Yes it is! You can continue to build muscle bulk while shedding the flab. If your goal is to build or maintain muscle whilst burning fat then it all boils down to three main factors…
- Sticking to the right diet
- Using an effective exercise routine
- Taking high quality supplements
Many see burning fat and gaining muscle mass at the same time as virtually impossible. But there are a sufficient number of fitness enthusiasts out there who have achieved these very goals.
This only serves as proof that it is possible for you to do the same. Here are some 7 great tips to help you melt away the fat without losing that hard-earned muscle…
1) Combine Strength Training with Hypertrophy Training
When you lift with heavy rep ranges from say 1 to 3, your ability to do so relies on being able get the maximum muscle fiber recruitment.
It also requires your body shifting from using the Type I muscle fibers to the Type IIb muscle fibers. You can find out more about this process in the very informative article “Understanding Muscle Fiber Types.”
This may be great for setting personal bests in the gym, but they don’t maximize the amount of muscle you can put on or the amount you can maintain while you are cutting the fat.
The best option is for you to combine the two types of training into one beneficial muscle-building workout.
So you can do 5 heavy reps, then rest for 30 seconds. Next do 3 reps of the same weight and again rest for 30 seconds. Finally finish off with 2 reps to complete the set.
What you have done here is use heavy weight but you have managed to do a full 10 reps.
This type of training will really stimulate thicker muscle growth while giving you a great pump.
2) Use Slower Forms of Cardio
If you want to lose fat, then cardio training is a great tool. But you need to pick the right kind because it will either maintain your muscle or it will destroy it.
The best way is to use the slower paced and easier forms of aerobic exercise. This can be a light jog or a casual bike ride or you can even just walk on a treadmill set to incline.
When you go at a slow pace you only use Type I muscle fibers. These are very resistant to fatigue.
You will also benefit from improved blood circulation, improved lung capacity and it helps clear the lactic acid from your body.
Remember if you improve your cardiovascular system then you will have more energy for better workouts. This means better recovery in-between sets and of course more gains from your gym sessions.
You can read more about the benefits of aerobic exercise here.
3) Eat Lean Proteins
It’s very important if your goal is to build muscle or even maintain muscle while you are cutting that you consume plenty of protein.
Your metabolism is supercharged throughout the day due to protein requiring greater energy for your body to digest than carbohydrates or fats. It will also stop you overeating because you will feel full for longer.
The main thing is that high amounts of protein helps prevents the muscle loss that may happen when you are leaning out.
Make sure you are consuming at least 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight. Studies have actually shown that a protein intake slightly higher than 1 gram per pound is best.
Look for lean sources of protein such as chicken, turkey, egg whites, fish and high quality supplements.
4) Take a Testosterone Booster Supplement
Test boosters are natural dietary supplements designed to support natural testosterone production.
The best ones use clinically proven ingredients such as D-Aspartic acid, Vitamin D3, Fenugreek and ZMA to ensure you maintain healthy T levels.
Having optimal levels of T during the cutting phase is essential to preserve muscle mass and to keep your energy levels up.
You can find lots more information about testosterone boosters at www.ProgressiveMuscle.com.
This excellent muscle & fitness website has detailed information on the very best sports supplements available on the market today.
They also have comprehensive articles on clinically proven T boosting ingredients for you to read.
5) Eat Carbohydrates after Your Workouts
Although many people in bodybuilding and fitness think carbs are evil when it comes to losing fat, they are still essential during your cutting phase.
This is especially true if you are still lifting heavy weights.
If you starve your body of carbohydrates it is certain to hurt your workout recovery which will lead to worse and worse workouts. So eat your carbs post-workout.
This is when your metabolism peaks and your body’s capacity to tolerate carbohydrates will be at its highest.
The best sources to pick are starchy foods like rice and sweet potatoes.
This will start your body’s recovery process and get your body filled with energy for the next workout.
6) Get 8 Hours Sleep Every Night
Recovery is a vitally important part of your training. This is especially true during your cutting phase. Calorie-restriction and lifting heavy weights puts your body through a tremendous amount of stress.
Your muscles need time to recover and rebuild. Growth hormone is secreted into your body throughout the day, but it is at night that production increases.
It is during REM sleep, the deepest part of sleep that growth hormone secretion peaks. Don’t short-change yourself on sleep or it will ruin your muscle growth and repair.
You can read more in the article “Sleep and muscle recovery: endocrinological and molecular basis for a new and promising hypothesis“, they explain that lack of sleep should cause loss of muscle mass and hinder muscle recovery after exercise.
7) Maintain a Moderate Caloric Deficit.
If you crash diet, then you will lose muscle no matter what steps you take. Such an extreme method is hard on the body. Not allowing your body to have enough nutrients to grow and recover.
You could even run into health problems and suffer from overtraining.
If you are happy with the muscle mass bulk you have and you want to start cutting then start with just a moderate deficit of 500 calories.
This is the optimal number to start the fat loss process without sacrificing those muscle & strength gains.
Check things like your body-fat percentage and check photos to ensure you are headed in the right direction.