Fat loss doesn't have to be complicated or hard. You just need to prioritize certain aspects of your life. CPTN-certified personal trainer Dan Cudes, who's also a certified nutrition counselor in Canada, posted these two pie charts to illustrate what you need to do (and not do) to lose fat.
"Unfortunately, the fitness industry influences us to prioritize the wrong things! Generally, it has people prioritize in this order:
- Working Out - Got to train hard because training hard will out-train any diet!
- Nutrition - Eat right, meet your caloric goals, and meet your macros, and your results are inevitable!
- Sleep - Oh ya, get that in too!"
Here's where Dan thinks your priorities should be for the best results both aesthetically (if that's important to you) and for good health:
- Nutrition — You have to feed your body the nutrients and amount of food it needs, not just for losing weight but to be healthy and energetic. Focus on whole foods, tons of veggies, lean proteins, healthy fats, and complex carbs, and limit the sugar and processed junk.
- Sleep — Aim for seven to nine hours of sleep per night. Aside from helping you rest and recover, getting enough sleep regulates the hormones in charge of hunger and weight loss. If you don't get enough sleep, cravings will actually increase.
- Working Out — This doesn't really matter all that much if the first two are out of whack! Dan said, "Train smart and intelligently, and oh man, you'll be a beast!"
Dan told POPSUGAR, "Feed your body whole, nutrient-dense foods and be healthy, because that's the most important thing. You can get abs and a big ass and whatever you want, but you need to focus on your health first. Up your intake of high-volume foods (ones with the highest amount of nutrients and lowest calories, like fruits and veggies), don't stuff yourself, strength train, and watch the fat melt off."
If you enjoy working out, great! But don't push yourself at the gym, thinking that's the only way to lose fat. Dial in your nutrition, limit the junk, get seven to nine hours of good sleep each night, and don't give up!