In today’s article, from my friend and international fat loss consultant Ryan Faehnle, we tackle what is probably THE biggest misconception causing you to struggle with dieting and fat-burning.
In fact, everyone from your doctor right down to your favorite aunt is probably encouraging you to make this costly calorie mistake. Don’t fall for it…
Why This Calorie MISTAKE Makes You Fatter
— by Ryan Faehnle
International Fatloss Consultant
CSCS, FMS, PICP, BioSignature & PIMST
S&C Coach, Miami University, 2005 – 2011
Did you know that doctors, personal trainers, nutritionists, nurses and even the government are unintentionally (I hope…) giving you the WORST possible weightloss advice?
In fact, 99.9% of them STILL believe this outdated information is relevant, and they stick to this “common wisdom” despite a huge mountain of evidence that it’s flat out WRONG.
I’m sure you’ve heard it before, in some way, shape or form. It goes something like this…
“Eat less and move more.“
Sounds logical, right?
“Calories in vs. calories out.”
We’ve all heard that this simple equation is the key to getting a lean, hard body. And that substituting lower-calorie foods for high-calorie options is the key to having the body of your dreams.
100 calorie package of Oreos anyone?
But if this were true…
Why are “calorie-counters” still fat?
As a society, we’ve been calorie conscious for over 4 decades. And we just keep getting fatter.
So do calories even matter? Is there more that you need to know?
The fact is, the concept of calorie counting has many flaws. But one CRITICAL mistake makes it nearly impossible for you to lose bodyfat with this approach.
So what’s the BIG mistake?
Calorie counting does not take into account the hormonal effect of food.
Most people who try low calorie diets end up eating foods that set off a cascade of “fat-storing hormones.”
For example, let’s compare eating 200 calories from a high-carb energy bar with eating 200 calories from organic butter.
Which of those choices is going to make you fatter?
If you said butter, you’re not alone. 9 times out of 10, the average person will make the same guess. After all, it’s what you’re lead to believe with elaborate food marketing, pseudo-science experts, and celebrity fitness personalities.
Sure, it’s the same 200 calories, but here is what happens hormonally…
When you eat the high-carb energy bar, your body secretes insulin in response to the elevated blood sugar. Insulin is a “building” hormone — in other words it is fat-storing. It takes the sugar in your blood and drives it into fat cells, making them bigger.
The butter, on the other hand, blunts insulin, leading to a more sustained energy release and a feeling of fullness. But that’s not all, the butter actually sends signals to your body to BURN body fat.
So… same calories in both, but certainly not the same reaction in your body!
Unfortunately, many of the commonly recommended “low calorie” health foods are exactly the ones that set off that cascade of fat-STORING hormones. So no matter how low you take your calories, you end up becoming a fat-hoarding machine.
So do calories matter?
Yes, in the big scheme of things, calories do matter. BUT, the HORMONAL effect of the foods you eat is far more important.
To optimize your hormonal response to food, eat plenty of protein & tons of vegetables. Load up on healthy fats like olive oil, coconut oil, and organic full-fat butter. And reserve “starchy” carbohydrate intake to the hour immediately after your hardest weight training workouts, and ONE weekly cheat meal.
Don’t make the mistake of obsessing over the minutiae of calorie-counting without first getting your hormones in check. It will only lead to a mediocre body, endless frustration, a dead metabolism, and guaranteed rebound weight gain.
And by eating the RIGHT kinds of calories, you also prime the ONE type of cell in your body that can give you a fast metabolism and unlock near-effortless fatloss.
Check out the next page to discover what that one type of cell is, and why it’s so important if you want to have a lean body both quickly and permanently…
“Spot reduction” is an idea that’s been around for a long time. The allure of using a cream to magically reduce your thigh fat, or the promise of blasting away belly fat with countless crunches, is nothing new.
And it’s total bull, right?
Well, not so fast.
Up until very recently, I would have told you that there’s NOTHING that can actually target your personal fat zones with any degree of precision. But I recently met a guy who changed my mind.
Ryan Faehnle is one of the world’s top fat loss consultants. In fact, he travels the globe training some of the top personal trainers and coaches in the fitness industry. He’s also a former Division 1 Strength and Conditioning coach for Miami State University. This guy knows his stuff.
