No one loves a muffin top. Nor a fat Fitness Dork.
I’m standing on my super high precision digital scale. 6lbs. I blink in disbelief. Step off. Stand on it again. Nope. 6 lbs. Not 2, not 3, SIX whole pounds of weight gained. A 4% increase in body fat. Holy c***. What have I done?
I’ll tell you what I did. Consumed my bodyweight in Iberian ham, ice cream, wine and peaches for 2 whole weeks. Red meat, dairy, sugars and alcohol – the 4 things I avoid at all costs in my day-to-day life. But on holiday? Meh.
It’s been an eventful summer for both Jules and I and in the past 2 months we’ve barely had any time to write, let alone keep up with our grueling workout schedule. On my first holiday in almost 10 months I abandoned my strict diet and fitness regime and nurtured my mind, heart, soul and spirit instead.
For two people who are usually highly active, not working out or being on a regulated food program has sort of wrecked our physiques. My six-pack was last spotted on Instagram several months ago.
I need an intervention. My own personal Marjorie from Fat Fighters.
But rather than beat ourselves up over the weight gain we’ve found the best way to deal with it is to accept it, forgive ourselves, and make a plan of action to start fighting flab now. We’ve been following the plan below for the past week and are starting to feel fitter and stronger with each passing day. If you over-indulged this summer and need a bounce back plan, do the 8 things I’m doing now…
1. I ♥ cardio, really.
I don’t hate many things – except for ketchup, Crocs and bugs. I hate bugs. So to say I truly hate cardio is saying a lot. Circuit training is my thang and I’d sooner drop and do 20 pushups than be dragged into a Flywheel session. But by some evil fate, lots of hard cardio is the only way my bodytype (the type that loovvvesss to slap extra fat onto my hips and posterior) can burn fat off fast. While I usually do 3 intense cardio sessions a week, I’ve upped it to 5 a week until I’m back at my usual bodyfat % (at which point please feel free to call me out on those 20 push-ups). I’m also making sure to walk 10,000 steps daily – although if you want rapid fat loss you should be doing 15,000 steps a day according to Tim Ferriss on his 4 Hour Work Week podcast (fantastic podcast by the way, I’m addicted to it. I love it almost as much as I love peanut butter.)
2. Be a snack nazi.
No. cheating. whatsoever. You’ve had all summer to drink wine, eat cheese and chocolate and tell yourself ‘you deserve’ another hunk of cheesecake (can you tell I like cheese?). While we’re usually all about balance, there’s a time and a place for being impossibly strict with yourself. That time is now. And don’t be fooled by labels screaming trendy diet keywords such as ‘wheat free’, ‘dairy free’ and ‘all natural’. Stick to eating whole foods such as vegetables, lean meats and fruit and cut out all grains, sugars, processed and packaged foods. Eat 3 neat, clean meals a day and don’t snack at all between meals a la Parisienne.
This is a big one, and the hardest to do. Cutting out alcohol completely is the key to a toned tummy in no time *sips plain water. Deeeee-lish.
4. Eat less, duh.
When we eat more our stomachs expand, and our appetites increase. You’ll have to ‘reset’ your appetite by eating smaller portions at meals and tracking your daily calorie intake to bring it in line with your weight loss goals. If you want to lose aggressively, cut your calories to 30% of the approximate calories you’ve been eating recently. Or more if you’re a masochist like me. For example, I was eating around 1800 – 2500 calories a day this summer but am now calorie-cycling between 800 – 1200 calories per day until I am back at my usual weight.
5. No really. Eat less.
I’m rubbish at taking supplements every day. I’m just not good at religiously pill-popping. But every time I’ve needed to lean out certain supplements have helped me out. I’ve been taking CLA, L-Carnitine, an Omega complex and Amino acids every day in addition to drinking raspberry ketones that I picked up in Paris. You can buy the Oenobiol Topslim sachets online here.
Exercising more and eating less can make you hangry as f***. And tired. And foggy in the head. And more likely to reach for aforementioned cheesecake. Make sure you get at least 8 hours a night, and sleep in more at the weekend to help your body cope with the stress. And yes, weight loss is stressful for your body. Studies have shown eating dark chocolate significantly reduces stress. Wait, what were we talking about?
It’s good to be back! Look out for plenty of new food and fitness articles up on site soon.