FAST, EFFICIENT FAT-BURNING! #480 10/05/11
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8 Insider Tips to Help You Burn Fat Faster

By Whitney Provost

You're ready to get in shape. You've committed to an exercise program and stocked your kitchen with healthy food. Now it's time to see results. Other than working out consistently and sticking to your nutrition plan, what else can you do to increase your chances of success?

People Running and Meal Plans

While there's no magic fat-loss fairy who'll grant your wishes overnight, there are a few proven techniques you can use to boost your results and lose weight faster. Check 'em out.

Burn more fat during your workouts.

  1. Man and Woman on TreadmillsCrank up the intensity early. A study from the College of New Jersey found that people who work out harder during the first half of their workouts and ease up a bit in the second half burn up to 23 percent more fat than people who start out slowly. What does this mean for you? After you warm up (never neglect this or you may end up injured), bump up your workout intensity and give it your all. You don't have to pace yourself so you can make it all the way through; take breaks as necessary later in your workout.
  2. HIIT it hard. By now, you've probably heard that the one of the most effective ways to burn fat is with High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). This involves short intervals of maximum intensity cardio, followed by intervals of low intensity cardio or rest. Researchers at Laval University in Quebec have discovered that people who do HIIT can lose 3 times as much fat as those who do steady-state moderate cardio. Try TurboFire® for fun, high-energy HIIT workouts that'll have you dripping with sweat and burning major calories.
  3. Woman with DumbbellLift heavier weights for fewer reps. Boost your metabolism long after your workout by training with heavy weights. As researchers at the Norwegian University of Sport and Physical Education have learned, the heavier you lift, the greater the rise in your metabolic rate and the longer the boost will last. The result? Increased fat loss. For amazing body-reshaping results, try ChaLEAN Extreme®, P90X®, or RevAbs®.

    Special note for women: Don't be afraid to increase the size of your dumbbells! You don't have enough testosterone to bulk up like the Incredible Hulk, and a lean, strong body will help you burn calories around the clock. Plus toned and shapely muscles look beautiful and give your body symmetry. Still not convinced? Read my related Beachbody® newsletter article, "10 Reasons Women Need to Lift Weights."
  4. Lift lighter weights for more reps. Wait . . . what? Didn't I just tell you that you have to lift heavier to burn more fat? It's true that training with heavy weights for fewer reps will burn more calories post-workout and give your physique a much more dramatic transformation. But there's also a benefit to using lighter weights at higher reps. For one, you burn a lot of calories during your workout. And if you're very out of shape or haven't lifted weights in a while, going lighter will help you condition your muscles and joints and help you prevent injuries. Start with programs like Slim in 6®, Power 90®, or Brazil Butt Lift® until you're ready to progress to heavier weights.
  5. Man and Woman Curling Dumbbells Stay in shape. Once you become physically fit, keep it up. The more active you are, the better your body is at burning fat. According to researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, you can avoid regaining belly fat by exercising as few as 80 minutes per week. Keep stoking your fat-burning furnace with regular exercise and good nutrition, and you'll be lean for life.
    • Let your kitchen help you burn fat.
  6. Get your omega-3s. Fish and fish-oil supplements are helpful fat-burners because of their high levels of omega-3 fats. Two recent studies in Iceland and Australia demonstrated that people who consume fish oil burn more fat than people who don't. Additionally, the Australian study showed that when fish oil is combined with exercise, the results were even better. To promote fat loss, take one or two Core Omega-3™ capsules with breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
  7. Omega-3 CapsulesDon't cut calories too quickly. You know that in order to lose weight, you need to eat fewer calories. But dropping them too quickly can cause your metabolism to slow down, because your body thinks it's starving and desperately holds onto fat. A dramatic reduction in calories can also lead to what author Martha Beck calls "famine brain," a condition in which your poor starved brain starts to freak out and all you can think about is food until you go nuts and eat everything in sight. The stress makes you much more likely to binge and end up fatter than ever. So what's the easiest way to cut calories gradually and keep your sanity?