And he’s one of the foremost experts on manipulating your hormones to accelerate fat loss with near-surgical precision.
It turns out that thunder thighs, love handles, belly pouches and man boobs can all be traced to very specific hormonal profiles.
You see, Ryan applies the most recent scientific research, along with thousands of hours of in-the-trenches experimentation, that clearly shows specific “fat zones” are directly correlated with certain hormonal imbalances.
Ryan then uses laser targeted nutrition, supplementation and exercise to realign your hormones and get rid of your most embarrassing trouble spots.
I thought this stuff was so fascinating that I asked Ryan to share his top 3 most common problems and solutions that use these hormone balancing principles. I hope you enjoy them!
3 tricks to use if you have stubbornly fat bodyparts by: Ryan Faehnle, CSCS
1. Put a strangle hold on your insulin levels to burst your spare tire
Did you know that most of the foods that are being promoted as “healthy” alternatives these days will actually add thick globs of dense fat on the sides of your waist.
Bagels for breakfast, sandwiches on whole-grain bread for lunch, pasta to “fuel” your workouts, and don’t forget your daily glass of orange juice!
All these mainstream health foods affect a major hormone in your body called insulin. Insulin is a “building” hormone, which means it builds muscle cells and fat cells. The problem is that unless you just finished a hard weight training session, you want to keep insulin levels LOW.
Just think about it. If your day looks like what I’ve mentioned above, your body is flooded with the building-hormone insulin ALL DAY. This means you’re making new fat cells 24/7. Not good!
Insulin-generated fat stores tend to make their way to the love handle area, giving you the muffin-top or humpty-dumpty look.
Getting rid of these fat stores is actually quite simple.
Eliminate carbohydrates other than veggies from your diet except for a one-hour window after intense weight training workouts. And indulge in a single Cheat Meal once every 5-7 days.
The rest of the time, half of your plate should be protein, the other half leafy-green vegetables, and you should have a side of healthy fats such as olive oil or organic butter to go along with it.
That’s it, the optimal meal for insulin management!
2. Gulp down probiotics to take the thunder out of your thunder thighs
One of the best tricks that I have for melting fat off people’s butt and thighs is to super-dose probiotics.
Truthfully, probiotics will help immensely with belly fat, love handle fat, AND fat legs. It’s just too versatile to NOT have in your cabinet.
Probiotics are healthy bacteria that regulate nearly everything that is going on in your internal environment.
They help you break down foods, keep your immune system strong, and speed up detoxification.
Since excessive fat on your lower body is an indication of high estrogenic or toxic load on your body, it only makes sense for you to become a probiotic junkie!
If you’ve got really fat legs and you’ve never taken probiotics before, I recommend taking a hefty dose of them AFTER each of your 3 main meals per day.
You want to take them after the meals so that your stomach acid doesn’t kill too many of them before they make it to your intestines. Remember, probiotics are LIVING organisms, so we want to treat them with respect and not give them an “acid bath” by taking them on an empty stomach!
Probiotics are often low-quality amongst supplement brands (I know, I’ve seen the lab test results of many popular brands), so make sure you buy pharmaceutical grade probiotics.
3. Go for quality over quantity in your workouts to carve out your abdominals
You’d probably be quite surprised if I told you that one way to get leaner is to shorten your workouts.
If you’re taking longer than 50 minutes in the gym (not counting your warm-up), then you’re making friends, not training.
In fact, if you’ve got loads of fat around your belly button, I recommend keeping your workouts to 30 minutes or less!
Now, this should not be a walk in the park; it needs to be 30 minutes of high-quality training with no interruptions, no texting, and no checking out the resident hotties.
The reason I recommend shorter workouts for burning belly fat is because many people have a problem with high circulating levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
Cortisol is an important hormone for the body at certain times of the day, but excess amounts of it can create fat stores right above your beltline.
Long workouts can cause cortisol levels to go haywire, which is counterproductive to getting a lean midsection.
I recommend 3-4 short-and-sweet weight-training sessions per week along with a few intense interval training sessions sprinkled in. Keep all your training sessions to under 30 minutes and you’ll be sporting a six-pack in no time!
