January 30th, 2013

50 Amazing Fat Loss and Fitness Tips From a Pro Trainer

Vancouver personal trainer Mike Howard joins the Burn the Fat guest blogger roster this month with 50 amazing fat loss and fitness tips to help you have an amazing year. Like a lot of professional trainers, Mike is passionate about his craft, so he’s always thinking about exercise and nutrition. He’s also keenly aware of how valuable our time is. So, as he was sitting in the airport waiting for a delayed flight to arrive, he decided to use the time productively, he opened up his laptop and just started writing his first post for Burn the Fat Blog. He brainstormed his best fat loss and fitness tips, and for a list that he told me was “random,” this is some amazingly insightful advice. If you apply just a handful of these tips, there’s no doubt, you’ll get better and faster results with much less stress.

50 Fat Loss And Fitness Tips, By Mike Howard

1. Slow down… enjoy, savor and nurture the process of preparing and eating food.

2. Do some form of squat or deadlift variation at least 3x/week.

3. Move often… move with intent.

4. Nail the basics… Don’t get wrapped up in the minutiae. Success is about mastering fundamentals.

5. Self-talk is powerful. Use “I choose/choose not to” rather than “I have to/can’t”. This is the genesis of personal accountability and sustainable health.

6. All diets work (or fail): What “works” is consistent adherence. Find an eating pattern that is nutrient-dense and that gets you into an energy deficit.

7. You don’t need to “cleanse” or “detox”… EVER. Your organs do a wonderful job of that.

8. Eating 6x per day can work well… so can eating only 3x per day. Customize your meal frequency to suit your lifestyle.

9. “Bodybuilding” can be (and often is) “functional”. What most people perceive as “functional” training is in comparison pretty useless.

10. Have only 10 minutes for a workout? Spend 2-3 minutes on mobility/warm-up then jump into a metabolic circuit. Pick 2-6 exercises multi-joint exercises and repeat – little-to-no rest.

11. Yoga and Pilates can be effective but if your goal is fat loss or performance-based – they should be “extra’s” when you’ve done your strength/metabolic/cardio work.

12. Fat loss simplified: Get in a deficit and get adequate protein – the rest is details.

13. Foam rollers, muscle rollers and other myofascial release tools are your friends. Make them part of every workout.

14. Your thoughts and your environment shape your behavior. Nurture them and use them to your advantage.

15. There is a fine line between open-mindedness and gullibility. Be skeptically open-minded but not so much that your brain falls out.

16. Have an exercise and nutrition mission statement. Having a clear idea of why you are doing what you do will solidify your habits as your core values – rather than just abstract thoughts.

17. You will never regret working out once it’s done. You will, however regret skipping it.

18. Set aside 7-10 minutes every morning to prepare food for the day.

19. Hit a grocery store at lunch or on the way home rather than a drive-through.

20. Need a 5 minute grocery store fix? Mixed nuts, beef jerky, flavored tuna (grab a plastic fork too).

21. Moderation: It’s less than you think it is.

22. Enter into and re-commit to your health journey knowing that it won’t be easy

23. Definition of insanity? Doing the same things this year as you did last year and expecting a different result.

24. Work out because you love your body – not because you hate it.

25. No single food (or category of foods) makes you fat and no single food (or category of foods) will make you thin.

26. Educate yourself: Read, absorb and apply the information to your situation.

27. Do something daily for your posture and mobility. This may be as simple as getting away from your desk more frequently.

28. 2 bad days can ruin 5 good ones: Use your weekends to capitalize on healthy living instead of an excuse to “let lose”.

29. Learn the difference between “hunger“ and “appetite”. Hunger is a physiological response placated by eating enough while appetite compels us to eat beyond that point.

30. Comparison is the thief of joy. You are unique and you and you alone should be your only barometer.

31. Vitamin D, fish oil a multivitamin/mineral and protein powder are “bordering-on-necessary” front line supplements.

32. Write down what you eat. Be specific and honest. Food logging creates instant self-awareness and accountability.

33. Only 10 minutes to train? Pick 6 exercises and superset them with minimal rest in between sets.

34. Treat workouts like work commitments in that they are set in stone. Take this a step further, however and treat your training sessions like “rewards” for a day of work.

35. Every exercise trend oversells itself. There is a place for zumba, pilates, dance-fitness, P90x, crossfit, etc but no one system is right or better overall for anyone.

36. Attack your weaknesses and challenge yourself until form breaks – not until you’ve completed an arbitrary amount of reps.

37. Pubmed: It knows more than your guru.

38. Be aware of your posture and how you carry yourself in seated, standing, walking, running or training. Awareness is AT LEAST half the battle.

39. Your true test is not keeping on track when you are motivated and life is smooth but rather keeping at it when life throws you curve balls and you don’t feel motivated.

40. To help organize your eating – try designating foods on different nights to simplify things; ie. Meatless Monday, chicken on Tuesday, fish on Wednesday, etc…

41. Join a challenge. While getting and keeping fit is a lifestyle with no time-constraints, transformation challenges can provide the right platform to propel you towards your goals.

42. A new body won’t change who you are as a person. It is not a missing link to happiness or fulfillment. It IS, however, capable of many amazing physical and psychological benefits that can make you feel better about whom you already are and what you are capable of.

43. Long-term success often comes down to preventing lapses from turning into full-blown re-lapses. You will slip and stumble. Get back up – as many times as it takes.

44. Strength training is your front-line intervention for health benefits. Make it your foundational form of exercise.

45. Learn 3-4 good healthy and quick recipes. These can be your go-to meals when in a pinch.

46. Populations have not only subsisted but THRIVED on diets both low in carbs and high in carbs. It is silly to think that there is one eating pattern that is universally superior.

