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HomeBody Building SupplementsGet Ripped Now: 5 Diet Plans to Choose From - T NATION+...

Get Ripped Now: 5 Diet Plans to Choose From – T NATION+ – COMMUNITY

One principle, several fat loss strategies

Of course, all successful diets involve a caloric deficit, but what are the best strategies for achieving a caloric deficit? Here are five easy ways to do it.

Fat loss is simple. All you have to do is understand one basic principle: create a calorie deficit. Burn fewer calories than your body needs to maintain its current fat state.

Within this principle, there are many approaches to choose from: intermittent fasting, tracking macros, ketogenics, habit-based nutritional changes, zone diets, Paleo diets, and no-eating, to name a few.

struggle? With so many purporting to be the best fat loss strategies out there, it’s easy to get lost in the noise. People respond differently to different diets due to current and past training, hormone levels, stress and lifestyle differences, dietary history and genetics. This is known as “interpersonal variability.”

So what works and under what circumstances? These five strategies provide some insight:

1. Carbohydrate cycling

Carb cycling manipulates insulin to burn fat and maximize muscle. You typically use two different eating strategies: high-carb days and low-carb days.

  • Weightlifting days are high carb days. Carbohydrates provide additional fuel to maximize anabolic response and muscle recovery.
  • Rest days and conditioning/aerobic days are low carb to help break down body fat stores and increase insulin sensitivity, which improves nutrient availability on high carb days.

Carb cycling sounds simple enough. You can track your macros or follow the simple method of only eating certain foods like white rice or starchy carbohydrates on training days.

On training days, your body’s sensitivity to insulin increases due to repeated muscle contractions. As the response to carbohydrates increases, your body brings nutrients into your muscle cells to aid in repair and growth. Consume fruit and starchy foods (potatoes, sweet potatoes, rice, and oats) as carbohydrate sources on weightlifting days.

Taking a day off and just doing cardio, or doing a low-intensity workout? Keep it low carb. By reducing your carbohydrate intake and reducing your calorie intake a few days a week, your body should accept insulin more easily and reduce the fat produced from the calorie deficit.

Here are two sample days. You can keep your meals the same, but add carbohydrate sources on training days:

Low Carbon Day:

High Carb Days:

When Carb Cycling Is Not Optimal

If you have a lot of muscle and are training hard, low-carb, low-calorie days may still affect recovery. Post-workout recovery doesn’t magically happen the day of your workout.

2. Habit-Based Dieting

It’s based on changing your daily habits and taking “action steps” to improve your health and create a calorie deficit. This approach is perfect for those who shudder at the thought of tracking their macros and are patient enough to stick to process-driven goals.

Studies have shown that it can take more than two months for a behavior to become unconscious. and the formation of new habits? According to one study, it can be anywhere between 66 and 254 days.

Admittedly, that’s a tough ‘sell’ in a world where everything is available at the touch of a button. Then again, being hijacked is not for the faint of heart. I’ve had great results using a 21-day period to focus on adding one habit and then layering on another.

By choosing habits and action steps that lead to healthy eating and fat loss, you can gradually improve your health and fitness. It just takes patience. When it comes to habit building, the best plan is to start small, and you can take action even when life is crazy.

For example, if you don’t eat any vegetables, adding them to every meal can be a little difficult, but adding them to one meal a day will be a practical first step. It is important to choose a task that is practical and sustainable so that you can complete it at least 80% of the time.

Here are some habits you can develop gradually:

  1. Drink 100 ounces of water daily. Complete 21 days, then add a second habit.
  2. drink two glasses Premium Protein Shake every day. Complete 21 days, then add a third habit to Habit One and Habit Two.
  3. Eat one vegetable at each meal. Complete 21 days, then add a fourth habit.
  4. Take a 30-minute walk every morning. Complete 21 days, then add a fifth habit.
  5. Set a nighttime routine and fall asleep an hour earlier than usual. Complete 21 days, then add the next habit.

This may not sound like much, but if you improve your hydration, protein intake, vegetable intake, exercise, and improve your sleep, you will dramatically improve your health, physique, and performance.

When Habit-Based Dieting Isn’t Ideal

Habit-based fat loss takes longer than other methods. While it often leads to better long-term results, those who are impatient and want a data-driven plan and biofeedback like tracking macros may struggle.

3. Intermittent Fasting

There is nothing magical about intermittent fasting. It reduces calorie intake by limiting the window of time in which you eat, which leads to fat loss. There are many other benefits as well.

First, intermittent fasting improves insulin sensitivity. Your body releases insulin when you see or smell food. The more we eat, the more often we inject insulin. Of course, insulin isn’t the only weight loss drug out there. But over time, especially if you’re struggling with weight, poor insulin sensitivity can make it difficult to lose fat and gain muscle.

You can give your “insulin pump” a break by eating fewer meals. Combined with a low-calorie diet, this improves insulin sensitivity, which further improves body composition.

