Lose Fat

How to Determine Your Ideal Body Fat Percentage

When it comes to body composition, knowledge is power.

4 Key Ways to Fuel Up and Drop Body Fat Fast

A common goal for anyone who steps foot in the gym is to shed body fat for good. Body fat is the fat that we can see in the mirror. The less body fat we have the more "cuts" you will be able to see. The higher your body fat levels the more fat that is covering our muscles. In order to see cuts you need to shrink the layer of fat that is directly under the skin and that covers our muscles.

How Should You Determine Your Body Fat Percentage?

One of the most accurate and cost effective ways to measure your body fat is with a caliper. There are several other ways to take your body fat. Underwater weighing, dexa scan, bioelectrical impedance machines and calipers. Calipers are designed to clip the body fat and measure the fat under the skin. There are various  pinch tests. I recommend using a four or seven point caliper test. Regardless of whatever method you use the key element is consistency. It matters much less what the body fat number says as long as every time you check your body fat it’s moving in the right direction...down! Try to be as consistent as possible when taking your measurements. Try to do them under the same conditions, for example first thing in the morning after using the restroom. This will eliminate any discrepancies with inconsistencies and fluctuations throughout the day.

What's the Ideal Range?

muscular abs

Body fat numbers are not generally set in stone. Knowing where you currently are is just another measurement you can use to track progress.

For Men

  • Bodybuilder About to Compete: 3-4 %
  • Really Ripped Ab Look: 8-10%
  • Athletic with Basic Cuts: 12-15%
  • No Cuts: 15%+

For Women

  • Bodybuilder About to Compete: 8-12%
  • Figure Competitors: 15-17%
  • Toned and Lean: 17-20%
  • No cuts: 20%+

These numbers are not the end-all-be-all. Some men have thicker abs then others and their abs may show through the skin at higher body fat levels. Same goes for women, some women hold fat in areas that are not easily seen while others may read really low but have a lot of fat in one area.

What Happens When Body Fat is Too Low? >>

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