Many people try to find the ideal point in which they burn fat and increase lean mass at the same time, making their choices based on these two goals. However, it is important to understand that some of these choices may be compromising the results of others, and it is not easy to find a balance.
But then, where is the difficulty? To be able to burn fat and increase muscle mass at the same time, it is necessary to eat enough to stimulate muscle growth, making the right nutritional choices so that the body uses fat reserves as energy, instead of the muscle that it has worked so hard to build.
With certain changes in eating habits, training and supplementation, it is possible to combine these two processes. Here are six habits that you should incorporate into your routine so that you can achieve those goals!
1- Increase your protein consumption
Did you know that protein consumption is essential to stimulate muscle growth? Diets rich in protein help to build lean mass, increase satiety and also burn fat.
Proteins are complex molecules made up of amino acids . These play a fundamental role in the construction, repair and maintenance of body tissues, as well as being part of the regulation of hormone secretion, digestion and transport of nutrients and oxygen, among other organic processes.
2- Workout to increase muscle mass, not to burn calories
Doing endless training with low weights and several repetitions is not the most suitable process for those who want to increase muscle mass . For this, it is important to increase the weight and focus on exercises such as squats, deadlifts, lunges, shoulder press, bench press, among others. These movements allow you to use more weight and stimulate the development of muscle mass, and should be the basis of any training.
3- Reduces the consumption of carbohydrates
To burn fat you will have to reduce the consumption of carbohydrates . But this does not mean eliminating them from your diet, as they are important to provide the energy needed to build muscle mass and prevent the body from using protein reserves for energy. However, you should consume them intelligently.
Knowing the glycemic index and glycemic load of foods helps you make healthier choices. Foods with a lower GI and GL are typically high in fiber and nutrients, providing a constant source of energy throughout the day. Some examples are oats, quinoa, whole grains, beans and brown rice.
4- Introduce healthy fats into your diet
Many believe that to burn fat it is necessary to cut back on foods with fat in their composition. However, by doing this, you will be compromising your health, because in addition to giving us energy and satiating us, fats have other important functions . Our body uses them to digest, absorb and transport fat-soluble vitamins (vitamin A, D, E and K). They are also used to build cell membranes and form a protective cushion around organs. However, you should choose to consume good fats, such as foods rich in omega-3, salmon, sardines, nuts, canola, peanut oil, chia seeds, avocado, olive oil, coconut oil, among others.
5- Consume a moderate number of calories
It is necessary to find a balance in caloric consumption that provides muscle development and that, at the same time, stimulates the release of stored fat . For this, you should not exaggerate in caloric consumption. It is important to remember that you are not on a diet, but working to increase muscle mass while burning fat. So you need the macronutrients and calories you need to reach your goals.
6- Bet on high-intensity training (HIIT)
A common mistake made by people who want to lose weight is betting on long and constant cardiovascular training. This type of exercise works to burn calories, however, it can cause the body to burn muscle mass instead of fat.
Proponents of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) claim that this type of training achieves the best of both worlds: retaining/gaining muscle mass while losing fat mass. Why not apply this type of training as your main form of cardio?