November 19th, 2012

Quick Start or Quick Fix? Advice On Starting A Fat Loss Program The Right Way

If you lose weight quickly in the first week or two of your fat loss program, you’re more likely to gain it back later, right? That’s a common belief, and in some cases, it’s true. But what if you could burn fat fast in the first week, achieve a large fat loss in the 3 or 4 weeks, and that actually HELPED you keep the fat off over the long term? Guess what? You can… and it does!  It’s all about knowing the difference between quick start and quick fix and knowing about the mistakes you must avoid if you want to start strong – safely and sustainably. Read on to discover how…

Scientists have studied not only potential and realistic rates of weight loss, but also the relationship between the rate of initial weight loss and long term maintenance.

One study published in the journal Obesity Reviews suggested that greater initial weight loss in the first 2 to 4 weeks is associated with BETTER long term maintenance.

That may be a shocker to someone who subscribes to the philosophy, “slow and steady always wins the race.”

But if you think about the benefits of starting strong from the psychological and behavioral perspective, it shouldn’t be.

Initial success breeds enthusiasm and motivation, which breeds more motivation and more success, which eventually creates a positive, self-reinforcing cycle.

It would be great if everyone were more persevering when results were not forthcoming, but the way most people’s brains are wired, it’s a rare individual who doesn’t get discouraged by a slow start, distraught with a slow week and completely unhinged when they hit a plateau.

Any of the above can cause the average person to drop out early or relapse later.  Getting off to a quick start is important for your morale.

But didn’t the “slow and steady” tortoise beat the hare?

Yes, sometimes the tortoise does win. For example, when the hare sprints too hard out of the gate and either gasses out or rests on his complacent laurels later, while the tortoise keeps chugging along. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t such a thing as going TOO slow. What slow and steady really means is be consistent and persistent over time. It doesn’t mean be timid or tentative out of the starting gate or go so slow that you lose all your motivation.

One common diet and fitness philosophy says that you shouldn’t start out full blast or play all your cards in the first round. You should always leave an “ace in the hole” so you have some way to break a plateau later on if it occurs.  Differently stated, you should leave room for progression. No doubt, this is a smart strategy, but it’s not mutually exclusive with starting strong. It simply means don’t go to extremes that could lead to burnout or dropout.

Long term fat loss research shows that if you get off to a quick start and you do it the right way, you are more likely to maintain your results. If you do it the wrong way – by resorting to quick fixes – you may get results, but you’re less likely to maintain them.  Swallow the “quick fix pill” and you might win the battle, but you won’t win the war.

What’s a quick fix?

According to weight loss researchers, a quick fix could be anything that doesn’t include an educational element or carry-over effect that gives you a benefit over the long term.

It’s anything that doesn’t encourage physical activity into the maintenance phase, as a lifestyle.

It’s anything that doesn’t include support and positive reinforcement.

It’s anything that doesn’t allow for continuous re-adjustment of changing calorie needs.

It’s anything that doesn’t address behavior change strategies.

And of course, it’s anything with extreme restriction of calories.

Drugs, diet pills,  liquid diets, and all kinds of extreme low calorie or starvation diets. They may all produce short term results, but they’re all quick fixes.

How to get a quick start without a quick fix

I’ve given the subject of starting strong a lot of thought since I’ve been sponsoring body transformation contests that last only 49 days. The results of our transformation challenges so far prove that with the right program and the right motivation, you can make dramatic changes to your body quickly, but there’s no time to waste with a 7 week deadline.  I can tell you without a doubt that getting off to a strong start is one of the keys to a great body transformation.

To start strong, there are certain things you should do, and certain things you shouldn’t do. Below, I share with you 5 things you should avoid if you want to start strong.

At the end of this post, I’m going to open it up and invite you to share your thoughts on what you think are the best things you SHOULD do to get off to a quick start without a quick fix. By leaving a comment, you’ll be automatically entered in our Burn the Fat Challenge free prize giveaway! (details below).

To Start Strong, Avoid These 5 Mistakes

1. Avoid all or none thinking. At the beginning, all or none thinking manifests itself in thoughts such as “If I can’t follow the program 100%, I might as well not even start… I should wait until I can “Do it right’”  Once you’ve started, all or none thinking manifests itself as such erroneous thoughts as, “I messed up this meal, so my whole day is ruined” (or worse yet, “my whole week, or “the entire program”). All or nothing thinking, in all its forms, is the great saboteur of diet and exercise programs.

2. Procrastination. You might think the time is not right. After all it’s the holidays. You’re busy. You have parties to attend, food to eat, places to go, and you want to enjoy yourself. You think the conditions will be better in January. That’s the season for resolutions anyway, right?  Wrong. The best time to start pursuing anything you want is now. The worst part of procrastination is that it can become a habit, just like any other behavior. It takes about 3 weeks to begin forming a habit, so if you wait until January, by then you’ll have developed a stronger procrastination habit and it will be harder to start, not easier. Develop the start NOW habit.  Be a do it NOW person.

3. Perfectionism. Perfectionism is a specific and insidious type of all or nothing thinking. It’s understandable that you want to do everything right.  But when you consider the power of the 80-20 rule, you know that just getting the few important fundamentals (the 20%) in place is enough to get the majority of your results.  The rest is details and you can fine tune them later. You don’t have to get it perfect, you just have to get it started..

4. Over-planning. Minutes spent in planning can save you hours in execution. Planning is crucial. However knowing the importance of planning, you may start reading, studying, collecting information and organizing the data into a comprehensive plan. The common problem is when you get stuck in this phase. Planning is a virtue.  Over planning is a vice. And if you really think about it, it’s merely another form of procrastination or perfectionism in disguise.

5. Unrealistic deadlines. Scientists have confirmed that what works for one person may not work for the next. The ideal calorie deficit may vary. The ideal speed of weight loss may vary. What IS important for everyone is to set goals, to assign a deadline to each goal and to break them down into smaller, more easily achievable (bite-sized) chunks. Know thyself. These little goals and deadlines must be easily attainable FOR YOU. Once you have them, always keep your goals and deadlines in front of you.


Want to burn fat and keep it off for good, without quick fixes?  If so, then read  Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle.   This book is known worldwide as “the bible of fat loss” because it doesn’t use quick fixes. Instead, it focuses on timeless principles that never go out of date. Based on the same techniques used by the leanest people in the world – bodybuilders and physique athletes – these principles have worked for decades and still do.

