Congratulations on making it to the end of your third week on my 8-Week Fat-loss Figure Trainer. That’s a significant achievement! You’ve now reached the point where you’re relying more on discipline than your initial enthusiasm. I hope that the results you’re seeing, though, are fueling both your discipline and your enthusiasm. At this point you should be aware of noticeable improvements in your figure.
Still, you have a lot of things to do today. Here they are:
YOUR DAY 21 TO-DO LIST:
WEIGH YOURSELF: You need to do this right after you wake up—before you take in any fluids, protein, or food. The key is to see how much your weight has shifted since you began the program—and also to compare it against your previous week’s weigh-in. BTW: I haven’t said this before, but don’t weigh yourself on other days! Save the weight check for each of your Rest and Reevaluate Days.
At this point, I hope you’re already figuring out the changes you need to make to support changes in your figure.
Here are some quick bullets for my Day 21 tips, based on the changes you’re seeing.
* I have added weight: No, you’re not if you’re following my suggestions. If you’re not following my suggestions, then follow them if you want to reshape your figure as you reduce body fat. The one exception is for women who weighed very little, but are now increasing muscle tissue as they maintain their current body-fat levels.
* I haven’t lost weight:Get another calipers test to see if you’re losing body fat. If you are, then hold steady. If you aren’t then cut calories to 13g per pound of bodyweight each day. It’s possible that you’re adding muscle mass while losing body fat—people tend to add mass more quickly than they’re able to shed body fat. You can bump your daily steady-state cardio session up to 30-35 minutes a day if you don’t think that’s what is happening for you.
* I’ve lost up to about 5 pounds: I recommend that you don’t make any shifts to your cardio, training or nutrition program. This is about what you should expect after cleaning up your diet, cutting calories a bit, and training with intensity. In fact, it’s okay if you’re lost a little more than 5 pounds over 21 days—but you don’t want to go much beyond about 2 pounds a week.
* I’ve lost more than 6 pounds: You may be losing weight too quickly, and this may be a sign that you’re burning muscle mass. It’s unlikely that you’ve burned more than 6 pounds of body fat in 3 weeks. Reduce your cardio to 15 minutes per day, and up your calorie consumption to 16g per pound of bodyweight each day for the last week of Phase One. That means if you were targeting 2100 calories you’ll shoot for about 2250. Go with a little more slow-digesting carbs, especially earlier in the day.
TAKE PHOTOS: Take your photos today to keep up the record of your progress. You should take these photos the same way you did during your prep and on Day 7 and 14. That means wearing the same clothes, using the same photographer (even if that’s you). Shoot yourself from the same angles in the same place with the same lighting. And position your body as you did for your previous photos. And, of course, take these photos at the same time of day.
UPDATE YOUR JOURNAL: Make sure that you’ve recorded all of your workouts throughout the week. Also make certain that you’ve included all of the foods and supplements you’ve taken during the week. This record is a huge benefit in helping you figure out if you have any weaknesses in the big picture while you’re following my 8-Week Fat-loss Figure Trainer.
Get in your cheat meal today. Remember this is not just a reward: It’s a benefit moving forward. It doesn’t matter what time of day you take in this meal—choose the time that works best for you life. Keep in mind that meals help rev your metabolism and restock muscle glycogen for the intense training you’ll perform tomorrow.
Still, this meal should only be about 5 calories for your target weight. That means if you’re trying to get to 140 pounds as your end goal, then you can go with up to about 700 calories for this meal.
As far as foods go, I don’t want you to consume only fast-digesting carbs (sugar). You can consume foods such as pizza, pasta or hamburgers that contain protein, dietary fats and carbs. Get in a balance of macros during your cheat meal, going with foods that you’ve been craving that aren’t on your program.
As I said on Days 7 and 14, you can also perform some activity today. Just because it’s a rest day, that doesn’t mean you need to sit home on the couch. Take your kids or dog for a hike; enjoy the day or the evening with your significant other. The key is to give your body a break from your typical weight-training and cardio routines. You’ll be back in the gym tomorrow.