There is one common focus that most fat loss programs agree on, and that is that you need to burn more energy than what you are taking in.
That of course makes sense, and it is known as "energy balance." You need what is called "energy deficit" or "energy debt" if you are going to lose fat. In other words, you have to be on the negative side of the scales.
In the beginning that works very well, but as anyone who has been on a diet can tell you, the success doesn't last indefinitely.
At first it is pretty easy and works very well, but old habits return and before you know it the fat is coming back.
Then their instinct is to do more of what was bringing them success before, and that is to eat less and do more. But the results are not as good, and here is why.
After a certain period of time, simple being energy deficit isn't the only factor in keeping the fat off. You need to have more of a "calorie maintenance" diet rather than a "below calorie" diet and you need to exercise to expend more calories.
But still, the fat won't always come off as fast as you want it to.
Why? Because once you've hit a certain level of fat loss, it isn't only about energy balance, but actually has more to do with hormones.
Leptin, which is a hormone, plays a major role in controlling your fat loss efforts and all factors such as satiety, appetite, "starvation mode." So if you are working towards creating an energy deficit by eating enough and training, the hormone Leptin is not the issue.
The issue may be from other hormones that work a little more insidiously on the effects they have on your physique. Rather than just determining whether or not you gain fat, they decide where you will gain it and whether or not you will be able to lose it from those places.
Those areas of your body we call "problem areas" and they are there for a reason.
It is your hormonal environment that creates those "problem areas" and your body is forced, by your hormones, to have certain patterns of fat storage.
In a subsequent article I will go over the three most common regional fat storage types and which hormones cause them.