It's take hard work and discipline to get your body fat down to the single digits. But if you have quite a bit of excess fat to lose, you don't have to adopt the strict diet of competitive bodybuilder. Instead, just follow these guidelines.
From High Body Fat to Average Body Fat
Let's assume you're above 20% body fat and male. These guidelines will help you get down to around 15% – an acceptable level of body fat. For women starting at 30% body or more, this should help you get down to 25%.
This is an area where you'll probably look pretty good, but it still won't qualify as "ripped."
- Reduce intake of desserts, sugary drinks (soda, fruit juices), alcohol, and most overly processed foods.
- Include vegetables in at least one meal a day to increase satiation.
- Lift 3-5 times a week.
- Do cardio 3 times a week for 30 minutes per session to help expedite the process.
- Get protein intake up to about 1 gram per pound of bodyweight.
If you make the above changes, then you probably don't even need to count calories yet. Eating healthier foods and getting rid of most of the junk tends to be fairly self-regulating in terms of caloric control.
Here's an example of what to eat to simply get to this level without counting calories.
- Whole Egg Omelet with Added Egg Whites
- Vegetable of Choice
- Oatmeal or Ezekiel Bread
- Jasmine Rice
- Salad with Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar
- Metabolic Drive® Protein
- Rice Cakes
- Fatty Fish Like Salmon or Lean Cut of Red Meat
- White, Red, or Sweet Potato
- Metabolic Drive® Protein with Fruit
There are no macros or calories listed because the goal is to simply make better food choices. You're not trying to contest diet on day one.
If you were to fit in foods you enjoy here that are minimally processed and nutrient dense, you'd naturally find yourself coming down from the fuscular (fat-muscular) range, to the "hey you look like you stopped eating like an asshole" range. You'd be surprised how far you can get by simply making better choices.
This phase could last from three to six months depending on where you're starting from and how well you adhere to the guidelines.