In this article I’m going to breakdown 10 transformation mistakes, which go beyond the typical issues you may encounter, such as calorie intake, regular training, protein intake, processed foods etc.
If you are mastering the basics and STILL having a tough time losing fat or transforming your physique, here’s why:
1. You Aren’t Being Consistent
Consistency is the NUMBER ONE factor in long-term fat loss and muscle growth.
Even if you have the world’s best plan, it won’t help you maximize your results if you keep stop-starting. In fact, an “average” plan that is consistent will be SUPERIOR to the world’s best plan than you only perform half of the time.
As I often say to people, if you can’t see yourself sticking to this diet in 1, 3 or even 5 years you’ve really got NO chance of maintaining your results and you will get trapped in the dreaded world of yo-yo dieting.
You must be patient and stay consistent all day, every day. That’s why I emphasize the importance of finding a balance and achieving a healthy lifestyle, which leads us to point number 2.
2. You Haven’t Built a Sustainable Plan
In all my coaching practices and programs I emphasize the importance of building lifelong healthy habits.
Sadly, most people go on strict diets and programs to simply achieve their short-term goal and then rebound back.
While dropping fat and adding muscle, make sure you do it in an achievable manner, one that you can stick with over the long term. Eliminating food groups, “bad” foods and performing hours of cardio isn’t sustainable for most, which is why I teach people the importance of “balance” and learning how to strategically use refeeds, carb loads and “bad” food to optimize their physique WITHOUT gaining fat.
In fact, this is the whole reason why I spent 2 years designing the Physique Friendly Macro Cookbook.
For both me, my personal clients and 1000s of others who now use this recipe it has finally given dietary freedom. Rather than limiting yourself to chicken and vegetables, then having weekly binges or cheat meals you can enjoy every bite and love your diet.
(Related: If you want more info on the Physique Friendly Macro Cookbook you can click to access a 85% discount coupon for it and get more info below and get ALL 120 recipes for just $9).
3. Your Training Plan Isn’t Specific to Your Main Goal
Training specificity is a key variable determining how well you adapt and how fast you reach your goal.
If you want to get faster at running, you run.
If you want to get better at swimming you swim.
If you want to learn to cook, you cook.
Simple – right? So, why, when it comes to fitness, do people often do crazy programs that aren’t optimized to their goal?
The truth is, few people know how to program the workouts to maximize physique transformation. This even applies to MOST personal trainers, making it no surprise that the average person wouldn’t even know where to start.
To maximize fat loss and muscle growth, methods such as my Metabolic Resistance Training can help you reach your goal way faster than conventional cardio or even weight training. This type of training can increase calories burnt and fat utilization by over 200%; best of all, it increases fat burning hormones and your metabolism, or the “after burn”, for up to 48 hours post workout.
If you want to drop fat, one of the best and quickest strategies you can use is a high frequency, volume and almost circuit-style workout, similar to Metabolic Resistance Training, which provides a highly advanced routine to take your results to the next level.
4. You’re Not Optimizing Your Cheat Meals or Refeeds
For most, cheat meals can be a major barrier, adding in 1000s of unwanted calories with little or no benefit. For a lot of people, weekend cheat days or meals can basically diminish a whole 5 days of hard work.
However, by strategically using refeeds and advanced calorie shifting techniques, like the ones in my 90 Day Bikini plan, you can not only enjoy meals out – pizza, ice cream or your favorite “bad foods” (in moderation of course) – but can still actually enhance your fat loss, metabolism, hunger hormones and physique at the same time.
No, I’ve not lost my mind. These techniques are backed by peer-reviewed research studies showing greater weight loss and hormone optimization when you add in higher calorie refeed periods!
Just take a look at this study, those who had higher calorie “dieting breaks” lost more weight (despite having 3 days off every 11 days!!) and increased their metabolism and hormones!
One large cheat meal / binge won’t cut it; you must optimize your refeeds and calories to actually enhance your physique and I have a full blog post educating you refeeds and calorie shifting here.
5. You Aren’t Tailoring and Cycling Your Diet, Macros and Calories
Linked to the above point, if you eat the same every day then you really aren’t optimizing your diet around your body and training.
By eating low calorie every day you will have a hard time adding muscle and will decrease your metabolism, thyroid hormone along other key hormones such as testosterone. However, by using carb cycling strategies and manipulating calorie intake you can not only optimize your training but also lose more weight and improve your hormonal health.
