Stop obsessing. Getting down to 5% body fat requires insane dedication. There are other quick fix formulas, but here is the proven method if you want to know how to do it:
- Train with weights intensely every day for 75 minutes with intense focus where you reach a full stretch and a peak contraction on every rep and go to failure on close to every set.
- Rotate your body parts so that you hit each body part twice a week.
- Perform HIIT cardio three times a week on an empty stomach.
- Eat every 2.5 hours like clockwork.
- Drink a gallon and a half of water per day.
- Cut out all carbs except for sweet potatoes and oatmeal.
- Cut out all dairy.
- Eat until satiated but never until full.
You will feel depleted. Some days you’ll feel great because of how you look. Other days will be an absolute grind. You will feel exhausted many times and you could actually lose the strength you built up. Training that many hours is not fun on a low carb diet. Just really assess the quality of life of fitness competitors.
I looked great during that time period. What I realized when I got there was that my quality of life wasn’t better. Internally, I didn’t feel happy. I realized that life is made up of a lot of compartments and fitness is just one. I then obsessed on being addicted to balance and improving my flaws as opposed to thinking that an obsession of fitness would make the rest of my life fall into place.
Now I hover around 7% body fat by eating more carbs, being a little lax on my eating schedule, and taking a day off from the gym here and there. I feel more energetic during workouts and my strength has gone up. I don’t get the same head turns I used to get, but I’m happier inside. A 2% body fat difference can be a difference in seeing things negatively or being full of vibrant, healthy life.
I still take my training and diet seriously, but I’m not obsessed. That’s why we created Muscle Prodigy and we create workout programs that allow you to get in shape, but to live your life also. We want to help you get in great shape but we are more focused in creating systems that allow you to thrive in all areas, not just the way you look in the mirror. I can assure you that your work and career is more likely suffer if you enter a fitness competition and are serious about it. Your brain can’t possibly be alert when it’s trying to get glucose by breaking down fat (and precious muscle).
Fitness is supposed to make your life better, not worse. We train with weights because it helps our golf game, not to get injured. Health research was designed to increase longevity. This isn’t a vanity construct and it’s a flawed societal norm to believe that’s why you should take up fitness.
Life has a cost. If you want to be good at anything in life and have a better quality of life then it will require work. However, obsessing over it (if it’s not your career or your major definite purpose in life) is a flawed concept that will deteriorate your quality of life and sense of fulfillment.
So would you rather be at 7% body fat and be happy on the inside or 5%? These are real goals you must ask yourself before embarking on a fitness plan.
I always suggest for you to try it yourself, see how it feels and then make the choice based on what’s a better life. I’ve made mine.
I always stress for you to focus on your internal health and how you feel as opposed to what you look like. You should want to work hard because it builds who you are and how you feel, but when the hard work gives such diminishing marginal returns to the point where you have a distaste for life, that’s when it’s time to scale it back.