4 Must Follow Tips for Getting Lean
The web is full of horrible advice that encourages people to follow extreme fitness programs or fad diets in order to achieve a strong, lean, and healthy body. Countless shakes and supplements loaded with extreme levels of caffeine and toxic garbage are also pushed on people trying to get lean.
Not only are many of these products, diets, and workouts dangerous; they don't result in lasting progress.
Why? Because these product manufacturers pray on the lazy and promise them they can eat and do whatever they want, as long as they buy their "magic pill."
In our opinion, these products and their marketing pitches avoid telling people the hard truth that getting lean is about owning up to our own bad habits and changing them. Like all problems rooted in political correctness, the crash diet industry doesn't want to hurt your feelings, so they sell you miracles instead.
The Truth About Getting Lean
Getting lean can be easy for most people. Learning to eliminate bad habits and replacing them positive ones like we've outlined below is all you need to do.
Remember: like a good financial plan, getting healthy and lean is about creating a plan and sticking to it consistently. There are no get rich quick schemes or get lean schemes in real life. Unless of course, you win the lotto or literally chop the fat of your body (which we do not encourage).
Dump those fat burners down the toilet; check out these tips for getting lean; and then try to implement them into your daily and weekly routines.
4 Basic Tips for Getting Lean, Strong, and Healthy
Lean Tip #1: Lift Weights
The more muscle you have, the more calories your body will need to burn to maintain it. That means you will burn more calories just by sitting around.
Focus on getting 3 to 4 functional strength training sessions in a week; focusing on compound movements that incorporate multiple joints and muscle groups; e.g., presses, squats, lunges, turkish get-ups, etc.
Lean Tip #2: Focus on High Intensity Training
Ditch the treadmill and other forms of steady state cardio and replace it with high intensity interval training (HIIT). Not only do HIIT workouts provide a more intense cardio workout; it burns way more calories.
There are two basic ways to incorporate HIIT into your workout routine:
1. During your strength training sessions, instead of standing around between sets you can do calisthenics during your rest periods like jumping jacks, jump squats, or mountain climbers; or
2. On your off days or dedicated cardio days you can do more TABATA style workouts where you do something like squats continuously for a period of 1 to 2 minutes without stopping, followed by 30 seconds of rest.
Continuing that pattern for 10 to 15 minutes. Sprint intervals are also another great HIIT alternative to steady state cardio.
Lean Tip #3: Focus on Eating a Clean, Plant Based Diet
Eating a clean diet is tip for getting lean that is arguably the most important, primarily because it is the one people screw up the most. What does clean eating mean? Well, put simply it means eating a diet made up of mostly fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds.
If you eat meat, then it includes eating the best "non-processed" sources possible. It also means eliminating as many non-water liquids as possible; that is, sugary drinks, sodas, alcohol, milk, etc.
Without getting into a debate on complex diets like paleo, vegan, etc., the best place to start for most people is to eliminate all highly processed carbohydrates and other foods laced with preservatives, hydrogenated oils, and additional sugars.
Start by cutting back or eliminating the following:
- All sodas, juices, sports drinks, milk, etc.
- Bread, pasta, and white rice
- All processed foods chips, lunch meat, cookies, ice cream, etc.
Lean Tip #4: Practice Regular Fasting
As discuss frequently on this site, one of the best tips or getting lean is to practice regular fasting. When our bodies are fed a steady stream of calories our body's go into a continuous process of fat storage in order to store the excess calories for a future need.
Regular fasting, especially practicing time restricted eating can assist the body in clearing out the excess calories so that it will be forced to use stored fat for energy instead of readily available glucose.
Bonus tip for getting lean: Try to complete as many of your workouts in a fasted state, this will accelerate the amount of stored calories that are burned during each session. For those of us with a little extra around the mid-section, it is better to burn that during each workout, then the calories from our breakfast.
Conclusion: There are a lot of great tips for getting lean, but these are the basics. Focusing ones training on building muscle and maximizing fat burn during workouts is the core from a fitness perspective. The other pieces are primarily eating clean and fasting regularly to help your body avoid storing excess calories.
Getting lean doesn't have to conflict with your desire to complete a marathon or for building awe-inspiring muscle, just don't fall for all the religious dogmas practiced both the majority of the extreme training camps.