How Macronutrients Can Help You Lose Fat While Gaining Muscle
With each day bringing us closer and closer to summertime, our minds naturally start to think about what we will see when we start to shed all of those extra clothes we’ve had to bear during those cold and chilly months. Even if we’re not engaged in a full bodybuilding routine, we want to see a more lean physique so that we can look good when we head off to the beach or to some other outdoor venue.
We all know the basics where we have to balance our meals with a regular workout to shed the excess fat and then tone up with a good physical routine; however, for many this method may not seem like it is enough. The truth is that building muscle and burning fat are nearly impossible to accomplish when you’re trying to do them at the same time.
“In the process of all that bulking we seemed to have let our abs fade in the place of strength and mass grains. So it’s time once again to shred up, lean down and turn into a ripped peace of art we all envision ourselves to be.” – Bodybuilding.com
This challenge can prove to be more difficult than you might imagine if you’re trying to do everything all at once, which is why the most common advice is to simply lose fat without losing muscle and to then concentrate on gaining muscle separately.
You are probably like most people who work hard to gain every inch of muscle they have only to watch it dwindle slowly away as soon as they let their guard down. Most experts will tell you that in order to achieve the best results on these two goals you need to attack each phase separately. You either need to sacrifice muscle to lose the fat or you need to concentrate on shedding fat first and then build mass afterwards. Bodybuilder or not, here are a few tricks that some have tried that have proven effective in the simultaneous approach.
The main secret ingredient in the simultaneous approach is to control the amount of macronutrients you consume every day. With a careful routine of managing your protein, carbohydrates, and fat intake you will soon seen the benefits of your efforts. Proper nutrition is a key factor to reaching your physical goals. Without careful manipulation of these foods you’ll find that you’re constantly fighting an uphill battle.
Your protein intake, for example, is one of the most important sources your body needs to build muscle mass. It is recommended that you take in somewhere around 1.5 grams of protein per every pound of bodyweight. This way, your body can be sure to have the necessary amount of amino acids needed to properly develop. These proteins can come from many different sources. However, key foods to consider are lean chicken or steak, fish, turkey, ground meats, eggs, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt or protein powders.
Carbohydrates are also a great source for helping your body produce energy, especially from complex carbs and fiber. You can find many of these in foods like brown or wild rice, sweet potatoes, whole wheat bread, wheat pasta, vegetables, and many different types of fruit.
It might seem strange that you need to include fat in your diet, but the fact is that some fats are absolutely necessary to maintain your body’s hormone balance and increase your energy levels. Careful intake of healthy fats will assist in replacing carbohydrates on certain days to keep blood sugar levels steady. Try eating avocadoes, walnuts, almonds, olive oil, natural peanut butter, egg yolks and sunflower seeds.
In order to successfully get the most out of your regular routine these three ingredients must be in perfect balance. While your body may need other ingredients, these three macronutrients make up the foundation of everything you’ll consume.
“Macronutrients are the main components of our diet. Our bodies require other nutrients as well, such as vitamins and minerals. However, these are needed in much smaller quantities, and thus are referred to as micronutrients. All three macronutrients are needed in the diet, as each perform vital functions in the body.” – Fit Day
How to Put Them to Work
Your body will need the right amount of amino acids in your body to continuously feed the muscles so that they can quickly recuperate and repair after each workout. Controlling your protein levels may be the easiest way to get the ball rolling. Start with one gram of protein per every pound of bodyweight you have and then monitor your progress. You can adjust your intake as needed until you find the right portions for your personal physical condition.
With carbs it gets a little more challenging, your goal is to trick your body into letting go of some of its fat stores to use as fuel. Since you’re not working out every day you’ll have to adjust your intake based on the amount of energy you’ll expend every day. Some days will be higher than others so you’ll have to adjust your consumption accordingly.
The amount of fats you take in should be somewhere around.25 grams for every pound of bodyweight or 20-30% of your total calories. Still, remember that on low carb days you’ll need to increase your consumption of healthy fats just a little to keep your hormone levels in balance and supply you with your needed energy levels to keep the pressure on. Keep in mind that one gram of fat has more than twice the number of calories that you would get from carbs, so a little fat should do you well.
The simultaneous approach may be one of the most challenging things you can do, but if you are careful in planning your diet so that you include the right balance of macronutrients, you’ll find true success at the end of the tunnel.
“Your macronutrients are on the right track, but with a few minor tweaks, you can balance fat loss and muscle gain.” – Muscle & Fitness
Making sure that you have the exact portions of these ingredients in a balanced nutrition plan can be half the battle of the simultaneous approach.