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Last updated on: February 7th, 2020
Many people are so keen on getting a six-pack and losing body fat that they do not remember they will be losing muscle mass as well. To a bodybuilder, losing gains is a nightmare.
If you want to know how to maintain muscle while shedding extra fat, it’s wise to have some biological knowledge behind the whole process. Your body needs to account for the loss of energy during the breaking down of muscle tissue when you’re dieting. Your body does this by breaking down the proteins in muscle tissue and the fats in adipose tissue, which are used in gluconeogenesis.
Maintaining a sufficient protein intake level will make it less likely that your body needs to depend on muscle tissue for protein. You are, therefore, advised to provide your body with adequate protein through your regular meals.
Also, you may want to keep in mind the concept of homeostasis. Generally, your body will be in either a catabolic or anabolic state – depending on preference.
In an anabolic state, when you gain weight, you are increasing both fat and muscle. While in a catabolic state, when you drop weight, you also lose fat and muscle.
The good news is that you can prevent the loss of muscle mass. Here are three practical ways you can do this for yourself.
Increase and maintain your protein intake
Among the crucial considerations, you need to make to maintain your muscles is improving your protein consumption. One document from the ISSN (International Society of Sports Nutrition) states that boosting your protein consumption from your regular intake can decrease your chances of losing muscle while maximizing weight loss. For instance, from the suggested 0.8g/kg/day- 1.2-2.4 grams per kilogram of body weight per day. Make sure that calorie intake reduction is 30-40%. If a person weighs 190 pounds and consumes close to 101-202 grams of protein daily, they technically maintain muscle mass even with a decrease in caloric consumption. It’s also true that improving protein consumption resultantly aids in gaining muscle mass while following a tight calorie-restricted diet. Remember, this is possible if you’re lifting weights as well.
A different study posted in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, using forty overweight young males as participants, had participants follow a diet that was either higher in protein (2.4g/kg/day) or lower in protein (1.2g/kg/day). They were also to perform HIIT and strength training six days a week. Even though the groups consumed different protein amounts, they followed a low-calorie diet that decreased their caloric intake by 40%. At the end of a month, the higher-protein group hadn’t lost more fat than the lower-protein group but had added about 2.6 pounds of muscle mass. There was no detectable muscle growth in the lower-protein group.
To improve your protein consumption, you’ll need to consider wholemeal sources, to begin with. Supplements are also a great source of protein. However, you will want to have them as a second option, in case you have difficulties meeting your protein needs.
The ISSN suggests consumption of protein throughout the day with a target of refreshing every 3-4 hours.
Perform full-body strength training
Findings posted in the American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism revealed that performing resistance training after following a low-calorie diet for 120 hours can boost muscle protein synthesis (MPS) to attain pre-diet levels. Also, when subjects consumed 15g-30g of protein after exercising, their MPS levels were 34% and 16% higher than their resting levels before the diet program. A recent study showed that strength training aided elderly obese subjects to retain muscle while observing a strict calorie-restricted diet. They were also capable of cutting the same amount of fat as those doing no strength training.
While strength training is known for growing muscle in a caloric surplus, research has shown that resistance training is efficient at softening the decline in muscle while in a caloric deficit. In addition to this, there are various supplements available on steroidsfax.net that will help boost your performance. Resistance training stimulates muscle protein synthesis to assist in healing and re-growing the muscle bigger and stronger, provided you have adequate protein.
If you are a beginner to strength training, the American College of Sports Medicine suggests beginning with two classes weekly minimum. After half a year of consistent training, you have the choice to increase these weekly classes. Focus on compound movements such as shoulder presses, chest presses, deadlifts, bent-over rows, and squats.
Do not overdo cardio
Cardiovascular training can help you shed extra weight. Whether it’s jogging, swimming, cycling, or running, alongside a strict healthy diet, you are bound to get yourself in shape in due time. From a study posted in the Journal of Applied Physiology, aerobic practices seem to be the perfect training method for losing that excess weight.
Keep in mind; cardiovascular activities offer various health gains to make them worthwhile. Running, for instance, may decrease your chances of death from heart disease by 45%, corresponding to long-term research reported in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
Another fitness expert says that most people’s means of losing weight depends on harshly cutting calories and sprinting for miles daily. The method is not only extreme but also results in severe muscle loss.
Consider doing high-intensity interval training, mainly because it takes little time. High-intensity interval training is great at burning calories, and it also guards against muscle loss. With the correct work-to-rest ratio, high-intensity interval training can even build muscle.
Active recovery from training aids you in getting the most out of every exercise, with the most critical form of recovery being sleep. The growth hormones that help in muscle synthesis are usually more active at night, according to Milton.
Stick to a mix of strength training and cardio instead of trying to exercise yourself too hard and risking muscle loss. Consistency and determination in your choice of training routine is the ultimate key to achieving your physical goals. If you complete your target and aim to maintain your achievements, you should consider making body training a priority. Good luck on your training journey.