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How to lose fat and gain muscle the easy way

Losing fat while gaining muscle may sound difficult but it’s actually very simple. Eat less fat, eat more protein. You can lose fat and gain muscle without even changing how many calories you eat.

In this article, I’ll teach you how to get lean and big using Body Recomposition.

To lose fat and gain muscle, you need to reduce your fat intake and increase your protein intake. Protein and complex carbohydrates such as rice, pasta and bread are satiating. They make you feel full. As a result, you’re less likely to eat food high in fat and simple sugars.

If you want to know what to eat to make you feel full without gaining too many calories check out my article on the best foods to eat while cutting, in other words losing fat mass.

Body Recomposition

According to the recommendations of the Institutes Of Medicine (IOM), the acceptable macronutrient ranges for carbs, proteins and fats are as follows.

  • 45%-65% carbohydrate
  • 10%-35% protein
  • 20%-35% fat

To lose fat and gain muscle, you want to go to the upper end of the protein intake, the lower end of fat intake and carbs are up to personal preference. Be aware that excess (more than your body needs) carbs eventually get converted into fat.

For reference, you should be getting in at least 1.1g/lbs of body weight or 2g/kg of bodyweight.2

This is just to help you gain an idea of what your diet should look like. You don’t have to get the numbers 100% accurate.

 Just remember, more protein, less fat, and enough carbs.

Many scientific studies agree that High Protein diets lead to healthier body composition and some even show results of weight loss while maintaining fat-free mass in low-calorie diets.

But what about gaining muscle?

How To Build Muscle

There are 2 important ingredients to building muscle. Protein and Training stimulus.

Muscle is built by training hard. It’s a little different than training to build up stamina. To build muscle, you have to break down muscle fibers.

Once they’re broken down, protein synthesis is what fixes them up. For protein synthesis to occur, you obviously need protein.

When you get in plenty of protein with an adequate training stimulus, you get muscle building, or its more scientific term, muscle hypertrophy.

“Muscle hypertrophy occurs when muscle protein synthesis exceeds muscle protein breakdown and results in positive net protein balance in cumulative periods. This could be achieved with both RT and protein ingestion, which stimulates muscle protein synthesis and leads to decreases in muscle protein breakdown”

(RT = Resistance Training)

This is all to say, train hard and diet harder.

The Beginner’s Guide To Losing Fat And Gaining Muscle

Take a look at this image. How many calories a day do you think this person eats in a day?

If you said around ~2500, close but it’s actually around 2300 kcal.

If you said anything above, I understand why you think that. You have to eat big to get big right? Also close, but not so much.

What I did was body recomposition. Here is my diet plan.

If you want to get in shape, whether you’re skinny or fat, your solution is body recomposition. I did it with total calories under the national UK minimum, and I’m not saying this to brag but this is what I feel comfortable with.

How do I create my own diet plan?

The first step to creating your own diet plan is to count the calories that you generally get in a day. These don’t have to be accurate, just close estimates.

No one actually eats the same number of calories every day.

Start with the regular foods you eat. This could be the morning sandwich, cereal, soda, pizza, or whatever it is, start with your regulars.

From there work your way to the uncommon and add those that you think you eat consistently enough.

The goal is to figure out what you eat consistently and to remove some of the ones with fat and simple carbs, and replace them with protein.

For example, my morning breakfast used to be cereal. A lot of sugar and very little protein. Instead, I now have an oats shake and a protein shake. Plenty of protein and plenty of healthy carbs.

I enjoy my shakes a lot. They’re chocolate-flavored. This is another point. Add healthy foods that you will actually like eating.

No one is saying you have to add broccoli if you don’t like it. Just find the alternative that you like.

Moving on, If you’re not sure about the numbers refer to the recommendations of the Institutes of Medicine

  • 45%-65% carbohydrate
  • 10%-35% protein
  • 20%-35% fat

Remember, the higher end of the protein range, the lower end of the fat range, and whatever you find comfortable for the carbs range.

Eating Protein burns calories

The Thermic effect of food (TEF) is the “increase in metabolic rate after ingestion of a meal”. In simple terms, TEF refers to the calories burnt by the body to “deal” with the food you eat. This includes digestion, absorption and metabolism.

This is important to know because eating protein has the highest thermic effect. Around 20% of the proteins you eat are burnt, 10% of the carbs you eat are burnt, and almost 0% of your fats are burnt. 

Very little of the fats you eat are burnt and to top it off, fats are also more than double in calories compared to proteins and carbs.

This gives even more reason why reducing fats to a healthy minimum is a must.

In contrast, by eating proteins and complex carbs, you can actually end up losing weight. Not only is your body taking in fewer calories but you’re getting the benefit of feeling full.

That is just a recipe to lose weight.

Simple sugars can be just as bad as fats

Simple sugars are carbohydrates. They’re rapidly digested, leading to quick spikes in blood sugar and insulin levels. While this can provide immediate energy, excess glucose (carbs) not used are stored as body fat. 

Also, the rapid absorption of simple carbohydrates can lead to a quick return of hunger, possibly leading to overconsumption and potential weight gain.

Complex carbohydrates, on the other hand, are digested more slowly, leading to a gradual and steady rise in blood sugar and insulin levels.

This can help maintain longer satiety (feeling of being satisfied), potentially controlling total caloric intake.

Simple carbohydrates are easily consumed. You’re not left satisfied. Rather, you would want to consume more.

Think of candy, soft drinks or that product that says it’s low in fat but has a lot of sugar instead.

Overconsumption is possible therefore increasing fat mass becomes easier unless replaced with the alternative of complex carbs.

After intense workouts, simple carbohydrates can aid in quickly restoring glycogen levels, thus supporting recovery.

It may be better to have a balance between simple and complex carbs after a workout to support recovery and be satiated.

Examples of complex carbs:

  • Brown Bread
  • Rice
  • Pasta
  • Vegetables
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Oats

How much do I have to train to see results?

There are a lot of moving parts when it comes to training to build muscle. But the basic jist is, if you train hard consistently, you’ll see results.

3 days of training a week is the minimum you should do to maximize muscle growth. Read this guide to find out how often you should go to the gym.

3 days is enough to train the main body parts, the chest, the back and the legs while also giving some attention to the arms.

As a beginner, you’ll see results very quickly. Weeks even. Results tend to be the quickest in your early days since you’re going from minimal training stimulus to consistent training.

It will only get better once you achieve better form, and add in some advanced training techniques such as drop sets or deload weeks.

You’ll likely see the most muscle growth in your first 2-3 years in the gym.

Again, I recommend reading this guide to find out how often you should go to the gym.

Bro tip: Genetics play a role in your growth. Some people may see results faster than others. Compare yourself only to your past self. Don’t be discouraged.

Advice From a Gym Bro

Eat more protein, reduce fats and train hard. That’s been this article. That should be your goal if you’re trying to lose fat and gain muscle.

Before I started training, I was a skinny dude with a fast metabolism. I couldn’t get fat.

I ate garbage food all the time.

When I got into fitness, I started eating healthier foods like eggs, chicken, low-fat yogurt, protein powder, and the list goes on.

I focused on increasing my protein intake. Remember, protein is satiating. It makes you feel full and satisfied. Take advantage of that.

You can literally recompose your body by getting in 1g of protein/lbs body weight.

As for training, watch video tutorials, read more guides on my site, and bring a partner with you to the gym.

Remember to enjoy the process.

Your early days will have its ups and downs but that’s normal. Trust the process and you’ll be rewarded in the weeks to come.

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