Still thinking about starting to get fit for the cricket season? A huge round of applause to you for trying and an even bigger one for this massive in-depth guide to losing weight:
Weight loss information is finite. Everything you actually need to know about it already exists and has existed for quite some timeâ€¦ It has not changed, and it never will change. It will never improve. It will never become easier, it will never become harder. The way cavemen lost weight is the exact same way flying-telepathic-super-humans will lose weight in 4028.
Every single point in the guide applies to you as a cricketer wanting to lose weight as it does to anyone else feeling a little flabby. So read it, follow the instructions and make a start.
I'd also like to add these things to make sure your plans go even more smoothly.
- Calorie counting. I'm not a big fan of calorie counting. It's hard work to keep up and even harder to accurately estimate how much you are eating. Most people will get results simply by following the eating instructions in the guide about eating less processed food and more vegetables.
- Protein. As Dr Berardi says, most people don't eat enough lean sources. It's a complex and individual area so it's hard to make a recommendation but I always err on the side of more protein rather than just meeting the minimum to avoid starvation. There are a number of benefits listed in the article above.
- Recipes. People eat food not calories. Now you have a guide to the makeup of your meals, seek out real food that tastes good that meets those recommendations. Do anything else and even those with amazing will power will be bored. Precision Nutrition has over 100 healthy and tasty dishes but you can collect ideas from magazines and websites just as easily. I would never go back to bland â€˜healthy' food.
- Vegetables. The weight loss guide is great but I don't think it talks about the magical weight loss powers of vegetables. What makes veg so good? They are loaded with essential nutrients, they fill you up without being full of empty calories, they sort out your acid/base balance and they act as antioxidants to other more oxidative foods (especially good for those recovering from injury or aged over 25). Eat veg 1-3 portions with every meal or snack, even breakfast.
- Aerobic exercise. There is no doubt the type of aerobic exercise the guide talks about will help you lose weight. It won't help you be a better cricketer though. For this reason I would replace slow steady exercise with interval training. I would also recommend more cricket practice and playing. If it is the off season, do something else you enjoy that gets your sweat on: football, table tennis, playing with the kids or walking up mountains. Anything will do. A couple of hours of activity a week (spread over 4-5 days) should do it, but the more the better.
- Weight training. Weight training is essential for losing fat without losing muscle. It also helps with making you a better player by reducing injury risk. Somehting is better than nothing but shoot for about 3 hours a week of gym time if you can.
- Insulin. One thing the guide doesn't really go into is insulin management. For me this is the most important weight loss factor after eating less. It boils down to 'saving' your starchy foods (bread, pasta, potatoes, rice) until after you have exercised. You can read more here, here and here.
- Cheating. It's almost impossible to go on a diet for any serious amount of time without lapsing now and again. The trick to this is to manage the lapses. You can easily go off plan a couple of times a week without it causing problems so decide when you are going to stuff down a pizza and do it every now and again. It's very motivating to know that if you have been â€˜good' all week you can scoff your favourite pig-out meal on Saturday night. So make sure you cheat, but not often.
Even if you don't want to lose weight and just want to get stronger and better at cricket the guide will help. Just ignore the bit about calorie deficits and you are good to go. Healthy people make better cricketers no matter how much they weigh.
If you are looking to lose weight to improve your cricket leave a comment and let me know how you found the guide and if it helps you get better. Good luck!© Copyright miSport Holdings Ltd 2008
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