How To Balance Weight Loss With Muscle Gain

How To Balance Weight Loss With Muscle Gain

If you’re focused on getting in shape but in addition to building muscle, you have to lose weight, you have to be careful or you’ll sabotage your efforts. Undertaking a weight loss program doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll only lose fat. Sometimes, you lose lean muscle mass, too. When you cut calories, you don’t always have the nutrients necessary for muscle gain either. You need to focus on both diet and exercise to achieve weight loss while building or preserving muscle tissue.

Having a great body starts in the kitchen.

Gaining weight occurs when you consume more calories than you burn. To lose weight, you have to burn more calories than you eat. You can’t exercise off a high-calorie diet. You have to cut back on calorie consumption, while ensuring you have adequate protein to build muscle. The amount of protein varies by weight, sex, age, and activity level. In order to build muscle and burn fat, you also need healthy fat in your diet. Eliminating fried food and highly processed carbs is the first step.

Your workout plays an important role.

If you’re trying to build muscle and lose weight by increasing your cardio, it’s a recipe for failure. Cardiovascular workouts torch calories indiscriminately. They burn calories from both fat and lean muscle tissue. That loss of muscle tissue not only defeats your muscle building, but it also slows weight loss, too. Muscle tissue burns more calories than fat tissue does, so the more you have, the higher your metabolism. Increase your strength-building exercises but make sure you provide 48-72 recovery time between sessions. Add HIIT—high intensity interval training—workouts. It’s not a type of exercise, but a way of doing them. It alternates intensity from high intensity to recovery and back.

Don’t starve yourself.

Sure, you want to lose weight, but drastically cutting calories isn’t the answer. Reducing your caloric intake by approximately 500 a day can give you a good start. When you add strength-building and HIIT, you’ll burn more calories. If your workout is intense, increase your calorie allotment slightly. Don’t forget to include pre-workout and post-workout snacks for the best results. The post-workout snack of protein and carbs can help boost recovery and build muscle.

  • Don’t get discouraged if you aren’t losing weight faster, especially if you’re building muscle tissue. You may be losing fat and building muscle tissue, which weighs more per cubic inch than fat tissue does.
  • Eating carbs earlier in the day can be beneficial. You’ll have adequate time to burn the calories, so you don’t store them as fat. Eating a carb and protein snack an hour before working out can increase your workout efforts and help you burn more calories.
  • You may have great muscles, but you won’t see the definition until you lose the extra fat. Keep your eye on your goal. The fat is hiding the muscle tissue you’ve built.
  • Find ways to burn extra calories, like taking the stairs instead of the elevator. Staying hydrated also helps you burn more calories and can cut your appetite, too.

For more information, contact us today at LIV Fitness

How To Stop Overeating Chocolate And Other Sweet Treats

How To Stop Overeating Chocolate And Other Sweet Treats

Everyone loves something sweet, whether it’s a juicy orange or a sweet treat. The problem with satisfying that craving for sugar with chocolate or other food with added sugar makes it even more difficult to stop overeating sugary delights once you start. That’s because sugar stimulates brain neuroreceptors which opioids also stimulate. It releases the feel-good neurotransmitter dopamine. That reward increases your desire to eat more. It’s similar to using recreational drugs. The more you eat, the more you want.

Is it better to cut back and wean yourself from sugar or give it up completely?

The response for each person will vary, but one thing doesn’t. If you’re going cold turkey and eliminating sweet treats, carefully choose your food. Everything that isn’t whole food seems to have added sugar, whether it’s ketchup, bread, or the more obvious, soft drinks. Giving up sugar can help prevent the desire to eat more, but it’s hard to do. It takes several days to weeks to work through the sugar cravings. If you wean yourself from sugar, it causes cravings to continue just as strong and can make it harder to quit.

Postpone eating sugar when you have a craving.

Everyone has their “sweet spot,” the desire for sugar sparking a marathon of candy bars, pastries, and ice cream If you’re weaning off sugar, try the procrastination approach. Instead of going to the cupboard or stopping at the store, do something else. Go for a walk, clean out the junk drawer, or, even better, exercise! Do whatever it takes to postpone eating the sugary treat. If you’re hungry and it’s time for a snack, have nuts, cottage cheese, or fresh fruit or vegetables ready to fill the hunger hole.

Cut out sweet treats one at a time and work up to all food with added sugar.

If your goal is a healthier lifestyle, cutting out all types of food with added sugar gives you a jump start. Start by limiting treats to once or twice a day. Then expand by cutting back to one treat a day and then none. You’ll slowly reduce the sugar you eat. Eventually, your diet will be free of added sugar and you won’t crave it.

  • People often fail to realize that soft drinks and fruit juice count as a sugary treat. Drinks are super high in sugar and just as addictive. Even zero-calorie drinks with artificial sweeteners can keep the sugar addiction strong.
  • Once you give up the obvious sugary treats, you might find you crave crackers, pasta, and white bread. They’re loaded with sugar, too. All you’re looking for is a big rush of glucose. Limit those foods if you’re weaning off sugar.
  • Find ways to get the sweet flavor without the rush of glucose. Create snacks with fruit. Make a parfait with plain Greek yogurt, berries, a half banana chopped, and nuts. It can help fill your craving for sugar without throwing gasoline on the fire.
  • It takes a while to get your tastebuds to adapt. When you eat sugar, it requires more sugar each time to get the same sweet flavor. It takes as long to get your taste buds back to enjoying natural sweetness.

