Get your meat…
All innuendos aside, consistently getting your meat and veg in is imperative to health, well- being and muscle growth. This said, getting enough protein via your diet is easier said than done when you train hard 4-5 times a week, especially if you have a manual job too! Resistance training (often in the form of lifting weights) is necessary if you wish to see growth in muscle size and strength, however, when we lift weights we inevitably damage our muscles. Muscle damage is a necessary process for facilitating muscle growth because the repair process causes the body to supercompensate i.e. increase the size of the muscle fibre beyond what it was before just in case your muscle is expected to endure that burden again. This is the gradual process needed for muscle growth – tear muscle, repair muscle, tear muscle, repair muscle and so it goes on.
The greater the training load, the more the muscles want to grow and repair to cope with the load. This means you need more protein to sustain the rate of growth, otherwise the muscle will become over trained, chronically damaged and ultimately…injured. In order to meet the elevated protein demand you may find that you have to up the amount of meat, beans, peas, pulses and lentils to satisfy this. Alternatively many people will prefer to get their protein in via a meat alternative, namely MuscleMeds Carnivor, a delicious high protein milkshake that comes in chocolate, strawberry, cherry vanilla and various other flavours, and is derived directly from beef! You literally are getting your protein in via a powdered form of steak. Now that’s manly!
Good news is that the protein powder is no more than the protein extracted from the beef, therefore you won’t taste or smell beef, you’ll only be getting the muscle building goodness from it. WIN WIN!
…and two veg
So I mentioned overtraining above, and the reason this is so relevant is because protein is crucial to reduce the risk of the condition. However so too are vitamins and minerals! So when you’re striving for improved muscle mass and strength DO NOT overlook the importance of your fruit, veg and dairy. Fruit and veg in particular are very dense in antioxidants which are some of the most important nutritional components in immune defence and reducing risk of overtraining.
This is why it’s so important for you to get your meat and two veg in when striving for lean muscle mass. There is no replacement for good ol fashioned fruit and veg, but should you struggle to get your 5-7 per day into your diet then consider adding a Greens beverage of some sort. A great example is PhD Nutrition Greens pH 7, you can drink it as an addition to breakfast OR mix it directly in with your protein shake after exercise it’s entirely up to you.