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The Four Components Of A Body Transformation

After years of trail and error and countless research hours I have found that any successful body transformation program is built around four key elements.

They are as follows; cardiovascular exercise, a concern for muscle, supportive nutrition and proper progression.

It’s important to understand that you must have all four components in place to see long-term, lasting results. The majority of quick-fixes only focus on one piece of the puzzle and that’s why they ultimately fail.

Think about some of the different fat loss solutions you may have tried in the past. How much discussion was there about exercise in the Atkins diet? How much real and meaningful information about nutrition did you find with the last workout video you purchased?

You see if you’ve tried any number of these so called solutions and ultimately failed it’s not your fault! You didn’t fail…the program failed you because it likely only gave you one piece of the puzzle.

Key Component #1: Supportive Nutrition

There’s no question the foods you eat will determine whether your body is in a “fat burning” or a “fat storing” state. I want you to begin looking at food as having a drug like effect on your body.

Different foods have different impacts on the hormonal systems of your body. For example, eating a meal high in carbohydrates causes blood sugar (glucose) levels to get high fairly quickly signaling the release of insulin. In the presence of insulin your body doesn’t have the ability to burn fat for energy. Not many people know this but it’s a FACT.

Choosing the right foods really does make all the difference. The nutrition strategies I teach my clients are centered on “naturally low” carbohydrate diets consisting of lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and healthy omega-3 fats, otherwise known as a Primal Blueprint diet.

The typical person looking to lose weight has low insulin sensitivity or insulin resistance and will find it difficult losing weight with even small amounts of starches and grains.

Key Component #2: A Concern For Muscle (Resistance Exercise)

 

While cardiovascular exercise does increase momentary metabolism, resistance exercise helps keep it going for hours. The reason is simple…muscle is metabolically active tissue and needs energy (calories) to function.

When fat is burned, it actually has to be released into the bloodstream and shuttled into a muscle cell where it is burned as fuel. Muscle, therefore, is literally the “fat burning furnace.” If you increase muscle mass, even slightly, you increase caloric burn not only while you exercise but throughout the rest of the day as well.

The mitochondria of a muscle cell is the ONLY place your body can burn fat as fuel. That’s important to remember. Now doesn’t it make sense that if muscle is the only place you can burn fat that the more metabolically active lean muscle you have the more fat you can burn?

Don’t believe any of the so called “scientific evidence” that tells you increased lean muscle has minimal effect on fat loss. While it is true increased lean muscle has a small effect on your overall basal metabolic rate, it’s a mistake to believe it won’t help you be better at releasing and burning fat.

Maybe it’s just a coincidence that the most muscular individuals are also the leanest. I don’t think so. Forget what you may have heard or read, success leaves clues.

Key Component #3: Cardiovascular Exercise

While cardiovascular exercise is not the ONLY activity needed for fat loss that some think it to be, it certainly plays an essential role. The real reason why it’s so important may come at a surprise to you.

Most people think they need to do cardio because it burns calories. While this is true it’s not really about the calories. When you look at stored body fat being what it really is….stored energy you can begin to see why the efficiency of your heart and lungs plays such an important role.

You need cardiovascular exercise to improve the efficiency of your heart and lungs so you can better transport nutrients and oxygen through your body. When you look at the Krebs Cycle and how your body produces energy you’ll find oxygen plays an essential role in the burning of fat.

In fact, you can’t burn fat for fuel at a cellular level without oxygen. Now doesn’t it make sense that if you MUST have oxygen to burn fat that the more efficient you are at delivering oxygen the better you’re body will be at it?

The first role of cardiovascular exercise will be to improve the efficiency of your heart and lungs through moderate intensity “aerobic exercise.” You must get your body efficient at absorbing oxygen if you want to really turn up the thermostat on your fat burning engine later.

Higher intensity cardio routines like interval training that really start burning fat are only effective once you’ve established an aerobic base.

Individuals just starting an exercise program will want to develop this “aerobic base” by completing moderate intensity cardiovascular exercise during their first few weeks.

You can accomplish this by doing cardio (5) days per week at (30) minutes each session. You can begin building this base with as little as 12 minutes of aerobic exercise daily in your target heart rate zone. So don’t worry if you can’t do 30 minutes in the beginning, you can always work up to it.

Key Component #4: Proper Progression

The fourth component is proper progression which is nothing more than changing your exercise routine in a way that creates a new stimulus in your cardiovascular and neuromuscular systems.

Not having proper progression is the biggest mistake I see people making with their exercise routines. Walk into any health club and you’ll undoubtedly find someone doing the same sets and reps scheme that they’ve been doing for months.

They think in their mind that they’re working out but often complain that they don’t see results. The reason is simple. They’ve given their body a workload to complete and it adapted.

Your body will adapt to any given workload over time. In order to see results you must change the intensity of your workouts. You can do this by changing the load (weight), rest, reps, duration and any number of factors. The key thing to remember is that you MUST give your body a new stimulus if expect it to change.

Most effective way to see a body transformation

You’ve just learned it takes more than just going on a diet. If you want to transform your body composition it’s going to take hard work and effort. Yes, you’ll need to eat clean with a healthy diet but you’ll also need to create the right hormonal responses for lean muscle development and fat burning to occur.

Going about this process all alone can be tough, especially in the beginning. That’s why the most effective way to see a body transformation is to seek out the accountability, instruction, and coaching that a fitness professional can provide.

Establishing a routine is the most important part and you simply can’t rely on your own will-power and self-discipline. You need to be accountable to someone other than yourself as you establish your new habits and routines. Over time you’ll be able to do it effortless and without much thought on your own, but in the beginning get some support.

I’ve long said as a personal trainer by greatest asset to people is in the coaching and accountability. Sure I’ve spent years learning exercise science, movement patterns, muscles imbalances and the like. That’s made me more valuable as a fitness professional but it’s never directly resulted in someone dropping twenty pounds.

Instruction on how to do exercises correctly should not be understated but the coaching and accountability is what helps people change their lives.

That’s our goal at Shaping Concepts and it’s what we strive to do every day. Help give people hope and empower them with the tools they need to change their lives. If you’re frustrated in a body you don’t like right now I can help.

Give me a call, send me an email, or simply drop by to see me at my studio. I’ve got a team of ten fitness professionals who are passionate and dedicated with helping others. Each with their own unique specialties, niches, and training style.

I know we can find you a good fit with a trainer that can help you see the body you desire. There’s no obligations and nothing to risk as I provide a completely free trial to test drive our programs.

I’m always happy to help in any way I can so don’t hesitate to contact me when the time is right.

Shane Doll is a certified Charleston personal trainer, fat loss expert, speaker, and founder of Shaping Concepts Personal Training Studios. You can receive a free, no-obligations consultation and trial of his Charleston personal training programs to experience the Shaping Concepts difference for yourself.

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Category: Fitness Training.