What Is The Best Workout To Burn Calories?

The-best-workout-to-burn-calories

 

Right now I am going to give you the best workout to burn calories.

I’m going to lay out what exercises you should be spending your time on and what may not be so important. I’ll teach you how to spike your metabolism to burn calories all throughout the day. I’ll tell you the biggest secrets when it comes to what is the best workout to burn calories.

Incredibly kind of me right? I do ask one thing from you in return.

Keep your eyes peeled to your screen.

Don’t look away if your house is on fire or if your child painted a fun new decoration on the wall!

Do we have a deal? Cool, now let’s dive in.

The Best Workout To Burn Calories

If you just stumbled across here, welcome. My name is Eric, but just call me E.

My main goal is to get my arms as big as my sarcasm.

As you may be able to sense there, I tease.. kind of. A large part of my childhood was sculpted from this sensation I wanted to be ripped. I wanted to look like the body builders on the fitness magazines or now instagram.

Yet that quickly turned for me the more I realized this fitness thing wasn’t about me. It was about helping the others around me through my passion.

Take Katie from Virginia for example. best workout to burn calories


She joined my online coaching program and immediately started to change her body. She is incredibly disciplined, has the heart of a saint, follows my guidelines like an army general, and always gives 110%.

My client Giselle has been in my online coaching program for over 9 months and boy does she give me a run for my money.

best workout to burn calories

All jokes aside, she is fiery, she takes jabs at me to keep me on my toes, and makes my “job” fun.

Melissa is a mom of two, business owner, and certified bad a**. She has lost 100 lbs, has a powerful personality to her, and will NOT be stopped short of her goals.

best workout to burn calories

I show you these stories not to impress, but to make you realize these people are just like you. Using the same guidelines I am going to talk about here for the best workout to burn calories you too can shed unwanted body fat and take control of your fitness journey.

If you want to see more client success stories, head HERE.

Without further ado, let’s dive in.

What Exercises Burn The Most Calories?

Most fitness marketers will try to sell you on this theory that you can burn 500-1000 calories in one hour of exercise.

The problem is this is simply untrue no matter what your apple watch or fit bit tells you.

Why would they lie to you?

Stick with me because I am about to explain something that is going to make you look at me like I have 3 heads.

The problem with the calorie trackers you wear on your wrist is that they vastly overestimate your calories burned. In other words they are dirty rotten liars.

Studies show calorie trackers over estimate your calorie burn by up to 50%.

When you think you burned 500 calories you really only burned 250 on a good day.

If you don’t believe me check out this Stanford medicine study.

Crazy right? I am only telling you this because I care about you and want you to see the results you deserve.

Let me introduce you to my online coaching client, Alison.

best workout to burn calories

Alison was vey much in the mindset of cardio was the best workout to burn calories and lifting weights was not going to help in her journey.

I thoroughly explained to her that lifting weights was going to increase her metabolism over time and actually have her burn MORE calories doing nothing. Whereas cardio will only burn calories in that moment you do it and then it is done-zo.

As she does with everything in her life she tackled my directions head on and as you can see changed her physique. She now actually has more time on her hands because she is not doing hours of cardio.

Wait. So What Does This Mean?

Well this means that the best workout to burn calories may not be about the number of calories burned after all.

I am going to guess that in short you want the best workout to burn calories to help aid in your weight loss journey. You want to lose weight and look a certain way.

Let me paint a picture for you.

Now that you know that the calorie burn trackers are 50% over estimated imagine you spend 1.5 to 2 hours burning 500-800 calories.

That is a long time right?

Now imagine you eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. How long did it take you to eat that?

Wait what? What does americas favorite sandwich have to do with this?

If it takes you 1.5 hours to burn 500 calories but only 10 minutes to eat 500 calories, you tell me what is wrong here.

Your quest to find high calorie burning workouts to make you lose weight faster is never going to work.

The math simply will not make sense. You will never be able to burn off the calories you eat from a poor diet.

If you want help with your diet, feel free to head HERE for my FREE diet guide for weight loss.

So.. Then What Is The Best Workout To Burn Calories?

Weight Lifting 

best workout to burn calories

Now that I have shattered what your previous thoughts were about exercise let me provide you a new way of looking at it.

When you exercise your focus should be building your body up not tearing it down. 

What I mean by that is exercise is centered around getting stronger, building more defined muscles, doing more reps, etc. 

You should not be focusing on losing weight with your exercise because that should be done through your diet.

This is done through getting off the treadmill or hopping out of the Zumba class and lifting weights.

The best part is when you make this mental shift you not only get stronger but you lose more fat in the process as well. 

Okay enough of me babbling. Let’s talk actual workouts now. 

I am going to give you a sample 3x a week workout below but first let me explain what they are made up of.

Compound Exercises 

I like to break the workouts up into 3 different parts and the first is centering your workout around full body compound movements.

These should be the first exercises you are doing within any given workout.

For example things like squats, deadlifts, chest presses, shoulder presses, chin ups / pull ups are considered full body compound movements.

You should be prioritizing these within your training because they will give you the best return on your investment, aka your time in the gym. 

They require the most total body effort. For example a squat is more than just a lower body movement. A squat requires your core to stabilize you, it requires your back to stabilize you, it requires your brain to tell you not to throw up if you are doing them right.

Kidding… kind of. 

Funny enough the best workout to burn calories would actually include a lot of these exercises because they do burn the most calories. 

Think about doing a squat versus doing a bicep curl. A squat is a more difficult exercise than a bicep curl you would say yes? I would hope so at least.

These movements should make up the staple of your training and you should be aiming to get stronger on these movements. 

Over time you will require more work from your body meaning you will get stronger and build more defined muscles which is exactly what you want. 

Accessory Exercises

Next up on the list is going to be accessory movements.

These are going to be exercises like lunges, single leg deadlifts, bent over rows, to name a few.

These come secondary because they still provide a great stimulus to your body to push the strength gains and muscle definition you are looking for. 

These should be done after the full body compound exercises. 

Isolation Exercises

Last not but last, isolation exercises can come into play.

These would be things like bicep curls, shoulder raises, glute kick backs to name a few.

These exercises are great for getting some extra work in but should not make up the bulk of your training.

3x A Week Workout Plan

Below I am going to lay out a sample program I gave to one of my online coaching clients that made them completely change their physique so I know it can for you as well.

Many fitness professionals told me not to put this out or I would lose all of my business. I call baloney and above all else I want to help you get results.

You can use this workout program for 4, 6, 8 weeks at a time. Likewise for that same period of time you should be looking to increase your strength. This can be through more reps, more weight, better form, to name a few.

Day One

Day One – Lower Body
ExerciseSets x RepsRestNotes
1a. Elevated Glute Bridge2×10 Dig heels into bench, hold the squeeze for 3 seconds, feel your butt burning!!
1b. Lying leg lifts2×10 Use your abs here, slow on the way down
1c. Plank Lifts2×5/ea Keep the center of your body from moving
1d. Side Plank2×45 sec60Butt squeezed!
    
2. DB RDL3×8-1090Have a slight bend in your knees, brace your core like you are trying to pop a button on your pants, push hips back stay on your heels, right below your knees then back up lock your legs out!
    
3. Front Foot Elevated Split Squat4×8-1075Elevate your front foot on a 6” or so surface, have a slight lean forward in your torso, try to hit that back knee on the ground, keep core braced!!!!
    
4a. Offset Reverse Lunge3×10-12/ea Have slight lean forward in your torso, hit that back knee on the ground SLOWLY
4b. DB Hamstring Curl3×1575More reps this go around, burn your hamstrings up!!!!
    
    
5a. Curtsy Lunge3×8/ea Keep both hip bones facing forward, feel your butt push you back up
5b. Single Leg Hip Thruster3×10/ea90 Push your heel into the ground and squeeze your butt!
    

** I included some videos to certain exercises, feel free to click on them to make sure you are doing them correctly.

** Note: If an exercise says 5a and 5b, that indicates a superset. What this means is do exercise a and then immediately do exercise b with little to no rest in between. Once exercise b is complete, rest for the allotted time.

Day Two

Day Two – Upper Body
ExerciseSets x RepsRestNotes
1a. Lat stretch on bench2×30 seconds Big breaths here,
1b. Plank Climb Overs2×5/ea arm Keep body level, just try to walk hands up and over
1c. Prone T’s2×1260Thumbs straight up, pinch your shoulder blades together as hard as you can
    
2. 1.5 Flat Chest Press4×875Control here! Keep those shoulder blades squeezed together on the way down
    
3. Chest Support DB Row4×10-1275Even though your body is supported, still focus on bracing your core aka trying to pop a button on your pants, push your stomach out.
    
4a. 1/2 Kneeling 1 Arm Press3×8-10/ea Big thing here, lock your hips out, squeeze your butt, and MAKE SURE you are not leaning side to side… work your core here
4b. Pause Push Ups3xMAX Pause 2 seconds at the bottom of the push ups, go until failure
4c. Chest Support Rear Delt Fly3×12-1590Sternum right above the bench, push your hands out to the side
    
5a. DB Skullcrusher3×12-15 Bend through your elbows, straighten those arms and feel your triceps
5b. DB Side Lateral Raise3×12-15 Squeeze your butt, brace your core, push those hands away from your body
5c. Incline Curl3×10-1275Keep your shoulders back here
    

Day Three

Day Three Full Body
ExerciseSets x RepsRestNotes
1a. Butterfly Bridge2×10 Push your feet together hard, extend those hips and squeeze your butt!
1b. Incline bench Y’s2×8 Be very intentional here, make sure you are moving through your shoulder blades not just your arms
1c. Plank Pull Through2×5/ea60Keep hips stable, brace your core the entire time during this, take your time.
    
2. 4-2-1 DB Sumo Deadlift3×675Keep your weight on your heels, hinge back through your hips, go 4 seconds on the way down, 2 second pause at the bottom, and 1 second on the way up
    
3a. Alt Incline DB Press3×10-12/ea 1 Arm at a time here!!! These are going to be tough, but you got this!!!
3b. Chest Support Elbow Wide Row3×10-1290Think now about, pulling with your elbows out wide, and pulling your hands towards your chest area
    
4a. Offset Squat3×8/ea Most important thing here, make sure your core is tight , make sure you are not leaning to the side. Push your knees out as you squat
4b. 1 arm push press3×8/ea Push HARD
4c. DB Front Raise3×12-1590Squeeze your butt so you do not arch your back. Lead the movement with your elbows, stop around eye level, slow on the way down
    
5a. Single leg rdl3×8-10/ea Hold one dumbbell here, opposite of the leg that is down, work on SLOW, controlled, movement. Feel your hamstring stretch, feel your butt working, that is the most important thing here
5b. Plank Rows3×6/ea Keep those hips stable, keep elbow close to side as you pull back
5c. Sit Up knee grab3×1090Hold the grab for 2 seconds!!

So, What Is The Best Workout To Burn Calories?

The best workout is one that is centered around increasing your strength.

In addition to one that focuses on increasing how toned your muscles look.

It is one that allows you to fit your workouts into your life rather than the other way around.

Above all the best workout to burn calories is one you can consistently stick to for a long period of time.

To sum up, the best workout is NOT the one that solely focuses on burning a ton of calories to aid in fat loss.

I hope this article was able to provide you with quality information, and now an actionable plan you can go put into place today!

Want more FREE workouts at your disposal to use?

Below I have 52 more FREE workouts you can grab. Seriously, they’re free.

What are you waiting for? Grab them now!

Talk soon.

-E.

4 Ways To Ramp Up Your At Home Workouts

 

Stuck at home, and feeling like Billy Madison here above?

Trying to keep up with your exercise routine, but you don’t have all the equipment you normally do?

The best you are really working with is a half empty bottle of laundry detergent, some bands, and your kids as weapon.. I mean weights.

I assume you are worried about how you can not only keep your progress, but get somewhat comparable workouts.

Well, that is why I am writing this article for you homie, I got your back.

I get that circumstances are unprecedented right now, and all of us don’t have access to state of the art equipment or even dumbbells.

I am going to teach you some ways in this article that can lead you to still keep your workout intensity up, still challenge yourself, and honestly probably still make progress.

But first, let’s peel the curtain back a bit and understand WHY we can still get quality workouts with soup cans or laundry detergent bottles.

Alright peel the curtain, or scroll down farther what you are waiting on?

 

Your Muscles Are Stupid.. Don’t Worry, Mine Are Too

 

 

Haha, this meme is funny. Anywho.

What does this mean? Why am I insulting your muscles, and mine? You thought I was a pretty cool guy now here I am making fun of you.

Let me break it down.

Without going too nerdy on science here, your muscles get worked through how much force they have to produce.

Now, using load (dumbbells, barbells, cables etc), USUALLY lends you to produce the most amount of force to them.

This is because you can continuously increase the force output by adding reps, adding weight, adding total volume, to name a few.

But, you don’t have the weight you normally do.. So that is why this principle comes into play even more.

Your muscles need to have a high force output to be able to stimulate and grow. That is it. They don’t NEED weight (though clearly this is the best way), you just need to find a way to make them produce a high amount of force still.

How can you do this?

Continue reading on, quarantiners.