Ask yourself this: why does it make sense to eat similar calories / macros on a rest day, which is spent around the house, as it does on a 90 minute leg day or weight training routine?
The answer is it doesn’t, which is why I recommend periodizing your diet daily and based on your goals, especially when you become more advanced and need to optimize the smaller details.
6. You Don’t Understand the Importance of a Good Night’s Sleep
Research is continually highlighting the importance of a good night’s sleep, showing it is just as important, if not more important, than your training and diet!
Even one night of reduced or interrupted sleep can drastically impact your mood, energy, hormones, calorie expenditure, food intake, dietary adherence, sports performance and more!
By optimizing sleep you can lose more fat, have less hunger and improve exercise performance. There are some very simple strategies to improve your sleep, such as reducing blue light exposure or taking some natural and safe supplements to help you relax.
Learn how to optimize it in this article, 5 research proven tips to optimize sleep!
7. You Aren’t Using Cardio to Your Advantage
Steady state cardio can be a great addition to a routine, if used correctly. When dieting you basically have a “recovery budget” just like your bank account. In addition, unless you are unemployed and single, you probably have a “time budget”.
These 2 factors make High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) the obvious option when combining it with a weight training routine. The research on HIIT is nothing short of spectacular, with just 5-10 minutes of exercise per day providing some major fat loss and health benefits.
In addition, it has been shown that just 5 minutes of HIIT is as beneficial, if not more so, than steady state or typical cardio.
HIIT plays a key role in the rapid fat loss strategies used in my 1:1 coaching and during the 90 Day Bikini Transformation program. Simply adding 2-4 sessions in per week can take your results to the next level, without adding any noticeable time or recovery commitment.
Try doing 5-10 x 30 seconds sprints after your main workout. Rest for around 60-90 seconds between each one. You can perform this on any machine such as a bike, elliptical, rower, treadmill (if you are a regular runner), battle rope etc etc. Add these in 2-3 times per week for noticeable results!
8. You are Wasting your Time with the Wrong Supplements
Although I encourage people to focus on diet, sleep and nutrition, the addition of some research-proven supplements can speed up fat loss, while supporting your other efforts.
The biggest problem is people are fooled by clever marketing tricks and endorsements from celebrity models or physique athletes that have never actually used the supplement they advertise (seriously!).
By sticking with the evidence-based supplements and combining certain synergistic ingredients, you can really take your performance and fat loss to the next level. I recommend you start with the basics and add in more advanced fat loss protocols, such as those in the 90 day bikini transformation plan, only once you’ve optimized your training and diet.
5 of the top supplements that everyone should be taking include:
- Whey Protein
- Green Tea
- Omega 3
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9. You’re Following a Poorly Structured or Cookie-Cutter Training Plan
Factors such as training frequency, rep range, volume, body part splits, rest periods all combine to make or break your transformation.
Most people will be wasting their time in the gym by:
- Following a random program and workout from a magazine, physique model or fitness website.
- Wandering round the gym with no idea what exercise to do, how to perform the technique correctly or how to program all the variables mentioned above.
- Following a cookie-cutter routine not specific to their goals (remember point 3).
Within a couple of weeks you could witness massive changes in your physique by simply switching to a well-designed, specific and periodizing training plan. Even with no change to diet or anything else, this can have a large impact.
10. You’re Following a Fake “Expert” Who Gives Terrible Advice
Remember, most “experts” and online coaches or physique athletes do not understand the science of application of program design, nutrition, hormones, physiology, metabolic or periodization. You may follow them because they are in great shape, but this is really the worst logic ever, especially in the fitness industry.
For a start, most of them are genetically uncommon or taking an array of anabolic steroids. In addition, they’ve probably hired a qualified and educated individual to actually design their program and coach them personally.
A six pack does not equal knowledge. I’ve worked amongst many of the “world’s top fitness models” and I can tell you firsthand, many (not all..) of them really have NO CLUE, including Olympia competitors and world renowned trainers, pro bikini athletes or bodybuilders.
This isn’t to say everyone sucks, in fact, there are amazing coaches, bodybuilders and fitness professionals around. However, a lot of these don’t have a million followers or appear on the front of Men’s Fitness – they are usually the people coaching these athletes behind the scenes.
Years of experience, research, practicing what you preach, and highly relevant and prestigious qualifications separate the amazing coaches and professionals from the remaining 99% of the industry.
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I hope you enjoyed this post, get in touch if you have any questions!