Wow, thanks Ryan!
As you can see, Ryan’s approach to getting rid of your trouble spots is totally no-nonsense. There’s no bro-science or silly pills and potions involved. It’s all straightforward techniques that are well researched, but that almost no one knows about yet.
The other thing I discovered about Ryan is that this cool hormone manipulation stuff is just the tip of the iceberg in his brand knew system, The Fat Loss Solution.
He’s packed all the tricks he’s accumulated while training over 5900 athletes and armed services personal — not to mention regular folks and the hundreds of personal trainers he has mentored — into a super straightforward and easy to follow plan for rapid fat loss that simultaneously builds optimal health and energy for the long term.
Next Page => Discover Ryan’s unique fat loss solution
Since yesterdays interview I’ve gotten a lot of comments and questions about intermittent fasting.
First things first: What is Intermittent fasting?
Intermittent fasting (IF) is a pattern of eating that alternates between periods of fasting and non-fasting.
I first learned about intermittent fasting from Brad Pilon author of Eat Stop Eat and to this day it is the book that I credit for changing the way I have looked at eating forever.
In fact, every year he comes out with a new update based on the growing number of research studies being done on the now popular fat loss tool.
He’s on his 7th update now and this book is stronger than ever.
(the pic above was taken in New Brunswick with Dave Ruel, Brad Pilon and Eric Wong)
In the interview we did yesterday I realized that the audio was a little shabby so before getting into the meat of today’s blog post I want to recap what was said in the interview:
1. Intermittent Fasting is a chosen 24 hour period where you abstain from food.
2. It is a very effective tool for fat loss but can be overdone because it is a still a stress on the body just like workouts are.
3. Differences between men and women are minor. I should know this because I’ve gotten hundreds of women to do some form of IF with great results.
My last observation about fasting that wasn’t covered in the interview is that your tolerance to IF largely depends on how many calories you take during a day and this depends largely on your height.
I would not get a big 6 foot 4 dude to even try a fast because he needs a dearth of calories every day to keep him operational.
I find that tall people are most likely the ones to be repulsed by the idea of not eating for 24 hours. Understandably so.
However, I’ve found that people that are 6 foot or shorter do well with IF and can incorporate it easily as part of their lives.
So with that being said, if you are not abnormally tall, here are 7 reasons why you should incorporate some form of IF into your life:
1. Reduced Glucose/Sugar Levels – During a fast your blood sugar levels slowly lowers itself.
By fasting you could decrease your sugar input by anywhere from 15 – 30%. This means that you…
2. Improved Insulin sensitivity – When you have more insulin sensitivity your body stores more fat as energy.
Fasting drastically lowers your insulin sensitivity and also helps your lose more water retention. This means you will look leaner with less fat and less water on your body.
3. Increased lipolysis and fat oxidation – This means one thing and one thing only…YOU BURN MORE FAT.
4. Increased Glucagon – Glucagon is one of the dominant hormones in your body responsible for Fat burning.
Fasting increases the amount of glucagon produced in your body. More glucagon in your body means your body is in a better fat burning environment.
5. Fasting Increases growth hormone which leads to increased fat loss and also slows down the aging process – You are able to produce Growth Hormone by up to 6x with short term fasting and it’s one of the main hormones responsible for increased fat loss, muscle building and looking younger.
6. Fastest way to eliminate waste from the body and lower inflammation – Short term fasting actually helps you eliminate waste in your body and can speed up the healing process.
The research is too early to tell but there has also been evidence to support short term fasting in prevention of asthma and cancer.
7. It’s the Easiest way to lose fat PERIOD. – If you want to lose fat and you want to do it as fast as possible then IF is the way to go.
Not only is it fast (no pun intended) once you get the hang of doing one it gets easier.
And my friend Brad lays it all out in his updated version of Eat Stop Eat.
He’s even added 6 more chapters to the book on:
Fasting and Women
In this edition of Eat Stop Eat he shows why, when done properly, Eat Stop Eat may be the very best weight loss
option for women.