Manipulating Rep Movements

One way I LOVE increasing the amount of force your muscles have to be produce is by manipulating WHAT your reps actually look like.

Every rep has 3 movements, the concentric, isometric, and eccentric.

Concentric means the raising portion, so think in a bicep curl when you are actually curling the weight up.

Isometric is the static portion, so NOT when you are brining it up, and NOT when you are lowering it down, but when it is at the top of the bicep curl motion.

Eccentric is the lowering portion, so think as you are returning the weight down from the top of the bicep curl, letting your arm go straight again.

Why did I just tell you this? They are going to be important for modifying your intensity and how much force you apply to your muscles.

Let’s now use a squat for the 3 movement parts above.

For the concentric, if you EXPLODE up as hard as you possibly can, that is going to provide a TON of force.

You HAVE to use force to explode up as fast as you possibly can, or else you won’t move fast. You can easily manipulate you pushing yourself back up out of the bottom of a squat by making it explosive.

BUT, not JUST that, you can add in an isometric hold to that!

At the bottom of a squat, if you are flexed in that position (aka not just sagging and hanging out waiting for a coffee), your muscles have to work to keep you there.

If you even had 15 20 lb weights, and you add in an isometric hold at the bottom of a squat, that is going to light your legs on fire.

Think about it, if you have weight, gravity is pushing you down, you fight not only the gravity by keeping yourself in that position, but also fatigue from doing 5 10 12 reps of squats. That will BURN.

So now you are holding yourself at the bottom, and then EXPLODING back up rep after rep after rep..

Best part is, that is not all!

If you REALLY think about a squat, was is the easiest part? Lowering the weight down. Yea getting back up is hard, but if you just FALL down, you can easily bounce back up.

So, on your squats, if you can slowwwwly control the eccentric, do 3 4 5 seconds on the way down, your muscles are going to have to work more.

Instead of just letting the weight drag you down, you actually control yourself on the way down. Feel your leg muscles do this.

They are not used to having to go 3 4 5 seconds on the way down, so when you add this in, especially if you don’t have the load (weight) you would normally use, it can make a huge difference.

So now you can 3 seconds on the way down, hold at the bottom in a flexed position for a 2 second pause, and then EXPLODE up as fast as you can.

That has me grimacing just typing it.

Your bodyweight will be enough to make you work hard there, add any kind of weight… Consider your muscles toast.

 

Work Your Muscles Where They Are Weakest

 

As we just learned above, there are different parts to every rep. And every rep has a spot where it is the hardest and or easiest.

Take a side shoulder raise for example.

When you have the dumbbell in your hand, and are lifting your arm up and out to the side, what is the hardest part?

If you think about gravity, when you get to the top of the rep, where your arm is up around your ear, that line of gravity is pulling STRAIGHT down on your shoulder muscle.

That dumbbell in your hand is pulling straight down, but you are keeping it up via your shoulder muscle.

This is where your muscle is also the weakest, because it is damn hard to keep your arm up there as gravity is pulling you straight down, that is why we do one rep and drop it.

Therefore, this is the hardest part of the rep… So, if you only have say a band, or a can of soup, what can we do?

Work the muscle where it is the hardest / weakest.

Get that band or can of soup, raise your arm up and out to the side, and HOLD IT THERE!

You don’t have the weight you normally do, but you do have gravity still. And if you can put some extra work where it is hard, that will be another way your muscles have to produce more force.

What you can do it pre fatigue the muscle, so get that band, hold your arm up and out for 30 seconds… Your shoulders will be on fire from fighting that gravity, then what you can do is do 10 reps of your normal shoulder side raises.

Your muscles will already be burnt up a bit, and then you can do your “regular work”.

Though nothing about this will be regular, you will be BURNING up.

This concept can apply to a bicep curl, a glute bridge, a push up, anything.

 

Mind Muscle Connection

 

This is something that can instantly change the effectiveness of your workout.

For not only at home, but when you return back to the gym.

Think about it, if you are doing a shoulder press… What is supposed to be working in theory?

Your shoulders.

But if you are using your legs to push it back up, if you are using momentum, if you are basically just trying to move the weight from point a to point b…

You are kind of missing the point.

One thing I CHALLENGE you to do (because trust me, it is a challenge especially at first) is to actually FEEL the muscle you are trying to work.

If you are doing a bicep curl, make sure you feel your bicep the whole time.

If you are doing a deadlift, make sure you feel the hamstrings and glutes work.

What this can automatically do is increase the intensity of the workout, and increase force via that.

Logic will tell us, if you make the muscle ACTUALLY work, instead of having momentum do it, then you will be increasing the force production of that muscle.

It will go from just moving the weight from A to B, to using force on the concentric, isometric, and eccentric…

Pop quiz from earlier! What do those words mean?!

If you want to get a more effective workout, and honestly build the body you want to, start incorporating more mind muscle connection into your exercises.

This will be hard at first, and will require mental effort. You can’t just sit there on Facebook and do this. But I promise if you can give me some effort to do it, it will help you.

 

Nice, Dense… Sets

 

What did you think I was going to say? Jeez.

Alright so if you don’t have the load you normally do, what does that mean?

You also aren’t getting the regular volume you normally do.

What is volume? The total amount of weight you lift.

So say you normally go 10 reps of squats with 40 lbs.

That would be 400 lifts lifted, 40lbs x 10 reps.

But if you only have 20 lbs now, that mean 10 reps would equal 200 total lbs.

Now, you can just do 20 reps, that is certainly one way to equate volume and keep your force production high.

But meh, 20 reps?

So, what you can also do, is make sets very very dense.

What I mean by that is, say you take that 20 lbs and do squats, reverse lunges, forward lunges, and side lunges, all for 10 reps.

Do all them back to back, with resting after all 4 exercises are done.

You are now getting 4 different exercises with 40 reps in. Rest 1-2 minutes, and do it again, now you have 80 reps.

You are getting a lot of volume in a short amount of time. Since you don’t have the load you normally do, you can condense volume with getting a lot in a short period of time. Thus, that will be a ton of force your muscles have to produce to keep up.

Exercise Examples

 

So, all of these words are cool, but what does it actually look like?

Well, you are in luck. For my online coaching clients in The Clubhouse, I filmed some exercise intensification techniques they can use to ramp up their at home workouts.

I am going to share them with you here.

If you have no weight, only bands, laundry detergent, whatever, these will help you.

You can see what a slow eccentric looks like, or you can see what isometrically holding looks like.

 

DB Front Squat

Bulgarian Split Squat 

Reverse Lunge

Rear Delt Row

 

 

Final Word

So there you have it. 

First and foremost, I know circumstances are abnormal, but remember something is always better than nothing. 

If your car ran out of gas, and you only had $7, you wouldn’t NOT put the $7 in and leave your car on the side of the road for someone else to take.

You would put in $7 and get the hell home. 

This is no different, if you can’t do your normal routine, do SOMETHING.

Truthfully, if you implement these strategies above, there is no reason it can’t be BETTER than what you may even normally do. 

I mentioned my coaching program The Clubhouse earlier, every month I give my clients new workouts, new nutrition guidelines, new intensification techniques like the ones above.

We also have a bad ass, supportive private group that we communicate in. Support and accountability are the glue that keeps fitness goals together, and a good community like that is hard to come by.

We certainly have that in The Clubhouse. If you want to learn more about The Clubhouse, feel free to visit erfclubhouse.com to dive in.

Or reach out to me via email @ coacheric@erfclubhouse.com . 

Would love to hear from you, and help out if I can. 

Happy Quarantining -E. 

A Proven Way To Increase Consistency With Your Diet & Exercise

 

Do you struggle consistently sticking with something?

Know what you SHOULD be doing, but struggle to consistently do it time and time again?

The diet you keep trying to follow that you have to keep “getting back on track”.

Or the exercise routine you swore this time you were going to stick to, but somehow you’ve told yourself that 6x in the past 2 weeks..

Through coaching thousands of people, I believe consistency to be the #1 MOST important thing when it comes to fitness.

If you cannot do something over and over, there is no chance you will be able to see results.

Whether the results you want is fat loss, muscle building, or just living a healthier life. If you cannot find a way to come up with the tools to do what you are supposed to do, over and over and over again, there will be no progress occurring.

In this article I am going to label out one of the most effective, most responded to ways to create consistency I use with my online coaching clients.

At the end of the day, all of this comes down to psychology. Most people KNOW what to do, eat healthier, exercise regularly, etc.

But, why do so many people struggle for the life of them to do it?

We are going to cover that in this article, and one simple, NOT EASY, but simple strategy you can take with you today to start seeing change.

Let’s open up that brain of yours.

Before I Get Any Farther

 

I have to say this.

If you study psychology, there is something called the Trans Theoretical Model Of Behavior Change (pictured above).

This simply states there are different stages to making a change. Through working with people, as hard as this is for me to accept, some people are simply not ready to make a change to their behavior.

They could say they are, they could swear up and down they want to, but in reality in their head, they are not ready to.

And, even though this is sounding like a bad thing, it really is not. This doesn’t mean you NEVER will be ready to make a change, but you have to be mentally ready first.

A lot of the times, the people that are ready to make a change say things like “ I’m tired of yo yo dieting. I can’t do it anymore”. “ I’m sick of living like this, I need to make a change”.

Point being, as Jordan Syatt discusses in my podcast I did with him , there normally is some sort of fear involved with truly making a behavior change.

The fear of their health. The fear of them not looking the way they want infant of their colleagues. The fear of losing a spouse.

Whatever that fear is, it is not a BAD thing, because it leads them to change.

I urge you to ask yourself if you are truly ready to make a change or not.

I can give you all the tips and tactics in the world, but unless we figure out if you are truly ready, they won’t do anything for you.

Only you will be able to be honest with yourself on that.

Alright, having fun class? Let’s continue to the next section.

Why Do So Many People Struggle With Consistency?

This is the million dollar question.

As I was saying earlier, people KNOW what to do. You probably know you shouldn’t be having 4 glasses of wine a night, with the extra side of bread, oh and on top of the workout you skipped today..

But, really, WHY do SO MANY PEOPLE do this?

Why is our obesity rate higher than it has ever been in the history of the United States?

Why are so many people on blood pressure medication, or better yet buying fat burners from GNC… Don’t get me started.

The answer is actually quite simple when you boil it down.

People choose the emotional in the moment response vs the logical outside of the moment response.

Think about it.

You just got off from a long day of work.

You woke up at 5am, got to work by 7am.

Have the normal stress associated from work.

You get off, sit in traffic for an hour.

You get home, and you’re tired.

You don’t want to go back out and workout.

So, THAT emotion in THAT moment, dictates your actions. So, you say F the gym, I’ll do it tomorrow.

That then leads into dinner.

You are tired, and now hungry because you just worked all day, didn’t really plan your food out, sat in traffic, and get home starving.

So you are now tired, and hungry. This emotion spills over into dinner. You have 2 or 3 servings of the dinner, when you really know one would probably be good enough.

Finally, going into the night. You are now stuffed from dinner, so you are a bit lazy / sleepy. You probably don’t feel the best about yourself because you just stuffed your face, and skipped your workout.

You are stressed from work and your kids.

All of this combined, the feelings in that moment, may lead you to go to the cabinet and get the wine bottle and have a few glasses.

This cycle repeats itself 1, 3, 5x a week.

All of this stemming from, you choosing the emotional in the moment response to a situation vs the logical out of the moment response.

Let’s break it down.

You got home and you were tired. In that moment, all you could think about was being tired. You didn’t wanna go workout, you didn’t want to cook dinner and plan your food out.

You just wanted to lay there and eat whatever the F you wanted.

Keep this scenario in mind.

Let me give you another.

Your kid wakes you up at 2, 4, and finally 6am.

You are now dragging a** to get into your regular routine.

You normally take 10-15 minutes to cook breakfast, but all you can think is how damn tired you are, so you say screw it and skip.

Running late as it is, you don’t pack and bring your normal lunch or gym clothes either. You say you will get something around work, and come back home and grab clothes later.

Lunch time comes, you are STARVING because you skipped breakfast. Now all you can think about in that moment is how tired AND starving you are.

This leads you to go get lunch and probably eat enough for the size of a small village.

You don’t feel the best from the big lunch and being tired, so you just go home instead of going straight to the gym like you normally do.

You see? This scenario too, all you thought about was the emotional response in the moment of being tired and hungry.

Learning how to take yourself out of the moment you are in..

This is where the unlock can come.

“Live In The Moment”.. Yeaa

All you ever really hear is how you life is too short, you need to live in the moment.

You need to enjoy every moment as it comes.

Well, I am here to offer my two cents on that for what it is worth.

Yes, every moment counts, and shouldn’t be taken for granted..

But, when it comes to building consistency and doing what you know is right, living in the moment should be the last thing on your mind.

I am not the biggest religious guy, and I am not sure if you are or not.

But one thing I do know is what a lot of the talk about is how you cannot give in every single temptation that comes your way.

If you gave into every single temptation out there, I guarantee there would be a lot more crime, and a lot more chaos in this world.

Guys, fitness is no different.

Let’s dissect here.

In both examples above, you gave into the emotional in the moment response of being tired, hungry, stressed, etc. Which led your decision making being based off of that emotional response.

Then, that decision led you then feeling even worse about yourself.