47. If you are capable of moving faster – DO IT! You will gain more benefit in a shorter period of time.

48. There is no universally-decided-upon definition of “clean eating.”Strive to eat well most of the time and allow for occasional indulgences and “dirty” foods. Try not to categorize foods as “good” and “bad.”

49. Learn the finer points of some of the more complex lifts (squats, deadlifts, pulls, pushes) – even if you hire a trainer for a few sessions.

50. Have fun… no matter what your path, learn to be process-oriented rather than product oriented. Enjoy the journey and don’t put much stock in the “when.”

About Mike Howard

Mike has been actively involved in the fitness industry since 1996 – amassing more than 10,000 hours of in-the-trenches experience helping people achieve phenomenal health.

He has worked with a diverse number of individuals of varying ages, goals and abilities. Mike specializes in fat loss, corrective exercise and youth fitness. His approach is comprehensive, individualized and results-oriented. A dedicated and lifelong student, Mike is on the cutting edge of exercise and nutritional science and designs strategies to help people get fast, efficient and long-lasting results.

In addition to personal training and coaching youth, Mike is an accomplished writer, with over 350 articles to his credit. He has been published in Diet Blog, The Vancouver Sun, Impact magazine and has been a guest on the Good Life Show, with Jesse Dylan — an internationally syndicated radio show.

For more information, visit www.coreconceptswellness.com and check out his blog http://www.coreconceptswellness.com/blog . And please do feel free to connect on Facebook www.facebook.com/mike.howard2 and/or follow him on Twitter https://twitter.com/CoreConceptsMH

Which Tip(s) do you like best?

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22 Responses to “50 Amazing Fat Loss and Fitness Tips From a Pro Trainer”

  • So many awesome statements to live by – copied and pasted for future reference.

  • [...] adherence. … Do something daily for your posture and mobility. … Continued here: 50 Amazing Fat Loss and Fitness Tips From a Pro Trainer | Burn The … ← Diet Tips for Treating Hormonal Imbalances – Ayushveda Natural Health Tip #9- [...]

  • Jared

    This is PHENOMENAL. What a fantastic list. Thank you, Mike, for putting this together. Even though it is “stream-of-consciousness”, it is easy to digest and refer back to. Excellent job.

  • Margaret T

    #36 was an A-Ha moment for me! I’ve never heard it put that way…Thanks Mike!

  • Karina Cerda

    *WELCOME HOME MIKE HOWARD* (:

  • San

    All the points are good. #44 Strength training is your front-line intervention for health benefits. Make it your foundational form of exercise

  • Thank you for the kind words and encouragement everybody : )

  • Noelle

    This one really struck me because I can’t remember a time when I didn’t hate my body. It’s been THAT long. Wow, what an important realization…

    24. Work out because you love your body – not because you hate it.

  • Anne

    #37 – I have never seen that suggestion on a fitness / nutrition list and I’m loving it! Pubmed is a great resource. Thanks for a great article – I intend to keep it handy to re-read.

  • Debbie Mazurek

    2 bad days can ruin 5 good ones: Use your weekends to capitalize on healthy living instead of an excuse to “let lose”. – Should be “let loose”, but this is one that most people don’t realize. Just because it’s the weekend, doesn’t mean you should go all out crazy. I stick to having one cheat meal a week. Usually, that is my Sunday breakfast, and I have one dinner a week where I still eat relatively clean, but go a little wild with some type of sauce. (Not like Alfredo or anything, but something with more sugar or something)

  • I like #18, except I usually switch it up. Instead of in the morning, I take 7 to 10 minutes and prepare my food the night before. Makes it A LOT easier to just get up, grab my good and go.

    Doing it the night before is perfect for those mornings when things get hectic right from the moment you spring out of bed!

    Bryan

  • [...] News About Fitness Tips: 4 Easy Health and Fitness Tips 50 Amazing Fat Loss and Fitness Tips [...]

  • Excellent tips! I would argue that #37 is the most important tip of them all. An evidence-based approach to losing fat and gaining muscle is sadly missing from most people’s approach. It’s odd that we expect critical thinking and skepticism in virtually every scientific endeavor…with the exception of nutrition and exercise science. I guess there’s too much money from exercise gimmicks and supplements to let something as inconvenient as the facts get in the way of profit.

  • Like these tips, very helpful. Hope to read more articles from you. For a person like me who wanted to look fit this is perfect.

  • Hi Tom,

    Amazing list! I am a Wellness Coach and this list definitely will inspire me when working with clients. #16 and #14 are so true and are at the heart of Wellness Coaching. #24 makes me happy!

    Jenny

  • [...] 50 Amazing Fat Loss and Fitness Tips From a Pro Trainer | Burn The … [...]

  • 50 tips is fantastic content. I particular like the self motivation points. For example that points about each 6 meals a day or 4 meals a day – dont get too hung up about it.

    I think its important to point out to not take each point as a MUST DO item. You need to chill out and enjoy the Fat Loss journey

    Yes be focused and determined in what you want to achieve but if its taken too seriously by saying “I must do these 50 things or I wont succeed” is not the best approach and leads to failure (in my view)

    The 50 items are GREAT but should be used like a supermarket – dont buy all but choose what you want

    Best of luck

  • Eric Huang

    A very interesting read, Mike! Especially #48. It is so true that while maintaining to eat clean the whole time, we need to get an occasional break by eating “dirty” food. This will help in creating better metabolism rate for your body.

  • Thanks for the amazing tips. It is a great reminder of how a little twist or minor adjustment can turn everyday habits into healthy habits.

  • I like the quote ” You will never regret working out once it’s done. You will, however regret skipping it.” So true!

    Nick J

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