Tips for building muscle & staying lean without living in the gym:
1. Eat a high protein diet to help maintain lean muscle mass, stay fuller longer and raise your metabolic rate.
Common foods that you can change out for each other while staying int the same macro-nutrient split. Protein exchanges: 4oz beef = 4 oz salmon = 5oz turkey = 5oz chicken = 6oz white fish. 1 protein shake = 1 cup Greek yogurt = 1 cup cottage cheese = 1 cup egg whites
2. Commit to exercise 3x a week, and stick to it. I’m not asking for a lot here :), muscle doesn’t build itself. Muscle groups take an average of 72 hours to fully recover in between training sessions. Working out on un-recovered muscles can increase risk of injury and decrease performance.
3. Prioritize strength and resistance training over cardio and “toning moves”, if you want quicker results. Squats build butts. Donkey kicks don’t.
Toning Muscle vs. Strengthening Muscle. Muscle toning is a colloquialism that usually refers to increasing muscle definition, rather than a muscle's resistance to stretching.
Muscle tone refers to the resistance and tension of a muscle at rest, while muscle strength refers to the power behind a muscle contraction.
Strength moves: Squats, Deadlifts, Bench, Lat Pull, Chest Presses, Bicep Curls, Row Machine, Tricep Extension, Leg Press, HIIT Cardio
Toning moves: Air Squats, Arm Circles, Body-weight Lunges, Light Weightlifting, Steady State Cardio
4. Track your steps. There’s likely an app on your phone for this! If you can get 8,000-10,000 steps a day in, every day, you’re in good standing. I use the Apple Health app. I have also had good experience with a fitbit.
5. Learn to say no. If you’re not hitting the gym 5-6x a week, you may have less wiggle room in your diet in order to keep losing fat. For me, I have something sweet and indulgent 2x a week, but on my good days, I’m really good 😇 and this keeps me on track, lean, and in the gym 3-5x a wk. How you can improve discipline: Practice self-denial. Learn to say no to some of your feelings, impulses and urges. Start with small things like resisting urges to check your phone, watch TV instead of read or resist saying something negative to someone. Accomplishing small feats of discipline will build confidence in your skills and strengthen them. Discipline is a skill, like math, and it takes practice to build! When you practice self-restraint it helps you develop the habit of keeping other things under control . Put yourself in an environment that encourages the building of self-discipline rather than one that sabotages it. Remove the temptations and surround yourself with encouraging items such as quotes and pictures of what you want to achieve. I did this when I first started in bodybuilding. I wrote notes on my fridge like “Choose long term satisfaction over short term temptation!” and notes on my mirror like “You are what you consistently do”. I swear by these tactics for building self esteem and discipline.
IN CONCLUSION… Don’t pursue the rewards directly, trust that they will come with consistent effort.
Bring awareness to your performance. Success will emerge from executing one step at a time without looking too far forward or back. It requires practice and confidence to remain in the moment.
Work like no one is watching (or like someone important is)! Imagine a coach or your favorite athlete cheering you on. Develop a solid base so you can naturally burn more calories at rest. This means focusing less on the scale and more on how you feel and look.
Eat enough calories in a slight deficit. This is tricky. You will literally have a “sweet spot” when it comes to the perfect number of calories/perfect macro split for your body at that time. For most people that is around 1600-1800 cals.
Don’t be impatient and fall for fads. If it seems like a bad idea for your health, it probably is. Ie: 2hrs cardio, extreme dieting, laxatives, appetite suppressants, extreme detoxing etc. These “quick fixes” can lead you down a slippery slope of negative behavior.
Healthy doesn’t just HAPPEN, so make those good choices each day as best as possible. It won’t be perfect, but it is progress. You got his and we got this!
If you need help with your nutrition and/or workouts, contact me for coaching! I am booking up my Fall 2018 clients now!