You gave into the emotional temptation, you now feel bad about it. This creates bad self efficacy, and leads you to believe you can’t do something, or can’t stick to something.

Which then creates this cycle in perpetuity of you being inconsistent.

Do you want to know the way to work through this?

Take yourself out of the moment, give yourself 5 minutes to think about WHAT DECISION IS GOING TO MAKE YOU THE MOST PROUD 4, 8, 24 hours from that moment.

That, is truly where the magic comes into play.

Keeping with the scenarios above.

If when you got home from work, even though you were tired and hungry, if you took yourself OUT of the moment, and thought about what decision was going to make you the most proud looking back on that moment..

I bet it would go something like, still going to the gym even though you were tired, and still taking the extra 5 10 20 minutes to cook a healthy dinner, and stick to your nutrition goals.

That would make you a lot more proud than saying F it, laying on the couch, over indulging on dinner, and flushing it down with wine.

But when the emotion / temptation pop up, people don’t think about that, they can only see what it is front of them, being the feeling of tired, hungry, stressed, etc.

That is all that is on your mind and all you are thinking about.

I implore you, and I mean implore you, to take yourself out of the moment, and think about what decision you make will make you the most proud.

Is this easy? Hell no.

This is hard. This takes a lot of mental effort. This takes a lot of practice. It won’t happen over night. It won’t happen after a week.

It is hard to look past the initial temptation of feeling stressed and looking at what decision is going to make you the most proud 4 hours from right now when you are feeling stressed.

If it were that easy, we wouldn’t have the highest obesity rate we ever had, and people wouldn’t be on such crazy amounts of medications at such a young age.

It is going to take a lot of effort from you. I am telling you this not to sell you on something, or to make you sign up for coaching with me, none of that. If I was this would be an awful way to do that.

I am telling you because I want to set you up for success. I want to give you the real environment you will be heading into, so you know what to expect.

So when you go to try it, and realize it is a bit hard, it is normal.

But just like riding a bike, or learning to become the skill of whatever your job is, the more you do it the better you get.

You will build the skill of it. You will build the confidence to know no matter what is thrown your way, you will be able to remain consistent.

Newsflash, yes this is how you see progress in your fitness journey… But this is how you actually change your life.

When you can get in control of every emotion you have, and remove yourself from that emotion to then make decisions based on what you know is right, that is your unlock.

It is not to say having the emotion is a BAD thing, we are all human, we have emotions.

Having the emotion is okay, but the more you can detach yourself from that emotion, and NOT let it impact your decision making, that is how you change your consistency issue.

Final Thoughts

Know this may have been a lot to think about.

I hope I was able to paint good enough pictures for you to follow along, and realize what is going on.

I work with a lot of people. This one simple, not easy, but simple mental shift of truly thinking about what decision is going to make you the most proud OUTSIDE of the current moment you are in, literally has changed peoples lives.

Not just their fitness journey, but their entire life in general. Marriages, relationships, work settings, parenting, you name it.

I am not here saying I am a psychologist, but I have just seen this one mental shift make seismic differences.

Guys I implore you to try this. And try it for real.

Do it today. There is going to be something that happens to you today that makes you want to say F this I don’t wanna track my calories, or I don’t want to get this workout in.

Give yourself 5 minutes to detach yourself from that particular moment, and think about what is going to make you the most proud when you lay your head on your pillow at night.

I promise you the more you can center your thoughts around THAT, the more change will come into your life.

Let me know if you give it a try, and how it works out for you.

Again it will not be easy, but I promise you with all of my heart, it works.

I wouldn’t be writing this 2300 word article if it didn’t, trust me.

Reach out to me at coacheric@ericrobertsfitness.com if you end up trying it. Let me know how it goes, would love to hear it.

If you are interested in coaching with me, and allowing me to guide you through this process and be your support system, head to the link HERE to fill the form out to see if we are a good fit.

Really look forward to hearing from you after this one. Give it a full week of trying. What is a full week to change the rest of your life?

-E.

How To Perform A Proper Push Up + How To Get Your FIRST Push UP!

 

 

 

From 6th grade PE class, to Navy Seals Training, the push up is known as a true test of your full body strength.

Yet, many people STRUGGLE with completing ONE push up, let alone multiple in a row.

In reality, this exercise is one that is butchered across gyms, group x classes, and even other coaches.

Yet, when done properly, can truly build your entire body quite unlike any other.

The purpose of this article is going to not only teach HOW to do one correctly, but also what you can do to make a path to achieve your first push up.

How To CORRECTLY Perform A Push Up

First let’s start by labeling out the steps that you need to follow to ensure a proper push up.

Let me start by saying, if you can’t do a push up on the floor yet, THAT IS OKAY.

Still follow along with my checklist here. You will see why later in the article.

Push Up Form Check List

STEP 1: Assume a plank position. Get your hands beneath your shoulders. This is important to have a proper leverage point, and protect your shoulder health long term.

STEP 2: Keep your core braced. If I was going to punch you in the stomach as hard as I could, that is how I want your core braced. Another great cue I give my online coaching clients is to think about popping a button on your pants. You know, the opposite of what you do at the beach.

STEP 3: Squeeze your butt. Yep, for a push up, squeeze your butt. This keeps your spine / pelvis in a neutral alignment, and helps with core bracing. Think about pinching a penny between your cheeks.

STEP 4: Keep your feet close. Again, this helps with pelvis alignment / leverage.

STEP 5: Think forward, THEN down into your push up. (Yep, we are finally getting into the actual push up, I know, a lot before we even get started. It is necessary to ensure proper form.) This step, is crucial, because a push up is NOT just straight up and down.. It is a bit forward, THEN you descend down.

STEP 6: Squeeze your shoulder blades on the way down. Think about pinching a pencil between your shoulders on the way down, or think about rowing / pulling yourself into the ground.

Step 7: Push off the ground as hard as you can as you ascend back up, maintaining a straight line throughout.

Again, if you cannot perform a push up on the ground yet, that is fine. Remember this check list as we get later in the article.

Most Common Mistakes

Mistake 1 – Hands / Elbows Too Wide

This is probably the MOST common mistake I see with push ups.

Somewhere along the line, instructors of group x classes across commercial gyms were told to tell people to “ Make a field goal post !” with their elbows when they do a push up.

No wonder why the shoulder injury is the most common one in America.

Please, for the love of all things strength training, DO NOT PUT YOUR ELBOWS OUT WIDE WHEN YOU DO A PUSH UP.

Yes, keeping your elbows out wide makes the push up easier, it is less distance you have to travel.

BUT, you are 100% going to injure your shoulder, it is only a matter of time if you haven’t already.

Plus, you aren’t working any real muscle at that point, you’re just jamming your shoulder joint.

The Fix?

Like we mentioned above, get your hands right under your shoulders.

This will automatically put your elbows / hands in a better position.

Your elbows should be traveling either A. Right by your side or B. At around a 45 degree angle.

You having your elbows out wide as you push up is doing *literally* nothing productive.

The next correction you can make is again, thinking FORWARD FIRST, and then down.

People tend to flare their elbows out because they are not getting their chest over their hands.

They are trying to go straight down. Your head should be traveling forward as you descend down into your push up.

If you look at the starting position / finishing position above, you will see my head travels a bit forward as I go down.

You will also see my wrists and my elbows in line with one another.

This will also prevent you from flaring your elbows out excessively, leading to wrist, elbow, and shoulder pain.

Mistake 2 – Not Staying In One Straight Line

This is by far the next most common mistake I see.

People are losing their rigidity of their core / torso throughout the movement.

Why does this happen? People usually A. Are not strong enough to maintain form while doing a push up or B. Just don’t know that their core needs to remain working the entire time.

If you compare the two pictures above, you can clearly see in the top picture I am sagging my hips down, arching my chest up, not maintaining one straight line in my body.

Where as the bottom picture, my butt is squeezed, abs are tight, shoulders are pulled back, all leading to one straight line throughout the whole movement.

The Fix?

To fix this, make sure you go through the checklist we laid out above.

Ensure before you even descend down into your push up, your abs are braced. Your butt is squeezed, you are pulling yourself into the ground as you descend down.

Maintaining one neutral spine throughout the whole movement is paramount because if you don’t, injury will occur somewhere along the kinetic chain.

How To Achieve Your First Push Up

So, knowing how to do a push up is cool and all but.. You still need the strength to actually do one.

This is where a simple modification can come in.

Remember earlier I said if you can’t do a push up on the ground yet to still pay attention to the form check list / correction check list? You are about to realize why.

Yes, you need the strength to be able to complete a push up from the ground.

My favorite way of getting this strength is by doing the same exact form as a push up, but putting your hands on an elevated surface.

Take your bed for example.

You can go through all the checklist items, keep yourself in a straight line, keep your core braced, etc.

If you can do perfect push ups on your couch which is say 20 inches off the ground, do them. Push ups are push ups no matter the height.

 

Why Elevated Surface Instead Of On Your Knees?

Well, so glad you asked!

Personally, I would pick an elevated surface because you can still teach your body the push up form.

You can still learn to keep your core tight, to squeeze your shoulder blades on the way down, to squeeze your butt, etc.

You will be gaining the core strength / body awareness to keep your body in one straight line.

SO, when you do get strong enough to do them from the floor, you will not have to relearn this all over again.

You can just take everything you have been doing, and apply it to pushing up from the floor.

When you drop to your knees, it makes it that much harder to maintain a straight line with your body.

It makes it so you may have to relearn things over again as you progress to the push up on your toes.

To avoid that, I love taking clients through elevated push up progressions.

Speaking of… More on how to get your first push up below.

Progression To On The Floor Pushups

So okay, now that we know we are going to do them from an elevated surface, how do we ensure that we GET to the floor?

Here is what I would do, and I would keep it very simple.

I woulds start by finding a height you can do a set of 10 perfect reps with.

So if that is your couch, your bed, your table, whatever it ends up being, make sure you can do 1 set of 10 with PERFECT form.

Touching your chest to the surface, keeping in a straight line, the whole 9.

Then, once you can do that, keep adding sets until you can do 4×10 with perfect form on that specific elevated surface.

Once you can do that, find a lower surface. Maybe go from your bed to your couch.

And again, make sure you can do 4×10 reps from your cough height.

Once you can do that, maybe find a coffee table that is a bit lower.

Once more, make sure you can complete 4×10 on that coffee table height.

After this, you can then progress to the ground and do your push ups from the ground!

That’s A Wrap

There you have it. You should now be equipped with everything you need to not only complete your first push up, but complete it correctly.

I strongly urge you to watch the short YouTube video I added along with this article if you want to visually see what I mean when I talk about these cues.

Just from coaching hundreds of people, I know a lot of you are visual learners, so the YouTube video attached I think can be very helpful.

If you want help with your push up form, or anything related to building muscle and losing fat, feel free to email me at coacheric@ericrobertsfitness.com .

Or fill out this form HERE to see if I can help you out.

Thanks for reading, and happy push up-ing? If that is a word?

-E.

What Is The BEST Workout Plan To Build Muscle?

You have this body in your head that you want to achieve.

It may be something along the lines of toned shoulders, lean arms, and definition in your legs.

Do you have to lose fat to get there? Yes, BUT, if you don’t dive into muscle BUILDING to some extent, you will never actually BUILD that body.

Because what most people fail to remember is exercise is meant to BUILD your body up, as opposed to tear your body down. Let your diet take care of the fat loss.

Or maybe you have lost some fat, you look and feel good, but you want to take that next step in your fitness journey to start to carve the body you really want.

Wherever you are at in your journey, I can assure you, muscle building should be apart of it.

THIS DOES NOT MEAN YOU ARE GOING TO GET HUGE IN 3 MONTHS.

Trust me, I WISH that was the case. I would have been there a longggg time ago.

This does mean though you will be set up on the right path to achieve that body you desire.

Through this two part guide you will learn the pyramids of importance when it comes to muscle building, this article will be training in particular.

I must first say, this article is greatly influenced by the incredibly smart Eric Helms. His muscle and strength pyramids created a while ago are the back bone to SO MANY coaches philosophies and recommendations today.

That being said, it has his influence and his studies backing a lot of it, but I put my own spin on it. I used it to come up with this hierarchy system of importance to give you a complete guide when it comes to how to train for muscle growth.

I hope you enjoy. If you have read my previous articles, I will refer to that pen and paper once again.

This one is going to provide you some exact numbers and recommendations you can write down and take with you to implement into your plan today.

By the end, you should feel fully confident to take this information and put it into action.

Let’s build some muscle.

Muscle Building Pyramid

To help categorize this article, I will be using this pyramid above in reference the rest of the time.

This was created to not only help categorize things, but give you a big picture look at what REALLY matters when it comes to muscle building.

This should give you a good direction of what to focus on and how much. For example, if you are struggling on how much rest you should be getting in between sets, but your intensity is not even there.. it won’t matter.

Without further ado, let’s dive into the base of the pyramid, Adherence.

Adherence

This is by far the most important pice of this puzzle, and I would be doing you a disservice if I did not label it so.

The hard truth is, I can give you the PERFECT training program, with the PERFECT amount of reps and sets, the BEST exercises, and the MOST OPTIMAL workout schedule..

