What is the difference between weight loss and fat loss? It may seem like just semantics at first, but in reality, it is an incredibly important distinction when it comes to setting your goals, informing your choices, and getting your mind in the right place.
Let’s break it down. Losing weight means one simple thing: when you step on a scale, the number is smaller than the last time.
It does not mean you got more toned, it does not mean you’re on the way to your dream beach body, and it certainly does not mean you got any healthier.
There are plenty of ways to lose weight. Here are a few:
- Starve yourself
- Slave away on the treadmill for hours
- Donate blood
- Donate plasma
- Get a haircut
- Clip your nails
- Remove a kidney
- Get an appendectomy
- Amputate a limb
- Shave your entire body
See? Weight loss is easy.
But is that really what you want?
What you want is fat loss.
Fat loss means health. It means becoming more toned, defined. It means losing weight while maintaining muscle mass. It means that as your measurements go down your ability to handle life and whatever it throws at you goes up.
So how do you achieve fat loss? As I’ve said before, fat loss is achieved when you tell your body that it no longer needs to hold on to all that fat.
Eat whole, nutrient-dense foods (forget the nutrition label – look at the ingredient list; the fewer, the better [bonus points if there is no ingredient list, like on a steak]). Walk a lot. Exercise in a way that your body understands, and only as much as needed. Manage your stress. Sleep. A lot.
Some of these things are easier said than done, but no one said you needed to make a complete overhaul of your life all at once. Work on creating new routines and habits little by little. Start small. Just make sure you start right now.