The 4 Fallacies of Fat Loss
I can recall when I first wrote the ‘Aerobic Fallacy’ article nearly 10 years ago and people got their panties up in a bunch.
You see, it was posted all over bodybuilding websites, etc. and it completely went against what most people are lead to believe when it comes to fat loss. I suppose the topic never gets old as 99% of people that come to Newell Strength are coming for fat loss as their primary objective.
I still see that there are many fake experts out there espousing the same old, misinformation.
So, allow me to once again blow some of them out of the water.
Fallacy number 1- Cardio. First off, cardio is anything that works the cardiovascular system. The muscular system drives the cardiovascular system. The more muscle one works, the harder the heart has to work. Most people have this vision in their head of slow, long distance cardio, when it comes to what cardio is.
Cardio as most people know it, such as walking on a treadmill, will make you more efficient at using body fat as fuel. That sounds great on the surface, but it’s not great if your primary objective is to cut down on your body fat. Think about it; if your car is more efficient at using fuel, it will use less of it, not more of it. We want our bodies.
Typical cardio is essentially useless for fat loss in direct terms. Walking, however, is great a lowering stress and cortisol levels, which will have an effect on how your nervous system functions which will directly impact hormones and body composition. Make sense?
Yet, throwing junk cardio at an already stressed body is the last thing I would recommend. To get the most bang from your buck, train head to toe, peripheral heart action, to get the best training effect and to create that gas guzzling motor that is so highly sought after.
Fallacy number 2-Counting calories. Another dumb invention if there ever were one. This didn’t become a thing until fairly recently, meaning within the past 80 years or so. Yet, it coincides with the fattest period in human history.
Yes, we are the fattest, as a whole, that the human race has ever been.
Counting calories is taking the outside in approach to trying to change body composition. It will work, temporarily, and this is why it is known to cause a temporary change, not a long-term transformation.
Counting calories will affect your hormonal level in a negative way if you do it like most people do it. The thinking is simple; create a deficit and watch fat fall off. Well, just like cardio, your body is the most efficient machine ever.
How else do you think it managed to procreate for billions of years by this point. If you cut calories, your body gets smart and adjust. You are screwed then when you go back to eating normal amounts of calories.
Oh, I can hear you. You think that you will just eat at a deficit forever. If you think you can do that, you have no clue how the human brain works.
This would require massive amounts of will power. Will power if a finite asset and the brain will not form habit around anything that requires will power because will power, by its very definition, means doing shit you don’t want to do.
There are certain circumstances in which this appropriate, but never in the long term. And if you require this for the long term, you would fail at the survival of the fittest test that nature has so brilliantly created for us. Your mouth is not a vacuum.
What we need to do with diet is to focus on how to alter the internal, hormonal environment, to our advantage with things like intermittent fasting.
Fallacy number 3- Eating more often. This one drives me bonkers, right along with ‘breakfast being the most important meal of the day’. In order to give your GI tract a break, we need to eat less often, not more often.
Your body is like a slot machine, the more you put into it, the more it’s going to keep.
In order to drop body fat, we need to eat less frequently, not more frequently. Again, just like everything on this list, there is a time and place to implement this in appropriate doses.
Let’s say that you have hunger issues and when you become overly hungry, you make bad choices. In that case, we would want to cut the hunger off at the impasse and try to stay ahead of the problem.
Yet, we would rather eat when in a relaxed state, which poses another problem for eating more often. It’s not as much what you eat as it is, whom you are when you eat it.
Eating less often allows us to keep insulin levels lower as well. If insulin is raised, you can forget losing body fat.
Which will bring me to point number 4.
Fallacy number 4- Don’t eat before bed. Again, people think that metabolism is this thing that is easy to manipulate and that it is black and white. It’s not.
Your metabolism doesn’t shut off unless you are dead.
And metabolism is going to be largely controlled through the internal, biochemical and hormonal environment. Not nearly as much so as what you eat as the fake experts would have you believe.
Examining the central nervous system, we have two branches that I like to focus on, the sympathetic and the parasympathetic. Sympathetic is fight, flight or freeze. That is our pure survival branch. Yet, any type of stress will cause us to go parasympathetic.
Parasympathetic is the part of the nervous system responsible for rest, digestion and relaxation. So, you mean to tell me that digestion and rest are both parasympathetic activities? Why, yes, I do my little friend.
So, it makes sense that we would want to pair these two things together. Eating a nice hearty meal when we are relaxed, like we should be at night, will release things like serotonin and dopamine which are going to cause the brain and body to relax and feel good. Sleeping will help us to digest better.
When you examine it like this, your biggest meal of the day should be the last one you eat, within a couple hours of bed. Normally, the way my schedule works out, I eat this meal within 30-60 minutes of going to bed.
As you can see, there are so many fallacies that he fake experts throw around. An expert is not someone that just does what always been done. A monkey or a parrot could repeat stuff with very little intelligence compared to a human being.
Here’s one last key piece of advice I’ll leave you with, which covers every area of life. Examine what everyone else is doing and do the opposite. Even if you don’t know what you should be doing, this will put you on the right path. The majority are the majority because they are the average.
When it comes to fat loss, don’t be a sheople.