But the reality is, if you either A. Can’t stick to it or B. Thoroughly hate doing it, you aren’t going to follow it.

And no matter how “great” the plan is in theory, if you cannot stick to it for a long period of time, you will NOT see results.

Especially talking about muscle building, it takes time to build muscle (unless you are a beginner, which we will cover).

When talking about adherence, there are a few factors to look at. Let’s briefly chat over them now.

Schedule / Time Frame

This is why everyones own individuality is truly paramount.

If you try to create a training program that has you working out at 6 am 5x a week because that is what is going to give you the “best” results, but you have a 7 month old at home… That might not be the “best” program.

Likewise, if you are planning for 2 hour workouts, but on gods green earth if you get an hour to workout you think you hit the lottery, again, it might not be best plan.

This is simply because you will not adhere to it. You won’t be able to consistently train this way. You will not be able to realistically work it into your schedule.

There is one thing to make sacrifices, and cut out excuses when it comes to getting time in to exercise.

Trust me, I believe the #1 worst excuse for not exercising is time. That being said, if you are making unrealistic expectations for yourself and your schedule, none of the rest of this will matter, because you won’t be able to do it.

Enjoyable

I understand some of you reading this may be either new to the muscle building world, or come from a world where cardio is king.

So in that aspect, I will say you have to just give it a try. Go into it with an open mind. Go into it with focusing on building yourself up, getting stronger, building a new body for yourself. Be okay with trying different things.

That being said, even if this is a new world for you, there are a million ways to tailor it towards your enjoyment.

If for example you do like feeling you are “working hard”, maybe you do more reps and sets than another person. This will give you a more metabolic feel to it, while still achieving the muscle building goal at hand.

Another example would be if you really enjoy doing a full body workout instead of one or two muscle groups at a time, then you program your training around that.

There are infinite ways to achieve this enjoyable factor. The point is, try things, find what works for you, try more things (because you never know what you may like), and roll with it.

Flexible

If you are reading this, you probably have 1839393^12 other things to do right now. Like that math there?

That being said, your plan must have flexibility taken into consideration.

If you were meant to workout on Monday, but your kid got sick and now you have to workout on Wednesday, your plan should account for that.

Or if you have a crazy busy day at work and have to go for a 45 minute workout instead of a 90 minute, this should be worked into. it.

This is all because again, at the end of the day, consistency and adherence reign supreme.

I would much rather you follow a B- plan with 80% consistency, than follow an A++ plan with 55% consistency.

Undoubtedly, you will see better results form the B- plan followed with 80% consistency.

Consistency > Everything.

Intensity

Before I continue on with this, I must define with I actually mean by intensity.

I am not defining intensity by how out of breath you are, how much you sweat, or how short your rest periods are.

Head HERE to view my thoughts on that.

What I mean by intensity is, how hard are you pushing yourself. What is your effort you are putting forth during a given set.

If it calls for a set of 10 reps, is that a set of 10 where you were texting during it, talking, thinking about what your girlfriend is doing, and probably could’ve actually done 10 more?

Or is that a set where those reps of 8 9 10 were GRINDERS. They were reps you really had to work for, mentally and physically. You really had to push your body and mind to get those last 2-4 reps.

THAT is what I mean by intensity, and if you want to build muscle, you better believe the ladder of those two scenarios is what is mandatory.

The reason I put this above how many actual set and reps you use is because without this intensity component, the sets and reps you do won’t actually matter.

In this day and age, people think more is better. That is not always the case, especially when it comes to muscle building.

You can increase volume, aka sets and reps, but never increase intensity. You can do more “work”, but not get any better results, because your work is not yielding results.

I would much rather you do 2 sets instead of 4 if that means you are going to give those two sets your max mental and physical effort.

It may look like 2 set is “less work”, but I promise, try it one time, and you tell me which requires more effort and “work” from you.

I go in depth about this on my podcast “Muscle building is a poor mans game”, link HERE for that.

Measuring Intensity

Okay so, here is the thing, I am telling you to put forth more effort but, how can you really measure that?

Yes put forth more effort Eric but, that is kind of up for debate, is there something I can use that leads me to keep track of this better?

So glad you asked.

There is something called the RPE scale.

As you can see above, this is called the rate of perceived exertion scale. This can be a great guideline to allow you to rate your level of activity by a tangible measure.

If you can hold a conversation while doing a set.. sorry honey, you are not really working that hard.

To take this a step farther, and talk about actual reps and sets, another added to this is the reps in reserve.

Now, we can start to apply this theory to your sets.

If you really have 4-6 reps left… again, sorry darling, you are not working that hard. Your intensity is not that high, certainly not high enough to build muscle.

Whereas if you are stopping maybe one rep short of true failure, okay, you are getting up there in your scale of intensity.

I love these two things when it comes to gauging how much intensity and effort you are truly using.

The one thing I will say is, if you are a beginner, you should not be taking all sets to max failure.

Your #1 concern is going to be what we talk about here soon, and that is form and technique. Beginners will build muscle just through osmosis.

If you go from lifting no weights, to lifting any sort of weights, that is a new stress your body has to adapt to. From that, you will gain muscle and get stronger.

Once you get past that stage, you will need to really use these tools to help you.

And, it will take time. It is going to take time to know what a TRUE RPE of 9 looks like. Right now you are probably thinking you are at a 9 or 10, but you are at a 6 or 7.

It is going to take you realizing there is more in the tank, you having to push harder, get uncomfortable, and ramping up intensity to see results.

Okay, So Where Should Your RPE Be?

Since we just covered the RPE Scale, we can now talk about where you should be for muscle building purposes.

Truthfully, if the majority of your sets are not in the 8-10 range, you are not going to build much muscle.

This means the majority of your time should be spent in the gym should be time spent pushing yourself to these higher intensity levels.

The more you can figure out how to do this, the more muscle you will be able to build.

Technique

We’ve all seen it. The person in the gym who looks like a humpback whale as they deadlift.

Or the person who looks like they are literally humping the air getting ready for their spouse that night as they do a bicep curl.

I don’t have the time to go over form and technique for every single exercise you are going to do, that is not what this section is for.

This section though is for explaining the importance of technique is for building muscle.

“You Won’t Get Hurt!”.. Yea..

So, YES, the better form you keep, the less likely you are to get hurt.

Yet as a coach, I have seen that sometimes is not enough to get people to realize how important form really is.

So, I will throw this at you for some food for thought.

If you are doing a bicep curl, you are wanting to get better biceps, right?

But, if you are swinging the weight aggressively up and down, using your hips to swing it, your shoulders to finish the movement up top…. Are you actually working your biceps?

No. You are using momentum, and other body parts to assist in the movement.

This then means from that 15 lbs you are doing a “bicep curl” with, maybe 4 lbs gets put to your biceps?

And 4lbs to your hips, 3lbs to your shoulders, and so on.

So, you set out wanting to work your bicep to get it more defined, but ended up using everything but your bicep.

So you won’t actually see any change in your bicep because you aren’t actually using the right form to use the right muscle.

This is what I tell all of my online coaching clients, and I have seen amazing response from it. Think about using the right form and technique to get better results.

Through that, you will not only stay injury free, but actually get better results in the process. Remember what we said earlier, more is always not better.

Walking The Tight Rope

Okay so now, I have to contradict myself.

I just told you that form and technique is paramount, which it is. Though that does not mean you then don’t push intensity and don’t push the weight so you can keep your intensity high.

From what we just learned, intensity is one of the most important part of muscle building.

So it doesn’t mean go get 5 lb dumbbells and do superrrrrr slowww and concentrated bicep curls.

No, that won’t yield results either.

You have to walk that fine line of doing high load (weight) and keeping *damn near* perfect form.

Again, this will only happen through trial and error. Try things, see what works, keep a record of it, and follow your path to results.

Volume / Frequency

Volume and Frequency would be the next tier of the pyramid. Let’s define what these words mean in terms of training.

Volume is the total amount of work done in a set. It can also be quantified as “volume load” (sets x reps x load), total number of reps (sets x reps), or simply just the number of sets.

There is no one “right” way to think about it, they all have their pros and cons.

But, for the reason we are about to dive into below, we will be using (sets x reps x sets).

Why Volume Is Secondary To Intensity?

Intensity is what we touched on earlier, and I spoke about why it is superior to volume.

I want to now give you an actual math example of why this can be the case.

Let’s say you are doing 4 x 10 @ 100lbs for your bench press.

That would be (4 x 10 x 100) = 4,000 lbs total.

Without changing any sets or reps, you can increase the volume AND intensity, by lifting 5 lbs more.

This then would be ( 4 x 10 x 105) = 4200 lbs total.

So, without changing any reps or sets, your volume DID actually increase, but through higher intensity, from a higher load.

No extra sets, or reps, or time in the gym. Just making the time you do have in the gym work better for you through higher intensity.

Ok ok back to volume recommendations.

Volume Recommendations

Truly there could be a different recommendation for every individual.

But for the sake of this article, I will give you some general guidelines to follow.

10-20 sets per muscle group / movement per week.

If you don’t know what muscle groups or movements I am referring to, head HERE to read my article on program design.

This means for every muscle group and or movement pattern you should aim to get a total of 10-20 sets per week.

So how can you do this? This is where frequency comes into play as a tool.

Frequency

This refers to how many days a week you are training these muscles / movement patterns.

As far as frequency goes, it really is a tool that is used to get your total volume in for the week.

If you need to get 10 sets of legs in, you can do 4 one day, 2 the next, and 2 the next.

Or you can do 5 sets one day, 5 sets the next day.

It honestly depends on your split and how you choose to design your training program. Again, highly suggest you go read my article on program design if you want extra help with this.

The other cool thing that frequency can be used for as a tool is skill acquisition.

Piggybacking off our previous section, technique, properly learning how to squat or deadlift takes time.

It takes practice over and over and over. An mlb pitcher doesn’t pitch once a week, they pitch multiple times throughout the week to get better at it.

This is no different. If you want to use frequency as an opportunity to learn how to squat, or feel your lats when you do a row, this is where you can program in such a way to do that.

Exercise Selection

In todays day and age where instagram runs the world, and the internet is full of people trying to one up each other with their next coolest exercise, we have gotten lost.

Everyone is doing bosu ball squats, weird mixes of lunges and bicep curl, and thinking they HAVE to do something new every time because “muscle confusion, bro!”.

Just stop. Stop with the madness.

Muscle confusion is not a real thing. You should not be on a bosu ball doing a front raise or a squat. Get your ass off the bosu ball, go grab a barbell or dumbbell, and work on mastering the basic fundamental movement pattern of a regular ol squat.

I can’t tell you how many people significantly hinder their chances of making any real muscle building progress, and significantly raise their chances of injury, with this notion you need to be doing crazy exercises.

It is important to keep consistency throughout your training. If you can keep the same movement for 4, 6, 8 weeks, you can actually track what you are doing on it.

You can track if you are getting stronger, or if you are doing more reps, you can track if your form is getting better.

You can actually have a training program that is leading you to create a stress your body has to adapt to to then see results.

As opposed to just going into the gym and exercising.

I will go over what I believe to be a good time frame to switch exercises up, but after I talk about picking exercises, for YOU.

Selecting Exercises For YOU

This is where individuality becomes SO IMPORTANT.

I am 6’4. I have long legs, and I have previous back and hip issues.

I have trouble loading up a barbell and barbell back squatting. And that is 100000% okay.

No where in this article have I said you need to do only certain exercises to build muscle, rather I talked principles.

Intensity, sets, reps, etc.

SO, I do not spend a lot of time barbell back squatting.

It doesn’t fit my persona. It doesn’t allow me to actually work my legs, or stay healthy.

Instead I opt for a hack squat, or a front squat, or a single leg split squat.

If you consistently get hurt with a movement, or don’t feel it how you should, there is no reason to continue to keep banging your head against a wall.

Switch it out for something that is within the same movement pattern, which allows you to use a higher intensity and better technique.

As we know from the pyramid, THAT matters so much more than the exact exercise you use.

Recommendations For Exercise Variance

For me what I do with my online coaching clients, below has worked incredibly well.

For your main compound movements, I would keep those in for at least 4 weeks, if not 8-12 weeks at a time before you switch them out.

This allows you to progressively get stronger at them, perfect the form, add weight, etc.

This will give you the best return on your time in the gym.

For isolation / accessory exercises, this is where you can play around a bit more.

Things like bicep curls, shoulder raises, hamstring curls, you can change these a bit more often.

Usually anywhere from 3-4 weeks can work, and if you are more towards the advanced side, week to week may be an option as well.

I totally understand changing the exercise can lead to better enjoyment and adherence, BUT, you have to take into consideration the other factors of this pyramid.

If you can’t increase your intensity with an exercise, can’t get stronger, can’t do it long enough to learn it… You won’t build muscle.

There is a lot to be said for consistency, keeping things simple, mastering the basics, and doing that week after week after week.

Rest Periods

Not sure the point of that picture, but it’s awesome.

Okay so we get to the top of the pyramid, rest periods.

I touched on this earlier, I had a link to a YouTube video I did on it, but I will say it again.

You should not be taking 10 or 20 seconds breaks when focusing on muscle building.

