Making Visible Changes To Your Body Pt. 1

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If you care about how you look, there is good news and bad. The bad news is our bodies are going to change and will continue to do so forever. The good news is we have more control than we think. Our focus needs to be on the calories we eat versus energy output with our goal in mind.

The two major problems most people face are:

  1. We don’t stick with our nutrition and workouts long enough to see lasting results.
  2. We don’t understand fat loss and muscle gain.

A great way to stick with something longer is to set a connection that runs deeper than just looks: health, mood, productivity, quality of life. However, most of us start with the goal of changing how we look and we want to know the best way to go about it.

4 ways to change the way we look:

  1. Weight loss – if you lose 20 lbs people will notice. Combine loss of body fat and muscle
  2. Lose body fat – maintain muscle mass will look better
  3. Build muscle mass – gaining muscle will improve body composition
  4. Lose bf and gain mm – most significant. Despite being at similar weight, huge difference.

Scenario 1 (most people take this route) restricting calories, increasing cardio, don’t pay attention to protein, and lose weight but lose muscle mass in the process. The problem with this is they have cut into their most important metabolic contributor, their muscle mass. Now they have a lower metabolism than before. Most usually reach a ceiling here and cannot seem to lose those “last few stubborn pounds” or they reach a goal weight, return to old eating or moving habits and gain it back quickly.

Scenario 2 is a great way and how we encourage most people to go about it. Restrict calories somewhat and/or increase movement but we make resistance training with weights a staple and protein is a priority. This combination allows you to retain muscle mass while losing body fat. This ensures you retain your muscle mass keeping your metabolism and strength in check.

Scenario 3 is less likely. Building muscle mass requires some amount of calorie surplus and you have to eat more calories than you burn for a 5-10lbs increase. For most this type of increase is going to result in some added body fat, unless the person is brand new and they have never lifted weights before.

Scenario 4 is pretty much exclusive to someone who is brand new or has taken a long time off and has a significant amount of body fat to drop.

Bonus scenario 5 is to out pace the loss or the gain correctly. Lose more body fat than muscle mass: 7lbs of fat loss + 2 lbs of muscle mass loss. The net change here of body fat is greater than the muscle mass. Gain more muscle than body fat: 7 lbs of muscle mass + 2 lbs of fat loss. The muscle mass is key in both scenarios. This is going to keep your metabolic furnace burning hot so you don’t yoyo back once you are done. You have that friend who for the most part can eat whatever they want? Most of the time, these people have a significant amount of muscle mass. It pays to have more muscle if you like to entertain yourself with food.

If you are interested in learning more, stay tuned, we have part 2 coming to you next week to explain how long it will take you to see these visible changes.