The Last Mile

So you lost 55 pounds (no its not a typo) recently. If you did, my deep respect. It took tremendous will, hard work and perseverance to achieve. You probably bought new clothes. You might have even started to resemble Bruce Lee. Minus the body scratches that is. A lot of people walk through you like you are the ghost of Christmas past. Hopefully, my readers do not include ghosts yet. Your friends merely pretend to not recognise the new you. Small price to pay, I suppose. Yet, you are not completely satisfied. There is that niggling bit of fat around your waist, hip or thigh. It just does not go.

Belly or hip fat is notoriously stubborn. Sticks to you much like Fevicol in the advertisement. Shake, rattle, roll. No effect. This fat has alpha receptors which inhibit lipolysis. Lipolysis is the process by which fat is broken down into energy. No lipolysis – no fat loss. Is it time to call in the Dear Lord? Hang on, hang on. There are a few arrows left in the quiver.

For starters here is what you should not do. Stop spot treatments. There is no science behind it. You cannot work your belly fat into oblivion. Eating many meals is also not backed by research. Neither is lack of sleep or stress the cause of belly fat. The simple truth is the only way to lose belly fat is to lose overall body fat. If you are a man, your goal is about 5-6% body fat. If you are a woman, your goal is about 20%. So you need to go from your current of say 10-12% (for men) or 23-25% (for women) to your goal. This can be achieved by eating in calorie deficit. Space your eating to avoid binge eating. Focus on eating a high protein diet of one gram per pound in weight. Engage in intensive strength training up to five hours a week. Spend time on  high intensity interval training. This will maximise fat loss without causing muscle loss. Toward the end, Bruce Lee might just be envious.

Note: It is highly advisable to seek expert guidance from a certified nutritionist and trainer before you start.