Get Burn the Fat:

Train hard and expect success,

Tom Venuto, author of
Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle,
The Bible of Fat Loss

tomvenuto-blogAbout Tom Venuto

Tom Venuto is a lifetime natural (steroid-free) bodybuilder, fitness writer and author of Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle: Fat Burning Secrets of Bodybuilders and Fitness Models and the national bestseller, The Body Fat Solution, which was an Oprah Magazine and Men’s Fitness Magazine pick. Tom has appeared in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, Oprah Magazine, Muscle and Fitness Magazine, Ironman Magazine and Men’s Fitness Magazine, as well as on dozens of radio shows including Sirius Satellite Radio, ESPN-1250 and WCBS. Tom is also the founder and CEO of Burn The Fat Inner Circle – a fitness support community for inspiration and transformation

Burn the Fat Challenge BLOG CONTEST and FREE PRIZE Giveaway (*** ENDED***)

Every year when our Burn the Fat Body transformation challenge rolls around, it has been a tradition to do a free prize giveaway for everyone who leaves a comment in one of our surveys like these. Now that I’ve briefly introduced this most important subject, I’d like to hear from YOU! Just answer the question below in the comments and you’ll be entered in the random drawing for one of these free prizes:

There will be 5 winners selected at random and each winner will receive a FULL one year membership to the Burn the Fat Inner Circle – a $97 value and your choice of either Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle (ebook) or The Body Fat Solution (hard copy book).

Blog contest survey question (post your answer in the comments below): What do you think is the one best specific strategy – it could be a mental strategy or a physical strategy –  to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a strong start without using any quick fixes?

Good luck in the drawing and I hope to see you in the Burn the Fat Challenge body transformation contest.  Learn more at the Burn the Fat Inner Circle website.


Congratulations to our 5 winners:

1. Vern Mravinc
2. Shelene M.
3. Stephanie Barron
4. Rhonda Gruber
5. Duayane L.

CONGRATULATIONS to our winners!. To collect your prizes, contact burn the fat support at and write I won the blog contest in the subject line.

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142 Responses to “Quick Start or Quick Fix? Advice On Starting A Fat Loss Program The Right Way”

  • Kris West

    What do you think is the one best strategy – mental or physical – to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a quick start without using any quick fixes?

    For me – my best strategy is a mental one – Visualization.

    Firstly – in order to get your transformation off to a quick start you require a “strong why?” A strong desire that will propel you through the tough “road blocks” or “stumbles” that may arise as you strive to attain your goal. Visualize – create a mental image, imagine your achievement, create it as though you were living it. Picture it vividly, how you look, feel.

    Secondly – visualize your “Achievement Date”. Focus on the calandar and actually visualize the month/date/year of your achievement date. Visualize your “Achievement Date” and insert your vision of your “Achievement.” Visualize yourself on your “Achievement Date” how you’ll look, what you’re wearing, feeling, the sounds/comments people are making.

    Thirdly – remember your visualization of your achievement – the power, confidence you felt when you attained your goal. Use that visualization to keep you focused, propel you through the tough road blocks and use it as the driving force to attain your goal on the calandar date that you visualized.

  • Michael williams

    Slowly ramp up cardio time to keep page with weight loss per week goals.
    Minimize caloric reduction and keep protein levels high.

  • Josephine Illig

    Positive reinforcement from family and friends – builds self-belief and gives you the mental support to keep going. If you have a family member or friend who joins you in the challenge that is even better – you can inspire each other and a bit of healthy competition doesn’t hurt 🙂

  • Darlene Provance

    What do you think is the one best strategy – mental or physical – to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a quick start without using any quick fixes?

    Year ago I thought it was all about the physical. I was actually convinced that goals and mental thinking were alot of mumbo jumbo. However, after reading about the mental aspects over and over, I figured “think outside the box” and just give it a try. Surprisingly it was just what I needed to start seeing results when I was in a plateau.

    Never underestimate the power of our mental thinking!

  • Sam Jackson

    I may sound like a BTF homer here but I am convinced that using the BTF Meal Planner software and setting up my daily meal plans got me off to a very quick and solid start. Simply put, no guessing. I now have a plan for grocery shopping and I KNOW what to expect and what to pack for my meals for my work day and the weekend.

    Truthfully I have been playing with the Meal Planner Beta since its introduction and I now have it down. Easy to use once you get the hang of it.


    Sam Jackson

  • Suzanne Rosenblatt

    Know exactly what your goals are. “The first step in getting the things you want out of life is this: You must know what you want.”

  • Tammy Nickerson

    Believe that you can do this. Believe that you have the power to achieve your goals. It’s so easy to let excuses and doubt creep into your thinking, but if you believe that you are capable of making decisions consistent with your goals, those good choices keep getting easier.

  • chris

    Buy a digital scale and log everything. Hang up pictures around your house of what you want your body to look like so that way it motivates you throughout the day to keep to your diet and to lose the weight. Cook foods in bulk for the week so that way you always have ready to eat nutritional food in your fridge when you get hungry and it saves you on prep time. Look in the mirror often and wear shirts around that show your midsection or walk around the house without a shirt on to visualize what you need to lose.

  • I like the Stepen Covet approach of “begin with the end in mind”.

    Visualization of what 49 days out looks and feels like is essential to starting AND staying focused. One can know about it, but better that one experiences and feels it in order to see success.

  • Ian Prather

    Plan a week of meals.
    Go to the store and get what you need for these meals.


  • Chad

    I think the best strategy to get off to a quick start without quick fixes is to set your mind on the goal and just get started. For a while now, I myself had continued putting off getting started on my fat loss/body transformation goals and had gotten to a point where my pants were uncomfortable. About three and a half months ago, I decided I had to change, set my mind toward getting back into slimmer slacks, and changed my habits. Eating whole foods and doing a simple 15-minute per day workout, I’ve gone from having trouble buckling my belt in the first hole, to being able to comfortably buckle it in the third hole. All it took was setting my mind on the goal and getting started.

    I guess all that is to say, set aside the procrastination, set your goal, and jump in!

  • Dan Ferber

    My answer would be mental. Because without the mind nothing is really achievable. Sure your subconscious controls things, but is still the mind that starts it all. I am a huge procrastinator and my mind keeps me from succeeding and i know this. It is my challenge to change my mind so i can succeed.

  • Joe A

    Front Loading!!!

    The problem with many is that they know what they need to do…but they don’t map out what!

    You need to plan meals going in…not count calories after you eat…Alot of folks that are successfull will bulk prepare meals in advance which have know macronutrrient contents.

    You need to schedule workouts…not just plan to do them…(after all….There will be days when a Gym is out of the question eg Christmas Day…life happens…just work around it)

    You need to develop and stick to a measurment system to measure progress..

    and you need to keep your eye on the prize…you need to want it!

  • Brian Johnson

    Hey Tom,
    Your e-book is full of great information such as meal timing, meal planning, metabolism, and alot of things that I just didn’t know. I think the most head turning thing for me was the mental part of it. I believe that is the most important part of a quick start. Your book helped me to understand that my weight is my responsibility, and there is no quick fix or easy way out. It takes work, and faith in yourself. I now understand that some weeks may seem like a step back when you’re actually gaining muscle. To wrap it up I believe the mental aspect is the most important part for a quick start. We must understand our weight is our resposibility, have faith in ourselves and the program, and work for the results.

  • Duayne L

    I think the best stategy is getting a support team in line before you actually start. Share your goals with them and ask them to hold you accountable from the start. It is too easy to be too relaxed early on thinking you have time to correct later. If you have your support team putting you back in line, it is easier to answer to them than yourself.