A 2019 study by Ravussin reinforces this idea. Studies have found that time-restricted feeding reduces appetite by regulating the hormone ghrelin. Ghrelin levels tend to rise before meals and fall after meals. The more we eat, the more often we stimulate ghrelin. Intermittent fasting can help regulate ghrelin levels, reduce hunger and improve appetite control—especially if you’re a chronic snacker.

Intermittent fasting is a great tool for people with busy schedules. Life becomes simpler when you have fewer food decisions and choices to make. Also, if you fast in the early hours of the day, you may notice an energy “surge” due to the release of adrenaline and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF).

There are several types of fasting, but the general idea is to give your body a break through purposeful restriction. Some popular options include:

  • 16:8 intermittent fasting: Fast for 16 hours, eat for 8 hours
  • 18:6 Intermittent fasting: Fast for 18 hours, eat for 6 hours
  • 20:4 intermittent fasting: Fast for 20 hours, eat for 4 hours
  • my own: Eat one meal a day and fast for 22-24 hours

When Intermittent Fasting Isn’t Ideal

intermittent fasting not perfect. If you have a history of eating disorders, stay away from intermittent fasting. I’ve seen people battle binge eating at night and struggle to keep their weight off when they come off intermittent fasting.

Fasting is also a stressor. The “alert” feeling you get from fasting is primarily due to the release of adrenaline – a stress response. If you’re sleep-deprived, running on caffeine, and skipping food, you’re likely running on cortisol. This can cause problems.

Personally, intermittent fasting worked well in my 20s, but as life got more complex (growing business, young kids, life stress), the added stress made it It’s more of a short-term strategy.

4. Track macros with a meal plan

Tracking macros is easy. You set your calorie and macronutrient goals for the day and try to get as close to them as possible. The steps here are simple: set your numbers, create meals and menus to hit those numbers consistently, and eat the same foods repeatedly.

There are many equations and variations that can help you set up your macros. They’re all very similar, so let’s keep it simple for weight loss:

Calories: Weight (lbs) x 10 = Calories per day
200 lbs x 10 = 2000 calories per day

protein: 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight
200 grams x 4 calories per gram = 800 calories

carbohydrate: 1 gram of carbohydrates per pound of body weight
200 grams x 4 calories per gram = 800 calories

fat: 400 calories remaining, or 20% of calories
400 calories/9 calories per gram = 44 grams


protein: 200 g (40%)
carbohydrate: 200 g (40%)
fat: 44 grams (20%)

The ratio of carbs to fat can be adjusted to personal preference; however, consider the way most bodybuilders eat: high in protein, moderately high in carbs, and low in fat—rather than ketone.Once you set your numbers, stick to the routine for a few weeks.

The goal is to have little change, and therefore fewer decisions. Set up your macro. Arrange your meals. eat your meals. Lose fat. It’s that simple.

When tracking macros with a meal plan isn’t ideal

It’s not a “fun” way to eat. If you crave variety and have trouble eating the same foods over and over again, it’s not a good idea to track macros with a limited food selection.

5. Track macros: if it works for your macros

The IIFYM method incorporates macro-tracking but removes the rigorous planning part. This allows for more variety in your diet.

As mentioned above, the steps are simple: Set your daily numbers and eat as many calories as you see fit.

Calories: Weight (lbs) x 10 = Calories per day
200 lbs x 10 = 2000 calories per day

protein: 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight
200 grams x 4 calories per gram = 800 calories

**Carbohydrates and Fat:** 1200 calories remaining (see below)


Calories: 2000 calories
protein: 200 g (40%)
Carbohydrates and Fats: Whatever you see fit as long as you hit your calories

The IIFYM method offers more variability. This allows you to focus on protein and calories—two of the most important facts about macros—while adjusting carbs and fat as needed.

Note that IIFYM is not a license to live on protein shakes and candy. IIFYM was popular for many years and then got a bad rap because “influencers” highlighted their fast food diet plans and how they lost weight. While calorie control is fundamental to fat loss, don’t overeat junk food. Eat a balance of fruits and vegetables and high-quality starchy carbohydrates.

The benefit here is simple: You can fit more of your favorite foods and social events into your macros.

When IIFYM is not ideal

The more flexible your diet, the greater the responsibility. When you eat a greater variety of foods, your chances of overeating and eating junk food are higher. You’ll have more food choices and more responsibility to track your meals to stay on target.Know yourself and know each other shortcoming IIFYM.

find what works for you

There is no perfect diet. The way your body responds to different dietary strategies can change over time as your stress levels, hormones, metabolic function, and constitution change. Find a structure that works for you while keeping the fundamental principle constant: creating a calorie deficit. The key is to find something you can do consistently.

refer to

refer to

  1. Lally, P. (2009, July 16). How Habits Are Formed: Modeling Habit Formation – Wiley Online Library. European Journal of Social Psychology.

  2. Ravussin E; Beyl RA; Poggiogalle E; Hsia DS; Peterson CM; (27 August 2019). Early time-restricted feeding reduces appetite and increases fat oxidation without affecting energy expenditure in humans. Obesity (Silver Spring, MD). PubMed.



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