Did you know it’s actually possible to lose fat without a calorie deficit?
It’s all about timing. The correct timing refers to certain situations when our body is more inclined to burn fat rather than carbohydrates or protein, such as when glycogen levels (muscles sugar reserves) are low and the body is forced to use greater amounts of fat for fuel. Timing can be applied to other aspects involved in the fat loss process, such as nutrition and meal frequency as well as exercising. Correct timing is the key to fat loss and there are a number of ways we can use timing to our advantage. The best exercise for each body type at the right time, a pyramid style of calories ingested during a day, the correct macro nutrient ratio for each meal and meal frequency are more examples of timing which can boost fat loss without the necessity of reducing calorie intake. With the right timing you can tap into stored fat much quicker.
What about all the advice to consume fewer calories?
I am not saying that all the normal advice we hear is incorrect. It is sound advice but a calorie deficit is still needed to lose WEIGHT. Weight loss and fat loss are two separate entities, and its fat loss dieters really need in order to change body composition for the best. When concentrating on merely losing weight can cause false results, the weight loss will be made up of various components; water, muscle, glycogen as well as some body fat. How much fat is lost through a calorie deficit alone will depend on many factors; percentage of calorie deficit, exercise frequency, body type, nutritional intake, macronutrient ratios, etc. These are just a few things to consider, but the fact is most dieters tend to lose far too much muscle when cutting calories. Muscle wastage means a loss of more water weight than stored body fat, and this is often the reason why many dieters develop a reduced metabolism within a month or so. A slow metabolism stops further weight loss and is partly why you may gain back the weight after a diet.
Fat Loss Timing
As an example of the importance of timing think about the situation if doing a weights session and a cardio session in the same workout, which exercise is done first?
I believe you should always do weights first, why?
Weight training is classed as an anaerobic exercise so it burns a larger percentage of carbohydrates for fuel. If you did cardio first you will deplete muscle glycogen stores simply because there is plenty at the beginning of a workout and the body prefers this energy source. Now due to low glycogen stores the weights session will now be below the intensity of what is required to build or tone muscle, and without more muscle you won’t increase the metabolism.
By doing weights first you have enough carbohydrate stores (glycogen) to train well and boost the metabolism, also a good weights session will deplete the glycogen levels which sets the optimum TIME to burn more fat through the cardio session. This is where timing is really important, and in this case you would have a net loss of stored body fat without a calorie deficit.
Another example of timing is eating your highest calorie meal after a workout. This is because our metabolism is slightly elevated for up to 2 hours after training, all the enzymes which work to absorb and store nutrients are extremely active, therefore all energy present in the meal will more than likely be used up for recovery and less chance any fat will be stored on the hips. This is also the best time to indulge in "bad" foods if you have trouble with any cravings. Obviously you just make sure not to overdo it as you don’t want to undo all efforts of the workout.
Timing is the Key to accelerated Fat Loss
The right timing for exercise, meals and carbohydrate intake is a real advantage for losing body fat. In fact many bodybuilders use timing to help strip most fat from the physique a few months before a show. The only disadvantage is timing alone may take a considerable amount of time for those who need to lose a large amount of body fat. However many overweight people can use both a slight calorie deficit AND timing to help speed up the process of losing a large amount of stored body fat, it just takes a little knowledge and effort to implement certain principles. It’s too difficult to simply state how to implement timing tricks because each person will have a different set of circumstances. You need the knowledge in order to adapt the principles for your own body type, eating habits, exercise ability, fitness and lifestyle.
Losing fat weight over just weight loss is the most important aspect of permanent weight control, there are numerous ways we can trick our body into burning a greater amount of body fat, but some techniques need to be learned and tested. Losing weight is relatively easy but losing stored body fat is a science which requires the use of important principles adapted to individual requirements.