You’re giving it your all at the gym. Your workouts are intense. You’re lifting weights, you’re doing cardio. You can feel your strength growing… But for some reason, you’re still not seeing a ripped physique when you look in the mirror… Why?

Too much fast food? Sporadic training habits? Underwhelming workouts?

Those are the obvious reasons. However, for this article I want to reveal some of the hidden culprits. If you’re not getting the ripped results you want, chances are you’re making one of these physique softening mistakes.

  1. You Cut Your Calories Too Quickly

This is a very common problem for many dieters. It’s a huge mistake to drop all your carbs right out the gate!

Yes, drastically cutting carbs can decrease body weight, but that drop will likely be short-lived. The problem with dieting is that your body will begin fighting to prevent too much fat loss. To your body fat is a great energy reserve when food is no longer plentiful. This was an issue for our ancestors, but not really an issue for us in modern times.

The goal should be to slowly reduce carbs and calories to prevent this effect. A sudden drop will put your body into “starvation mode” which will hold you back from getting the ripped physique you want.

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  1. You’re Slacking On Your HIIT Workouts

A very common misconception in bodybuilding circles is that you must do low-intensity cardio regimens to maximize fat burn and spare muscle mass. However, research has proven the exact opposite.

Studies have shown that people who do some form of high-intensity-interval-training (HIIT) lose twice as much body fat as people that do steady-state (slow and steady) cardio. And as an added bonus people that do HIIT spend far less time doing cardio!

To sum it up, HIIT results in less time spent doing cardio, and a lot more fat burned. Why? Because HIIT boost your post-workout metabolism, which greatly boost the calories you burn when you’re not working out. So make sure you’re HIIT-ing it at the gym!

  1. You’re Lifting Too Light

Another common misconception about getting ripped: “You should opt for light weight and high reps to build lean muscle mass.”

This is simply not true.

Similar to HIIT, research has confirmed that lifting heavier loads during your workout results in a higher metabolic rate after your workout as compared to lifting lighter weights.Simply put, you burn more calories from lifting heavier loads.

So aim for heavier weights and fewer reps if you’re looking to get ripped. And by heavier I mean a load that limits you to 8 reps per set and training to failure. This will boost your metabolic rate long after your workout and you’ll be well on your way to getting ripped!

  1. You’re Taking Too Much Rest

You absolutely have to minimize your rest between sets. If getting ripped is your goal you should spend as much time as possible moving in the gym, not sitting or standing around.

In a study conducted by researchers at the College of New Jersey it was found that when subjects rested 30 seconds between sets on the bench press for 5 sets of 5 reps, they burned a little more than 50 percent more calories than when they rested three minutes between sets.

I suggest using supersets and cardio acceleration to turn your rest time into work time. As I stated earlier, cardio acceleration can boost fat burn and save you time in the gym. And for those that don’t know, supersets are when you do two different exercises back to back (either for two different muscle groups such as chest followed by legs or for the same body part such as two bicep exercises.)

Now why should you also incorporate supersets? Well, research has proven that supersets are a powerful calorie burner. In fact, you can expect an increase of calories burned during your workout and after your workout of around 35 percent!

  1. You’re Sitting For Too Long

What you do when you’re not at the gym is just as important as what you do when you’re at the gym. If you’re sitting around watching hours of television and not active throughout the day you’re likely compromising your fat loss efforts.

There have been numerous studies that have linked the amount of time spent sitting during the day to body fat levels. There are also far greater health implications. Research has shown that sitting for prolonged periods of time increases the risk of disease and early death. Just Google “sitting disease” and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

Conclusion

So are you ready to get ripped? It’s not as hard as it seems when you take into account the tips I mentioned in this article. The overall goal should be to avoid a fat loss slump by staying active throughout the day, to give your all to your workouts, and to stay as active as possible while at the gym.

You should make it your duty to seize all opportunities for physical activity. If you do, you’re well on your way to being ripped!