If you are pushing your intensity, and hitting a 9 or 10 on your RPE Scale, your muscles need time to recover.

And if you are thinking you are hitting a 9 or 10 on your RPE Scale through 20 seconds rest, you are not.

YOU ARE NOT WORKING HARDER BECAUSE YOU ARE CUTTING YOUR REST PERIODS.

Sorry. Just the truth.

It is actually probably leading you to work LESS hard because you can’t fully mentally and physically recover, leading your intensity to be less, leading to you not being able to build muscle.

So with that being said, I will provide some guidelines for rest periods below.

Rest Period Guidelines

For compound lifts, like your squat, bench, deadlift, overhead press, your rest time should be around 2 minutes.

For your isolation / accessory exercises, like lunges, single leg deadlifts, bicep curls, these can be around the 1 minute mark.

But That’s Tooooo Longgggg

I know, for some of you, that is scary.

Here is my compromise to that, add a superset into your workout.

This can be done by doing two exercises back to back with no rest, and THEN taking a break after the exercises are completed.

These also usually tend to be antagonist muscles, like chest and back.

An example of this is below.

1a. Push Up

1b. Pull Up

Rest : 75 seconds after.

This can allow you to get some higher heart rate work in, push the envelope a bit more, but not compromise your intensity, and still leave you time to recover for the next set.

Final Word

So, there you have it.

Whew, that was a ton.

I hope that pen and paper was rolling section by section.

Muscle building is NOT about one specific thing. It is not attributed to one source of results.

Rather it is comprised from multiple different variables and guidelines to operate by.

Adherence is the most important. That is individual to you.

Intensity is what drives muscle growth. Learning how to truly achieve this is a skill which takes time and effort.

Form / Technique is a principle that is based around actually making your time in the gym effective.

Volume can be used as a general guideline to follow and make your own individual preferences off of. Frequency is used for a tool to compliment volume, intensity, and basically this whole chart.

Exercise selection is less about picking ONE certain exercise to do, or the contrary doing every exercise known to man. Pick ones that work, stick with them, change when need be, and see great results.

Rest periods are used to complement the pyramid as well. Use the rest to mentally and physically recover to keep all of the other things in mind.

I truly hope you got some value from this article. I know it was a bit long, so if you read this whole way, thank you.

I promise you if you read all this, and implement it, you will see amazing results.

If this is all a bit much for you, and you have questions, please feel free to leave them below or email me at coacheric@ericrobertsfitness.com .

Or, if you would like to apply for coaching with me instead so I can help you every step of the way, head HERE to fill the form out to see if we would be a good fit.

Thank you so much for your time, and Happy Muscle Building.

-E.

The BEST Diet Plan For Fat Loss, For YOU!

Have you been through different diet plans that cut out carbs, make you go through times of not eating, or make you howl at the moon? (Yea.. look it up, it’s real).

How about you’ve been scrolling the internet now for the past 15 minutes looking for the perfect diet plan for you to follow.

Maybe you WANT to eat carbs, or you WANT to eat breakfast, but all these plans say you can’t if you want to lose fat.

Maybe you are a shift worker or a busy parent, but you still want to find a way to find some sort of “routine” to follow.

First things first, without a plan, you aren’t going to have anything.

This whole fly by the seat of your pants probably has not worked thus far for you.. So you must come to terms with you having a plan.

BUT, the beauty is, it is YOUR plan.

There is no ONE meal plan I am going to give you through this article.

There is no ONE diet I am going to tell you to follow. Rather, I am going to give you the tools to come up your own plan.

A plan that takes into consideration YOUR life, and YOUR goals, and YOUR time responsibilities, etc.

To my knowledge, there is not a resource like this on the internet.

I hope it brings you value, I hope it gets you thinking, and I hope by the end you will have YOUR own plan you can take with you and put into action.

Because remember, failing to plan is just planning to fail (I SO hate using phrases like that.. but damn is it true).

Let’s jump in.

What Every Diet Plan MUST Have

So before we get into actual components of making the plan, we must understand the goal behind the plan.

What is the plan going to accomplish? Fat loss with YOU and YOUR schedule / preferences in mind yes..

But, HOW do we do that? How does ANY diet plan do that? No matter if it’s keto, fasting, plant based, carnivore, you name it.

They all MUST have one thing in common.. Because without this foundational piece, everything else won’t matter in the slightest.

THE ONE THING THAT YOUR PLAN MUST HAVE IS BEING IN A CALORIE DEFICIT.

This is something that is non negotiable. You can’t argue this. You can’t exercise enough to make this not true.

Your diet plan MUST have this. Without it, you will NOT lose any fat.

Now, HOW you do that, is a totally individualized story. Truthfully, that is the beautiful part about nutrition coaching to me, is finding that piece of the puzzle for every individual.

This is where we get into the actual components of making the diet plan.

So like the article on how to program design for strength training I wrote , get out that piece of paper and pen, and be ready to take notes.

No seriously, I would do that, because as you go through this article, section by section you will be coming up with a part of your plan.

By the end, you should have written down all components to then piece together to make a plan.

So happy note taking, let’s continue.

Calorie Amount

So, piggy backing off the last section, it is only right we start this section off by talking about calories.

Now that we know you HAVE to be in a calorie deficit to lose fat no matter what else your plan entails, this then brings the question, well how many calories should you eat?

This also entails it probably would be a good idea to start counting calories to find out how many calories you are eating, to ensure you are in a calorie deficit.

If you want a full guide on how to lose fat through calorie counting, click HERE for a full free guide on that.

In the short term, I will answer this question of how many calories you should be eating to lose fat.

This is truly dependent on the individual. Your diet history, your current weight, your lifestyle, are all things that can come into play when deciding this.

That being said, below is a GREAT place to start when it comes to how many calories to eat.

Goal Bodyweight x 12 = Daily Calorie Amount For Fat Loss

I have an entire video covering exactly how many calories you should eat on my YouTube channel, you can watch that HERE.

One thing I will say is, it is much less about getting the EXACT number.

You may find that you need 1400 to lose fat, or you can do 2000 and still lose fat.

Either way, the whole point here is, get a number, and just get started.

The more you look for the “perfect” plan, the more you will procrastinate, the more you won’t do anything at all, and the more you stay right where you are at.

Go read the guide on how to lose fat through calorie counting, get your calorie amount, start tracking, and start seeing results.

Also, one last thing, I promise.

Give it time. Please.

Don’t do it for 6 hours and say “Wow I haven’t lost 20 lbs yet this is stupid I’m doing keto”.

Give yourself 21, 30, 60 days. Be consistent over that time period.

I promise you it will work. Promise. I am putting all this information out here for free, I have no reason to lie to you.

Protein Amount

So now we Segway into our next section, protein.

By now you should have your calorie amount down, and if you read the calorie counting guide to fat loss, feel confident in counting calories.

The next most important factor in this equation is going to be protein.

Protein is SO huge for SO many different reasons.

One being that it is the most satiating macro nutrient, which just means it will fill you up the most.

Most people’s diet plans fail because they get hungry enough to eat for a small village. You can combat this, by keeping your protein intake high throughout the day.

Another reason is because protein has a high thermic effect of food. Again, that just means it can basically boost your metabolism by eating protein.

If you don’t believe me, or want to check out more on how to boost your metabolism, check out my guide on how to increase your metabolism HERE.

And no, there will be no fat burners or discount codes to buy something in there.

Lastly, it is the only macro nutrient that can build and preserve lean muscle mass.

This too can help your metabolism, but also help shape the way you look. That lean aesthetic physique you are searching for can be accomplished through being in a calorie deficit, and keeping protein intake high.

Okay so, we know protein is important now, but, again, how much do you want to have daily?

Glad you asked.

Protein Goal For The Day = .8-1.2g protein Per lb of bodyweight, or 35-45% of your total calories.

So, let’s use the example of the 150 lb individual again.

.8-1.2g of protein for a 150lb individual would be 120g-180g of protein daily.

Personally, I would just have yourself fall right in the middle. For every lb you weigh, have 1g of protein.

150lbs=150g of protein.

This is also what 40% of your total calories for the day would be, 150g.

And if you want to know how I got that, I just did .4×1500=600. There are 4 calories in every gram of protein, so I then did 600/4, which brought me to 150.

If you want the whole scoop on protein, I did a quick 12 minute podcast on it via my podcast, you can click HERE for the audio to that.

Carb & Fat Amount

Alright, to recap quickly, we so far have calories, and protein covered in your plan.

Those two things will be the most important.

If you have those two things in check, you will be golden.

To start, no carbs do not make you fat. Eating carbs after 6pm does not make you fat. Eating carbs when you wake up does not make you fat.

The only way you will gain body fat is if you are in a calorie surplus consistently over a long period of time. Notice the “consistently” and “long period of time”.

You don’t have to do a low carb diet to lose fat. If that is what you prefer, cool, go for it.

If you don’t, and you are like the guy in the picture above, as long as your calories are in check, you will be just fine eating carbs.

Though I have heard people will tell you eating fat makes you fat too.

Hell if you look far enough on the internet, people will say carbs make you fat, fat makes you fat, protein makes you fat, so just don’t eat at all.

But, then, starvation mode makes you fat, so, you’re f’ed.

It is actually funny and sad to see at the same time that people get so confused, which is one of the main reasons I am writing this article.

Moving along, fat is great for you and absolutely should be eaten.

It helps a ton with the process of your hormones, and keeping them at a healthy level.

It is also a very filling macro nutrient that keeps you full for a longer period of time than carbs will.

The truth is, these two macro nutrients, don’t spend a ton of time on them.

If you prefer a high fat, low carb diet, go for it. If you prefer a higher carb, lower fat diet, go for it.

Don’t major in the minor, if you would LIKE to know what exact numbers of what your carbs and fats should be, head HERE* to watch my YouTube video where I cover that.

If you have read this far, this is where I said you will take each section and create your own plan come into play. You should be able to create your own numbers from your own body weight from this.

BUT WAIT…. Numbers are cool and awesome, now how do you apply these numbers to your actual life?

With your schedule, your work, your kids, etc.

Don’t worry, that is what the next few sections will cover. Keep reading, and keep that pen and paper close.

Meal Timing / Meal Frequency

So, this is where it starts to get good. This is where you start to put your own twist on things.

The information and numbers above is cool, but these sections are where you put things together, and actually apply those numbers to real life.

I will give you things to think about as far as making your own diet plan, and examples of things you could do with yours.

Meal timing and meal frequency can help play a role in keeping you in a calorie deficit.

They are similar, and can play a role with each other, but are not quite one in the same.

Meal timing refers to WHEN you eat, like breakfast, lunch, snacks, dinner.

Meal frequency refers to how many meals or snacks a day you eat. So 2, 3, 4, 5.

Keeping things very honest, it does not matter if you have 2 meals a day, or 6 meals a day.

It doesn’t matter if you eat breakfast or skip breakfast.

If you are total calories are in check and you are in a calorie deficit, this has been proved over and over in research, you will lose fat.

Anyone else telling you otherwise is just trying to sell you something to get your money. That is the bottom line.

BUT, both of these things can play a HUGE role in keeping you full, fighting off hunger, keeping energy levels high, amongst other things.

If you are not hungry, if you have good energy, if you feel good, chances are you are going to stick to your plan.

If you stick to your plan, you will see results. So using these 2 things to your advantage can make a huge difference.

Let’s stick with the 150 lb person trying to lose fat, with their calories and protein goals.

Now I will also make up a scenario in which say this person works full time, has kids events at night, and also makes it to the gym 3-4x a week.

This make believe person, and you, are busy! You have a job, responsibilities, an incredibly busy life.

That can make it difficult to get a plan for you to follow.. This is why we are here.

Meal timing / meal frequency can help play a role in keeping you in a calorie deficit.

Say you wake up at 6am to get ready for work. You get to work by 8am, you work all day until 4 pm, maybe go straight to the gym from there. You workout from 5-6 pm. After that, you have to go home cook dinner and get to your kids soccer practice from 7-8pm.

This is a jam packed day, and being a coach, I have seen this and MUCH more from my online coaching clients .

BUT, that doesn’t mean you just say “Well I am going to be super busy, it is going to be too hard, I might as well not even try”.

Like we said earlier, failing to plan is planning to fail.

This is where you put your calorie number and protein number to work for you, and actually start to make a plan for YOU so you can stick to it.

This is where if you know you get hungry before you leave work in the afternoon, you can plan a snack.

If you know your morning is SUPER busy, and you have no time to cook, you can have a protein shake.

This section is all about using your own life, to plan things out, in a way that is going to suite YOU best.

Sample Diet Plan

I want to create a sample day plan for this made up person above, to get you thinking about your own plan.

Just through coaching hundreds of people by now, I have seen 3 meals and 2 snacks works GREAT for a lot of people in terms of their hunger, energy, keeping a deficit, etc.

I will use that concept for this plan below.

Again, THIS MAY NOT WORK FOR YOU, YOU MAY WANT TO DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT, AND THAT IS 100% FINE.

You may not like this food or eating at this time, and that is okay. That is not the point of this example plan below. It is again, simply just getting your brain thinking about how you can structure your plan for your day.

The plan below is keeping two things in mind for that 150lb person, 1500 calories, and 150g of protein.

