Losing weight while maintaining muscle mass is always a challenge. Although it is certainly possible to hang on to your muscles as you shed the extra pounds and fat, it takes a certain level of dedication to your exercise routine, sleep patterns, and eating habits. Even then, some weight loss can be difficult or even impossible without surgical help. Here are three ways that you can ensure that you keep that coveted muscle mass as you continue on your weight loss journey.
How You Work Out
One of the biggest factors that determine how your body changes as you lose weight is your exercise routine. According to Jump Rope Dudes, too much cardiovascular work will cause you to lose muscle mass along with the fat. You can combat this tendency by combining cardio work with a full-body strength and conditioning program. The right balance of strength and cardio work will help you to maintain your muscle mass. So, while it is tempting to want to go all-in on the cardio work in an effort to lose weight quickly, it is a better idea to approach this with restraint.
What to Eat
According to TruVision, losing fat while maintaining muscle, like everything else in fitness, involves what you eat more than anything else. By using protein effectively, as well as being careful of carb intake you can maintain muscle while losing fat. Muscles need to be nourished with protein and pay heed to the recommended sleep needs in order to grow them. Many of the most popular fad diets lack protein. While this may help you to lose water weight quickly, your resting metabolism will suffer down the road when you begin to lose muscle mass because of a lack of protein.
How Much to Rest
Rest has traditionally been one of the most overlooked and undervalued elements of physical health. According to InBody USA, not getting enough rest can also lead to a decrease in muscle mass. A critical part of the recovery process is getting adequate sleep. If you are lacking in sleep, your body will begin to see an increase in cortisol levels. This hormone imbalance may lead to a decrease in muscle growth. In addition, your training program will be more effective if performed after getting a solid night of sleep.Although the most common nomenclature is weight loss, what you really want to be aiming for is to lose fat but not muscle.
Be sure to keep these things in mind as you go running, lift weights, or do any other type of exercise routine. Following these three principles will help you to shed fat while retaining that highly-desired lean muscle mass.
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