How to Maximize Fat Loss

This is a picture of Hercules battling Cerberus the three Headed Dog.
I set this as the lock screen on my phone.

Back when I used to own a gym, I read everything about exercise and fat loss that I could get my hands on. I did this for several reasons: 

1. I was interested in these topics personally. (There’s a lesson here for you) 

2. I wanted to help the members of my gym burn as much body fat as possible. Many of our members joined the gym because they wanted to lose weight and get in shape. 

3. I was a certified trainer and led some of our group exercise classes. This meant that I needed to “program” each and every workout I put our members through.

One book I read back then was titled, “21 Day Kettlebell Swing Challenge” by Josh Hillis. It was a great little book that outlined a daily kettlebell workout plan anyone could follow to burn more fat. 

In the opening to his short book, Hillis wrote briefly about Exercise Post Oxygen Consumption (EPOC). EPOC basically refers to the calories your body burns after you’ve completed your workout. 

We usually refer to this as the “afterburn.” 

Intense exercise offers two opportunites for fat loss: 

Additional calories burned while exercising + 
The additional calories burned after you’ve exercised

Consider this compounded fat burning! LOL. 

Here’s what Hillis wrote about the glorious “afterburn:” 

1. You burn more calories post-workout when your workout is intense. In other words, *harder and faster* is more effective than *longer and slower* for producing afterburn.

2. You burn more calories post-workout when you do intervals. 30 seconds of work followed by 30 seconds of rest, 10 times, produces better afterburn than running 10 minutes continuously. 

3. Lifting heavier weights burns more calories postworkout than lifting lighter weights. 

4. The more muscle you have = the more calories you’ll burn post-workout. 

5. You burn more calories post-workout on every day that you work out. You don’t burn extra calories postworkout on days you don’t work out. Increasing workout frequency is going to increase your “afterburn.”

By doing a short workout every day, you can effectively raise your resting metabolic rate all the time. 

I found this interesting back then and am revisiting it again now because it allows us to leverage our time while providing maximum results.

For the next 37 days, I’ll be working out every day and will focus on interval weight training. I view weight training as interval training because you do 30 seconds of work followed by a short rest. 

Every set you do becomes another interval. 

The main concern regarding this idea is overtraining. If we push things too hard, we won’t be able to fully recover. This will lead to an injury, pain and suffering… which is frowned upon! 

One way we can implement this strategy without overtraining is to alternate which muscle groups we train and when we train them. 

I’ll be using the old-school bodybuilding push/pull/legs approach. Pushing exercises focus on your chest, shoulders and triceps. Pulling exercises focus on your back and biceps. Leg exercises focus on your… um legs. 

I’m also going to combine this structure with the “3/7 Method” – One round of this method looks like this…

Set One: 3 reps + 15 second rest 
Set Two: 4 reps + 15 second rest 
Set Three: 5 reps + 15 second rest 
Set Four: 6 reps + 15 second rest 
Set Five: 7 reps + 15 second rest 

After this, you’d rest for three minutes and do two more rounds of this entire sequence. It’s a lot harder than it may appear!

To prevent overtraining, my plan is to alternate the muscle groups exercised. 

On day one, I’ll do pushing exercises – 3/7 method 
On day two, I’ll do pulling exercises – 3/7 method 
On day three, I’ll do legs – 3/7 method 

In addition, I’m only planning to exercise for 30 minutes each day. This will, hopefully, prevent overtraining!