One of the biggest questions I always get asked as an athlete is how do you strip fat and build lean muscle. Do you exercise because you want to look like the guys on the front cover of a magazine? Are your fitness heroes or inspirations those that look like Steve Cook, Rob Riches or Ryan Terry? Do you want your abs to be showing but also retain a muscular physique on top? Here are my tips on how you get to achieve an aesthetic physique without performing endless amounts of running, eating limited calories and being super strict. Let's go....
Possibly the hardest task to achieve is stripping body fat which is why we address this issue FIRST so that you have the foundations laid and in place. The biggest problem I think is that you think the best way to lose body fat is to eat less, which has some truth in it but it doesn't mean drastically reduce calories and go on a 1500 calorie diet. To lose body fat you must know your body and realise what your body needs for it to lose body fat. Again, this doesn't mean perform endless amounts of cardiovascular exercise and ignore the basic fundamentals of being in the weight area. Lifting weights and performing compound exercises is far greater for fat loss than spending most of your time on the treadmill. This is because resistance training stimulates the muscles to grow and increases fat burn rather than cardiovascular exercise targets fat burn and health.
You want to build bigger, lean and more defined muscles but you can't seem to do it? From my experience I have always mixed my training sessions around but one basic principle always remains the same, BREAKing the muscle so that it grows. Let's be super honest here, how many of you can actually say you give it 100% in every single workout you perform? I don't think I would be far off by saying that most of you don't and this is sometimes down to other issues. However, when it is time to WORKOUT, it is time to forget all the other stuff going on in your head and focus only on one thing, what you will be doing for the next hour. You must make sure you put everything into your sessions and leave no stone unturned.
Is Diet Important?
You don't need to go onto a diet you just need to know your body and what it needs to function properly. What you eat however is very important but don't get caught up in every single macro and micro nutrient you should be giving your body. Remember, food is essential but Eat to Live and not the other way around, this is a great saying I live my life by.
So you want to burn fat, does this mean you need to take a fat burner? No is the answer to that question and here is why. In my opinion a fat burner works best when you have little body fat on you and targets the stubborn areas so that you can get rid of those final bits. I personally feel that a protein, BCAAs and a multi vitamin are more important for your body and the results you seek.
I have been exercising and staying in shape for many years, I have experienced what the trials and errors that many of you will face in your journey of losing body fat and gaining muscle mass. There is no secret or magic formula which is going to give you an awesome body without you putting in the effort and hard work.
Your WORKOUTS should be of you in the weight area, performing different types of exercises, incorporating drop sets and super sets. Mix up your sessions and use different types of equipment. Join in on CrossFit sessions, outdoor activities and do everything you can to keep your heart rate up and push yourself to get those final few reps.
Your DIET should be healthy and balanced. I still eat pizza <sometimes> and so can you. Do not stick to a strict diet which means you won't live your life because you simply won't stick to it. Be smart, be realistic but most of all have fun with it.
I never bulk up by consuming ridiculous amounts of food, I stay in competition, lean shape all year round. I eat clean and I always get my workouts in. If there was a secret it would be to KEEP GOING and don't quit. Blast fat away by constantly mixing your workouts and eating healthy. Gain muscle by meeting your protein requirements and supplement with BCAAs and a multi vitamin to keep everything in working order. There is no such thing as you can't, if this is your goal, go after it and achieve it :)