4 things I’ve learned about fat loss

So, after a 5 stone weight loss and more plateau’s than I can count, I have learned what works and what doesn’t work when it comes to fat loss. The hard way.

Although I am no mastermind, I wanted to share with you my honest tips on how to burn actual fat.  The first thing you need to realize is the difference between weight loss and fat loss.

Fat loss, for one, is a lot harder than weight loss.


How do you loose ‘weight’? Stop eating food, cut out water, run in hot weather. Check the scales one day and you’re down 2lbs and then the next your up 1lbs. The point to note that these 1-5lbs is not always actual fat coming off your body – weight on the scales can be water weight, a heavy meal or even building up muscle.

FAT LOSS, however, is not concerning the number on the scales but more so  the amount of excess fat you have on your body. When you don’t have so much fat to lose, becoming leaner and more toned is extremely difficult. Women hold on to fat more so than men too.

So, how did I manage to continue to burn fat after I lost all the weight?

1. Sugar = fat

You may hear of people talking about how sugar is bad for you in a general sense but in terms of fat loss, sugar is really crucial. Once consumed, sugar gets converted directly into stored energy (fat) quicker than any other foods you eat. Its simple, cut out sugar to cut down on fat.


‘Fat does not make you fat, sugar does.’

The other side to it is that once you have sugar, you will get caught up in the sugar binge cycle, just wanting more. Reality is, you’re not going to get abs very easily if sugar is part of your daily diet.

A little tip to gauge sugar content, check the grams of sugar in the food you are eating. Say, a can of coke has 35g of sugar. You divide that number by 4.

4g of sugar = 1 teaspoon

…so the can of coke has almost 9 teaspoons of sugar. Imagine putting that in your tea!



When I lost most of my weight, I was slim, fit and healthy. However, although I was still training very well and eating very clean, I came to a standstill in terms of weight loss and my body stopped reacting to my continuous efforts. It wasn’t until I was introduced to HIIT that I seen rapid changes.

“HIIT, or high-intensity interval training, is a training technique in which you give all-out, one hundred percent effort through quick, intense bursts of exercise, followed by short, sometimes active, recovery periods. This type of training gets and keeps your heart rate up and burns more fat in less time.”


Short and sweet, HIIT is a ‘change-able’ workout that is constantly changing throughout. The idea is to confuse your body to different levels, variations and resistances to make it work harder. Your body gets used to the same thing very, very easily!

Elle Belle Fit

Lorna Jane Jess Core Ankle

Lora Jane Sasha Excel Top 

My outfit is ElleBelleFit, a brand I have found as a perfect go-to for high quality clothing that will last me through my gym sessions, wash after wash. Its not cheap but its a lot more stylish and feminine as Nike, or any generic brand. I prefer pink in all cases!



Being tired, sluggish and unmotivated can have a huge impact on fat loss. How can you perform at the gym after a couple of hours of sleep? When we are tired we crave sugary foods to keep our blood sugar levels up, the number one fat loss killer!


When we have little sleep, our bodies produce more of the hormone gherlin, which is the signal to our brain that we are hungry and lower amounts of leptin which is the hormone that tells your body when you’re full. This is a slippery slope into consuming more calories than needed, just because you didn’t get enough shut eye!

In addition, sleep deprivation causes water retention which can bloat us and make us feel frumpy. There is nothing more un motivating than feeling squishy!

4. Consistency

One thing I have seen help me get to where I am in is being consistent. I always tell people who ask me for advice on how to get ‘into the grove’ of weight loss and the first thing that I tell them is that no matter how many times you fall off the bandwagon, always, always get back on.


The times when you feel unmotivated, tell yourself you’ll only do half of what you normally do in the gym. Or perhaps you are craving some pasta. Talk yourself through it. Tell yourself you’ll have a little bit later.  I can guarantee you once you get to 50% of the way through a workout or when it comes to ‘later’ and you have had a chance to think about your decision make bad diet choices you will change your mind pretty quickly!

More features on SnappedUp.ie you may be interested in :

My 5 Stone Weight Loss FAQ’s 

A Week of my Workouts

My 5 tips : How to stay healthy at weekends 

My Top 5 Running Tips 

My 5 Fitness Commandments 



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Stephanie O'Quigley