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Many times when starting a nutrition and training plan, our only goal is to reduce the numbers shown on the scale. But this idea is somewhat wrong, and should not serve as a reference.
A true plan to improve our body composition must work so we:
“Lose fat, not weight”
I train, but I don’t lose weight
If you are guided by the scale, this is quite likely to happen to you. And is that one of the clearest reasons is that if you gain muscle mass, you will continue to weigh the same as at the beginning. Does this mean that I am not going to lose weight? It is not entirely true, because there is also a decrease in the fat percentage, and therefore, this weight may have been replaced by the muscle that we have gained.
Same weight, but I have less volume
However, this circumstance is positive, and here is the key, since adipose tissue (fat) with respect to muscle differs, speaking of measurements, in that the former occupies much more volume. Therefore, how do we guide ourselves if it is not by the weight that the scale marks? Well, very simple, use your clothes as a reference. Surely, you lose some size when you lose fat, even if you weigh almost the same. Remember this, it’s good, and it should be a line to follow.
The key: maintain muscle mass
Our task will be, therefore, the loss of muscle mass during our time of definition, since it is the metabolically active tissue that gives us the greatest benefits with respect to maintaining our best body composition and image that we want to show off. But how is this achieved? Well, on a general level, here are some important tips that, if you are not doing it right now, I think you should change your habit.
1. Reduce “cardio hours”
It is not necessary to delete it, but rather to distribute both the type and the duration. In this sense, it is committed to high intensity interval training, which is often referred to as HIIT (high rhythm and short duration). With only 3 weekly sessions it will be enough. The stationary cardio, which is typical and that we were used to (low rhythm and high duration), we can place it on walks or hikes to perform and take advantage of any time of the day, being highly recommended just upon waking and fasting.
2. Prioritize strength exercises to lose fat
Exercise should be based on this type of training. They are the ones that will cause the most powerful hormonal response in our body in the sense of stimulating the regeneration of muscle tissues (improving our toning), activating the metabolism, losing fat, reducing the risk of suffering from certain types of diseases (osteoporosis …) . And of course, forget the false myth of getting huge.
3. Get enough protein
Protein is the macronutrient that will provide us with amino acids. In other words, the “building blocks” necessary for our tissues to recover after training. They also occupy a series of essential physiological functions in our body. We must try to have protein sources through which to obtain essential amino acids (the group of amino acids that our body does not manufacture and that are found in food). In this sense, protein of animal origin provides all of these in good proportions. Vegetable protein has the limiting amino acids (it does not provide enough of any essential amino acid). However, this fact is solved by combining different sources during the meals that we make during the day.
A very good source of protein to take after training is protein powder, which we can have from various sources: whey protein, vegetable protein (pea, rice or soy)