Two months ago Men’s Fitness editor Jon Lipsley, 37, didn’t have a six pack, didn’t have T-shirt filling biceps and didn’t have broad shoulders. He had a belly and love handles, and was overweight.
Before undergoing eight weeks of simple life changes, he had big, dark sleep-deprived circle under his eyes, was stressed and had low energy levels.
Eight weeks later he is one stone six pounds lighter, but had also gained himself a six pack, bulging biceps and dramatically reduced body fat.
The plan was designed to answer the simple question: What’s the quickest and easiest way to get in shape without a personal trainer or expensive meal-prep company?
The plan is a total lifestyle change, made up of wellbeing and life tips, simple diet rules and exercise methods.
Weight loss: Lose belly fat, gain muscle and achieve a six-pack in just eight weeks with these simple steps
Made up of only four sessions a week, much less than expected to achieve such drastic results in a short space of time, the New Body Plan also encourages significant rest and recovery time, particularly a good night’s sleep.
Shedding belly fat and transforming his physique, Jon insists on the “protein first” rule. Eating protein at every meal from meat, fish and eggs, will allow you to gain lean muscle mass fast. Prioritise protein, then add healthy fats, and fill in the last gaps with carbs.
The Men’s Fitness editor also recommends clearing out your cupboards to avoid moments of weak will power and keep you focused on the diet plan.
Ensure there are no beers, other alcoholic beverages or tempting foods in the fridge, as they might limit your progress over the eight weeks.
According to Jon, how you eat, as well as how much, can also influence how full you feel. Avoid wolfing down portions and allow your body to register the meal eaten, before going back for a second helping.
The plan includes just four workouts a week and can transform your body
Another top tip from the 37-year-old’s plan is to eat at the table, as opposed to in front of the television.
A recent analysis of studies looking into how people eat and their total food intake found that people eat more when they are distracted.
Eating in a rushed or stressed state will also reduce how well your body digests food and absorbs nutrients, often leading to weight gain.
Follow a “90 per cent nutrition” rule, with 90 per cent of your diet based around lean protein and veg with some carbs and fats, and the other 10 per cent can be used on your own pleasures, so you’ll never be totally deprived.
What grade of quality foods you buy is also influential when it comes to losing weight and gaining muscle. Free range animals have a more varied diet and get more exercise, meaning more muscle and therefore less fatty meat.
Alternate between upper body and lower body when working out, upping intensity each session
These free range meats will have more vitamins A,B and K, amino acids, iron, selenium, phosphorus and zinc in them, and even omega 3-s – linked to reducing body fat and improving brain health.
The plan also recommends a strict meal prepping routine, making breakfast and lunch the night before so they’re ready to take out of the fridge the next morning.
If you don’t have a fridge at work, buy a cooler bag, and aim to bulk-buy your food each week – saving you time and money.
The belly-fat blasting plan has an intricate training routine, but the tips for success are transferable so all lean muscle building goals.
Jon recommends working different isolated sections of your body in each training session, to get maximum impact.
The plan, devised by Jon Lipsley, saw him lose over a stone AND build muscle
Start with your upper body (bench presses, shoulder presses, press-ups and bicep curls), then move to your lower body (lunges, squats, step-ups, crunches and plank jacks).
Alternate between the two, adding more intensity, resistance and weight to each exercise you perform over the eight weeks.
Working isolated muscles is said to be the fastest way to achieve muscle growth, and squeezing each target muscle as you work out can help the muscle to properly contract, with the “better the contraction, the better the outcome”.
It is also important to make every rep look the same, with each rep taking the same amount of time, as this will produce the best results. When it comes to training it is also key to keep tension on your muscle instead of locking joints and to not use momentum when swinging weights or using kettle bells.
By ditching alcohol, decreasing his meal sizes and building up to four gym sessions a week, Jon swapped his beer belly and love handles for a toned six-pack and chiselled biceps.