By Kate Horney
For the past week we’ve been celebrating the kickoff of Bikini Boot Camp by bringing you 7 days worth of our BEST fat loss tips and tricks. From tush toning to fat loss power foods, we’ve strategically designed these posts to give you the practical tools you need to reach your goals, create lasting body change, and live the fat loss lifestyle.
If there’s only one thing you remember from this week of fabulous tips & tricks (Training Tips to Beat Belly Bulge? Yes please!), we want you to remember this key distinction:
FAT LOSS IS NOT THE SAME AS WEIGHT LOSS.
That’s right, we said it. All “losses” are not created equal. In fact, when it comes to fat loss vs. weight loss in the battle of sustainable body change, weight loss loses, hands down.
Here are 3 Reasons Weight Loss Loses:
1) Weight loss decreases your metabolic potential. The fat loss lifestyle builds muscle and actually increases the rate at which your body burns fat, a focus on weight loss does the opposite. Low calorie diets and hours upon hours of aerobic exercise are disastrous to your metabolism. When it comes to body change, they make things worse, not better. Plain and simple- Muscle is key to your metabolic potential. If you are following the “move more, eat less” weight loss approach, you may be burning calories, and may even be losing weight, but that weight you are losing is most likely from muscle rather than fat. Muscle burns 2-10 times more calories at rest than fat and other tissue, so loss of muscle mass (through weight loss) means a decrease in your metabolic potential. But for every pound of muscle you gain, you will burn up to 30 more calories per day, even while at rest… sounds like a pretty sweet deal, don’t you think? Fat loss works smarter while weight loss just works harder.
2) Weight loss doesn’t change your shape. In addition to increasing your metabolic potential and helping your body burn calories- even while you REST- muscle also changes the shape of your body. If you focus on weight loss, you won’t build muscle. And if you don’t build new muscle, you can’t transform your body (aka give yourself a new shape). This is a major difference between weight loss and fat loss. Weight loss may shrink your size, but fat loss is the only way to improve shape and tone. Like a melting ice cube, you may get smaller, but your shape won’t change. What’s worse, after your weight loss, you’ll be a cube sitting in a melted puddle of water (hello lose and saggy skin). If you want to minimize saggy areas and tighten otherwise lose connective tissue, muscle is the key. A women losing weight becomes smaller. But a woman losing fat becomes smaller AND changes shape.
3) Weight loss isn’t sustainable. Ultimately, in the weight loss vs. fat loss battle of body change, weight loss loses because it’s simply not sustainable. Even if weight loss DIDN’T decrease your metabolism and DIDN’T leave you as a saggy, only slightly smaller version of your previous self, it would still lose because it’s just not something you can maintain for any extended period of time. Weight loss isn’t a lifestyle. You might lose weight and keep it off for a few weeks- maybe even a month, or a couple of years, but the key component that every major fad diet or weight loss program ignores is that no program will work if you can’t stick with it. (Adherence, anyone?) And you can’t stick to a diet forever. Your weight loss program only works as long as you can drink the shakes, count the points or ignore that tummy growl one more. At some point, you’ll be tired of being tired, hungry, and craving every food you “can’t” have, and eventually, you’ll stop…
You’ll run out of willpower, and you’ll stop because the “eat less, move more” weight loss approach is incomplete. The missing piece of the sustainable body change puzzle is the hormonal changes required for sustained body change- and that comes from a fat loss lifestyle, not a weight loss mindset.