When we prepare our training for the arrival of summer, we are presented with the difficult decision of the best way to carry it out. How can you reduce your body fat as much as possible while maintaining the muscle volume that has cost you so much to achieve?
Our day-to-day will vary slightly from one to another, but there are specific techniques that I have personally followed and that I recommend to my clients to help them make a definition as efficient and productive as possible.
# 1 Keep lifting heavyweights
A widespread mistake people make in the gym looking for the physique they want is to suddenly change the form of training they followed in the bulking stage to gain muscle (what put muscle there will keep it there).
Once the volume stage is over, many people decide:
Completely change your training
Train lighter due to low-calorie intake
Do many repetitions thinking that this way you will define more (developing muscular endurance)
muscle definition stage
Unfortunately, these options will only cause muscle loss, leading to a lower basal metabolic rate. This would mean, among other things, having to live with even fewer calories to lower the body fat index.
? If you are defining after having increased your muscle volume, maintain the weight you were lifting. What should be achieved is to maintain strength – if it is not won – while you are defining – it can be done!
? Perform multi-joint movements like squats, deadlifts, bench press… to burn many calories compared to equivalent exercises on machines. This way, you can keep the muscle in place instead of losing it.
# 2 Keep eating well and do light cardio
Defining doesn’t mean giving up carbs and doing hours of cardio. This is usually one of the big mistakes. It is convenient to do it with a correct calorie intake while performing the minimum amount of cardiovascular exercise when defining. Sounds good, right?
This will keep your metabolism accelerated, help maintain a stable recovery rate, and even improve performance (all of which contribute to gaining muscle mass). Therefore:
? When you start defining, do not make significant changes concerning the diet you had in your volume stage. The numbers will be different for each individual – however – an example: In week 1, lower the carbohydrates by 50-75 g – according to that, adjust the number of nutrients and re-evaluate it for the following week.
In this way, you will give yourself many options and the freedom to be more toned.
? If you are still progressing and defining eating every day and doing little cardio, keep it up! Please don’t feel like you have to do more until you need it. It depends on how your body works.
# 3 Don’t overestimate cheat meals / refeeds
Probably the previous section has made many of you sad (including me). However, I have heard of many people who feel the need to eat cheat meals frequently while defining.
However, the more toned you are, the more necessary it is to perform these cheat meals / refeeds since leptin levels begin to fall, and in turn, basal metabolism decreases. However, this is a very individual factor.
muscle volume stage
? Cheat meals are not out of reach, but they are not crucial. Some people may like to have them once a week, but for others, a cheat meal can go on for hours. And in this way, all that is achieved is to turn it into a burden on your shoulders, making it more challenging to achieve the goal.
Supplements for Bodybuilders during Pre and Post Workout
To complete the diet example, we are going to explain a little what each of the supplements that are taken in pre-training and post-training is used for:
BCAAs: are branched-chain amino acids (VALINE, LEUCINE and ISOLEUCINE), and they are essential because we need to consume them in our diet since the body is unable to synthesize them by itself. They are ideal among ergogenic aids since, on the one hand, they stimulate energy production for muscle work and, on the other, the natural anabolic process inside the muscle cells. Very good as an anti muscle catabolized.
Glutamine: it has two main functions; on the one hand, it favours the recovery of glycogen without having any effect on insulin, and on the other hand, it favours protein synthesis, an adequate intake of glutamine together with a well-designed diet rich in protein, is the best way to protect muscle tissue.
Minerals are necessary for the structural reconstruction of body tissues and participating in processes such as mo the action of enzyme systems, muscle contraction, nervous reactions, and blood clotting.
Caffeine: (it should be included as a thermogenic) mainly increases the metabolic rate, so it helps to burn fat in addition to helping to increase strength because it triggers the emission of epinephrine from the adrenal glands, which improves muscle contraction. This reduces fatigue, allowing us to use more weight. It is usually taken in cycles, like creatine, in which caffeine cancels the effects of creatine.
Thermogenic: they help promote fat oxidation since the number of norepinephrine increases, increasing the number of catecholamines that help fatty acids released from triglycerides.
As stated above, everyone works their body differently, and what works for one person may not work for another; it’s all about experimenting!
Total carbohydrate intake can be maintained at 70%, or it can be lowered perhaps to 60% of which complex carbohydrates (which start at 50% of total carbohydrates consumed during the day) will be restricted in such a way gradually to make up about 10% of total carbohydrate intake. The case of simple carbohydrates (which start at 20% of the total carbohydrates consumed during the day) will ultimately make up between 3 and 5% of the total carbohydrate intake. Fibrous carbohydrates (starting at 30%) will gradually rise so that they form 85-87% of the total carbohydrate intake at the end of the process.
The protein intake is technically maintained throughout the preparation, although it can rise to 4 g / kg depending on the hunger that could be felt and the use of drugs. I consider that a higher intake of these levels could already have repercussions on health; for this reason, I recommend not exceeding the limit of 4 g / Kg. of weight.
The fat intake in this form of “classic” depletion practically at the end of the preparation reaches “zero,” although, of course, we know that a diet can’t be fat-free; for practical purposes, it can be considered as such.
However, it is widespread for people to think that a drastic change in their diet leads to a faster solution when, usually, all that is needed is a little consistency. Train hard and enjoy the results!