Can You Target Fat Loss?
You, like everyone, would love to have the luxury of targeting where you burn body fat. This would be a dream come true if you know the ideal body type you are striving for. I’m firstly going to share with you what usually happens when I decide to get shredded at a certain time during the year.
When I first start losing body fat and getting shredded the first area where I notice it the most is my belly and I think this is the case for most guys since most guys typically gain fat on their stomach and abdomen. By the way, when I say I’m losing body fat, I don’t mean I’m going from being actually fat to ripped. I mean I’m going from being already pretty lean to being shredded to the bone. I just thought I would clarify that before moving on so none of you are confused…
This is what happens to most guys. You see the weight melt off your belly (not literally) and your abs start to show especially first thing in the morning when you have no food or drink in your system. If this doesn’t happen to you and you’re the type of guy who loses weight but sees it coming off his face or chest first then yeah you’re an anomaly man. You’re a weirdo…jokes 😉 Not everyone is the same but this is certainly not the common experience for most guys who are in the process of losing body fat.
After I’ve lost several lbs on the scales and my abs are more visible the next area of my body that starts to really lean out is my arms. The insertion points between my biceps and shoulders and biceps and elbows become really defined rather than blocky and dense like when I’m focusing on muscle and strength gain. I really start to notice whenever I’m doing tricep dips my arms overall have much more definition and shape compared to usual and I actually appear bigger which is kind of strange.
By this point, I’m looking lean but not quite what I consider as ripped and shredded. To get to this stage I still need to lose weight off my chest and back which are always very stubborn areas whenever I start losing fat. It takes a good few weeks of consistent dieting for anything significant to really change with both of these areas, especially my back, even if I have been in a calorie deficit for quite some time already. In particular, my lower back holds stubborn fat that just won’t shift in the initial stages of my cutting phase. This may or may not be the case for you, but you should be aware of how your body burns body fat over time as you transition from the initial stages of a diet to the last couple of weeks. If you’re not, get dieting ready for summer so you know how your body responds!
Lastly, my legs are stubborn as hell when it comes to fat loss. Especially my inner thigh/groin area and calves. Those areas just won’t shift and if they do it requires me to be down to around 10% body fat before that process starts to happen and bearing in mind at this stage I have already been dieting for a couple of months, this is quite mentally taxing and challenging to push through given the sustained calorie deficit my body has been in for quite some time already.
You might lose fat in the same way that I do. You might not. But the point here is this: you can’t choose where you are going to lose body fat. You can’t wake up one day and say, “With this fitness regime I’m going to lose fat only from my stomach”, or, “With this program, I’m focusing on getting a stronger jawline”. Fat loss doesn’t work like that. You just have to accept that it is what it is and if you stick to your diet long enough AND, more importantly, you are accurate and stay disciplined, you will inevitably lose fat off all areas anyway. If it means that you have to be a bit more patient to lose the stubborn areas that you’ve been wanting to shift for ages then it’s 100% worth the wait.
Just a quick story before I wrap up today’s blog post – I can remember when I was younger I used to be obsessed with trying to figure out how to get a six-pack. I would read all these fitness magazines such as Men’s Health and be fascinated by the lastest ‘ab v-burn workout’ thinking that was ‘the secret’ to my lack of visible six-pack abs. This then led to me following these workouts in my bedroom with my stopwatch and headphones on thinking I could do crunches faster than Rocky Balboa could throw punches. Haha, what a fool! The big problem with this mindset is you are focusing on very tiny details and this kind of marketing works because people want the easy option, and as a dumb naive twelve-year-old kid, I fell for it like a lot of guys and followed these workouts like they were the holy grail. At least my Mum was paying for the magazines…
You want the easy route to success. I’m here to tell you in a very unsexy way that there is no secret and there is no easy way. There’s just consistency with your training and nutrition that leads to the fat loss, and ultimately the body you’ve always wanted. Yes, some guys might lose fat faster than you in the areas you want to lose it most, but you’ve just got to buckle up and get on with it. It might take a few more weeks of grinding it out with your calorie deficit but if you follow my advice with the right training and nutrition program you will soon see the fat melting off in all areas and you will be looking like a Greek God.