Training for Fat Loss

By Ulli Ackermann

One of the first questions I ask, when signing up a client for their journey to a better version of themselves is usually: “What do you want to achieve?” And while the answers are as diverse as the people training with us, the most common one is fat-loss.

There are countless myths, half-truths and “bro-science” aka invalidated gym-talk out in the fitness world and combined with a new fad diet and ultra-fat burning routine that is being promoted in magazines every week, one can only wonder, what really does work. The answer is more complex and needs more space than a short article can provide but here are a few bullet points to consider:

– There is no spot reduction One of the greatest and most common misconceptions of them all. You want to lose the fat around your mid-section and believe that doing 100 crunches every day is going to get rid of it, since you are working that area. Unfortunately, it is not that easy. While you are working the local muscle tissue underneath the fat tissue, your body would never use just that fat tissue as fuel. Because that’s what fat is. Excessive fuel that has been stored because you didn’t need it at the time. And the human body is a biological organism designed to always stay in balance. So while you will be burning calories off of your fat depots, it will come off on the whole of your body, not just on your belly. Which brings us to the second point.

– Whole body exercising is more effective.  The only way to consistently lose body fat is by creating a calorie deficit. That means that, if you eat 2000kcal a day, you need to be burning more than that, lets say 2200 or more. If you do 100 crunches a day, you may be burning an excessive 50 calories. Arg, that’s not even one chocolate bar. If instead, you incorporate big compound moves, deadlifts, squats, push and pull movements for your upper body, you may very well get up to 2500 kcal expenditure during that day. And depending on repetition ranges used, you add muscle mass as well, therefore increasing your basic metabolic rate, which in turn may burn another 100 or 200kcal a day.

– Consistency and patience is key.  One kilogram of body fat stores roughly 7000 kcal. The average adult expends around 2000kcal in a 24 hour window. So even if you wouldn’t eat or drink anything at all, it would take you more than three days to get rid of 1kg of body fat. The scale may say more than that, but that is cell fluids, in particular, water being lost in the process. And even if I would advise for such drastic measures to start off a fat loss journey in some rare cases, the tool of a full fast is not effective in terms of long term weight loss. The main reason for this is that the body doesn’t just lose fat if you don’t eat. It takes a little from everything you have, breaking down precious muscle tissue, important nutrients and muscle glycogen in the process. If that wasn’t enough red flags already, the metabolism slows down, burning less calories in the process, which is suboptimal to say the least.

If we take the above example of a 300 – 500 kcal deficit during one day, which is realistic and healthy with appropriate exercise, you end up burning an excessive 10000 – 15000kcal a month, which equals up to 2kg of body fat. That is, if you don’t fall off the wagon and indulge in naughty foods or drink in that month. So if somebody comes to me and says, they want to lose a stone, I will say, be prepared for 3 months of hard work every week!

It takes time to lose weight and it’s certainly not as easy as piling it on. But the moments when you look into the mirror or at a picture before and after are going to be the most rewarding and accomplished feeling ever.


[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’][/author_image] [author_info]Ulli is a Personal Trainer at MoreFit Finsbury Park and has a diverse sports background ranging from weightlifting to Martial Arts, downhill mountain biking to even semi-professional dancing. His fitness approach is based on a MSc in Sports Science with emphasis on Motion and Performance. This enables him to tailor custom programs for clients of all backgrounds with an assorted range of goals. His main focus lies on body re-composition, body sculpturing and weight loss including a variety of exercise methods to achieve best results. “As a Trainer, I pour my passion and energy into our session to make you work at 100%. Nothing gives better results and leaves you buzzing after as much. I will guide you on the path to a better you and it will leave you healthier, stronger and more energetic!”[/author_info] [/author]

Simple Eating

By Chris McKeown

There is no secret to losing weight and having a good diet. It’s all about eating a good quality well balanced meals at the right time.