  • Dan Ferber

    It’s simple ,MENTAL. Without the mind you cannot achieve anything. Get you mindset right and all of your physique goals can be attained. See yourself making it happen and just do it. My mind is my biggest setback to achieving my goals. It’s time to change that.

  • Dennis

    With me it has ALWAYS been mental. I constantly sabotage my program when it appears I am not following it perfectly or have a new ache and pain as a reason to justify stopping. When this happens I stop for a week or two before I can get psycd up to start all over again even when I was intially making progress.

  • David Webb

    My personal opinion as the best way to get off to a QuickStart
    is to focus on your diet. I think our eating is where most of us miss the mark.
    We’ve all seen this…the guy or gal who consistently comes to the gym and
    trains like a savage beast…day in and day out with no significant change. How
    frustrating must that be! We all also know why there is no change. When these people
    leaves the gym after another intense workout session what are they putting into their bodies?
    It’s one step forward, two steps back! You can burn 1000 calories in the gym and then put it all
    back with surplus with one trip to a fast food restaurant. Conversely, by focusing intently on eating
    the right things to adequately fuel and replenish your body, you provide yourself the additional confidence
    of knowing that the harder you work in the gym the greater your results. There is no longer the dread that comes
    from working hard in the gym, only to instantly nullify those results with poor eating choices. So take note of what you put in your body and watch your enthusiasm skyrocket as you push yourself to the limit knowing that finally, your diet will not again be your Achilles heel. Keep burning!


  • CYnthia Soto

    You have to decide, mentally, that this will be a lifestyle change and not a short lived diet or challenge.

  • Aurora Franz

    As Tom wrote somewhere in his book, you have to be serious about this program when you decide to undertake it.
    You have to make sure you have the level of motivation that would yield success. The way I see it, these elements must mesh together seamlessly: motivation, self-control, knowledge. The BFFM book gives you the knowledge, the other two dimensions needed for success are up to you.

  • Anthony BowlingT

    To help with a good start. I think it is important to try to follow your plan to the best of your ability, and that you will strive to continue to learn and improve as you progress. And the most important second thing to keep in mind that everyone makes mistakes, and being successful will depend a lot on how you handle correcting mistakes when they happen, and not letting them derail you from achieving your goals.

  • Tammy McDermott

    I think the best one can do to get themselves off to a good start without any quick fixes is to just make the decision that you are going to take control of your life, once and for all, & get healthy. To make the decision because you are sick & tired of being sick & tired. Just do it! There are no quick fixes! And lastly, making that decision also means that from this day forward, you will no longer entertain another negative thought.
    How do I know? Because I’ve been there. I looked for quick fixes; I’ve procrastinated and I have been oh so negative. Well I got sick & tired of being sick & tired & I made a decision to get my health back. Key words: MADE THE DECSION!!! And to date I have lost 21.6 pounds!!!!! No more negativity & no more procrastination. (Sorry if my reply is too long :0)

  • Rhonda Gruber

    You must find a huge “Why” to release the weight. The time that I lost 20 pounds, my “Why” was to fit into a mother-of-the-bride gown for my daughter’s wedding which by-the-way was 2 dress sizes too small for me, but fit me perfectly at her wedding.

  • Karina

    a solid support network…because we will all have days where we feel lethargic, unmotivated, disillusioned and like giving up, but with the support of like minded people, loved ones & honest friends like those I have discovered on IC we CAN and WILL succeed!!!

  • Bob Bullard

    Prepare your meals for the week or at least come up with a menu, as the proper diet will give the best results in the beginning and this will motivate you to keep going with zest.

  • Rachelle Burkert

    I believe the best strategy to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a quick start is to know your purpose, set a goal, write it down, read it throughout the day, and just never give up. Have the mental attitude that YOU CAN MAKE IT HAPPEN!

  • I believe the best way to a quick (and successful) start vs. a “quick fix” is to track your calories for a while (or longer if you have the inclination). I learned (the hard way) that the calories I’m actually takin in are 1.5~2x more than I realized (by tracking). There are great online sites that offer free nutrition (and exercise) tracking; my favorite is As Tom says in BFFM, losing weight (and gaining muscle) comes down to a net calorie deficit… good luck!!

  • Kenya Hargis

    I think as with any program…you have to do it for you! You can’t do it because your husband or other family members think you should. You have to want to make these changes for yourself or it will never work.

  • Galina

    the one best strategy is to start a program and stick with it for at least 21 days. The habits do change in this time and sticking with any program for 21 days will bring the results that would motivate to continue. Just do it without having too many internal debates or thoughts that it has to be a lifestyle from the get go. It will have to become a lifestyle, but it will come easier when habits change.

  • Karima

    I believe one must make a commitment to themselves, just as in a relationship, and remain in integrity to oneself to succeed. So far, I have broken my commitment to exercise, but have done well with diet. I am down 80 lbs but need to get rid of the stomach, which I am not so sure exercise will handle and may need surgery to make it right. I do hoop often, and tribal drum, so my waist and arms look like I work out constantly, although I do not. I do have a gym membership for years, but it’s getting there that counts. It takes commitment to oneself, and that is the thing I need to develop. Take care of me before all the others I take care of. This is a hard thing to do for a woman.

  • What do you think is the one best strategy – mental or physical – to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a quick start without using any quick fixes?

    I believe the best strategy is to believe in yourself! If you really want to change your lifestyle, it’s important to have an “I can” attitude. No one ever got results because they didn’t believe in themselves. There are so many ways to become active – just pick your avenue! Once you get started, momentum will pick up and you’ll get in this feel good habit of wanting to continue.

    It’s a great feeling to succeed!

  • Caroline

    I think one of the best strategies is to PLAN ahead as much as possible, which often starts with being willing to see your faults and weaknesses, and then plan in such a way that doesn’t allow you to fail. For me, my weaknesses are overeating, justifying more cheat meals/days than than my goals allow, and giving in to the “all or nothing” mindset. Therefore I must, in a sense, “cut off my right hand if it causes me to sin”. For this holiday challenge, I’ve preplanned all of my cheat days – to the day – so that I can’t justify any other days “just because it’s the holidays”. I’ve made a list of banned foods for myself – foods that are unnecessary and often lead me to overeat. I also force myself to count calories, even when it’s inconvenient, so that I can’t blindly overeat. I’m also setting weekly goals, along with my challenge goal, because I’ve found that when my goal is too far off, I may begin to lose hope that it’s achievable and give up all together. With weekly, attainable goals, I can continue to build on my progress, rather than procrastinate, knowing that I have 7 weeks to attain my larger goals (I have to lose 2 lbs before I can lose 10 lbs!). This has been a bit of a jumble, but overall I’ve found the best (mental) strategy is PLAN, SET GOALS, and not underestimate my weaknesses and the power of temptation.

  • Theresa Siegel

    For me it’s all mental – I know this because I still struggle with it. I can get the challenges started great, but tend to slack as time goes on. You also MUST have a very strong reason why you are doing it. If the reason isn’t strong enough good results are much harder to achieve (and in my case many times – maintain).