    Start by swapping your usual breakfast for Shakeology®. It's only 140 to 150 calories and tastes great, and you can add healthy ingredients like milk or a dab of peanut butter and still keep the total calorie count low. Next, try cutting your total calorie intake by 250 calories per day. Give it a couple of weeks and see if you like the results. If you're losing weight, stick with it, and if not, cut out another 250 calories and reevaluate a couple of weeks later. If you're already doing everything else I've mentioned in this article, you shouldn't have to starve yourself to lose weight.
  8. Cup of Green TeaDrink green tea. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that the catechins—antioxidant flavonoid compounds—found in green tea may stimulate the body's fat-burning activity. You'll get the most benefits from about 4 cups of green tea per day, but if you don't want to drink that much, green tea extract supplements appear to have similar benefits. It's kind of cool to think that you might be able to relax with a cup of green tea and burn fat at the same time!

Give these tips a try, and let us know how they work for you.

Related Articles
"Fighting the Obesity Trend"
"The Five Pillars of Willpower"
"8 Tips on How to Fit a Balanced Diet into Your Busy Schedule"

Questions about your workout program, diet, the latest newsletter, or anything wellness related? Chat with Steve Edwards, the overseer of Beachbody's fitness and diet development (who also serves as your Fitness Advisor on the Message Boards), in the Beachbody Chat Room on Monday, October 10th, at 3:00 PM ET, 12:00 PM PT.

If you'd like to ask a question or comment on this newsletter article, click here to add a comment in the newsletter review section or you can email us at mailbag@beachbody.com.

Check out our Fitness Advisor's responses to your comments in The Beachbody Mailbag on the Message Boards. If you'd like to receive The Beachbody Mailbag by email, click here to subscribe.

And if you'd like to know more about Beachbody Director of Results Steve Edwards' views on fitness, nutrition, and outdoor sports, read his blog, The Straight Dope, recently named one of the Top 50 blogs covering the sports industry by the Masters in Sports Administration.

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†With Home Direct, you'll receive this item every 30 days, shipped directly to your door and billed to the credit card used today. You may cancel at any time.

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Metabolic Efficiency: Working Hard or Working Smart?

By Dr. Mark Cheng, L.Ac., Ph.D., FMS

If you're involved in fitness, health, or the pursuit of a lean, toned body, you've undoubtedly heard the word "metabolism." You've probably also heard that the more highly your metabolism functions, the better your results as far as fat loss and maintaining a slim, trim body. But "metabolism" is actually defined by Wikipedia® as "the set of chemical reactions that happen in living organisms to sustain life." Simply sustaining life isn't that challenging a goal to aim for. If you're engaged in doing a Beachbody® home fitness program, mere survival shouldn't be your standard. Thriving, growing, exceeding, and surpassing should be what you're working toward!

Workout Calendar

So let's take a closer look at your metabolism to see how to optimize it.

Weight LossThe human metabolic process is broken down into two parts: catabolism and anabolism. Catabolism is the "burning" or digesting of food or fuel sources to provide cells with energy. This is the part of metabolism that provides muscles with the energy to maintain posture and create movement. Anabolism, in turn, uses energy to link chemical compounds together to produce larger molecules, like muscle mass.

For catabolism to be efficient, you need to give your muscles the maximum number of opportunities to burn fuel like fat, carbohydrates, and sugars. So it stands to reason that if you're training your body for the purpose of burning off excess weight, you want to engage the maximum number of muscles in the most efficient and safest manner possible.

Woman Doing Sit-upsOne way to think of your body's muscles is as their having two main functions: stability and mobility. Most of the big muscles people develop for cosmetic reasons, with prime examples being the quadriceps muscles of the thighs, the pectoral muscles in the chest, and the deltoid muscles of the shoulders, are centered around dynamic mobility. In other words, they're muscles that allow you to go through a full range of motion. The stabilizing muscles, however, are generally those muscles that are deeper and closer to the joints. These are smaller muscles that include the spinal multifidi, the rotator cuff of the shoulder, and the core musculature of the midsection, and if they're doing their job properly to stabilize your body while you're in motion, they also play a major role in energy consumption.

Don't be fooled, though. While some fitness coaches argue that it's better to focus on the bigger mobility-oriented muscles because they burn more calories, any weakness or poor functionality in the smaller stabilizers can force the prime movers to pull double duty, making them attempt to both stabilize and move at the same time. This kind of inefficiency can overload one muscle group (prime movers) while robbing another group (stabilizers) of training. This scenario can lead to joint dysfunction and pain, which your body reads as a stressor. When it's under stress, your body dumps the stress hormone cortisol into your bloodstream. And cortisol keeps packing the flab on around your midsection.

