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Dallas Hot Yoga, Pilates, Barre & Fitness

Dallas Hot Yoga, Pilates, Barre & Fitness

Brandon Hartsell Brandon Hartsell May 17, 2017

Having Trouble Losing Weight?

Body, Fitness, Life   Comments
Having Trouble Losing Weight?

At Sunstone our members often ask our coaches to work with them on losing weight. Our coaches work with members to establish the right mindset around fitness and this extends to ‘losing weight’.  

Since language affects the way we think about a goal like ‘losing weight’, it is important that we clarify what we mean. When you tell your coach, ‘you want to lose weight’, do you mean you want to lose fat?

Fat takes up a lot of real estate on our bodies and it is probably an unwelcome tenant. Here are some principles to help get your mindset right on how to evict that unwelcome tenant.  
  • Think in terms of improving your body composition. Terms like losing weight usually lead to bad outcomes. You want your body composition to support your health and fitness not just to be lighter on a scale.
  • Body composition goals are usually to increase lean muscle and decrease fat.  
  • Muscle takes up less volume on your body than fat. They say a picture is worth a thousand words so here you go: Lose the 5 lbs. on the left (fat) but gain the 5 lbs on the right (muscle) and the scale doesn’t change but those jeans and yoga pants will sure fit differently. 
  • Muscle burns 7 to 10 calories per pound. Pro Tip: Programs that are part of a good fitness system will keep your muscles active and challenge making it more likely they are burning 10 calories.  
  • Fat burns 2 to 3 calories per pound. So, the math is simple for every pound of fat you replace with muscle you are burning as much as an extra 8 calories ‘just living’.  
  • When you move well, muscles need energy and burn calories. An extra pound of muscle not only burns more calories ‘just living’ it is burning more calories when you exercise. Therefore, when you replace 5 lbs. of fat with 5 lbs. of muscle you weigh the same but the same workout is now burning more calories.

Get the idea? By optimizing your body composition (ratio of fat to lean muscle), you fundamentally shift your body in a way that calorie restriction and cardio cannot. Here is an analogy:

  • Think of the calories you consume as pouring water in to a pot. 
  • Think of heating the pot to boil off the water as an instance of working out. 
  • Think of the surface area of the bottom of the pot as your lean muscle. 

Question: If you have two pots, one with a small surface area on the bottom and one with a larger surface area on the bottom, which one will boil the same amount of water faster? Answer: The on with the larger surface area. 

Using this analogy if your goal is to boil off water that most efficient thing you can do is use a pot with a larger surface area. The two pots in this analogy are fundamentally different for efficiently boiling water. Most people who struggle with fat loss have not optimized their body composition. They try to pour in less water or heat the pot more often. Far more efficient to build a larger pot. Note: one thing I don’t like about this analogy is more muscle doesn’t make you visibly larger like a larger pot would be.  

Now that you know you likely need to adjust your body composition by increasing your lean muscle here are a few more tips: 

  • The increase in lean muscle will usually precede fat lose. So stay off the scale because before you look leaner you will likely get heavier.
  • Maintaining muscle requires protein so pay attention to your eating habits. Once you start increasing muscle, you may need to add more protein. Listen to your body for clues. The same meal is not as satisfying or new cravings. Try more lean protein and see if that helps. 

Your Sunstone coach is ready to help you improve your body composition and get you in a lifestyle of doing the right things at the right time to keep you in control of your fitness. 

 Move well, Brandon


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  • Our Vision To become one of the world's most influential fitness associations who transforms the very idea of fitness from isolated physical activity into an integrated body, mind and life practice.

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