DIET PLAN FOR FAT LOSS

Meal 1 6am: 40g protein shake, 1cup unsweet vanilla almond milk, 1/2 tbsp olive oil dressing

Snack 9am: Greek yogurt, 1tbsp peanut butter, 1 apple

Meal 2 Noon: BAS (Big Ass Salad): 2 cups of salad (spinach, peppers, tomatoes, errythang), 1/2 tbsp of olive oil dressing, 5 oz chicken

Snack 3:30pm: 2 cheese sticks, rx bar

Meal 3 6:30pm: 5 oz turkey, 1 cup of rice, grilled veggies

So above, you are using meal timing / frequency to help shape your own plan.

You are using your calorie limit to guide food choices.

You are also using the protein goal to guide food choices.

It is much less about eating these exact foods at these exact times, but making a plan around your schedule, rather than your schedule around a plan.

Because at the end of the day, that is not sustainable, and just not going to work.

Let’s dissect the plan above so you can see my thought process a bit more for WHY I made these recommendations.

Again, I am here to educate you as much as I can, and hopefully get your brain thinking. If you can think through your own plan like this… You will be in a GREAT spot.

If your brain hurts already, and you might want me to help you with your plan, click HERE to fill out the form to see if me and you may be a good fit for coaching together.

Okay so meal 1, protein shake. I LOVE this for so many of clients, especially if they have a busy morning.

If you can’t cook food for time reasons, it takes about 47 seconds to make a protein shake. Take some unsweet vanilla almond milk (because it is bomb), take some protein, 1/2 tbsp of flax seed oil, and chug it on down.

It will give you protein and healthy fats to keep you full. This will make you not want to donuts or muffins or foods that tend to be higher in calories.

The snack is usually a bit later when you aren’t STARVING, but you could be a bit hungry. This can save you from getting starving, and over eating. Usually people are busy, so may not be able to eat a 3 course meal.

Perfect, greek yogurt and a piece of fruit. Both easy to travel with, high protein, and can hold you over.

Lunch, having one big ass salad a day, you saw it in the plan above, helps SO MUCH with fat loss.

It gives you a lot of food volume to fill your stomach up, with not a lot calories, to keep you in a calorie deficit. Throw some chicken on it to get your protein, and you are good to go.

It doesn’t have to be a boring lettuce and chicken salad either. Spice it up, put what you want in it… As long as it will fit your calories ;).

Second snack, same thing, easy, quick, and simple. Also provides you some carbs to fuel before your workout.

Lastly dinner, this can be prepped in advance, or made at the time, whatever your day depicts. But again, just some sort of protein, some veggies, throw some carbs in, and call it a day.

This is a GREAT thought out plan to keep you full so you don’t over eat. A great plan to ensure you are keeping your energy levels high. A great plan to work diet around your life, not the other way around.

You probably don’t have a chef or chauffeur doing things for you (If you do, you should definitely sign up for coaching with me), so things aren’t going to be “perfect”.

If you can some way find a way to be consistent, and make it work, I promise you, you will be in a great spot.

Final Thoughts

Alright so this meme is great, I laughed out loud reading it. Can you tell I like to mix actually having fun in life with dieting?

In all seriousness, I truly hoped this article helped you.

It was not a “oh, eat only this food to lose weight!”. Or “only eat at this time to see amazing results!”.

No, that is not what a “diet plan” is about.

A diet plan is about coming up with just that, a plan. A plan for YOU, and YOUR life.

Every person is an individual. With different responsibilities, different preferences, different lives for lack of a better term.

It is also about working to create a plan that works around your life, not working your life around a plan.

I referred to this a few times above, but this may be the most important concept from this article.

You trying to work your life around a plan, is not going to work long term, ever.

If you LOVE carbs, you doing keto is never going to work long term.

If you LOVE eating breakfast, intermittent fasting is never going to work long term.

Rather than trying to change your entire life to fit a diet plan, why not make the diet plan fit your life?

Because then you aren’t “dieting” anyway, you are just learning how to eat for your life.

I don’t think there is ONE plan out there you need to follow. That being said, there can be some guidelines if you will, mixed with some critical thinking on your own part, that can lead down a very good path.

It doesn’t have to be perfect. You may deviate here and there, or have something different than what was originally thought out.

THAT IS OK. The fact is that if you are taking the time to plan ahead, and put thought behind your decisions… I can almost guarantee that is a lot more that what you are currently doing, right?

To get a different result, you have to do something different. Make this article the place you start doing that, so you can stop wasting more time, and start seeing more results.

If you have a question about your plan that I may be able to help with, PLEASE feel free to drop a comment below, or email me at coacheric@ericrobertsfitness.com .

If you are like yeaaaahh maybe I better have a professional handle this for me, head HERE to fill out the form to see if we might be a good fit for coaching together.

In the meantime, thank you for reading, I hope this at least sparked a thought in your head, and I look forward to hearing from you.

Talk soon. -E.

How To Design Your Own Strength Training Program

 

Ever feel like you walk into the gym, and it is a jungle of machines, dumbbells, kettlebells.

All staring at you, and you have no idea what is the most optimal way to use all of these things to get you the results you want.

It doesn’t matter if your goal is to lose fat, build muscle, or get stronger.

You want to make sure the time you spend in the gym, is spent well.

You want to make sure what you are doing is actually going to get you closer to your goal.

It can be very overwhelming in many different ways.

Maybe you are a beginner and you have NO idea what to do.

Or maybe you have been working out a little here and there, but never really had any structure to your workouts. Never had a plan.

Today I am going to make sure, by the end of this article, you are confident in building your own strength training program.

You are going to be sure to have a structured plan you can take into the gym, put into action, and start seeing results.

Before I show you exactly how to do that, I must cover some initial “rules to train by” if you will.

I would get out a pen and paper (because I am old school), and take some notes.

This article will be filled with information. Let’s press on, shall we? (Get it, press, like bench press?.. Alright fine moving along).

Strength Training “Rules”

Now, are these rules ones you MUST follow EVERY TIME?

No, but they certainly are some very good guidelines I love to follow, and have my online coaching clients follow, when it comes to strength training.

Stick To The Basics

This is one I see butchered and drug through the mud So. Many. Times.

Especially in a world of instagram workouts, internet phenoms, and just the feeling that more is better.

There always has to be some crazy exercise. Like doing a triple axle backflip off a bosu ball into a pistol squat with a bicep curl..

But you don’t even know how to squat properly first!?

No no I won’t get started.

For real though, the basics are there for a reason. They have been around forever a reason.

They work. Plain and simple.

You don’t need a ton of different exercises. You don’t need to do difficult movements atop of unstable surfaces.

There is no place for doing exercises under conditions that are susceptible to any type of major injury or cause you to repeatedly break down form because you are so exhausted.

I know, that isn’t the sexiest thing to hear. I know the basics may seem boring at times, but please please trust me when I say, they are THE MOST IMPORTANT THING WHEN IT COMES TO WORKOUT PROGRAMMING.

Later in this article I will lay out exactly what I consider the basics, and how you can use them in your workouts.

You Don’t Need To Sweat To Have An Effective Workout

This one, again, is one I unfortunately see often times from not just general population, but trainers and coaches alike.

I am here to tell you, you don’t need to sweat or be out of breath, to have an effective workout.

Try this for me. Go outside right now and run down the street as fast as you can.

Or chase your dog or kid around the house a few times.

You’ll undoubtedly get sweaty, and be out of breath.

So, is that what you would classify as a good workout?

I would hope not.. and if you do, just go ahead and exit out of this page now because the rest won’t be down your alley.

Sweating and being out of breath has NOTHING to do with having an effective work out.

Can you sweat and have a good workout? Sure.

But I am 6’4 255 lbs male. I sweat peeling an orange.

I know ladies who are 4’10, completely kick ass in their workouts, and don’t sweat a drop.

Using someones sweat glands to determine the effectiveness of a workout is ludicrous.

Your workouts should be based around if you are getting stronger, doing more reps, getting better endurance.

And let me tell you something else, if you know a coach or trainer who’s SOLE purpose is to beat you down and make you sweat / be out of breath..

That is not a trainer, that is a monkey. Because a monkey can do that to you. Find a new coach.

Leave Your Ego At The Door

Listen, we all have somewhat of an ego.

And we don’t want to admit we are bad at something, or we don’t know how to do something.

If there is one thing I can tell you if you are looking to get into working out, or stay healthy, is please leave your ego at the door.

It is okay to admit you don’t know how to do something. It is okay to perfect form.

It is okay to seek out help from someone who does know how to do it, and learn from them.

If there was one thing I am glad I made the switch from in my early teens, it was taking the step back to understand the movements I was doing.

Learn how to squat. Learn how to deadlift or row. Lessen the weight a bit, and understand what was going on.

Not only did this eventually help my gainzz, but it also helped my injuries.

I encourage you to do the same, and if you want help, please feel free to reach out to me.

Movement Patterns, Not Muscles

People often are quick to do isolation exercise to work their biceps, or glutes.

But fail to realize that total body compound lifts will work those same muscles, with a heavier load, and multiple other muscles at the same time.

Thus maximizing not only the muscle they wanted to work, but 4 other during the process.

Don’t get me wrong, I love a bicep curl thrown in, and I will program specific glute movements if a lady would like her tush a bit bigger.

But they should in no way shape or form make up the majority of any smart training program.

I would program a bent over row, or deadlift, before I would a bicep curl or a glute kick back.

These movement patterns are going to work those same muscles with much more efficiency.

You will also probably realize these movements will also leave you needing not much *if any* extra work.

So, what are these movement patterns I am talking about? Glad you asked. Keep reading below, and seriously get a notepad out to get some notes.

Understanding Movement Patterns

Let’s talk movements, shall we?

But not just any movements. Movements that are going to make up your exercises in your training program, for your goal.

You have to have a system in place to be able to create programs, as opposed to just picking random exercises.

And understand what muscles those movements are working, and how they affect the other things you will do later in the workout.

Let’s cover the 5 fundamental movement patters, with some individual sections for each.

Upper Body Push

An upper body push movement, can be divided into two sub categories, horizontal push and vertical push.

Horizontal Upper Body Push includes variations of bench press, push ups, and all similar exercises. Mainly ways you are pressing in a horizontal motion.

Vertical Upper Body Push includes all variations of shoulder press, push press, and all similar exercises. Mainly ways you are pressing in a vertical motion.

Upper Body Pull

An upper body pull can be divided into two sub categories, horizontal pull and vertical pull.

Horizontal Upper Body Pull includes variations of bent over row, inverted row, and all other similar exercises. Mainly ways you are pulling in a horizontal motion.

Vertical Upper Body Pull includes variations of chin up, lat pull down, and all other similar exercises. Mainly ways you are pulling in a vertical motion.

Lower Body Push

These movements typically refer to lower body exercises that cause you to recruit more quads than hamstrings, usually causing a “pushing” motion rather than a “pulling” motion.

Examples include all variations of the squat, lunge, step up, and hip thrust.

Lower Body Pull

These movements typically refer to lower body exercises that cause you to recruit more hamstrings than quads, usually causing a “pulling” motion rather than a “pushing” motion.

Examples include all variations the deadlift, good morning, kettlebell swing, and cable pull through.

Trunk

These movements typically refer to all these including the “core”. Everyone you talk to will have a different definition of the core, but I am referring to not just your abs. Also the muscles that stabilize your hips, stabilize your spine, and play a role in upper body stabilization. So much more than the 6 pack bro.

Examples can include all variations of plank, sit ups, Russian twists, pallof press, deadbugs, etc.

Understanding The Daily Workout Make Up

Here is where some people get caught up when it comes to what is the most optimal way to program a daily routine.

This is what you actually will be composing your daily sessions of, throughout a weekly basis.

There is no one “right” way, only a right way for you. Learn about the four main ones below.

Full Body

These training sessions typically tend to be longer, and obviously hit the entire body in one session, rather than splitting it up.

This split is incredibly great for beginners, and people who are uber busy and just can’t make it to the gym that much during the week.

I would not tend to program a full body any more than 4x a week, MAX. 2-4x a week for these full body session typically will do best. Again, this is for beginners, or people who don’t wanna spend a lot of the time in the gym, but still get an effective workout.

Upper / Lower

Yes, as it sounds like, this split just divides the training days up into an upper body day and a lower body day. Generally, 2 upper body days, and 2 lower body days, for a total of 4 days total per week, is what is used best here.

This is something that I program a ton for people who can make it to the gym 4x a week. It allows for proper frequency, exercise selection, volume, among many other things.

Push Pull Legs

This split is one that divides the days into 3 separate days, one of upper body pulling, one of upper body pulling, and one of legs, including both pushing and pulling motions.

This split is generally combined with 1 full body day, or 1 upper body + lower body day. So a total of upper body + lower body + Push + Pull + Legs. Or just 6 days a week of Push, Pull, Legs. This can be a total of 5-6x per week.

Yea, a lot of math there. Personally, unless you are towards the advanced level, I would not worry about this one.

Body Part Split

This split is one that is popular amongst the body building world. This splits days up into certain body parts, one day for chest, one day for back, one day for legs, etc..

Personally, even after living and studying the body building world for a while, I see no real reason to use this split for any general population individual, or even body builder for that matter. This split should be reserved for top level bodybuilders who need the extra isolation work to win Mr. Olympias.

Understanding Training Days Per Week

Touched on briefly in the split session above, this is where you figure out how many days a week you are training.

This is also where you decide what split you are using.

As a general rule, I like to hit both upper and lower body at least 2 days a week. Depending on the client, that can go up to 3 or 4 in some cases. But remember, more is not always better.

2-3x Days Training Per Week

For people who only have a small amount of time in the gym, full body tends to do best for this.

3 Day Full Body Split

 

Day 1

Full Body

Day 2

Full Body

Day 3

Full Body

   

However, there is more than one way to skin a cat (whatever that means anyway).

I also love this split to get more of a feel for the muscles, and split things up a bit nicer.

3 Day Upper, Lower, Full Body Split

 

Day 1

Lower Body

Day 2

Upper Body

Day 3

Full Body

   

This split allows you to split up into an upper and lower body day. I use this to have people focus on an area a bit more as opposed to switching back and forth between upper and lower body in one session.

Takeaway: There is no one RIGHT way to do it. Some people like full body better, some people like splitting it up. The one thing I would advise is try not to do all 3 days back to back to back. If you HAVE to, that is one thing, but if you have a choice, get some rest between days.

4x Days Training Per Week

This training schedule allows you endless possibilities when it comes to splits. This is great for the average gym goer to the intermediate / advanced trainee.

A standard upper lower split can be used here, like we talked about earlier.

4 Day Upper Lower

 

Day 1

Lower Body

Day 2

Upper Body

Day 3

Lower Body

Day 4

Upper Body

This is also a great way to get different stimulus to the body as well, because you have two chances to get at it.

Below is a bit more advanced way to look at the 4 upper / lower days you have.

4 Day Upper Lower

 

Day 1

Lower Body STRENGTH

Day 2

Upper Body STRENGTH

Day 3

Lower Body HYPERTROPHY

Day 4

Upper Body HYPERTROPHY

This is great because you can focus one day on getting stronger, and one day on more muscle building. **Hypertrophy is just a big word for muscle building**.

Takeaway: Training 4x per week is amazing for the general gym goer, the intermediate to advanced trainee, or someone looking to build strength and also build muscle. There are so many ways to slice this cake, try it and see what works for you.


5x Days Training Per Week

Honestly, unless you are more towards the end of intermediate / advanced, this probably is unnecessary for most.

That being said, let’s look at ways to program a 5x a week training program.

5 Day Upper Lower Push Pull Legs

 

Day 1

Upper Body

Day 2

Lower Body

Day 3

Push

Day 4

Pull

Day 5

Legs

Like we said earlier, you can combine an upper, lower, with a push pull legs routine, to get you to 5x a week. This hits all muscle groups 2x, and can allow for optimal recovery while still hitting a higher frequency.

Takeaway: Again, unless you are more towards the advanced side, you probably won’t have to worry too much about this one. Recovery starts to become HUGE here, and if you are not eating, sleeping, and recovering properly, things WILL start to break down.

Number Of Exercises Per Training Day

Now we get into what you are ACTUALLY doing during your training day. I know, a lot to get here right?

That just goes to show you how much goes into actually making an individualized training program. If you want me to help you with yours, click HERE.

Moving forward, I am going to exclude 2x a week, and anything over 4x a week as far as training splits. I have just seen as a coach, the vast majority of people don’t need more than 4x a week, and if you can’t get to the gym more than 2 days, we need to have a conversation on that.

Before we dive into what the days exercises are going to consist of, we need to first talk about what types of exercises will exist.

  1. Strength Focused Exercises

Strength exercise are full body, compound movements like squat, bench, deadlifts, that challenge you with a relatively lower rep range.

But, it is not so much the exercise that is strength focused, though that does play a role, it is the weight and reps you choose to do with it that is “strength focused”.

Generally speaking, these movements tend to be no more than 6-8 reps, with 8 being on the high end.

2. Hypertrophy Based Exercises

Hypertrophy focused exercises can be full body, compound movements OR isolation exercises.

The main difference between a strength focused exercise and a hypertrophy, is A. The load you are using and B. The point at which the exercise becomes difficult.

You are focused on working and fatiguing the muscle, rather than gaining strength.

This is where having a mind muscle connection comes in, and where finding the right weight that isn’t tooo heavy, but not toooo light comes in.

Generally, these exercises tend to be in repetitions from 7-15 to achieve this stimulus.

So, How Many Exercises Per Day?

Well, it depends. There is no one real answer, it would depend on how many days a week you are training, what your focus is that day, what your goal is, to name a few.

But, I will give general guidelines you can follow.

Strength focused exercises

Goal: Build Strength, full body compound movement

How Many Per Day: 1-2 exercises per day

Sets and Reps: 3-5 sets, 3-8 reps

Rest Period: 90-180 seconds

Examples include: All variations of the squat, bench, deadlift, overhead press, rows, and chin ups.

 

Hypertrophy Focused Exercises

Goal: Hypertrophy focused, work and fatigue muscle

How Many Per Day: 2-6 exercises per day

Sets and Reps: 2-4 sets, 8-15 reps

Rest Period: 45-90 seconds

Examples include: All Variations of the squat, split squat, push up, shoulder press, tricep extension, bicep curl, face pull, Romanian Deadlift, lunges, etc.

Tying It All Together, Sample Workout Plans

Alright, so now we get down to actually putting this all together to see what it looks like in an actual program.

Remember that notebook I told you about earlier? That bitch should be full by now, but hopefully you saved some room for this.

Sample Upper / Lower Body Training Days

Upper Body

Upper Body Day

Sets x Reps

Rest Period

 

1. Bench Press

4×6

120 seconds

 

2. Barbell bent over Row

3×8

120 seconds

 

3a. 1 arm shoulder press

3×10

   

3b. Assisted chin up

3×8

90 seconds

 

4a. Push Up

2×10

75 seconds

 

4b. Cable Face Pull

2×12

   

5. Plank

2×40 sec hold

45 seconds

 
       

** If an exercise is labeled with a and b, that indicates a superset, where exercises are completed back to back.

So, let’s dissect this day.

The first exercise is a strength focused, compound movement in the bench press.

The second exercise is another strength focused, compound movement in the barbell bent over row.

The third and 4th exercises are still somewhat compound, they still provide a pretty good full body stimulus, but they are more hypertrophy focused in their rep ranges.

The 5th and 6th exercises are a bit less intense, less load due to being later in the workout, and wanting to be smart about injuries, effort, etc. They still work the muscles and provide a stimulus.

Then the trunk at the end to finish off the day.

Lower Body

Lower Body Day

Sets x Reps

Rest Period

 

1. Barbell Front Squat

4×5

120 seconds

 

2. Deadlift

3×6

180 seconds

 

3a. Single Leg RDL

3×10

   

3b. Split Squat

3×8

90 seconds

 

4a. Leg Extension Machine

2×12-15

 

 

4b. Swiss Ball Hamstring Curl

2×12

   

4c. Side Med Ball Slam

2×8/ea side

90 seconds

 
       

Again with the dissecting.

The first two movements of the day are full body, strength based compound movements. They have a lower rep range, and higher rest period from what we talked about above.

The 3rd and 4th are still full body exercises, just a bit less load, a bit less intensity, and getting more focused on muscle building.

The last circuit for the day is focused on isolation of muscles, lower loading, and working on the trunk.

The Final Word

Woo, I know that was a lot.

There is a lot to consider, a lot to think about. I urge you to go back and read over some parts, to make sure you fully grasp them.

Seriously, take notes.

I would NOT worry about getting the perfect routine, the perfect split, the perfect this or that.

The truth it, it will all be trial and error. It will be testing things and seeing what works and what doesn’t, for YOU and YOUR life.

Your schedule, your goals.

If you want to workout 4x a week, go back and look at the 4x week options. Look at how to structure the split. Pick what strength and hypertrophy exercises you want to put into your routine.

And then just go try it.

There is no ONE RIGHT way to program and design your workouts… Rather try things, see what sticks for you, and then narrow down later.

I know this is a lot of information, I know you may be like whaaaattttt…

If that is you, I implore you, please reach out to me for help. Leave a comment below, or email me @ coacheric@ericrobertsfitness.com .

Or if you would think coaching might be a better option for you rather than trying on your own, click HERE to fill out the form to see if we are a good fit together.

I hope this article helped, and again, please reach out for help. I wrote this whole damn thing for free, so you know I want to help.

Look forward to hearing from you. Talk soon. -E.

How To *ACTUALLY* Boost Your Metabolism

 

Do you have a slow metabolism?

Better yet, do you LOOK at a cookie, and gain 27lbs?

What about just struggling to LOSE weight, but have no problem GAINING it?

If your answer was yes to any of those questions, especially the cookie one, this article will be for you.

Whether through age, through previous diet history, through lifestyle change, your metabolism has gone down hill.

You don’t burn as many calories, you really don’t eat that much food yet still gain weight.

No need to fear, Eric is here.

I am going to teach you how to increase your metabolism the RIGHT way to see results.

And no, this will not be an ad for some fat burning pill with a promo code at the end.

Just real science that you can take and implement today to help start seeing results.

What Actually Is Your Metabolism?

It is funny, people will be quick to blame their metabolism for their lack of fat loss..

But when I ask them to explain to me what metabolism actually is, they cannot quite speak with the same conviction.

I cannot teach you how to increase something without actually knowing what it is first.

In the simplest of words, your metabolism is simply the sum of all chemical processes going on in your body at any one time.

At any one point in time there are millions of processes going on inside your body. Your heart beating involves your metabolism, your eye movement reading this, digestion of the food you eat.

Anything that is allowing you to live and breath right now, is apart of your metabolism.

Now that you have a basic understanding of what metabolism ACTUALLY is, you can have more context when Sally from the gym complains how hers is just SO SLOW.

Now let’s look into what components play a role, and how we can use them to your advantage to speed up your metabolism.

RMR, Resting Metabolic Rate

Your RMR, or resting metabolic rate, is the most practical component of your metabolism.

Some people use BMR, basal metabolic rate, but that is literally when your body does NOTHING but lay in bed and not even more..

I mean, you at least gotta blink or something right?

So your RMR is what we can use to begin to talk about how your metabolism works.

These are the calories you burn when you stand up and get out of bed. Your brain processing and thinking as you read this. Everyday life things.

What can go into your RMR? Super glad you asked.

Lean Body Mass

Your lean body mass plays a roll into what your RMR is.

This is can be how much muscle you have. Also, Your muscle to fat ratio.

This can also be how tall or short you are.

Taller people, like myself, burn more calories than those who are shorter. We will talk more on this when we get into gender as well.

Depending how tall or short you are, you can have differences in bone mass, and in overall total body expenditure. 

This can lead to a difference in how hard your body has to work to maintain itself.

Muscle Burns More Calories.. Kind of.

One BIG thing I do want to briefly touch on is the fact that more muscle can lead to an increased metabolism.

Now, this is 110% true.

The more muscle you have, the more calories you will burn. Absolutely.

BUT, the amount it does is minimal.

For every 1lb of muscle you add, you burn an extra 6-10 calories a day, at most.

So if you added 10 lbs of muscle, you would potentially only burn possibly 60 more calories a day.

Is it more? Yes. Is it so significant you should listen to someone selling you something crazy about building tons of muscle to boost your metabolism?

Nope.

Now you should clearly be building muscle, but it isn’t a justice to you go to go and eat pizza and ice cream.

Do it for health reasons, for strength reasons, increased bone density, all things that build you up.

Rather than worrying about it tearing your fat down. That will be done mainly through diet anyway.

Click HERE to find out how many calories you should be eating to lose fat.

Gender

Here we are, the forever war between girls and boys.

Who truly started cooties? One will never know.

Anywho, yes, men normally burn a bit more calories than women.

But that is not some magical fat loss potion.

It is just science.

Like we said earlier, taller people have more energy that their bodies have to use.

There is more blood to be circulated, takes more energy to go up and down steps, more bone mass to them, etc.

Men are typically taller, so they typically burn more calories.

We also just said the more lean body mass / muscle mass you have, you burn more calories.

Again, men typically have more muscle mass / lean body mass to them.

Both of these things lead to a higher metabolism, because again it is just more work their body has to do.

I coach mostly women, and trust me when I say, you all are much more bad ass than us men could ever be.

So you win.

AGE

Oh boy, Age.

This one is the crutch of many individuals wanting to lose weight.

They claim they are not 18 anymore, so their metabolism doesn’t work like it used to!

I am here to tell you to STOP using this excuse as to why you cannot lose fat.

Does your metabolism slow as you age?

Yep. Sure does.

BUT, first and foremost it is usually lifestyle based, not solely because you got older.

You eat less overall, eat less protein, your lean body mass decreases, your activity level goes down.

If you have been following thus far, those things are key factors when it comes to how your metabolism works.

Second, the amount it decreases is almost next to none per year.

Good thing for you is, however much is does slow down, this can pretty much be reversed.

Through proper strength training, well thought out nutrition, and losing body fat, you can pretty much reverse that aging process.

Click HERE if you want to contact me about possibly coming up with a plan for you to do just that.

