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People Swear by the 30/30/30 Plan for Weight Loss: 'Completely Changed My Body'

Trying to lose weight? This time-efficient routine may be your key to success.

When it comes to weight loss inspiration, the internet is chock-full of information. However, sifting through a wide range of tips, tricks, and hacks can be incredibly time-consuming. Not to mention, many trends may not steer you in the right direction to success. That's why we're here to help. If you've been on TikTok recently, you may have noticed the 30/30/30 morning routine people are following to lose weight. But does it work? Eat This, Not That! spoke with Jonathan Tylicki, NASM CPT and director of education for AKT, who breaks down everything you need to know about the 30/30/30 morning routine for weight loss.

Read on to learn more, and when you're finished, don't miss I Drank Cucumber Water for 30 Days & Experienced 4 Life-Changing Benefits.

What is the 30/30/30 morning routine?

We have professional human biologist Gary Brecka to thank for making this morning ritual go completely viral on TikTok. Brecka's video, which received over 1.5M views, starts off with him saying, "So I have women all the time—and not to pick on ladies, but this happens in three to one women coming into the clinic and say, 'Gary, I don't get it. I wake up in the morning, I'm fasted, I have a cup of black coffee, I go to OrangeTheory, I go hammer down for 55 minutes. I've been doing that five days a week for three months; I haven't lost a single pound. How is that possible? Like I'm not even eating.'"

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Breaka continues to explain, "Well, you're not eating, but your body is. It's just eating you. Because what happens when you don't have any sugar in your bloodstream is you get to the gym and now you have a 20-minute reserve of glycogen … 20 minutes into your workout, you're out of energy—your body needs energy now." Your body gets energy by burning lean muscle mass rather than fat. Brecka adds, "There's something called 30/30/30. I've never seen anything in my life strip fat off of a human being faster than this … there's an entire book written by Tim Ferris called The 4-Hour Body explaining this whole theory … do [the 30/30/30 method] for a month, and watch it eviscerate."

Essentially, the 30/30/30 morning routine calls for consuming 30 grams of protein within the first 30 minutes of waking up. You'll then perform 30 minutes of steady-state cardio so your heart rate is below 135 bpm. "This means that when you first get up in the morning, you consume food that is high in protein, and complete a 30-minute cardio-based workout done at a steady state, like a light jog, an easy pace on a stationary bike, or some low-intensity dance cardio," Tylicki tells us.

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How can the 30/30/30 method help you lose weight?

hearty bowl of oatmeal, eggs, and avocado for breakfast

To better understand how the 30/30/30 morning routine can be an effective method for weight loss, Tylicki breaks down each component of it.

First off, you've likely heard the age-old saying, "Breakfast is the most important meal of the day"—and there's much truth to it! Research shows that what you have for breakfast and the time you eat your breakfast can play a crucial role in your weight loss efforts.

Now, the 30/30/30 method calls for savoring a protein-packed breakfast, and protein has been linked to weight loss time and time again, as it keeps you fuller for longer. "The number suggested (30 grams of protein) is just a number to associate with food choices that are high-protein. It doesn't mean that you have to eat 30 grams exactly, just consume foods that are relatively high in protein," Tylicki says. "This means that we aren't eating carbohydrate-forward foods like cereals, or pastries, but instead choosing protein-rich foods like eggs, cottage cheese, quinoa, or even protein powder added to oatmeal or Ezekiel bread with nut butter."

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Next, it's time to address cardio, which has been scientifically proven to benefit weight loss. "What's important here is that [you] don't want the cardio to be too intense—more so enough that [your] heart rate is elevated and still able to hold a conversation," Tylicki explains. "[You] don't want to become too out of breath or fatigued, as that isn't the point of what [you're] aiming to achieve. Instead, [you] want to maintain [your] body in the aerobic intensity zone."

People on TikTok swear by the 30/30/30 morning routine to lose weight.

It seems like the 30/30/30 method lives up to the hype, as people on TikTok are sharing their real-life success stories. One TikTok user commented on Brecka's video, "4-Hour Body completely changed my body. It works," while another noted, "100% the 30/30/30 works! I did it years ago when I wanted to lose weight fast. I was shocked!"

TikToker CoachDhealth documented her journey on the 30/30/30 morning routine, explaining in a TikTok video, "It is day 15 for me of my 30/30/30 challenge, and everybody wants to know one thing: Have I lost weight, and if so, how much? So, here's my update. It has been two full weeks now that I've completed this challenge. I have gotten up around 5:30 every morning, I consume 30 grams of protein powder, and then I exercise for 30 minutes on my bike doing slow steady-state cardio, which just means that I'm keeping my heart rate at around 135."

The TikToker also points out that she started the slow-carb diet around the same time and goes to the gym three times a week (in addition to her morning bike ride). She continues, "With those changes, I have lost four pounds since I started, which [is] a really good amount of weight to lose in two weeks."

Alexa Mellardo
Alexa is the Mind + Body Deputy Editor of Eat This, Not That!, overseeing the M+B channel and delivering compelling fitness, wellness, and self-care topics to readers. Read more about Alexa
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