  • Angela

    You need a plan. And stick to the plan. Map out a diet plan that’s based on research & data. Work out an exercise plan that’s based on research, data, and personalized. Give 100%.

  • jamie jerald

    I am the first one to admit I was queen of quick fixes for many years. I have to say for me mental readiness is key. No matter what ur goals are or ur plans to get there number one isvto know that ur venture is life long. Know what ur willing to do and do it indefinately

  • Michael church

    I believe there are 2 key elements to a strong start and strong finish. Intensity and consistency!
    Train HARD, create the hormonal responses that will build muscle and burn fat along with boosting
    The metabolism and do it consistently, as often as possible without overtraining!!

  • Michelle Pilch

    I believe the start of my transformation was realizing the only person who could change me was me! I started with finding an exercise program I enjoyed and looked forward to and that led to improving my eating habits because I didn’t want to lose what i had worked for
    so hard while exercising. I also realized all info out there is not reliable and to focus on the experts not the hype

  • Pamela Tomassetti

    For me, it is an in person connection with a coach, trainer, and or group of like minded friends who are all on the same page. . . .all doing a similar plan or workout or challenge. . .We keep each other honest as well as engaged and supported. That personal piece magnifies the purpose and the belief in ourselves and one another!

  • Hannah

    Visualising your goals, and culturing an infallible perseverance, confidence and belief in yourself. If you don’t honestly believe you can achieve a goal, you won’t, no matter how much you prepare and train and sweat. Simple.

  • Ryan Magoffin

    I think the most important part for getting off to a quick start is just getting after it. Be consistent with the workouts, meals, and positive reenforcement every day. Focus is a one word answer for it. Focus on each step, meal, workout, each day and a quick start will happen.

  • Rowan Mulvey

    I think the most important thing to do mentally is to commit to focused consistent effort for a specific amount of time. This amount of time can be fairly short term, ideally it should not be a long time, perhaps 10 days or 2 weeks. This is only a get it started strategy. Once a person sees significant results, measurable results, then that person is MUCH more likely to commit to further efforts. If the person starts out with this huge pressure on them to meet this huge ideal then they are much more likely to self sabotage, get discouraged, get side tracked, or give up for any number of other “reasons”. This is not to say the big picture is not important, it is, but it can be daunting. Once a person has seen that they can be effective in their efforts they will be much more heavily invested in continuing.

    Physically, I think that exercise and activity should be included right away from the start. This is a lifestyle change that is necessary to their ongoing success and maintainance. Also, it allows the person to really feel they are doing something, not just not doing something (making unsuccessful food choices). I think it reinforces sound eating practices by boosting energy levels and allowing people to start enjoying the benefits of their efforts right away. It also sculpts the body so the person can see and feel the positive changes.

  • Amber Kernan

    For me, it is to set your mind to it, and just get started. Figure it out as you go.

    I am guilty of all five mistakes on some level, but the one that really hit home for me was Procrastination. At first I thought over-planning was the biggest, but, when I really think about it, over-planning was just another part of the procrastination process for me. I typically don’t feel like I can start something without having everything laid out before me and knowing what to do at every turn.

    Yes, road maps/plans are important, but they don’t do a bit of good if you don’t get started on the trip. So I am learning to take that first step and just get started, and find my way as I go. If I don’t reach my ultimate goal on this first trip, then at least I am a hell of a lot closer than I would be had I not started at all.

  • emily

    Write down long term and short term goals. Read them everyday. They can be anything!! Ex: do 15 pushups straight, 5 pullups, increase cardio, drop a pant size, increase strength, push play today
    Eat clean, treat myself once a week etc.

  • Margret Tregilgas

    Best strategy I think: The Mental approach If you are not in the right state of mind, you won’t stay strong and keep to it long term.Once you enter this it has to now become a way of life or you will just yo-yo.

  • Donna mays

    I believe the right mindset is what will quickstart the whole process of becoming healthy; and with that procrastination is key to achieving it…now if I would only take my own advice.

  • Rita G

    What do you think is the one best strategy – mental or physical –  to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a quick start without using any quick fixes?

    One of the best strategies to get a fitness or body transformations off to a quick start without a using quick fixes is to take it One day at a time, and to set your mind to do your honest best, and be true and honest with yourself. Look at it as one of life’s journeys with small goals as your pit stops until you reach your main goal which will be your destination point. And most importantly Start!!! 😉

  • elena

    What do you think is the one best strategy – mental or physical – to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a quick start without using any quick fixes?

    I know it is obvious but I think in order to succeed you need to be clear on WHY you are doing this, what is your motivation and is it enough to drive you on. Does the desire of your goal promise enough pleasure for you to preserver with what ever “pain” you may have to endure to achieve it ?

  • Albert

    Developing oneself to get into a romantic relationship motivates many people to start strong simply because you cannot wait to get personal with that someone. The trick is to feel this way towards not only one person but as if every person wants to see you look great.

  • Your first decision towards weight loss is a mental one. A paradigm shit in fact. It must be a decision to reach a goal such as to loose weight.

  • Soroya

    What do you think is the one best strategy – mental or physical – to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a quick start without using any quick fixes?

    I think having crystal clear FOCUS is the best strategy to getting off to a quick but lasting start to a fitness transformation program. As Tony Robbins says, “Wherever focus goes, energy flows.” You must first know where you want to go or what you want to achieve before you can plan for it. Once you have a clearly defined target or goal you must attach an empowering meaning to it that will drive and inspire you to go after it and do what you must do to reach it regardless of any obstacles you may face. Then and only then should you devise an action plan to win!

  • Be committed, not just interested. Get a food diary. Do it.

    • Jim



  • coedy c.

    I think you just need to make your mind up that you are ready to make a change, then find yourself a motivational force to help keep you moving the right direction.

  • Viren

    Commitment to the exercise/workout program and Commitment to eating “clean”.
    So in one word COMMITMENT.

  • Dean Linnell

    I think the best strategy is to fully engage yourself in the BFFM Inner Circle community so that you can really get that accountability happening for yourself.

  • Shawn

    I think the best strategy is to set realistic goals and commit yourself to working out hard to reach those goals.

  • Paul

    Start with manageable steps in each of the primary areas as you begin:
    Weight Training

    Tighten up each area within the first weeks but still provide latitude for less than perfect behavior as you progress forward.

    Reward yourself for each successful mini-goal attained.

  • Jared

    >>What do you think is the one best strategy – mental or physical – to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a quick start without using any quick fixes?<<

    My largest success comes from being *aware*. Aware of what I'm putting in my body, aware of how much of it I'm putting in. Aware of my activity levels. Aware of where I want to be.

    Setting goals, visualizing achieving those goals, and doing what it takes to make those goals a reality are important. And the one thing that ties those pieces together is awareness.

  • Lynn

    I think there are 3 fundementals

    1. Desire to transform
    2. Endurance fed by your desire
    3. Support for when times are slow going.

    But the nitty gritty is just do it…start right now and make the commitment to no one else but yourself…

  • Lynn Cook

    3 Fundementals:

    1. Derisre to transform must be stronger than the desire not to
    2. Endurance fed by your desire to change
    3. Support for the slow times and low times.

