Yes, you can do it — here’s how
From a psychological standpoint, losing fat and gaining muscle at the exact moment is impossible because losing fat stores is catabolic (it breaks down), and building muscle is the opposite — anabolic. Your body can’t do these two tasks at the same time. In saying that, over several months, it’s very much possible to gain muscle and lose fat if you spend more time in the anabolic state than the catabolic alternative. Now, this is challenging to achieve! As soon as you start to reduce your calories, the body burns a combination of fat and muscle tissue. But, unfortunately, you can’t help that. Did you know that anywhere between 30–60 per cent of weight lost during the diet phase comes from lean tissue? Muscle burns a lot more energy than fat, and when you lose muscle mass, your resting metabolic rate will drop. That means you burn fewer calories during the day. You may also notice a drop in your strength, as well as lethargy. The only way to succeed in burning fat stores and increasing muscle mass is to make sure that our diet, exercise and nutrient timing are carefully controlled (which is challenging, but with experience, it is possible). Then, you can lose a high amount of body fat and build muscle in a shorter period. We need to look at a few key points that will successfully transition us towards this goal.
Four of the most effective ways to gain muscle and diminish body fat — at the same time
One: Higher protein consumption
Consistently trigger protein synthesis whilst reducing the rate of muscle catabolism. That means you encourage an environment that will allow your muscles to be in a constant anabolic state.
Two: Nutrients must be well controlled and timed
That means eating the necessary macronutrients with every meal and not including any foods detrimental to their fat loss and muscle gaining goals.
Three: High-intensity bursts
increase the levels of fat-burning enzymes and boost your post-exercise consumption (the rate at which you burn calories after a workout). HIIT is also effective at retaining muscle mass whilst decreasing body fat. Make sure you keep your HIIT training within a 20-minute window and no more.
Four: Train hard & aim to overload your body with weight training
Don’t focus on long-duration cardio workouts. Overloading your body with weights has a more profound effect on building muscle mass and burning fat, leading to a successful body transformation.
These points above are just some of the bare bones. We could go into much more intense details, but it gives you a good starting point to take those first necessary steps. Please remember that there is no set rule for this — we all benefit from these points differently. The aim is to try and keep altering until the results become favourable for you.
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