Six-Pack AbsThe bottom line is pretty simple. If you want to look good, you've got to move well. In order to move well, you have to feel good. In order to feel good, your body has to function well. So to get the most out of your metabolism, both in catabolic, fat-burning reactions and anabolic, muscle-building processes, your training has to involve both dynamic, explosive, gross movements and slow, controlled, precise movements—without pain. Pain is a silent enemy that constantly undermines the effectiveness of our workouts and hampers our metabolic efficiency. So to improve the functionality of your training, make sure you incorporate stability and postural training in addition to your dynamic, high-intensity workouts.

Woman Performing Dumbbell PressThe correct mix of stability and dynamic motor control exercises along with explosive, high-output routines can give your body an incredible boost. By training muscles to perform their correct functions, you work more muscle groups with your exercises, perform those exercises more safely, and dramatically drop your risk of injury. Coordinated functioning of both your stabilizers and your prime movers is the essence of metabolic efficiency. As the stabilizers kick in and increase your caloric burn, not only do they consume more calories through their own action, but they also help the prime movers operate more efficiently with more powerful contractions, creating stronger movement and burning even more calories than ever.

White ScaleIf you want to get past the hump of "those last few pounds," "the bulge that won't go away," or "the little spot I'd love to just tone up a little," giving your stabilizers a chance to play in concert with your prime movers will set the stage for great movement. And when you move well, you'll be happy to move more often. As you move more often with metabolically efficient movement patterns, you'll be able to handle higher-intensity fat-sizzling workouts like P90X® without the cortisol setting you two steps back for every step forward you take. You'll love how your athletic movements improve, how your quality of life blossoms, and how your lean, healthy, toned body evolves!

Related Articles
"The Top 10 Questions About P90X2™"
"Lose Weight and Get Ripped with Virtual Exercise Buddies"
"Sleep and Muscle Growth"

Questions about your workout program, diet, the latest newsletter, or anything wellness related? Chat with Steve Edwards, the overseer of Beachbody's fitness and diet development (who also serves as your Fitness Advisor on the Message Boards), in the Beachbody Chat Room on Monday, October 10th, at 3:00 PM ET, 12:00 PM PT.

If you'd like to ask a question or comment on this newsletter article, click here to add a comment in the newsletter review section or you can email us at mailbag@beachbody.com.

Check out our Fitness Advisor's responses to your comments in The Beachbody Mailbag on the Message Boards. If you'd like to receive The Beachbody Mailbag by email, click here to subscribe.

And if you'd like to know more about Beachbody Director of Results Steve Edwards' views on fitness, nutrition, and outdoor sports, read his blog, The Straight Dope, recently named one of the Top 50 blogs covering the sports industry by the Masters in Sports Administration.

Submit A CommentTell A Friend Bookmark and Share

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Milkology 101

If you're adding milk to your daily dose of Shakeology®, you might be aware of milk's benefits but unaware of the added fat and calories. We'll give you the skinny on all things milk in today's webcast. Click below to watch the video.

If you'd like to ask a question or comment on this newsletter article, click here to add a comment in the newsletter review section or you can email us at mailbag@beachbody.com.

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Recipe: Baba Ganoush
From the Team Beachbody® Kitchen

Baba Ganoush

So what exactly is baba ganoush, you might ask? Well, it's kind of like hummus, except instead of chickpeas, it's made with broiled eggplants, which have a delicious smoky taste. Baba ganoush is great as a dip or a spread—scoop it up with pita bread or crackers, or slather it on your favorite sandwich.

  • 2 small whole globe eggplants (about 1 lb. each)
  • 3 Tbsp. tahini (sesame paste)
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • Water (optional)

Preheat broiler. Broil both eggplants whole until sides closest to heat are blackened, then rotate each a quarter-turn and repeat until each eggplant is blackened on all sides and flesh feels soft (about 10 minutes per side). Remove from heat and cut each eggplant in half lengthwise; scoop out flesh and place in a medium-sized bowl, discarding skin. Add garlic, lemon juice, tahini, and salt to bowl and mix well with fork or hand mixer (or use blender or food processor). Add water (by teaspoons) if desired to adjust consistency. Makes 4 servings.

Broiling Time: 40 minutes

Preparation Time: 15 minutes

Nutritional Information (per serving)
Calories Protein Fiber Carbs Fat Total Saturated Fat
93 3 grams 4 grams 9 grams 6 grams < 1 gram

If you'd like to ask a question or comment on this newsletter article, click here to add a comment in the newsletter review section or you can email us at mailbag@beachbody.com.

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