Hello, this is a straight forward guide on how to loose weight, gain muscle and get down below 10% body fat. There are a few things you are going to HAVE to do to accomplish your goal. If you cant follow the next few steps listed just stop reading because you are wasting your fucking time.
- You must count all calories you put into your body NO exceptions.
- You must maintain a calorie deficit for an extended period of time.
- You must make sure you are hitting your macro nutrients 85% of the time.
- You must have a reasonable workout schedule consisting of 4-5 intense weight lifting workouts a week.
- You are willing to do this for a long time. Consider it a lifestyle change.
- Willing to cut back heavily on alcohol consumption and or stop drinking it all together.
If you are willing to do the steps listed above no matter how fat you are you CAN lose the weight and gain muscle while doing so.
First step is taking an educated guess on how fat you are. If you are a guy and you cant see your dick when looking down you can assume your body-fat percentage is 25%+. If you are a chick its not as easy as looking down in the shower. Here is a visual guide to give you a very basic idea. (https://athleanx.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/Womens-Body-Fat-Infographic.jpg).
Having a realistic estimation of your body fat percentage is important. This will help you estimate about how long its going to take to loose the weight. Most people estimate that their body fat percentage is MUCH lower than what it actually is. At 15% body fat you are starting to see some abs at 12% you pretty much have a six pack. Anything below 10% as a guy and you look you belong in a magazine if you have some muscle. Therefore, if you cant see your own dick looking down you are no where near that 15% body fat you think you are. I recommend getting a body-fat caliper this will help you more accurately determine your body-fat percentage once you are thin enough to use them. Please note, body fat calipers are not 100% accurate by any means they just give you a better estimation than looking at photos. If you want the most accurate measurement possible you should research the "bod pod". Lets be real though... if you cant see your ABS you have a ways to go.
Once you have an estimation of your body-fat percentage you can use the following math calculations below to get a reasonable estimate of how long things are going to take...
- Determine your current body weight.
- Multiply your current body weight times your body fat percentage. An example would look like this.
174 lbs * .28 = 48.72
The 48.72 is the estimated amount of fat you have on your body.
Determine your body fat percentage goal. Id recommend using 10% as your first time goal.
Take the body fat percentage calculated in step two and multiply that by your body fat percentage goal. An example would look like this.
48.72 * .10 = 4.872 (hint, for 10% just move the decimal over 1 step to the left)
- Now subtract the value determined in step two from the value determined in step 4 and you will now have an estimate of how much body fat you need to lose.
48.72 - 4.872 = 43.848
The value "43.848" we are left with means the following in a sentence.
"If you weigh 174 lbs and had 28% body fat to get down to 10% body fat you would need to loose 43.848 lbs of fat."
From here we can estimate how long this will take. If you are trying to gain muscle and loose weight I would recommend estimating a loss of 1 lb a week. So if there are 4 weeks in a month and we are able to loose a pound a week we can use the following math to take a guess. Yes, you can loose more than 1 lb of fat a week especially if you are currently obese its much easier to do so. Again, I am giving you some very long goals just to give you an idea of what you are in for. You can adjust this. For example if you think you are loosing 1.5 lbs a week divide by 6 rather than 4. 2 lbs a week would be dividing by 8 etc.
43.848 / 4 = 10.962
In this case round up and you can estimate its going to take you around 11 months to get the body you want. IF you are loosing 1 lb of fat a week.
OK now that you have an idea of how long its going to take to reach your goals lets talk what you are going to have to do. Its actually not to difficult just follow the following steps.
- Eat at a calorie deficit. Determining this can be done in many ways. The MOST accurate would be taking a week without dieting to record everything you eat and finding an average over the span of the week. From here you would subtract around 200-300 calories from that value.
If you are like me and don't want to spend a whole week not making any progress I would just use an online calculator to determine this value you for you. This is the one I use (https://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/macronutcal.htm). PS don't lie about how active you are. You are only biting yourself in the ass.
Once you have your caloric value determined you can move onto step number two.
- Eat Healthy. This is the MOST important step if you want to actually have a chance at gaining muscle while loosing weight. Sure, you can eat whatever you want, measure your calories and still loose weight but I PROMISE you are not going to hit your macro nutrient values which will prevent you from potentially gaining and or keeping your current muscle.
Here is a list of foods that I recommend eating.
Good Sources Of Protein
Eggs—The Grand Daddy of all foods. I like to have 1 whole egg for every 3 whites. So breakfast might include 6 egg whites and 2 whole eggs.
Liquid Egg Whites—This is just pure egg whites. More convenient than cracking all the eggs and discarding the yolk but will cost you a little more.
Skinless Chicken Breast or Cutlets—Lean, inexpensive, high quality protein; staple of every diet.
Lean Ground Turkey—Lean high quality protein. Little more expensive than chicken breast.
Top Round Steak—Lean cut of meat. Has more fat than chicken but great source of meat. Definitely something you want to have in the off-season and can be eaten while dieting in moderation.
Filet Mignon—Tasty lean cut of meat. Expensive but worth it every once in a while.
Buffalo—Lean red meat, very tasty but super expensive. Give it a try.
Flounder—Inexpensive lean fish.
Cod—Inexpensive lean fish.
Wild Salmon—Healthy fatty fish. I get my salmon wild because the quality is a lot better but that results in a higher cost.
Canned Tuna—Lean inexpensive fish. If you worry about your sodium you might want to cut down on this. Make sure you get the one in water not oil.