    And just get on with it, do it now attitude will always help. Just get started…and dont give up.

  • William Scott

    mental, if the mind set is wrong, you will never succeed

  • Anna Azzopardi

    From personal experience whenever I need a quick start, I would clean my cupboards and throw away the food and snacks which may hinder my diet plan. Then I stock the right food and make sure to get fresh supplies of fruit including lots of berries. I also think that steering away from carbs gives you a quick start of weight loss, at least it works on me. No bread, pasta, pastries,pastry, rice for a few weeks. Expect results. It works on me.

  • Ford Keeble

    I think identifying strategies you can implement offers a key benefit. For instance this Christmas period in the UK means plenty of parties and social events. By offering my services as a designated driver, I’m straight away off the booze (I feel this is imperative during my 49 day challenge) whilst avoiding peer pressure from others. Also by volunteering to do the cooking on Xmas day means I can more closely monitor my own food intake and not be sitting around having treats thrust upon me. There’s nothing like seeing weight fly off fast at the start to keep you motivated even if initially most is water weight

    Target 170
    4 days down, 5 lbs down…….49 day challenge

  • paul mubu

    Mental preparation id necessary for a quick start.

  • Stop the cravings.
    I have found starting the day with a smoothie, mine is made with home made raw milk yogurt, raw egg from my own chicken,nuts or nut butter and home made fruit preserves. (no sugar)
    You can tell from the formula I get plenty of exercise just caring for the farm.

  • Val McBeath

    For me I think the single most important thing to get right from the start was understanding how many calories your body actually needs and logging your food to make sure you have a calorie deficit. It is so basic but very easy to get wrong if you are guessing at things. Once you understand your calorie needs then you can start planning and using some logging software takes a lot of the hard work out of it.

  • Alex McX

    Great solid advice there!

  • Virginia

    I Think the best strategy is to have a Well designed, sound nutrition plan that leaves no room for guessing, and then just follow it consistently. Then having someone who can hold You accountable so cheating is not an option.

  • Mick Stein

    At the start you must be focused mentally.
    The one and only deterrent for me was in my own head.
    Even now after dropping 75 pounds I still have to take
    time to get my head “straight” as I continue striving
    to lose the last 25!
    On a weekly basis I write down motivational
    phrases and scold myself in writing for the inevitable excuses
    that kept me fat and lazy for so many years.
    This seems to work, because right now I hear my own voice telling
    me “put down the smartphone and get busy”
    Gotta go it’s time to burn fat and feed muscle!!

  • For me, it is physical. I definitely “over plan” which equals procrastination. Thanks for the post, number five slapped me in the face! If I get off my but and get to the gym and start my workouts, the endorphins kick in, I remember that great feeling of lifting and it empowers me to go back. Then the rest falls into place (eating well).

  • Denise Cavender

    Mental, definitely for me. I have had an injury to my knee(s) that totally stopped my exercising and eating right routine for the past 7 months. I have had surgery, physical therapy and am still having difficulty with mobility. I do however, need to drop the 20 lbs that I have gained and help take the pressure off my knees. In spite of this dibilitation, I know what I have to do to feel better and healthier overall. I am 54 yrs old, definitely not ready to toss in the bones. I am beginning equatic exercise and have begun exercise at home thus far (4 days)and staying away from sweets and salty snacks. I can do this! I’m tired of being tired,achy, not sleeping well and not wearing my favorite skinny jeans. So in spite of knees/legs, I have the mindset to move forward and be successful at being more mobile and..a hot Grandma! Even if I don’t have encouragement at home, I will seek it elsewhere and stay focused.

  • Concetta

    “What do you think is the one best strategy – mental or physical – to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a quick start without using any quick fixes?”
    Don’t wait for a “good time” to start. Plan and get to work. Go to the store, buy your food, pick your workout, schedule the time. There is no better time to start than NOW.

  • Andy

    The one best strategy is to see yourself succeed! I see myself wearing an outfit and looking and feeling great in it! Visualizing the future me and my future life gives me wings and takes my attention away from the lifestyle and body that I don’t want and don’t enjoy.

    Also, I told myself: All I want is to lose 1 lb of fat!” When I lost that pound, I felt great to have accomplished my goal. I since lost 30 pounds, 1 lb at a time. If you can lose 1lb, you can lose any amount, you just gotta keep that momentum going.

  • Ted

    You need to first believe in yourself and want ‘change’. Then, you need to follow a plan like Burn the Fat. Until you really believe in yourself and the need for a change; not much else will happen!

  • Carolyn LaDuke

    Mental, I have lost significant weight over the years, once I lost 120 lbs. You have to be 100% mentally on board, and then the physical is a natural follower to the mental process. I have gained some weight back, about 30lbs, but I know, without a doubt I will never be as big as I once was. The 120lb loss was over 20 years ago. That being said, now that I am 45, I am finding it significantly harder to lose weight, and really could benefit from your book. Thanks for the chance to win! Carolyn

  • Heidi

    I think that, from my past experiences, just DOING the work gets me off to a great start. I can plan forever and it doesn’t make me any more likely to succeed. In fact, if I attempt to plan out the entire 7 weeks, it doesn’t leave any room for tweaking the plan on the fly based upon results. I’ve also fallen into the trap of ‘paralysis by analysis’.
    Sometimes it’s better to just throw yourself right into the thick of things, feed off the excitement and motivation of a new challenge and then MAINTAIN the level of commitment because of your results. By adjusting your plan based on those same results, you’re an active participant in YOUR fat loss and muscle building journey – not just someone blindly following a fad diet.

  • Judy Knowlton

    I believe you can’t exercise away a bad diet so in my opinion, the first thing you should do for a fast start is clean out those kitchen cupboards and drawers. You can’t make a bad food choice if the food isn’t available.

  • Shannon

    I think a key factor to a quick start is to plan your meals, cook in advance and in bulk, and allow yourself to be imperfect but still striving for your goal. Eating something that does not meet your nutritional goals does not mean the whole day is lost. Forgive yourself and move on. Do not let the mental game beat you – you are in charge!

  • Karen Stone

    I truly believe that to have long term success it has to be both mental and planning where your day is going!
    Keeping negative thought out of your head and changing them with positive outcomes drives success ! It’s not a one time fix its a lifetime of knowing who you are on a fitness, mental level that I believe takes years to develop because we are constantly changing! Which is the fun part in training your body and your mind! Never mind the awesome body you are left with!
    Has taken me years to learn there is no perfect! Only the best you can be for who you are today!:)

  • Lorraine Handler

    I feel most importantly you must start with a commitment. “This is something I really want to achieve and I am willing to make some changes in my “habits”. Understanding that this may be a truly new lifestyle.

    Your program interested me enough to buy your book. However, since I will be 70 in January, I feel your program is really too extreme for a person of my age group.

