A lot of people especially those with busy work schedules, tend to consume nowhere near enough calories per day. It’s a common thought for people to think ‘sure if I’m barely eating how am I not shedding the weight?’ This right here is a mistake made by many, if you aren’t consuming enough calories your body needs you run the risk of going into your muscle stores instead of your fat stores for fuel. This then results in the crashing of your metabolism which is a process that occurs in body where what you eat and drink is converted into energy. With the slowing down of the metabolism this then leads to the storage of fat. When your body doesn’t get enough calories this can hinder your progress just as much as taking in too many calories.
A calorie is a unit of energy so having your daily calorie intake too low will lead to low levels of energy. It then becomes a vicious cycle of constant cravings, hunger and mood swings. Fuelling your body correctly is extremely important for both the mind and body, especially when you are training, your body needs fuel in order to perform and reach the goals you have in place for it.
The best way to effectively lose fat is through calorie control. This can be as simple as correcting your portion size with each meal. For a lot of people this might mean just reducing your portion sizes and adding more protein and vegetables. A good place to start with controlling your calorie intake would be to replace the high calorie foods with more nutritious foods that will fill you up instead of high calorie foods that leave you hungry soon after, take a look below at a few examples:
Calorie Smart vs Calorie Not So Smart
Calorie Smart: Salmon & 1 cup of Rice = 340 Calories
Calorie Not So Smart: Pepperoni Pizza = 1,600 Calories
Calorie Smart: Fillet Steak & Salad = 370 Calories
Calorie Not So Smart: Big Mac Meal = 2,300 Calories
As mentioned before a cheat meal is perfectly okay to have even on a fat loss program but controlling how often and when you can have it is key. Opting for an option like the calorie smart options above will not only fuel your body correctly with the right nutrients but it will also leave you feeling fuller for longer.
For some people hitting the calorie recommendations of over 1,200 calories for women and 1,500 calories for men can be actually quite difficult to reach especially when your running around all day working and feeling like you’ve no time to eat. For others then keeping their calories this low can also be difficult to attain. Each person is different with different work life demands but finding a healthy balance is essential in order to maintain and sustain fat loss.
Planning your week ahead will not only stop you from reaching for those ‘Calorie Not So Smart’ options but it will also have you feeling more in control, on track and motivated to keep working towards your goals and getting the results you want.
Make smarter choices when it comes to your food and watch the changes you will see and feel in yourself.