6 steps to getting shredded no matter what your experience level
Getting shredded appears to be easier said than done, as most of you already know from personal experience. Everywhere you look though, we see images and videos of men and women who have washboard abs and the body fat percentage of a cheetah – and then we look at ourselves and say, “What am I doing wrong?” Well the honest truth I’d tell most people is, “everything.” While that may seem harsh and even crass at first, the fact of the matter is I come in contact with so many people that want to get shredded but haven’t the faintest idea how to put all the pieces together and make it work for them. Sure, they may have one or two of the elements right but they might be doing part of those elements incorrectly or be slightly off – enough to prevent progress. One thing I will never do, is sugar coat the truth, and the truth is most people are doing it wrong.
Here’s how you to do “getting shredded” right
These six steps I’m about to present aren’t necessarily the bible of getting shredded. However, these are steps that have worked for me personally, and I use them with those seeking my advice – and they work. If you live by these next six steps, you will watch the body fat melt away and the physique transformation you’ve been desperately seeking come to fruition.
Step 1: Set goals
As basic as this sounds, it’s the step that most people overlook and the reason most people quit before they see results. Setting a realistic goal is paramount to succeeding. One of the ways I’ve goal set in the past is by selecting avatars. These are people in the industry that I look up to, whose physiques I admire and whose advice and mindset I hold in high regard. If you don’t have at least one avatar, the time to find one is now. Spend some time scouring Google searches for fitness models, fitness icons, gurus, etc. that resound with the elements I mentioned above. When you find an avatar, look up their height and weight and maybe even their body fat percentage on and off season. Now you have a bench mark to set your goals by.
Next, take some measurements and weigh yourself. Look at where you are and make a realistic goal of where you want to be. Usually, about three months is what it takes to see a solid physique transformation. So now, write down your goals and plaster them all over. Tape them to the fridge, on the back of your door, and on your forehead if you need to. Just make sure you can see them every day.
Step 2: Commit to a cardio schedule
If you want to get shredded, you HAVE to do cardio. There is no shortcut or other way around it, and there definitely is no magic pill to get you shredded. Old fashioned, hard work, is the key here. We’ve found that the most effective cardio is High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). This is where you rotate between going “all out” for a short period of time, to reducing the intensity to about 60-80% of your “all-out” for the next short period of time. You rotate back and forth for your entire cardio session. For example, 30 seconds of level 10 on the stair mill and 30 seconds of level 6 on the stair mill. Do this for your entire cardio session.
We’ve also found that morning cardio on an empty stomach does wonders for incinerating body fat. Your body won’t have any carbs or sugars to use for energy since you’ve been sleeping for 6-8 hours (usually) and haven’t eaten anything for breakfast. This means it will be using it’s own body fat for an energy source. Yeah, you can thank us later for that one 😉
Decide how many days a week you can commit to doing cardio and then don’t let anything stand in your way.
Step 3: Stop dieting and start using a nutrition plan
Diets are the worst possible thing that you can do to your body. They come with the preset notion that they are only for a short period of time and that they will be grueling and you may or may not get results. How many times over the years has Oprah Winfrey plugged a diet she was doing? Since I was a child, I can honestly say that my memory of her is all about new diets and watching her rebound off of them. This may be a bad example for some of you, but it’s an example that millions of Americans watched when I was younger. We came to believe that diets don’t work, or they only work temporarily. Well guess what, we were right.
Nutrition plans, on the other hand, are a key building block to getting shredded. In a solid nutrition plan you should look for the following:
- Designed by a licensed nutritionist
- Includes daily macros
- Custom for your body
There is no one-size fits all nutrition plan. However, there are some that use well established, scientific formulas to calculate all of the required dietary intakes. Our Genesis Program, for example, has a nutrition plan designed by our Master Sports Nutritionist with a proprietary formula she created. The program will auto-calculate your daily macros (grams of protein, carbs, and fats per meal), and display them in your Genesis Dashboard. It’s a no-brainer. You shouldn’t have to think to hard about what you’re going to eat.
