Burn/Build Or Both?
Alright, Here we go. You are are one of millions of people who, starting January 1st, have made a "resolution" to lose 50 pounds of fat or gain 10 pounds of muscle. This is probably not your first time trying to do this and you have started off fine but over time slowly lost focus and discipline, finding yourself back at square one. I don't want this time to be the same as the others. Here are some tips that will help catapult your year and create habits that will make you healthier for life.
Before we get into the nitty gritty, I will start by saying that it is the mindset you bring to the table that is probably the most important aspect. Many don't think about life after the 28 day challenge and once they have completed it they fall right back into the lifestyle from which they were trying to escape from in the first place.
All of these principles are meant to be used, not just for the remainder of your 28 day challenge, but to be implemented for the rest of your life. Ok ok i'm done....Let us begin
So whether you are trying to lose ten or fifty pounds, these will not change. Most of them you probably already know but fat loss isn't rocket science either.
#1. Reduce calorie consumption and consider how each food choice will be converted into useful energy throughout your day. If it's not helping you, don't put it in front of you.
Like I said, common sense, but easier said than done. One piece of advice is to throw away all the unhealthy options that you have in the pantry/fridge. You are going to get hungry and reach for whatever is the quickest source of nourishment that you can find. More than likely thats not going to be apples and almond butter if BBQ chips are lying right next to them.
#2. Increase cardiovascular forms of exercise to maintain an elevated heart rate throughout your workout.
Following aerobic exercise, your resting metabolic rate stays elevated from 60 minutes to 12 hours depending on the intensity and duration of the exercise. Alternate between high and low intensity intervals to best improve your aerobic fitness and burn more fat!
#3. Do not abandon strength training. The development of muscle burns calories at a faster rate. The whole foundation of Wilderness Athlete products are focused around building muscle while burning fat. Why is that? While you may be totally opposed to strength training and don't wish to become a gym bro, you cannot argue with science. The absolute best way to burn fat is to supplement your regimen with periods of strength training for 2-3 hours a week.
#4. Increase metabolic activity with consistent lean meals throughout the day.
Meal composition and timing can play a big role in your ability to burn body fat. Getting lean in a hurry is not only based on what you eat, but also when you eat it. There is good evidence that frequency of food intake has effects on metabolism and studies have found that irregular meal frequency may lead to obesity over time. Basically, what it amounts to is if your consistent with planning your meals, you wont be swinging by Chick-Fil-A late at night cause theres nothing to eat at home.
#5. Avoid late night snacking, especially refined carbohydrates.
Studies show that when food is consumed late at night — anywhere from after dinner to outside a person's typical sleep/wake cycle — the body is more likely to store those calories as fat and gain weight rather than burn it as energy-even glorious Chick-Fil-A.
Now there are some of you out there that are seeking another goal. Building Muscle. These are going to be some basic but crucial tools to help you gain muscle strength and mass.
#1. Increase calorie intake with quality nutrition throughout the day.
Now the key word here is quality nutrition. I myself have done the fabled "dirty bulk" where it was basically eat everything on sight. Swinging by Mcdonalds for 10 items off their dollar menu for a post workout has probably shortened my lifespan on this earth by a couple years. The refined sugars and carbohydrates that surround us take the body on a rollercoaster ride that wreaks havoc on your digestive system and will eventually lead to insulin resistance.
#2. Consume quality protein, BCAA's, and creatine along with a healthy ratio of fats to carbohydrates within 30 minutes following exercise to increase your rate of recovery and growth.
Proper strength training results in micro tears within the muscle which requires proper nourishment to repair and rebuild. During this rebuilding process growth occurs to better prepare your muscles to withstand this stress the next time. Intense exercise depletes the body of the required nutrients to stimulate this regrowth. While the words depletion and tear may sound like negative things, they're not if they only stick around for a short period of time. It is absolutely crucial that you consume your post-workout meal immediately after exercise. In addition, during this time, the muscles are biochemically "primed" for nutrient uptake.
This phenomenon is commonly known as the "window of opportunity". Over the course of the recovery period, this window gradually closes and by failing to eat immediately after exercise, you diminish your chances of promoting full recovery.
As all types of exercise use carbohydrates for energy, muscle carbohydrate depletion is inevitable. Therefore a post-workout meal high in carbohydrates is required to refill muscle carbohydrate/energy stores.
#3. Avoid stagnant workout routines to minimize plateaus. Keep it fun!
The human body is amazing! It is able to adapt to an incredible amount of stress. When you stick with the same routine over and over your body will no longer be pushed to adapt and you will no longer see the benefits that you once saw in the beginning. On the contrary you do not need to change it up every week if you are seeing results. There should be balance and you should fluctuate from high reps to low reps every 4-6 weeks. In essence activity should be enjoyable and there are many different variations that will keep you engaged.
#4. Stick with a workout routine hitting multiple muscle groups to allow for ample recovery time and dynamic development.
Lastly, pick a workout routine that works around your schedule and more importantly, gives you ample time to recover mentally and physically. Here is an examples of a split routine that you can use which focuses on complementary muscle groups.
- Monday: Chest/Triceps
- Tuesday: Legs/Abs
- Wednesday: Rest/Stretching
- Thursday: Back/Biceps
- Friday: Shoulders/Cardio
This split schedule is merely an example of how to create enough opportunity for recovery of each muscle group.
If you have specific questions, do not hesitate to ask me here so we can work on a productive plan to help you meet your goals!
Good Read Jesse, to much science and folks get lost. I tell my athletes I'm working with to have a mental picture of themselves and visualize this image becoming reality throughout every rep and every set. Have an idea of the outcome before we start training. I tell them that you can't build your house without a picture of what it is supposed to look like before you start. This is your blueprint for construction. I tell them that every meal, every training session,every rep of every set will have direct effect on the next phase of construction of their house. We we look at this from a familiar idea or processes I see focus and intensity increases.Reply