  • Naomi Wassel

    After repeated failures I have come to the conclusion that the best strategy to get a fitness/nutrition program to a quick start (without quick fixes) would be to have a partner with similar motivation. Failing that, following a comprehensive program such as Burn the Fat seems to be the answer for sustained support & motivation. (However, being 74, I am wondering if it would still be of help for my age group.)

  • Darlene James

    The most important thing to a quick start is being organized. Realize that you need to set a time / day (I use Sundays) to plan out the week ahead. This includes preparing food, training schedule /days and the night before each day getting your things together for the next day. That way there is no EXCUSE to eat right or hit the gym. It works!!! I have done it both ways and being organized eliminates ALL the excuses. No…its not easy but the results are great both mentally and physically

  • Jay F.

    you need to have it in your mind to go all out with nutrian and a workout regiment and Just Do It. you mess up one day just move onand don’t think about it

  • Chad

    A good strategy for having a quick start with long success versus a quick fix and possible failure is to set realistic and achievable goals. The quick fix is usually marketed in a way that generates unrealistic expectations which leads to disappointment and defeat. If you have goals that you can reach, you will be motivated by achieving the goals and once attained, you will be able to create new goals to ensure continued success.

  • preet

    The #1 strategy is committing to consistency – shoot for being 90% of perfect 100% of the time rather than 100% perfect 90% of the time (although always being perfect certainly won’t hurt!). This way you’ll end every day closer to your goals than you started.

  • Jo Anne Creyer

    For me to succeed, I have to be mentally committed to the weight loss. I also need a specific goal that I am aiming for. My goal is to start running again and with my old(67yo)knees I need to lose the weight first. I will not be able to stick to my diet, and especially, exercise program if I am not fully committed.

  • Adrienne

    You have to be mentally ready to commit. It’s a life style change and it will pay off I promise. Stay focused on you goals as we all know from Tom’s literature this is the motivator. Thank you Tom for all of your information.

  • Francis Beckles

    Tom my personal thoughts on a quick start fat loss is that it should all start with a positive and strong mental attitude, my reason for saying this is that a person has to resolve in their mind that what they are doing is not a want but a need and that they have to find the solution that they know they can stick with even if along the way they have set backs. I believe once they are convinced it is the best thing especially in connection with life this is the starting point

  • I think the best strategy combines both mental and physical elements. I think it is to start living as if you have already achieved and are maintaining your dream body, which means eating healthy, proportionate meals and living an active lifestyle full of life and fun that you feel good about living.

  • Mama Jama

    Definitely need to lose the ‘all or nothing’ mentality. I have been guilty of this all my life!
    Now I’m tying to stay with the attitude of ‘doing my best’ each day and letting go of the little things that might not go completely right.
    Keep completely focused on the destination, and push through whatever obstacles get in my way.
    If I don’t stick to my eating plan 100% one day, LET IT GO!
    If I don’t get a complete workout in one morning, LET IT GO!

  • Kelly Sanchez

    Hmmm I have recently discovered that for me a “Quick Start” is to JUST DO IT. I kept putting if off until tomorrow and next thing I knew it I was 10 lbs of fat heavier and 7 years later. I now just push play. You can get fit at home.
    I did the fast fat loss and lost all I ever wanted in just 3 months. But…I gained it all back and 3 extra pounds almost immediately. So now I am the turtle who will win the race one day at a time.

  • Sarah

    Hello – I think the best strategy is to be mentally organized in planning each day. By being organized in your thoughts, you will plan out your food and exercise schedule ahead of time and by following your plan each day, you can make adjustments as you need to. Being mentally organized makes the physical parts fall into place!

    Best of luck (and planning) to everyone!

  • clint williams

    A quick start would be to begin immediately! Start today!

  • Dawn Beaumont

    For me the “Quick Start” was mental. I knew I was totally unhappy with my weight. I had gained weight due to a fall from a horse, which left me with a twisted pelvis. I was more or less immobile for three months. Due to other things going on in my life as well as the injury I was seriously DEPRESSED. I spent the three months in bed, not getting up unless it was absolutely necessary. At the end of this I weighed 100kg. I have always been big but never this big. So I hit my limit and I knew it was time to take control and take action.
    I bought Toms E-Book BFFM and have received newsletters for a while but have always been “on the fence”. Through these last few months I have tried to apply some of the things I have learned through these sources of information.
    Positivity, even to days that don’t quite go to plan. I set myself reasonable goals, which are within my reach. e.g. How many kg’s I want to lose in the month. Not setting goals too high but ones that you can reach, if you surpass them then that’s a bonus. I have decided what dress size I want to be when I’m done. If I’m smaller then Great. If not it’s ok, as long as I reach my goal I set myself.
    I do have a great friend who is my “gym buddy”. She has motivated me to keep going,even when the going has been tough. Also other friends who have been encouraging in their comments.
    I started in February, when I was told by my chiropractor, that I could start gentle exercise. I weighed 100kg’s I have now lost 18kg’s and 96cm in total. I had a months holiday with family and no access to a gym, so I walked three or four times a week when possible. I put on 700g at the end of my holiday but hey no problem. I came home, got weighed, and that first week back in my routine, lost my 700g plus 300g more. It’s a wonderful feeling being in control and having the power within myself to keep going. Mental strategy is definitely answer.

  • Lorrie Hiner-Caprice

    I think building a foundation of good habits is critical for a quick start to your fat loss program. Ward off procrastination by having a daily regimen that is imbedded as habit. Starting with when you get up in the morning to when you go to bed at night and everything in between. If you make what has to be done in order to accomplish your goals a daily habit, then the chances of failure are lessened. Relying on planning can derail you if you fail to plan, but making it a habit to, let’s say, plan your menu for the day while having your 1st meal and a cup of coffee becomes a ritual. My Mom was a person who’s daily life was guided by a regimen…she had things to do! She also never gained more than 5lbs her entire life!

  • Rob

    The best way to get off to a quick start, or just start any type of fitness routine, is to think of yourself when your 70. In your current state, mind and body, at 70 what will you be like. Healthy, vibrant, full of energy, OR sitting in a home, yours or some institution, waiting for the walker races down the hall to start, OR thinking of when the next TV show begins.
    I often use this strategy to reinforce that what I am doing for myself will pay off, and I think it has.

  • Chris Lagace

    Well speaking from experience I think a positive mental strategy would be the best start to any program.Our minds tell us to quit long before the body ever will.Tom’s E book explains a lot about the mental aspect of losing weight using positive affirmation, realistic goals and be surrounded by people that will support you in your mission to get your life back and to be healthy.
    Im my past efforts I allowed stresses in my life to derail me what what I truly wanted for myself and my life.Aside from that I suffered a broken toe and shoulder injury which really took me out of the game mentally , as I could no longer do any resistance training.My body responded better when I was able to work out with weights and because of my injuries it kept me from doing what I so enjoyed.

    There will be road blocks of all different kinds during your journey, but if you stay positive during those times.No one or nothing will be able to stop you from obtaining your goals.

