Up until a few years ago, weight loss goals were focused on adopting dietary plans and fat-burning exercises, rather than building muscle mass. For a long time, low-calorie diets and aerobic exercises were the main approaches to fighting excess weight. Although these are still options for weight loss, currently many people prefer plans that enable muscle mass gain.
Because these plans not only help you to achieve a slimmer figure but also firm up the muscles and increase physical strength.
However, this is a long and difficult process, for which it is necessary to step up your effort and be constant with it.
Although some people achieve results more easily, depending on their genetics, in general it is necessary to make lifestyle changes to achieve this goal.
For this reason, in this article we want to share with you 5 main keys to not fail in the attempt.
Put them into practice!
1. Do aerobic and anaerobic exercises
Combining aerobic and anaerobic exercises significantly contributes to increasing the muscle mass of the body while reducing the fat index.
- Aerobic exercises are carried out at low to medium intensity over long periods of time in order to be effective at burning fats.
- On the other hand, anaerobic activities are done at higher intensity for shorter periods of time, focusing more on muscle work.
- The latter, among other things, continue to have an effect after the training, helping to prolong fat burning for up to 24 hours.
- The result of this combination is, without a doubt, a slimmer and more toned figure.
- A cardio session should not last longer than 20 minutes to avoid the effects of excessive physical training.
- Anaerobic exercises should be carried out according to your physical ability. Increasing muscle mass is achieved in stages, so it’s no good rushing it.
- Lifting weights without being strong enough can cause injuries and lead to failure.
Read also: 8 Effective Ways to Slim Your Face
2. Increase your protein intake
A diet to increase muscle mass requires lots of essential nutrients. However, of these, it is important to highlight proteins given the role they play in the process of building and strengthening the muscles.
- We obtain from proteins the amino acids which contribute to stimulating the processes of muscle formation.
- Eating them after training helps to regenerate broken muscle microfibers.
- They are an important source of energy which also, as if this weren’t enough, helps to maintain good sports performance.
While protein is available in many supplements, the best option is to get the majority of your intake from foods like:
- Fish and seafood
- Seeds and dried fruit
3. Eat carbohydrates
When it comes to losing weight, many people doubt eating carbohydrates. They were given a bad image for years and, in fact, they were largely excluded from diets.
The truth is that, contrary to what many still think, carbohydrates are necessary for both losing weight and gaining muscle mass.
- The important thing is to choose carbohydrates which, as well as giving your body energy, support the metabolism and the penetration of proteins into the muscle cells.
You should completely avoid carbohydrates from refined foods and instead eat:
- Wholemeal bread and pasta
4. Sleep well
Poor sleep quality can interfere negatively with the recovery and regeneration processes of the muscular microfibers which get broken during training.
For this reason, so that this lapse doesn’t last longer than necessary, and in order to maintain good muscle and metabolic health, it is necessary to respect your hours of sleep.
- Sleep for between 7 and 8 hours a day without interruptions, regardless of what time you train.
- Eat a light dinner, low in calories, before going to sleep.
5. Eat 5 meals a day
Both to burn fat and to increase muscle mass, it is advisable to eat 5 meals a day, in moderate portions, instead of 3 large main meals.
This helps improve the activity of the metabolism, maintaining continuous energy expenditure, which reduces the tendency to accumulate fats.
- Design 5 meals in small portions, based on healthy foods with controlled amounts of calories.
- Eat more fruit, vegetables and dried fruits as snacks at moments of anxiety.
Is increasing muscle mass among your plans? Bear in mind that, to see results, you need to design a plan which will enable you to get rid of the fat accumulated in your body.
Follow all the recommendations given above and, if possible, get the advice of a trainer to find out which is the best plan for you depending on your abilities and needs.