For more information, contact us today at LIV Fitness

What Genetic Predispositions Increase The Risk Of Becoming Obese?

What Genetic Predispositions Increase The Risk Of Becoming Obese?

If you’re like many people in Livermore, CA, you’ve heard the latest scientific discovery linking a genetic factor to the potential of becoming obese. While genetic makeup dramatically affects your future, it doesn’t seal your fate. A predisposition means you must work harder and be more careful with your diet and other lifestyle options. Scientists recently analyzed human genome sections affecting body weight in four hundred thousand people. The people in the top 10% containing those markers were 25 times more likely to become severely obese than those in the bottom 10%.

It doesn’t mean you have to become obese.

Even if you have all the markers of obesity, your lifestyle plays an important role. While it doesn’t seem fair, people with the genetic markers of obesity have to be more careful and live a healthier lifestyle than those that don’t have the markers. It also doesn’t mean that someone with few genetic markers can avoid obesity if they live only on pastry, snack food, and other foods high in empty calories.

Your lifestyle plays a critical role.

There’s always been a debate about nature vs nurture. Which one plays the most important role in all facets of life? For obesity, it looks like it’s a 50/50 split. You inherit the genes that provide a predisposition to obesity, but after that, it’s your lifestyle that determines your outcome. It explains why two people in the same family can have very different body shapes and weights.

Just because you have a genetic predisposition toward obesity, it doesn’t make it bad.

Genes linked to excess body fat may protect the body from other health issues. Scientists also discovered 62 sections of markers that were associated with both a lower risk of heart disease and a higher risk of excess body fat. There was a difference between healthy fat cells and unhealthy ones. The key was the fat created, how the fat was distributed, and the regulation of inflammation and energy. It explains why about 45% of the people who are obese maintain healthy blood pressure, lipid levels, and glucose levels and remain relatively healthy.

  • Even if you don’t have genetic markers for obesity, you aren’t out of the woods. In the study of genetics, people without the genetic markers of obesity still developed it. That places the burden back on lifestyle.
  • Early childhood plays a role, particularly when it comes to health interventions. It doesn’t mean adults can’t change their future. It’s just easier when you learn healthier options early in life.
  • Even if you do have the genetic markers to improve heart health, people with obesity face a 72% higher risk for diabetes, increase the risk of high blood pressure by 38%, and are 34% more likely to develop heart failure.
  • Our personal trainers at LIV Fitness can help you develop a personalized plan for a healthier life, whether you have a predisposition to obesity or not. It’s all about you, your goals, and present fitness level.

For more information, contact us today at LIV Fitness

Best Foods To Eat When On The Road

Best Foods To Eat When On The Road

Whether you’re on the road for business or a fun family trip, eating healthy food can still be your goal. You don’t have to “junk-food junkie” your way across America. It takes some planning, but with the help of an internet search or a couple of coolers in the trunk, it’s possible to eat healthier. Start by planning your trip before you leave the house. Check the internet for restaurants on your route and visit their website to view what they offer.

Even fast food restaurants have some healthy options.

Grilled chicken, salads, and fruit are offered at some drive-through restaurants. Dine-in restaurants normally have a wider variety of healthier foods Avoid fried options and choose grilled or baked foods. Find restaurants with plenty of vegetable side dishes that aren’t drenched in cream sauce. Some of the fast food restaurants even offer vegetarian or gluten-free options. It’s far easier to find healthy food on the road today than it was just 20 years ago, but you have to choose wisely, Grasshopper. (A reference for anyone old enough to remember the 1970s Kung Fu TV series)

Make your trip a family picnic along the way.

You can create meals to take with you and snacks. It’s an excellent option if saving money, or simply having food you know is healthy readily available. Bring a cooler even if you don’t bring food. You can fill it with bottled water to stay hydrated. Fresh fruit and nut butter makes a good snack. Don’t forget utensils to scoop the nut butter and cut the fruit. Unsweetened yogurt with berries is another good snack option. Rotisserie chicken, salads, and whole grain roll-ups are all healthier options.

Take along a small blender, like the Bullet, and the ingredients you need for a smoothie.

If smoothies are your thing, when you stop for the night, make them, just make sure you have all the necessary ingredients. You don’t have to bring all your food from home. Preplan a shopping trip using the Internet. You can have fresh, clean meals that you know are healthy. If you’re buying food along the way, use the older fruits and vegetables for smoothies and avoid waste.

  • Don’t forget to stop frequently to stretch your legs. It’s a healthy option that can reduce fatigue at the end of the day. Enjoy your meal or snack at a roadside stop and get some exercise at the same time.
  • If you opt for a meal that makes subs to your specifications, choose multigrain bread and pack on the vegetables. Avoid pepperoni and processed meat, American cheese, and many of the dressings. Stick with chicken, vinegar or vinaigrette, and Swiss cheese.
  • Don’t take juice for the kids, thinking it’s healthier. Opt for water, unsweetened tea, or infused water. The lack of fiber in fruit juice makes it a sugar bomb that will ramp up the kids for hours.
  • If you’re traveling in a farming area, check for farmers’ markets along the way. They have fresh produce you can prepare in your room at night. Some even have restaurants that offer farm-fresh options for every meal.

For more information, contact us today at LIV Fitness