  • James Hudson

    I think one of the best strategies to start a transformation is right is two fold. Develop a strong “can do ” mental attitude and a willingness to commit to one goal for the duration of the transformation. Second part of that will be to put in place your support structure and accountability team. Will it be your best friend , family , or other someone who can support you and provide the needed feedback to really keep you accountable and on track

  • Jess Cress

    I think the best strategy is to set realistic but challenging goals for short, intermediate and long term results AND BELIEVE YOU WILL ACHIEVE THEM. I know this is what is going to get me to my goals. I don’t just hope for things. I have goals and a plan to reach them and I know I will get there. It’s something I never took seriously until reading BFFM, but it’s brilliant!

  • Mae ismael

    Keep yourself accountable. For me, it’s too easy to let myself down (right in line with that perfectionist/procrastination mentality). I need someone else to keep me accountable. For me, it’s my husband – as he motivates me by leading by example. You have to be careful as this can backfire if you have someone constantly policing you. Get money involved somehow where if you don’t meet your realistic goal, you lose it. No one wants to lose money.

  • Stephanie Barron

    Hi Tom,
    For me the single best strategy is making a list of why being fit ties into my self worth.
    The list is on my fridge,in my car (really read it before heading into the gym) and the list is on my phone.
    The list is short and to the point just the way I like most things.
    How I feel matters.
    How I look matters.
    Working out matters.
    What I eat matters.
    Who can stop me? Only me.
    Who will make it happen? Me.
    Let’s do this.

  • Deborah Wedel

    For me it is mental. I have to write down all aspects of my plan and continually review them to make it work. I must figure out the calories I need to create a deficit, but not too much. I also figure out my macronutrient ratio to keep my food in line. I put together both a weight lifting plan and a cardio plan for each day of the week. I figure out a do-able goal of fat loss and muscle gain and focus on that reward. I also reach out to others to encourage me and keep me focused. The more people I am accountable to, the better I will do. So, it is definitely mental…the physical just follows what the mind already determined!!!

  • John

    For me it is definitely planning and fixing meals ahead of time! That way, I don’t get tempted to go get something to eat at a restaurant or eat too much of anything in the house

  • Linda

    For me you need to have a researched plan for nutrition and exercise that does not focus on extremes. You must know your daily caloric needs. Indttion you need to have all of your tools evaluation tools in place. As a recovering type A personality a support sytem is important to call you on your all or nothing thoughts.

  • Rodney Booth

    Basic rules for me. Calorie education and meals 3,3 1/2 hours apart. No crazy cravings is what I’m after. Plan/time one meal to eat after exercise end plus, Read the book!

  • Don

    My best way to start strong is to do 2 workouts every day, no excuses. Even if it is just 5 min of push ups and crunches right before bed or a short run. There is always 5 min to fit that in and it gets you in the habit of working out so you can more easily do 2 longer workouts.

  • Brad Burnette

    In the last 3 months I’ve dropped from 205lbs and 29% body fat to 178/10% as of this morning. Yesterday I started my final cutting run to get down to 6% body fat (my goal by January 1).

    My advice is to flip #2 Procrastination on it’s head. I just started my final and most strict cutting nutrition/meal plan the week of Thanksgiving. Does that mean I’m not eating buttered white biscuits and gravy, ice cream, pumpkin pies, etc. on Thanksgiving? That’s exactly right. I am going to watch everyone else gorge while I eat my 6 tupperware meals of “weighed-to-the-gram” cold chicken with 8 almonds and a small serving of healthy carbs. And I’m still going to the gym according to my regular schedule.

    My advice is to do it when it’s hardest to do it. Makes doing it the rest of the time really easy by comparison. Plus, if you start at the “wrong time of year”, you know you really want your results. I want my 6% body fat way more than I want to eat junk on Thanksgiving. What about you?

  • Jirasee

    find your inspiration, set your goal and your pathway (exercise program) to pursue such inspiration, then get yourself to the gym

  • Hani Akhras

    In my mind, the biggest obstacle is my mind so addressing that first would be my top strategy. That strategy needs to include what goals I want to accomplish and why. Not the simple why (I want to get fit) but a more subconscious why that can ensure that this strategy is not a short term one but gets ingrained into my psyche and allows me to continue progressing and developing past the time my initial goal is met.

  • Mujtaba Nazir

    I believe, looking to people (experts) for motivation is key for a good start. Mohammad Ali said: “I hated every minute of training, but I said, train hard now and be a champion forever!”

  • carlos

    it is always wise to think about what you want to do before you do it. If you want to lose weight, fat or just get in shape, there is the one single most important thing that is required…determination. It is the mental aspect of anything in life that is required. You must be determined to accomplish what you set out to do. I did it once. I lost 90 pounds. I was determined. but sometimes in life, your goals and your focus get blurred and you end up in a cycle of never doing what you set out to do. your life gets busy and you think differently. along the way you realize “what the hell am i doing?”. Thats when you try your absolute best to get back what you once had…yourself. YOu beging to realize that life is a gift and you cant screw it up anylonger. I recently purchased and have read every single page of BFFM. In December I am determined to begin getting myself back and the one thing that is going to make that difference is my mentality, and that is the one thing that makes all the difference.

  • Tara Devine

    I think the one best specific strategy is choose an exercise plan you will ultimately enjoy and that works for you!
    I have found that if I do too much at once,
    or do something that is completely miserable
    I have a real hard time going back to it.
    Challenging yourself is extremely important.
    But there is no rule that says you have to hate it to be successful.
    Make it fun, make it often, make it sweat!

    Exercise doesn’t have to be an excuse for failure 🙂

  • Libby

    My suggestion is to fight your fears. Don’t sit back on your haunches because you are ‘afraid to try something new’, ‘you have to go to the gym full of big burly men and you’ll look silly’ ‘everyone will laugh at you because you can’t (insert exercise) with as much weight/ run as far/fast as them’ Everyone starts somewhere and by taking that first giant step into the unknown without spending too much time overthinking what could happen, you make each step after that seem smaller. Your confidence grows with each new exercise, extra bit of weight added, extra mile ran etc and before long you wonder why you put it off so long.

    Another one would be to not compare yourself to others in the gym. Of course thet can lift heavier than you, they’ve probably been training for years. Measure your progress and achievements against you only. You are unique and what works for one doesn’t always work for another

  • What do you think is the one best specific strategy to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a strong start without using any quick fixes?

    Goal setting and achieving those goals. With each achieved goal comes the satisfaction of winning. With each win comes the motivating force of building confidence in yourself, enticing you to set larger goals.

  • Jane S

    I wrote the word “NOW” on my hand so I will see it constantly and be reminded. Only completed work will lead to results. Leaving it until later just means more days of being unhealthy and fat…

  • Bitten Friborg

    The best thing to get started is to tutor yourself into a fast start. I totally agree. And this must be done in the first week loose a significant weight in the first week. Go way down in carbonhydrates get your weight loss and after the first week get somw hydrates into your meals again. Best regards Bitten . Thanks for a great program Tom.