Many “meal plans” will be written out so that you are instructed to eat 1/2 cup of this or 1 cup or that, or 8oz of this or that meat. While this is well and good it does a few things that leads to failure for many people. First, it restricts you to only eating the exact items on your meal plan and allows for no flexibility whatsoever. In doing this, people tend to get bored with their meal plans and then they don’t know what to eat and eventually fall off the wagon altogether. A nutrition plan that provides you with your macros is far more flexible than a meal plan. Yes, it takes more work in the beginning to weigh out your food and look up the nutrition facts for everything you’re eating BUT you will ultimately learn an invaluable skill. You will, usually within a week, easily memorize the macro contents of several foods, understand how your nutrition plan works, and have the ability to eat pretty much anything you want as long as it fits your macros. Again, our Genesis Program has a macro-based nutrition plan, loaded with recipes and videos to help you succeed.
Step 4: Find your “WHY”
Your “WHY” is the driving force behind everything that you are doing. It’s the reason that you chose to get shredded in the first place. Your “WHY” MUST have a deep, emotional attachment. Simply saying, “I want to get shredded” is the reason you are going to the gym and doing all these steps we’ve outlined, will get you through to about week two. Then, life will get in the way and you’ll go back to your old habits because getting up in the morning earlier than usual is too hard, or finding time to meal prep isn’t possible, and every other excuse I’ve heard along the way. If you find a deep seated reason as to why you are embarking on this journey, it will push you through the most difficult and trying times. Have you ever seen a movie where a mother crosses through hell to get her child back? That’s love, and that’s the kind of reason we’re looking for here. Are you worried that you won’t be around for your kids’ wedding day because you’re overweight and fear that you might die of a heart attack or some other medical condition? Do you want to prove to your family and show your children that you will lead by example and can accomplish anything if you just put your mind to it? Or do you simply want to stick it to your ex for leaving you when you were overweight and he or she cheated on you with that more in-shape person than you? While the last one isn’t the most positive reason, it’s still A REASON – and it’s deep seated. Breakups make bodybuilders, it’s true.
Step 5: Stay motivated
We talked earlier about finding your avatar for physical appearance. Usually people that are in the limelight will have YouTube channels that are loaded with motivation, workouts, and helpful tips. On our Body Spartan YouTube channel, we put out a TON of motivational videos in hopes that people like you will watch them and stay motivated to finish what they started. So find positive videos, audios, podcasts, etc. and take 20 minutes a day to listen or watch. You can do this when you do your cardio, when you drive to work (audio only here, of course), or plug in your earbuds in the morning when you’re making your breakfast and getting ready for work.
What you put into your ears and mind has a direct correlation with how successful you are – in everything. If you are surrounded by positive energy and influences, you are far more likely to succeed at your goals, whatever they may be.
Other motivational speakers that we listen to personally:
Step 6: Go the distance
As simple as this final step sounds, it’s the one where most people fail. Getting shredded doesn’t happen overnight. It doesn’t happen in a week, or a month, or even three months. It’s a journey and this is especially so if you aren’t already in the low percentages for body fat. It’s easier for me to get shredded for a video shoot or photo shoot because I’ve worked at this for 24 years and have maintained a low body fat percentage throughout that time. Once you’re there, it’s much easier to to lose that last few percentages of body fat and look shredded. Getting there takes time, effort, dedication, and hard work.
YOU WILL SUCCEED if you use all of these steps though. I’ve provided these so that your journey to getting shredded is a successful as it possibly can be. If you use all of these steps combined, you can’t fail.
If you want all of these steps combined for you, in one location, then I am urging you to try our 14-day free trial of our All Access Pass. I created it knowing that people need every step I’ve mentioned here, plus a few more to be successful. We offer a full, 90-day money back guarantee.
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