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Diet is the most important element for losing body fat, comprising 80-90% of your success. You can lose fat by dieting alone, but exercising too will yield the best results.

Many people want to lose body fat. However, most of them do not know how to succeed in it. They see contradictory messages everywhere, from one diet to another, one person telling them one thing and another telling them another thing.

According to the National Weight Control Registry (NWCR), of those who successfully managed their weight loss:

  • 98% have changed their eating habits.
  • 94% have increased their level of physical activity.
  • 78% eat a healthy breakfast each day.
  • 75% weigh themselves at least once per week.
  • 62% watch less than 10h of TV per week.

Those who succeeded to lose body fat know their body well and how it responds to various aspects of nutrition and fitness manipulation. Those who do not know their body well look to those who succeeded and try to imitate their methods. Everyone needs to remember that everything is individual. What works for one person might not work for another. However, these 3 key steps to lose body fat apply to everyone:

  • Goals
  • Diet plan
  • Exercise

Each key is necessary, and here is how you can utilize them efficiently to lose body fat.

Goals For Losing Body Fat

goals for losing body fatThe first thing you need to do is to set your goals. Look at where you are right now, and what you want to be. Your end-goal can be whatever you want.

But give yourself a realistic time frame to achieve it in, and you will achieve anything you want.

Once you set your long-term goal, you need to set smaller goals. They will help you achieve your long-term goal.  You need to be SMART (specific, measure, adjust, realistic, time frame). Here’s how to utilize your goals.

  • Be specific: You must be specific about what your goals are. (E.g., I want to lose 4% body fat in 8 weeks.)
  • Measure: You must measure your progress towards achieving your goals. (E.g., body fat can be measured doing a 6 skinfold body composition test each week.
  • Adjust: You must adjust your goals if, for some reason, something happens and they are no longer realistic for the time frame that you have set yourself.
  • Be realistic: Your goals must be realistic. (E.g., losing 4% body fat in 8 weeks is realistic; losing 4% body fat in 2 weeks in not.)
  • Set a time frame: You must set a time frame in which you want to achieve your goals. You must have a specific start and finish dates. (E.g., I want to lose 4% body fat in the period 10 July to 15 August.

Diet Plan For Fat Loss

diet plan for losing body fatOnce you have set your goals, the second thing you have to look at is your nutrition. Diet is the most important element for losing body fat, comprising 80-90% of your success.

Your diet needs to be something that you can easily maintain all year, and the only thing you change would be a number of calories you consume, based upon your body goal. Your diet plan must include these 6 principles:

  1. Energy Control: You must know what your energy needs are (maintenance), and allow for that. Use food that has a high nutrient density to ensure you get the nutrients your body requires.
  2. Moderation: Moderate your portion size and consume foods that are high in fat.
  3. Adequacy: Your diet provides sufficient energy and nutrients to meet your needs.
  4. Nutrient Density: Choose foods that carry the most nutrients for the least energy.
  5. Balance: Do not over-consume any single type of food.
  6. Variety: Eat a variety of foods day-to-day.


exercise losing body fatYou can lose fat by dieting alone, but not as efficiently as you would with a calorie controlled diet and exercise plan. Exercise will help you build muscle (which will help you to burn more calories and lose more body fat in the process). Also, it will help you feel good about yourself, and provide a way to de-stress. The FITT and SOAP principles need to be applied to your exercise program.

The FITT principle:

  • Frequency: It’s the number of training sessions completed over a given period.
  • Intensity: It’s the level of exertion that you are training at (e.g., if you are training for primary strength you will use 80-90% of your one repetition maximum.)
  • Time: It’s the duration of the session (e.g., resistance training should last no longer than 45 minutes.)
  • Type: It’s the type of exercise you perform (e.g., aerobic, strength, power, etc.)


The SOAP principle:

  • Specificity: The body adapts specifically to the kind of stress placed on it. (E.g., if you train aerobically there’s a little influence on strength. If you want to improve your strength, you need to train for strength.)
  • Overload: Refers to doing a training regime of a greater intensity than the athlete is used to. (E.g., if you are training for strength, and if you do not regularly increase weights lifted during strength training, then you are not overloading your muscles enough to get stronger.)
  • Adaptation: Training must regularly progress via overload, or else, adaptations can be lost quickly, and performance can start to decline, with fitness and condition sometimes returning to its first state. (E.g., if you constantly did the same thing, then your body would stop making progress and adaptations.)
  • Progression: The intensity of the training needs to become progressively Progression promotes long-term training benefits. (E.g., you must change your training program every 4-5 weeks, to ensure you’re providing new challenges and constantly getting results.)

The best exercise program for losing body fat is one that includes weights, cardio, and flexibility.


As long as set your goals, eat right, do weights 2-4 times per week, do cardio at least 3 times per week, and allow your body to recover (this is very important since your body only gets results in the recovery time), you will successfully lose body fat!

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