“How do I keep my lean muscle while cutting?”
This is always a valid question when people are getting to the end of a challenge and diet cutting is present. So how do you do it? Well, I can tell you if you have waited until the last minute and you think going on a strict low-calorie diet is the answer you are likely going to be losing muscle. The best way to lose fat and keep your muscle is the slow and steady method. If when you started had a lot of fat to lose the best thing to do is to slowly cut calories leading up to your peak day, being it a competition or photo shoot. You do not want to do this for more than 12 weeks. If you have been diligent about maximizing your workouts, feeding your body with whole foods and giving yourself adequate recovery time, then you are likely to be where you need to be on show day.
People always ask how to burn fat and gain muscle at the same time, but this is the wrong question because your body can not be in both a catabolic and anabolic state at the same time. Either your body is breaking down or building. So as your body breaks down and rebuilds what’s important is that you feed it what it needs to build. So, your diet will be focused on balanced nutrition, giving it the carbs for energy to perform your workouts, your workouts will break down your muscle fibers with the tears that you create while pushing harder and then the proteins will rebuild the muscle and the fats will protect and heal. The key is to not give your body enough food to store for later (fat). The system works well when you create a routine of eating what you need. Now, if you are overweight, you will simply have to be consistent about eating what feeds your muscle mass, not your fat. Your body wants to stay the way it is, so in the start, you will have to fight to resist overeating while you retrain your body for a new routine.
Anabolic: building more complex structures from simpler ones.
Catabolic: breaking down complex structures into simpler ones.
“This coupling of fat and muscle tissue is inevitable and it is just how the body operates; accept it. This means that you can’t build muscle and lose fat at the same time (perhaps with the exception of “newbie gains” made by first-time weightlifters).”
Workouts that work
All workouts have their value, whether it’s cardio or CrossFit the main thing is that you are pushing yourself to the max. Everyone has an exercise type that works best for them. HIIT training is one of the best ways that you can train both for cutting and building a strong body both in muscle and endurance.
Top 3 tips to get in a great workout
- Listen to music with a BPM of 120-140. This will help raise your body and mind alertness and get you in an intense state to get moving.
- Choose workouts that you enjoy. When you actually enjoy what you are doing you are more likely to do it.
- Plan your workouts when you have the most energy in the day. If you struggle to get your workout in after work. Plan to go to bed earlier and wake up and workout before work.