For weight loss we want to make it simple. To start with we want to look at basing all our meals around protein, vegetables and use pulses and whole grains to bulk out the meal to keep you full for longer. We also want smaller meals more often throughout the day. As this keeps your blood sugar and insulin levels in balance and prevents you craving these snack foods like biscuits and crisps.

Foods we really want to stay away from are simple carbohydrates and processed foods. These are the foods that your body converts and stores as fat very easily.

We also want to have a good meal 1 to 2 hours before your workout then again within 20 minutes post workout. If you cannot eat within this time I recommend a quality protein shake to help your body start recovering.

Below are a few ideas of good foods and also foods that you should try and cut down on.



  • Poultry (chicken, turkey)
  • Oily or White Fish (mackerel, salmon, tuna, cod, haddock)
  • Red Meat (small amount of lean meat)
  • Eggs (scrambled, poached, boiled)
  • Lentils
  • Soya or tofu


Vegetables: You want to eat plenty of vegetables of all different types and colours as they all contain different vitamins, minerals and fibre.

  • Kale
  • Sweet potato
  • Beetroot
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Tomato
  • Spinach
  • Tomato,
  • Peppers
  • Cucumber
  • Courgette
  • Cabbage
  • Artichoke
  • Asparagus * Squash * Watercress * Parsnip
  • Peas

Grains and Pulses: Key point here is that you want to be eating whole grains

  • Lentils
  • Quinoa
  • Barley * Pulses (kidney beans, green beans, chickpeas, cannellini beans) * Oats * Buckwheat * Millet * Rye * Wholegrain rice * Wholegrain bread and pasta (eaten in small amounts)


It is good to have a small amount of fat in your diet

  • Fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines, anchovies, herrings)
  • Coconut oil (cooking in)
  • Olive oil, Some nuts and seeds (almonds, pumpkin, seeds, walnuts, flax seeds, chia seeds)
  • Avocado

BREAKFAST IDEAS * 2 eggs with spinach, avocado and wholegrain toast * Porridge with banana honey and cinnamon * Natural yogurt with berries  * Oat cake with cottage cheese

SNACK IDEAS * A piece of fruit * Handful of nuts & seeds

LUNCH/DINNER IDEAS / pre and post workout ideas * Chicken with brown rice, sweet potato, kale and tomato * Salmon with lentils, sweet potato and broccoli


* Fried food * Fast food * Sugary snacks * Processed foods * Refined carbs * Biscuits, crisps, chocolate * Pop drinks * Juice * Sandwiches

These are just ideas. Mix and match the foods from the above lists to your taste. Food you enjoy is food you will stick to. AWAYS BASE YOUR MEAL AROUND PROTEIN AND VEG.

If you struggle to make your lunches there are always great options around your work there is no excuse for just picking up a sandwich from Pret A Manger. You all put in so much effort into training don’t waste it buy eating crap food just because it is easy.

Easy ideas near MoreFit Personal Training Studio in St Paul’s:

  • Hummus Bros. It doesn’t get much easier than that. It right above us and serves great and healthy food.
  • Porterford Butchers on Watling Street.  Top quality chicken and meat cooked an ready to go after a tough training session there is a better meal then a chicken breast from them and a chunky salad from M&S.

For more food options near you talk to your trainer they will have many great ideas to make your life easy.

Enjoy Simple Eating!


[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’][/author_image] [author_info]Chris is a Personal Trainer at MoreFit St Paul’s and has worked with people from many different backgrounds, all with their own goals and abilities. He is passionate about exercise and physical activity and truly believes that we are happier when we are healthier. Throughout my life I have taken part in a variety or sports from rugby and rowing to my true passion of adventure races and running, were I have competed in events from coast 2 coast races to ultra marathons. I use this passion for health and fitness to inspire and motivate my clients to reach and surpass any goals they have and live a happier, healthier and MOREFIT LIFE.[/author_info] [/author]