Intermittent Fasting and Leptin
He’s updated Eat Stop Eat to include some very surprising research on the connection between Leptin and fasting, exercise and some chronic diseases.
Intermittent Fasting and Exercise
In this edition he’ll tell you whether or not you need to exercise during a fast to get the most fast burning possible
Intermittent Fasting and Building Muscle
Can you build muscle while following Eat Stop Eat? ABSOLUTELY.
And he’ll tell you exactly how in this new chapter.
Intermittent Fasting vs. Longer Fasts
Brad will explain the dangers of using longer fasts to try and lose weight
Intermittent Fasting and Training
In this chapter Brad explains why fasting for too long or too often is the absolute worst thing you can do for Fat loss.
He’s even added a crazy bonus where if you get Eat Stop Eat before July 19th you’ll get a bonus coaching call where he’ll walk you through his latest edition of ESE and answer your workout/fasting related questions.
If you are not abnormally tall, want to lose fat and do it in the simplest way possible then grab Brad’s
Buy it before July 19th 2013 so you can get on the phone and get coached by the father of IF himself.
By Benjamin Teal, PTS
First, I want to thank Dan for letting me guest post on his blog. It’s a huge honor and I’m proud to call him a friend.
“That’s not a big idea,” my friend said. “Everybody and their brother has a 20-minute workout program.”
The words stung, but they weren’t unexpected.
“How is your different?”
I looked back across the room at him as my eyes narrowed.
“Because I have different science.”
“Oh, yes. I have the same proof that short, intense workouts are the best thing since apple pie, like everyone else.”
I let that hang in the air for just a beat.
“But I have different science that everyone else is ignoring. And it’s going to change the game.”
By now, it’s no secret that short, intense exercise programs work. Study after study has proven it.
One study showed how one group not only lost fat with a very specific short, high intensity workout program. They did a 20-minute routine, 3 times per week for 12 weeks. The kicker? They were specifically told not to change their eating habits.
On average, they saw a 6.7% in body fat over the 12-week study. Without changing their diets!
[M. Heydari, J. Freund, and S. H. Boutcher, “The Effect of High-Intensity Intermittent Exercise on Body Composition of Overweight Young Males,” Journal of Obesity, 2012, Article ID 480467, 8 pages]
This one is probably more familiar to you and the one the rest of this post is going to focus on:
A recent study found that doing a Metabolic Mayhem style (whole body resistance training) workout for just 4-minutes, 4-times per week had similar increases in endurance as folks who spent 30-minutes on a treadmill 4 times per week. Not only that, The whole body resistance training group also increased muscular endurance.
Here’s the coolest part. According to researchers, the 4-minute group also enjoyed their workouts more!
[McRae, G et al, “Extremely Low Volume, Whole-Body Aerobic–Resistance Training Improves Aerobic Fitness And Muscular Endurance In Females.” Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism, 2012, 37:1124-1131]
It was that last observation though, that led me down a different path. But before I get into that, let me tell you a little about how my insanity often works.
I’m trained as an economist. That’s what I do for my day job. One of the first things they teach you as an economics student is to assume that people always do what’s “rational”.
That, of course, is a euphemism for “what your mathematical model says they should do”. And, in fact, I can build mathematical models for nearly every scenario under the sun to tell you what you should do.
But, once you get out of the ivory tower, you see quickly see what your model says people should do and what they actually do are very different.
There’s a psychological factor involved.
Take the two studies above. It’s clear that people should do short, high intensity workouts. The first one even suggests that you can out train a bad diet.
So Why Aren’t People Doing the Workouts?
That’s the real question that needs to be answered. The problem isn’t in designing a better workout. It’s getting people to do the workout consistently.
Which brings us back to exercise enjoyment. If you thought that reason that people enjoyed that routine was because it was short, you’d only be half right.
People, if you study them long enough, tend to do what they enjoy doing the most.
And, if you’re honest with yourself, you’re the same. But more so, you tend to enjoy the things you’re most confident about. And what are you most confident it? The things you know how to do well.
And there’s science to back this up:
Way back in the dawn of time – okay, 1986 – there was a study done that looked at self-efficacy, outcome expectations and workout adherence.
The study found that people who were more confident that they could do the workouts regularly, tended to stick to the workouts!