  • Sheena Cook

    “What do you think is the one best specific strategy – it could be a mental strategy or a physical strategy – to get a fitness or body transformation program off to a strong start without using any quick fixes?”

    For me the starting point was to define my long and short term goals and then identify some easy attainable weekly goals. For example, drink one 24oz bottle of water at work each day or log my food daily.

    I usually tend to fall into the “perfectionist” trap where I’m going along really well and then … oops, something goes wrong, I beat myself up about it and then derail completely.

    I’ve decided that small attainable goals will eventually get me where I want to go but also give me the necessary positive feedback I need to keep on track. Also, over the past couple of years, it is very obvious that I need a community for support – I can’t do this on my own.

    Overall, one needs to come to the realization that there is no quick fix, that the only programs that work are those that are sustainable as Life Style Changes. You have to commit for the long term.

  • Helen Lucas

    My healthy life strategy is to live and behave like the person you want to be. Train and eat like a fit, lean athlete and that is what you will become. Ask yourself “would a fit lean person eat that?” or “would a 42 year old mum who wants a great body stay in bed right now, or get her butt to the gym?” If you behave like an overweight person on a diet, you will always be fighting the long hard battle. Start doing the things that lean people do, and this becomes your life too!!

  • Russ

    I absolutely believe that you must find a way to BELIEVE that you deserve to have a better body. If you believe that you deserve it, then your mind will find ways to achieve it.

  • Shelene M

    The best way to get off to a quick start, is by making sure you have everything needed, before you begin. Have your foods, meal plans, and fitness choices ready for use, so there’s no excuse not coming out of the gate strong. Find your calorie range and stick to it! Weigh, measure, and account for everything that crosses your matter how small.

    Consistency is a major factor! So just keep pushing forward and the goal line will be at your feet, before you know it!!

  • Vern Mravinec

    The hardest part to starting any fitness program, in my opinion, is planning meals. This task can seem tedious and if you leave it for the morning of the day you have to eat, you will probably not bother making one for the day and not consume your proper amount of calories.

    My advice is to build a meal plan for the entire week (or at least 5 days) and then go from there. Keep building it two or three days ahead so that you are on top of it and don’t lose focus.

  • The best way to start a new program is to set a realistic goal, use a picture and see yourself as that successful person. One day at a time!

  • Elaine Munro

    Be the Change……Pain is temporary….Failure is forever !

  • Sonia

    Best strategy: Mental or physical?
    Either way may work, it depends on each person.
    For me it is: “Never do anything without believing in it”.

  • Stefan

    Clean diet up and imeediatley lower carb intake as most peoples is too high, also increase cardio as most peoples is too low. Carb drop could be filled with protein as most peoples is too low. Drink appropriate amounts of water to minimize water loss with carbs to minimize disapointment.

  • Tristann

    Record what you do (eating and exercise). This enables you to see your good choices, and areas you need to adjust. It also lets you see patterns, how food affects your mood, energy, and fills you up. The same applies to exercise.

  • Angela

    As I will be new to this, my going in strategy is to make it all work seemlesly into my everyday life. I will plan my meals, schedule my workouts and be good to myself ( as opposed to applying the “you need to pay for your mistakes” system for motivation). I will definitly visualize myself as a 125-pounder, but I will probably not hang my pictures everywhere. I am activelly seeking mentors and cheerleaders – I may finaly take advantage of my facebook account.

  • Beth-Anna Van Dellen

    Make some things automatic. Find foods that work and repeat them when you’re in a rush. Stock the pantry ahead of time. Use an app to record food etc.

  • Maria

    It’s all visualization. Visualize what you want your body to look like, how it will feel to be fit and in shape. Get it right in your head, that’s where it starts. You’ll push for every set, every rep, every mile, you’ll feed your body to nourish it. If you believe you can do it, you can! Dream big…and enjoy the journey!

  • Rachel Tarlowski

    It’s time to give thanks. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience with us. It helps to feed my mind daily with thoughts that reinforce taking care of my body,mind and spirit. Keep it coming…this season can be challenging.

  • Julie Mahern

    I think that mental strategy is 100% key in getting started and having the fortitude to continue on a weight loss plan. I recently lost 112 pounds in 7 months that I had tried unsuccessfully to lose for several years until I finally decided that I needed to do it for myself, put myself first and then I mentally was able to start. It wasn’t easy, as anyone who has done it knows, I had a few setbacks and stalls which really messed with my mind. I was doing everything right, so why wasn’t it working? Well, it was working and I just had to have faith and understand that weight loss is not linear and the body (especially a womans body) will do whatever it can to prevent it. It was hard to wrap my head around that, but I continued to eat clean and exercise and I was abe to stick with it and 112 pounds lighter only 7 months later I am ready to take it to the next level and recomposition my body i the nexxt 49 days!

  • Mike

    Tom, I can’t seem to maintain my gains long term. I spent the last 9 months working really hard to get myself into shape and then sustained an injury. I’m not 100% yet but have started to work out again, however all my gains are gone and I’m starting over. This is a tough pill to swallow as I’ve repeated this cycle many times over the last few years. Any thoughts?

    • fred the rabbit

      mike – just wondering if you read the question to be answered here. everyone’s input is helpful to me.

  • Amy Smith

    What works for me is to have a specific mantra that I continually repeat to myself while I’m working out, while I’m planning my meals, while I’m visualizing me achieving my goals. My current mantra is “Do you want it or not???” To which I then answer yes, and take the action necessary to focus on working toward my goal.

  • jim

    I think the best strategy is mental. Create a DAILY habit of doing something. You can’t think about it, it just has to be part of something you do. We breathe but we don’t consciously think about it. Same thing with getting started.

  • biker-paddler

    DETERMINATION. be committed to keep plugging when things are tough, after mistakes & through plateaus.

  • robin warnberg

    Mental change combined with support from family is crucial to success. Good training and change in food consumption effects everyone in my household so it is very important that they “HAVE MY BACK”.

  • Cynthia Kilmartin

    Understand that is is your CHOICE. Your DECISION. If you know that everything is your conscious choice, it is easier. Like giving up smoking. Remind yourself every day all day that it is your choice to be fitter and healthier.

  • Karen

    One of the best strategies to get your fitness or body transformation off to a great start without quick fixes is your mind set. You have to set your mind on it and really want it. Its all psycological.

  • Carlos

    Hey Tom,
    I just got your book and I don’t know if I should read the whole thing first or what. I’m in chapter two and it looks like I have a long way to go. I did started going to the Gym but there is a lot of reading to do. What do you recommend?

    • Tom Venuto

      hi carlos. Step #1. Read chapter 1. Step #2, do what chapter 1 says: set your goals. That alone puts your mental focus where it should be. From there, read the whole book. But if you want to get the gist of the eating plan, skip to chapter 14 (BFFM eating plan) – that gives you the whole overview of the nutrition program… then you can go back and read the rest. Also you should have gotten a link to the quick start guide too if you confirmed your subscription to the clients-only newsletter. Let me know how else i can help – cheers

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