Turkey Bacon—Leaner than regular bacon, not something I have all the time but I am a bacon lover so adding this to my breakfast in the off-season is something I like.
Lean Ground Beef—Make sure you get something that is at least 90% lean. This can be a great off-season source of protein.
Cottage Cheese—Slow digesting form of protein. Great for having when you have to go a long time in-between meals and also excellent to have before bed.
Pork Tenderloin—Inexpensive lean protein.
Wild Sea Bass—Lean high quality protein. Expensive side.
Good Sources Of Carbohydrates
Oatmeal—I like the slow cooked version but the quick one minute is fine. I have oatmeal with my first meal every day. It is a great slow digesting carb.
Steel Cut Oats—Similar to oatmeal. Slow digesting carb.
Fruit—All fruits are great but some are better than others for different reasons. Blueberries are at the top of the list for antioxidants and bananas are great for post-workout carbs. The majority of them digest faster than complex carbs so they are best used in the AM or pre and post workout.
Vegetables—Like fruit you really can't go wrong when you eat veggies. During the off-season all veggies are great to have but when you are looking to diet I stick with just the green ones as they have less calories and net carbs. Veggies are a great source of fiber. Try to have some in every meal.
Sweet Potatoes/Yams—Tasty slow digesting carb. Add a little Splenda and you will be in heaven.
Brown Rice—Staple of a slow digesting carb.
White Rice—Faster digesting carb. Not a big fan as I think the brown rice is better overall option but white rice is good to have in the off season as it gives you the ability to bring in the carbs and calories need to grow.
Whole Wheat Bread—I like to have Ezekiel bread as it is not processed and not made with white flour. Great slow digesting carb.
Cream Of Wheat—Substitute for white rice. Faster digesting carb.
Cream of Rice—Substitute for white rice. Faster digesting carb.
Good Sources Of Fats
Olive Oil/Flaxseed Oil—Great source of fat. Great to add to dishes.
Fish Oil—Staple source of healthy fats.
Almond Butter/Cashew Butter—Derived from the nuts but a good source of fat.
Almonds—Great source of fat and small amount of protein.
Pecans—Great source of fat and small amount of protein.
Walnuts—Great source of fat and small amount of protein.
Cashews—Great source of fat and small amount of protein.
Natural Peanut Butter—Not processed.
Avocados—Healthy fat source.
- MAKE SURE YOU HIT YOUR MACRO NUTRIENTS!!!
It sounds worse than what it is really. I'll be honest im not perfect with it but I am about 85% of the time.
People make this complicated, truly if you focus on getting 1 gram of protein per your body weight then you can eat whatever carbs and or fats you want as long as its from a healthy food source. Doing this method will keep your macro nutrients in order and its not a pain in the ass to figure out.
The following tips might help you reach the protein/diet goals daily.
Eat protein with breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Cook dinner daily and make enough meat and veggies for the following lunch. This way you are not having to cook during the day and it makes life easier. I will air fry 3 chicken breasts and eat 1.5 during dinner and eat the other 1.5 for lunch the next day. Ill also split whatever veggies I cooked between lunch and dinner.
Have 2 protein shakes a day. I tend to have one between breakfast and lunch with some sort of fruit or veggie. Same thing between lunch and dinner. My second protein shake normally takes place right after the gym around 4:30 - 5:30 pm which gives me just enough brain power to make some dinner.
I use an air fryer, grill and a pressure cooker for nearly all of my cooking. Make it simple. You want to find a routine you can do daily and not hate yourself.
For flavor, stay away from sauces they have a shit ton of calories... hot sauces add flavor to any meat and have pretty much 0 calories.
Drink water and coffee. Try not to indulge in diet drinks and water flavor enhancers... yea, it might have 0 calories but its not good for your metabolism nor is it good for your overall health. Once in a while is fine, but don't drink it all of the time. Treat diet drinks like you would alcohol. If you are drinking it every day you have some problems good sir.
Try to carb cycle for dinners. One day eat veggies for dinner with your meat of choice. Next day have some brown rice. This will help you loose more weight. Read about carb cycling.
Chewing gum is great if you are super hungry and want something to munch on.
- Have a cheat day once a week. Be reasonable with this... I don't recommend eating a gallon of ice cream etc. Just have more calories than you normally would within reason. Have that piece of cake after dinner or go get wings vs your normal chicken and brown rice etc. This will help keep your metabolism going as well as keep your sanity in the beginning. I promise as your body gets more use to the diet changes you will feel better and it wont be so hard.
5 Don't do a shit ton of cardio, its going to make you tired and its going to slow your metabolism down ever further when cutting calories. If you do want to do some cardio try HIIT training. Short intense bursts vs long tiresome cardio. It works great, but it blows ass doing it.
I could list out a bunch of extra shit such as when the BEST time to have carbs is etc and all kinds of other crap but those are small things that are not going to be deal breakers.
At the end of the day REMEMBER slow and steady wins the race. Making sure you regularly diet is the most important part of loosing weight. Lifting is important if you want to have a chance at gaining some muscle but if you are hitting your macro nutrients you are going to at least hold on to most of your muscle.
Once you get down to the body fat percentage you want. Don't be a jackass like I did in the past and go back to your old routine and gain back the weight and more in a few months. 7 years later I am finally getting back to how I use to look and I do not plan on gaining back the weight down the road.
Best of luck and stay motivated. Odds are if you stick with it long enough to see some major body figure changes you will get hooked.