[Desharnais, Raymond, Jacques Bouillon, and Gaston Godin. “Self-efficacy and outcome expectations as determinants of exercise adherence.” Psychological Reports 59.3 (1986): 1155-1159.]
Once again, there’s a psychological factor involved. And this one is often very widely ignored.
In that study above, the exercises they did were burpees, jumping jacks, mountain climbers, or squat thrusts. Almost everyone that’s ever spent time on a playground knows how to do those exercises.
They don’t spend a lot of time worrying about how they look doing them. And they can get right to work and focus on exercise.
There’s was a confidence about doing that workout. They had a list of exercises they were confident they could do. Add to that the fact that the workout literally lasted only 4-minutes, and you have a recipe for enjoyment.
Instead of focusing on a simple system that people are confident they can stick to, you’re seeing more and more complex systems popping up all over the place.
I Wanted To Go In The Other Direction. And The Science Is Backing Me Up.
In that same study, the exact protocol was to prescribe the intensity use for the 30-minute group at approximately 85% of max heart rate. The bodyweight resistance group wasn’t given an intensity target, only an exercise duration.
What role does THAT play on workout adherence?
A 2005 study showed that it played a big difference when your talking about overweight folks. That study looked at 16 overweight and 9 normal weight subjects. They did two 20-minute workouts on a treadmill. One was done at a pre-defined intensity. The other at a self-selected intensity.
As you would expect, the overweight group had higher oxygen uptake and a higher perceived exertion than normal weight folks during both workouts.
On the enjoyment side, the overweight group enjoyed the pre-defined intensity the same; however, there was a significant decline in enjoyment when the intensity was imposed on them.
[Ekkekakis, P., and E. Lind. “Exercise does not feel the same when you are overweight: the impact of self-selected and imposed intensity on affect and exertion.” International journal of obesity 30.4 (2005): 652-660.]
So, now we’re up to three variables that increase workout adherence.
Duration of the Workout
Confidence of Completion
It Doesn’t Do Anyone Any Good If You Don’t Actually DO The Workouts.
That’s why I designed the Metabolic Mayhem High Definition System the way I did. It’s not just another set of short, high intensity workouts.
No, instead they’re designed on only to maximize fat in minimum time, but they’re also designed to maximize the stickiness of the program.
It doesn’t do anyone any good if you don’t actually DO the workouts.
And Then I Took It All One Step Further.
Most programs focus only on what are called “outcome” goals. You’re familiar with these. It’s the traditional “I’m going to lose X pounds by Y date” format.
What they ignore are the process goals. These are the things that need to happen between now and Y date to reach your goal.
In 1999, a study measured performance on a soccer task. They discovered that after 5 weeks, the group that used a multiple-goal strategy (outcome AND process goals) outperformed the outcome only goals significantly.
In fact, the researchers specifically state, “The benefits of adopting an outcome goal are realized only when the outcome goal is combined with the prioritization of a process orientation immediately before and during performance.”
[Filby, William CD, Ian W. Maynard, and Jan K. Graydon. “The effect of multiple-goal strategies on performance outcomes in training and competition.” Journal of Applied Sport Psychology 11.2 (1999): 230-246.]
And quite simply, better performance leads to confidence.
But the fact of the matter is that knowing what you should be doing each day in the process and then creating a plan to achieve those daily action is hard. It’s why no one is doing it.
So I did it for you.
I systemized the whole thing. This plan is delivered – not as a huge pile of PDFs for you to spend hours combing through – but as daily, step-by-step, done-for-you action plans. It’s designed to have you taking action on Day 1 rather than reading through volumes of theory.
On any given day, you’ll have a clear set of actions to take. On workout days, you’ll have follow along workouts. On non-workout days, I’ve integrated some amazing mental techniques designed to continue to increase your motivation, willpower, and most importantly, CONFIDENCE.
If that sounds interesting to you, then you’ll check out my new Metabolic Mayhem High Definition System now.
Well, we’ve only scratched the surface of what’s possible. Here’s the rest…
Here are some of the pics from my shoot:
Thanks for watching. If you jived with the video then just click here to learn more about the workouts: