There truly is nothing new under the sun. All of the “latest” workouts and diet recommendations have been around forever; it’s just that they tend to get rediscovered every now and then. As 2016 looms large, we are taking a look back at our 2015 library of blogs and have picked out a handful. Everything presented on this site is researched and backed by authoritative sources, and it is all good information. That is what made it so difficult to narrow down a Top Five list. But, if the future of the Free World depended on it, what follows is pretty much the best of the best.
HIIT it Hard
High Intensity Interval Training, what you should be familiar with as HIIT, has been around forever. It gains new popularity every few years, and sometimes it’s not even called HIIT. The concept is still the same, though: alternating short bursts of intense exertion with longer intervals of reduced effort. The longer intervals are considered your rest periods, but you continue to move the entire time. HIIT remains a popular workout trend fitness experts recommend because it optimizes fat burning and increases the metabolism even after you’re done working out.
The Best Fat-Busting, Muscle Building Supplements
The answer to the weight loss and muscle building question is essentially the same: supplements! You don’t necessarily need to spend a fortune at the health food store. There are four to five supplements that are essential. All the rest are optional ones that may provide benefits if you have a specific goal in mind, such as competing in a fitness model or bodybuilding meet. The terrific thing is that these supplements help achieve both goals of building muscle and losing weight.
If you don’t like taking more than one or two supplements, then the least you should do is start taking a whey protein and a multivitamin and mineral. You can even sneak the protein powder into some treats if that helps. If you are willing to include a few more to push you past a plateau, creatine and Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs) will increase energy and strength and improve your recovery, as well as enhance fat burning. Also, consider an L-arginine and L-citrulline supplement to increase nitric oxide (NO) in your system. NO is essential for organ function, adrenaline and hormone control, and it is great for your cardiovascular system. Plus, NO promotes efficient use of glucose and encourages your body to use fat as fuel.
Eat More Often
It might seem counter-intuitive, but eating more often is an effective weight loss strategy, and frequent meals will keep your body fueled when you’re trying to build muscle. Eating every three or four hours will keep your body from panicking and thinking you are going to starve it, so it won’t be so desperate to hold onto stored fat. Studies have shown that five meals a day promote fat loss and lean bodies. The key is to increase the number of your meals, not the number of calories you eat. Just spread your calorie allotment for the day out over four or five meals instead of three and, of course, work out. You should start seeing results in as little as eight to 12 weeks.
Real Food Will Rock Your Weight Loss
Here’s the good news: natural ingredients are healthier for you than ones created in a lab. Your body knows how to metabolize them and what to do with them. That means opting for real sugar and fats has a rightful place in your fitness and weight loss plan. Never heard of a weight loss diet that included real butter? Well, then, here’s a first for ya. Just remember that having permission to eat real fat and sugar is not a license to eat unlimited amounts of them. Eat them in moderation or even sparingly, then work them off with the exercise of your choice. Your weight loss will be more effective and will last for the long-haul if you aren’t bombarding your body with artificial foods.
Make Up Your Mind
Above all, you really have to want to meet your muscle-building and weight loss goals. They will take effort and, if you are still looking for that magic pill that will allow you to veg on the sofa and eat whatever you want, the bad news is that your resolution will fail again this year, just like it has in the past. Decide that 2016 is the year your body and your life will change and then only take it on one day at a time. Don’t even look at your big-picture goal, like building 24-inch biceps, benching 10 big plates, or losing 75 pounds. Just do what you can today, and then do what you can tomorrow and keep going. One day you will realize that you’ve stuck to your resolution and reached your goal–and how amazing will that be?