Genetics

Yet again, another thing people look towards to pin the tail on their fat loss scapegoat.

I debated whether I wanted to go into this or not, because if I give you a reason to quit, most of you will.

The truth is, genetics plays a HUGE role in your metabolism.

It affects obviously your gender, your height, your lean body mass, all of these things.

A lot of it again is lifestyle based, but there are just cases of genetics winning no matter what.

If you are a 5’5 male out there reading this.. You aren’t making it to the NBA.

Just not gonna happen.

Some people have the perfect genetics for bodybuilding. 

Here’s the thing, we are talking about fat loss here, not professional basketball or professional bodybuilding.

So, even if we say your genetics are the worst ever.

Why would you not still do EVERYTHING you can to make the best of them.

To increase your lean body mass. To do proper strength training. To eat healthy.

Regardless, that is a great idea.

So, don’t use genetics as a crutch either. This is fat loss here we are talking about, not stepping onto the court or a body building stage.

TEF, Thermic Effect of Food

Protein protein protein.

Protein is the #1 macronutrient I see missing in the average individuals diets when I go through my initial nutrition coaching evaluation.

Protein should be a staple in ANY fat loss diet. Let’s talk about why and how it helps boost your metabolism though.

Let’s talk practical application first.

Protein is the most satiating macronutrient, meaning it will fill you up and keep you full the longest.

This then means if you are not hungry, and stay full, you tend to not eat at much.

Then leading to eating less calories aka being in a calorie deficit.

Which is the only way to lose fat.

It also is the only macro nutrient that can help build and maintain muscle / lean body mass. Which as we know from above, helps with boosting your metabolism.

There is also something called the thermic effect of food.

This basically just means how many calories your body has to burn digesting food.

Protein has the highest thermic effect of food. Meaning when you eat protein, your body has to burn more calories to digest it. Just because you ate a chicken breast.

Obviously you can see how, if you make your diet high in protein, all day your body is burning more calories digesting it, as opposed to if you were eating carbs or fats all day.

TEA, Thermic Effect of Activity

This picture was just absolutely hilarious, so I had to use it.

Okay so thermic effect of activity.

This is basically just the calories you burn through exercise and or movement through the day.

And before we get any farther, NO your fit bit or apple watch tracking your calories is not accurate.

It actually over estimates by 50%. Click HERE to find out why.

Okay, moving on.

Strength training I believe is the most important for long term fat loss.

This will increase your lean muscle mass, increase your lean body mass, and with the right diet decrease your body fat.

This will have the biggest impact on boosting your metabolism long term.

It will burn less calories than cardio in the short term, but long term will allow you to burn more.

More importantly, will KEEP the fat off, without having to do hours and hours of cardio.

Because I’d rather watch grass grow than do hours of cardio.

Next up would be said spoken cardio.

Whether LISS or HIT, low intensity steady state or High intensity training.

Both can be beneficial and both can have their benefits.

Not only physical, but mental and emotional as well. Which I would argue is maybe a bit more important for most people.

It is not very high up on my list as far as importance of boosting metabolism, but it certainly plays a role.

The last would be NEAT, and that is the Non Exercise Activity Thermogenesis.

Now don’t worry, big word, but it just means all of the stuff you do throughout the day that is not dedicated exercise.

Walking into the grocery store. Brushing your teeth. Scratching your head.

People VASTLY underestimate NEAT when it comes to fat loss.

This is why counting steps became so huge. Shooting for 8-10k steps a day is an amazing way to increase NEAT.

Eventually leading you to move more, and increase your metabolism.

Park farther away at the store, walk around the perimeter of your house 5x, take the stairs no matter what.

I strongly urge you to not be one of those who underestimate how much getting 10k steps can help your fat loss journey.

Supplements / Metabolism Boosting Foods

So, I HAVE to go into this, but keeping it very brief.

Anyone who tells you you can take a pill to burn fat, run.

Run far, far away. After you laugh at them.

Also anyone who tells you to eat a certain food because it can boost your metabolism ( besides protein we learned because science not because some marketing ad ), run even farther.

Seriously, anyone who tries to sell you on a fat burning pill or metabolism boosting food, they are doing just that.

Trying to get your money and sell you something.

No other way around it.

Let’s put an end to it one person at a time.

Final Thoughts

So, as you see, nothing here is sexy.

I can’t go sell you something some product from any of this.

Nothing is about doing this ONE trick to start boosting your metabolism!

Or eat this food or do that workout to boost your metabolism!

Because in 100% honesty, it is quite simple.

Move more, optimize your lean body mass, keep protein high, and you will increase your metabolism.

It would be just down to science at that point, your metabolism would HAVE to increase to keep up with the work you are putting on it.

Focus on things you can control, things that will give you the biggest return on the change you put in, and I promise you will see change.

Though I would love to hear, what is the craziest thing you ever heard or read to increase your metabolism?

It is always great to hear what fitness marketers can come up with these days.

I hope you enjoyed the article, learned something, and can take it with you to start using your metabolism to your advantage.

If you have any further questions leave them below, or feel free to reach out to me at coacheric@ericrobertsfitness.com.

If you are interested in seeing if we are possibly a good fit for coaching together, head to the link HERE!

Talk soon.

-E.

How To Lose Fat By Counting Calories

 

Have you tried different fad diets, lost 5 10 15 lbs, but not ever been able to really stick to anything?

Maybe you tried keto, or cut out sugar, but after 2 weeks you’re like F I WANT A COOKIE. You “break” and realize this isn’t going to work for you, so you fall back to your old ways.

Well, I have a simple solution for you.. Start counting your calories.

Every single thing you eat, drink, put on top of your cheeseburger, all of it has calories.

And, when it comes to fat loss, calories ALWAYS count.. So why not count them?

Dive in with me, let’s go over not how to diet, but how to eat for the rest of your life.

 

Before We Get Any Farther..

I believe in educating you so you can learn and understand, rather than following a plan blindly.

This has been shown to increase long term adherence in my online coaching clients.

This cannot be said loudly enough, THE ONLY WAY TO LOSE FAT IS TO BE IN A CALORIE DEFICIT.

There is simply NO other way around that. I don’t care if you eat sugar, eat carbs, do keto, do intermittent fasting..

The only way to lose fat, in this universe at least, is to be in a calorie deficit. That simply means taking in LESS calories than your body burns out.

Every diet out there has this one single purpose in mind.. most just end up being not very sustainable.

This article is not going to tell how you can’t eat pizza, cookies, or pasta.. Rather how can you do that, and still see fat loss progress?

And no, I am not saying you can eat pizza, cookies, and pasta all day everyday and lose weight.. Though, if you are in a calorie deficit, you could ;).

Where & How To Count Calories

As I am sure you know, as you are probably reading this off your phone right now, technology is one hell of a drug.

But, you can use this drug for good use.

As far as where and how to track, there a few ways.

The first would be to just go old school pen and paper. This can work for some people, if you are a math wizard, because it will require a lot of math throughout the day.

And if you are caveman.

The second option would be to use your smartphone device, you know that thing everyone is on all day long, to let one of the many apps do this for you.

Some are labeled below.

  1. My Fitness Pal – This is the one I use personally for myself and my online coaching clients. It is very easy to use, it has millions of food in its data base, you can scan foods you eat and put them right in. You can also add friends to see their diary or vice versa, this works very well if you are doing it with a friend for accountability or working with a coach.

           2. Lose It!

            3. Fitbit

There are millions out there, I just label the top 3 I see used very often.

It is less about picking the right one, more about just getting started using them.

Calorie counting is a task within itself, so just getting started using one of these apps is a great first step.

Once you get whatever app you choose downloaded and get familiar with it, now is time to actually track.

I CANNOT UNDERESTIMATE THIS ENOUGH, THIS IS WHERE PEOPLE GO WRONG.

You would think, well what is so hard about it now?

When you start to count your calories, and track your food…. You have to do just that!

Meaning, if you have a ham and cheese sandwich, you have to put in all the ingredients of that ham and cheese sandwich.

Let’s use that for example.

If you just type into the app, “Ham and Cheese Sandwich”, the calories comes out to 250.

Now, let’s look at what you actually ate on that ham and cheese sandwich, including the 2 slices of white break, 4 oz of ham deli meat, 1 slice of Swiss cheese, and a serving of mayo.

Look at how the calories almost DOUBLED, at 493.

This is HUGE, because if you think you are tracking everything correctly, you end up following the guidelines I lay out later in this article, and you aren’t seeing results, you are going to get frustrated.

You will think it is not working.

When in reality, as you can see, you MUST track accurately if you want to get results.

You may think you are eating 1200 calories everyday… But if you were accurately tracking, you would see you are eating 1800, and THAT is why you are not losing weight.

Because it all comes down to a calorie deficit, right? ;).

And yes, I know this can be tedious at times, but I promise you, it will be worth it.

You will LEARN what 4oz of ham looks like.

You will LEARN how many calories 1 slice of Swiss cheese has.

You will get educated on so many things.. and if you remember from the beginning, what leads to long term success / adherence?

Education.

How Many Calories Should You Shoot For?

So, know that you have where to track your calories, you have gotten used to doing it, and you KNOW you have to track EVERYTHING ACCURATELY..

Let’s get into the fun stuff.

It would be good to know what to shoot for now, right?

Let’s talk calorie equations for if you want to lose fat.

 

WEIGHT LOSS EQUATION – Bodyweight x 8-12 = Calorie Limit For The Day

 

So say your body weight is 150, you can do 150 x 10 = 1500 calories. 

All of this can be VERY dependent on YOU.

YOUR activity level, YOUR previous history, YOUR relationship with food, to name one of many.

BUT, it is not the point to be perfect here. The point is, pick a number, and go with it.

Do it for 2, 4, 6 weeks straight. 100% during that time, and track your results.

If you do this, I PROMISE you will see results. Then from there, you will be able to made adjustments if need be.

But please, just start something.

** FOR FAT LOSS IN PARTICULAR, LISTEN UP**.

So, I know most of you looking at this equation will automatically jump to the body weight x 8 to achieve your desired calorie number for the day, because it will give you lower calories.

Please, please, let me make you aware.

This is NOT about losing weight as fast as possible. If that is the reason you are here, I am sorry for wasting your time, and you may as well leave now.

Will that equation make you “lose weight faster”, maybe.

BUT, think about this.

If you pick this, and it gives you a amount YOU cannot sustainably adhere to, and causes you to binge, over eat, have negative hormonal responses..

Then is it really worth the perceived “increase rate of fat loss”?

When really, you won’t be making much fat loss progress at all because the deficit will be so aggressive that you will not be able to sustain it.

I am not saying don’t try it, I am saying if you do, be aware, work in periods where you can have more calories, and always think big picture.

Consistency, Not Perfection

I cannot say enough about consistency during this, or any fitness journey.

I can give you the perfect plan, perfect number of calories, everything.. But, if you don’t follow it consistently, none of it will matter.

I am not asking you to only eat chicken and broccoli. Not asking you to cut out your favorite foods.

What I am asking you to do is stick to track your calories, stick to a calorie number no matter what, and from there you will see results.

You can have cookies. You can have pizza. Nothing is “off limits”, as long as you can stick to your calories, you WILL see results.

Now, should protein be prioritized? Should you be getting a good amount of veggies and fruits to maintain hunger and micro nutrients? Yes of course.

But that is a different article for a different day (reach out if you want me to cover that!).

For the purpose of this, just know that consistency trumps perfection.

And that means, weekends, holidays, travel, all of that counts too.

I cannot tell you how many people track PERFECT Monday – Friday morning…. Then Friday night – Sunday, they act like a blindfold is on and it doesn’t count.

Saturday night means the same as Tuesday night.

Friday night means the same as Thursday morning.

It all counts towards your progress.

 

 

You can be perfect Mon – Fri, hit your calories, but if you on Friday Saturday Sunday eat 3000 calories, when you are only supposed to eat 1500.. You won’t lose fat.

Because by the end of the week, you WON’T be in a calorie deficit.

You will have effectively gone into a maintenance, or surplus, by your actions on the weekend.

Weekends count, travel counts, birthday, all of it.

And that is not to say you can’t have birthday cake on your sons birthday, you can certainly do that.

But, just know that if it comes a point you think you are being perfect but not seeing progress, check these trouble spots out first.

Because I can tell you first hand as a coach, this WILL happen to you at some point. And you will be ready to conquer them hopefully, after reading this article.

Ready To Take On Your Goals?

Hopefully by now, you are confident that you can take on your fat loss goals.

Listen, fat loss is hard. It takes time, effort, consistency, all of it.

BUT, it does not have to be complicated.

All it comes down to is if you are in a calorie deficit or not. If you are, you will lose weight. If you are not, you will not lose weight.

Simple. NOT easy, but simple.

And that is why I am such a huge believer in calorie counting, because it can give you the most accurate way to track what you are doing.

It gives you a plan, it gives you the most optimal way to reach your fat loss goals.

Because remember, you don’t HAVE to count calories, but calories ALWAYS count.

If you have any questions about your specific situation, feel free to reach out to me via email @ coacheric@ericrobertsfitness.com, and I would love to help you out.

If you are interested in coaching with me, click HERE to fill out the form to see if we would be a good fit together!!

Talk soon. -E.