Change your mind, change your body, change your life!
This is the inspirational words from the #1 New York Times Bestseller Body for Life by Bill Phillips and Michael D’Orso.
Today is my first day of the 12 Week Rapid Fat Loss challenge from USN and I am so excited to finally start with a complete new look on things. The start of a healthy mind, body and life…
First of all I would like to explain to you more about body fat percentages, for some people don’t really know what to aim for. First of all every individual is different and everyone’s goals can differ. What is the ideal fat percentage for me isn’t necessary except able for you, so this will give you a good guide on what is Ideal for your age and your body.
What is a healthy, realistic body fat percentage to aim for so you can have that lean, toned body you desire?
There is five categories of fat percentages namely:
Risky High Body Fat Category:
When you’re in the risky high body fat category (represented by over 30% body for males and over 40% body fat for females) you’re going to see visible cellulite and excess fat all over the entire body. The body shape will look very round and often the body will bulge in certain places where the clothing is right around the skin.
The Excess Fat Category:
Those in the excess fat category have 21-30% body fat for males and 31-40% body fat for females and won’t have quite the degree of excess weight as those in the risky category but will still look largely overweight. These people may carry a decent amount of muscle mass, but it is for the most part covered in a thick layer of body fat as well.
The Lean Category:
For those who want to take their body slightly further, you come to the lean category. This represents between 9-12% body fat for males or 19-22% body fat for females. At this point you will see clear muscle definition, often being able to clearly see where the muscle starts and ends.
There will be little fat to pinch on the body and it will be clearly obvious these individuals are exercising regularly and following a strict diet.
The Ultra Lean Category:
Then you have the ultra lean category, represented by 5-8% body fat for males and 15-18% body fat for females. This is typically where fitness and bodybuilding competitors are coming in, so muscle definition will be at its highest.
Veins may start appearing at this stage and very little fat will be evident at all on the body. Note that females will not look as lean as males (as obvious by the difference in body fat percentages) but this is also because females will have more necessary body fat internally to help support their reproductive capabilities. It would be futile for a female to try and get to the same body fat level as a male as it is neither safe nor healthy.
Finally there is the risky stage; less than 5% body fat for males and less than 15% body fat for females. At this point the individual is setting themselves up for a number of negative health consequences and could even risk death by staying at these extremely low levels for an extended period of time. In females, reproduction often ceases when body fat is at this level, setting you up for problems down the road.
Today was my first measurement sessions and this is how it looked like:
I must honestly say that this was rather a surprise for I honestly expected it to be so much more…
Now the next thing will be to set a realistic goal for myself and to work toward that. Setting realistic goals for oneself is what helps to motivate you when you track your results by doing a measurement every two weeks if possible. This will motivate you and give you the confidence to go forward and to work hard!
My aim is not necessarily to loose allot of weight but more to focus on the overall look of my body. I am not “cut” one bit and this is where my training plan will come in the next 12 weeks. I am more of a Cardio junky and love my Studio Aerobic classes like Zumba fitness. I never wanted to do weight training and that is where I need results. Cardio helps with overall endurance/fitness and I am a walking testimony of that. It is so important to know your heart rate during training and to set goals for every session and to keep the balance. This is where my Polar watch comes in and I am so so thankful for this technology. This may sound stupid to some but it really does make a difference to track your progress or information after a training session. This is a little motivator in itself. 🙂
I will take a before photograph tonight and then as I progress with the challenge.