You’ve all heard the expressions: “Lift weights get dates” or “do curls, get girls” or another favorite which is especially relevant during the summer months which is “sun’s out, gun’s out”. Yes, it’s safe to say that when searching for the body beautiful, it has to be said that muscle is most definitely in, and fat is most definitely out. When the weather is hot outside that means you're ready to strip off, tan up, and hopefully receive a few looks of envy and admiration thanks to your lean and chiseled physique. If however, you’re worried you’ve left things a little too long this year, or if the fat isn’t coming off quite as quickly as it should be, then worry not, because there are a few simple and highly effective ways of getting around this type of particularly frustrating plateau that will help you to strip away the body fat, without sacrificing the muscle.
High intensity high volume training is ideal – If you’re looking to lose weight and burn fat while maintaining as much muscle as possible, or even building muscle for that matter, then a high intensity high volume training program could be absolutely ideal for you. Steer well clear of low rep programs and instead opt for a much higher rep range, typically anything between 8 and 20, depending on which exercises you perform of course. As well as the high rep range, try to include plenty of exercises with each workout, and always train intensely. Don’t perform several reps then decide to stop, even though you could have easily gotten a few more, if you can do more, do more! Cut back on the amount of rest you take in-between sets too, keep your heart rate up as this will also help you to burn calories and excess body fat.
Eat little and often – Forget about starving yourself when trying to lose fat, you should instead be eating small and healthy meals every three hours or so. Eating in this way will keep your metabolism running at its full capacity, and will also keep your muscles well fed with all of the nutrients they require in order to maintain and repair themselves following strenuous workouts.
Get plenty of protein – If you’re looking to build or maintain lean muscle mass whilst simultaneously losing body fat then you will most definitely need to be consuming plenty of protein. Typically you should aim for between 1 and 1 ½ grams of protein per pound of bodyweight. So, say you weight 200lbs, you should be consuming between 200 and 300 grams of protein per day. Protein is rich in amino acids that are vital for the growth and repair of muscle tissue, but it’s also thermogenic, which means the body has to burn more calories just to digest it and break it down. Look for good clean sources of protein such as lean meat, fish, and seafood.