The Secret to Fat Loss

Detox teas.   Master Cleanse.  Baby food diet.  Does any of this sound familiar?  If you’ve tried all the “fad diets” and never had found the secret to fat loss, it’s because you’re most likely doing it wrong.  Or if you had success with it, but bounced back again to gain some weight, then you’re definitely doing it wrong.

secret to fat loss


There is no secret to fat loss.  But there are facts that everyone needs to hear.  To be successful with your fitness goals, you must first understand the concept of FAT LOSS.  

Lose Fat vs Lose Weight

Weight loss is a decrease in your weight or the number from the scale.  Weight is defined as mass multiplied by the gravitational force.  So body weight includes your skin, organs, skeletal structure, muscles, water, blood, and other bodily fluids.  When you see that number on the scale drop, it could be water loss and not necessarily fat loss (which we want if we want body recomposition).

Fat loss, on the other hand, is exactly what it sounds.  You lose actual fat mass and cannot be measured by any ordinary household scales.  To achieve real success with fat loss, meaning actually shredding fat and keeping it off, you can’t just do a random diet for a certain period of time.  You have to understand another concept…

Calorie Deficit

It’s actually really simple.  to lose fat, you have to be in a caloric deficit.  Meaning 

the amount of calories you consume must be less than the amount you expend.

Of course, there are other factors that play.  Our body, after all, is a living dynamic thing.  Metabolism, chemical and biological reactions, living cells, etc can definitely play a role.  But the bigger picture is energy–Calories in vs calories out.  You must burn more calories than the amount you consume.  It’s a very simple formula but very hard for most to stick to because it takes discipline and consistency.

If you are having troubles on keeping motivated, I have an article for that!

To be in a caloric deficit, you have to be expending calories more than your maintenance calories.  Each person has their maintenance calories or the amount of calories you need to not lose or gain weight and two ways to create a caloric deficit are to 1) eat less and/or 2) increase intensity of workout.

How do you make sure you’re not eating more than your maintenance calories?  By

Tracking Your Meals

Depending on your goals, a tool you can use to ensure you reach them is to track your meals.  If you simply just want to lose weight or move that number on that scale, you can just track the amount of calories that you eat.  

But if you want body recomposition, you need to gain muscle and lose fat.  In order to make this happen, not only do you need to track calories, but you also need to track your protein, carbohydrates, and fats to supply your body the right amount of macronutrients to build, repair, and lose fat.

secret to fat loss

There are several tracking apps available. The app I use is MyFitnessPal—it’s easy to use, offers a huge database of food, and FREE.  The only downside to this app is it is a user generated data and might not be 100% accurate.  And the macros it will suggest is not one size fits all.

With this in mind, everything in the fitness world is not 100% exact and accurate because of the dynamics of the human body and lifestyle.  The macro ratios will be different for each person.  It involves a lot of monitoring and experimenting to get the right style for you.  And that’s where I come in as a coach—to figure out what works best for you.

As your coach, I will calculate how much calories and macros you need to achieve your goals and these will be the numbers you enter into the app.

How to track calories (if your goal is just weightloss):

1. Enter your calorie goals in the app.

—> Click “More” (located at lower right) 

—> Click “Goals”

—> Click “Calories, Carbs, Protein, and Fat goals” 

—> Enter number of calories that you calculated or your coach gave you.

2. Search  the food from the database to add into breakfast, lunch, or dinner.  You can scan the food barcode (if available on packaging) and it will automatically upload it.

3. Top section shows calories remaining for the day.  Use this as your guide on how much food you can still eat to make sure you meet your caloric goals.

How to track calories and macros (if your goal is body recomp):

1. Enter your calorie and macro goals in the app. 

—> Click “More” (located at lower right)

—> Click “Goals” 

—> Click “Calories, Carbs, Protein, and Fat goals”

—> Enter the number of calories and macros that you calculated or your coach gave you.

2. Search  the food from the database to add into breakfast, lunch, or dinner.  You can scan the food barcode (if available on packaging) and it will automatically upload it.

Pro Tip:  Make sure you distribute a good portion of carbs, protein, and fats for every meal to make sure you meet your macro targets.

3. Top section shows calories remaining for the day.  Macros can be checked under “Nutrition” located at the bottom when you scroll down the daily food diary page.  This will give you a summary of your macro intake in comparison to your targets.

IIFYM (If it Meets Your Macros)

AKA Flexible Dieting.  This is what I currently practice as of now.  IIFYM utilizes the concept of calories in vs calories out.  The argument is you can eat anything you want, as long as you hit your macros (protein, carbs, and fat).  If your goal is to lose fat, for example, you can eat what you want as long as you track your food intake and still be in a caloric deficit and hit your target macros.

My philosophy with IIFYM, however, is 80% nutritious and 20% fun.  Fueling my body with quality food is important to me for the longer term, but leaving room for the junk food creates balance.  This is up to you and this is exactly the beauty of it–it’s flexible and meets everyone’s lifestyle while still meeting your fitness goals. 

How to Hit Your Macros

1.  Plug in your foods in the app first before eating so you can adjust the amounts accordingly to meet your targets per meal.  Then during food prep, follow the amounts of food that you plugged into the app.

2.  Flexible dieting leaves so much room for any types of food.  But sometimes, it gets complicated when you eat processed food or food that includes so many ingredients.  They usually contain a combination of the 3 macronutrients (protein, carbs, fats) and it’s harder to manipulate.

To avoid this complication, try to stick with simple ingredient food.  Chicken breast, white fish, shrimp, lean beef, for example, are your main source of protein.  Rice, oats, sweet potatoes are your main sources of carbohydrates.  Olive oil, nuts, and avocado are your main source of fats. By doing this, you can easily adjust ingredients so you can manipulate the macros to hit the targets.

3.  I find protein targets hard to meet.  So make sure you have ample servings of protein for every meal.  If you do this and still cut it short, you can supplement it with protein powder.

secret to fat loss

4.  You can cook things the same way and swap ingredients (chicken, salmon, beef for protein or rice, potatoes, bread for carbs).  I usually cook things the same way like stir frys, flatbread/pizza style, etc. and just change ingredients and seasoning to vary things up a bit.  I am very busy so I don’t like complicated recipes and usually just mix things up and stir fry them.

5.  When you have room for some sweet treats, just plug it into the app first and see how much carbs, protein, and fats you have left.  Adjust the amount to see how much you can eat without going over your calories and macros. 

6. You can use a food scale to be as accurate as you can.  The more accurate it is, the faster you can reach your goals.  However, it does not have to be 100% perfect!  If weighing food is too much for your lifestyle, you can always estimate portions.

Click this article from Weight Watchers to see the basics of how to measure and estimate portions without the need for a scale.

I hope this helps you a lot with your nutrition and I am sorry that there is no magic shortcut secret to fat loss.  It is a lot to digest but that is what I am here for–to answer any questions you might have.

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