next up is avoiding foods that your body easily turns into fat, primarily sugars & simple carbs (candy, chocolate, soda, chips, junk food, etc). These get broken down by your body for energy very quickly compared to lean protein & complex carbs, so they are more likely to be converted to fat if you are not immediately active. Veggies are good bc they’re a form of carb that also have fiber, so your stomach gets full before there’s enough calories for it to be turned into fat. The worst thing you can do is have a lot of sugar/chocolate or simple carbs at night bc these are guaranteed to be turned into fat as you sleep. In addition, you want to increase your amount of lean muscle tissue, which would increase your body’s overall caloric needs bc muscle is more biologically active than fatty tissue. You do this by incorporating heavy resistance weight training 2-3 times/week in addition to your cardio workouts. Over time, you’ll build lean muscle, burn more calories than you take in and your body will use up some of the fat it has been saving. Hope this helps! Stay healthy and stick with it!