Most people have two goals in mind when doing weight training. Losing fat and building muscle. The human body, unfortunately, has other ideas. On its own, the human body can only do one of the two. This is because as far as physiological processes go, losing fat and gaining muscle are contradictory. The human body is conditioned to build both fat and muscle when well fed. Conversely, it loses both fat and muscle when it’s not fed enough. It’s like trying to download with too many users connected to my building’s HughesNet Plans: no progress.
Mistakes to Avoid When Building Muscle
So if your body isn’t naturally conditioned to do both, how do you make progress? Well, you can start by avoiding these very common mistakes when it comes to packing on more muscles:
- Eating too much
- Eating too little
- Not eating before and after working out
- Consuming too much fat
- Eating too many carbs
- Insufficient protein intake
- Weak training intensity
- Lack of cardio
Read on to find out more about why you should avoid making these mistakes.
Eating Too Much
Let’s face it, nobody wants to admit they eat too much. In fact, a large majority of people underestimate how many calories they’re taking in every day. If you’re working hard but not counting your calorie intake, you may end up putting on more fat than muscle. There’s no need for the bare minimum low-calorie diet, but you still should know how much you’re eating and what the consequences can be.
Eating Too Little
If you’re looking to pack on muscle without eating enough, you’re in for a few surprises. You’ll lose fat for sure, but also your body mass. You may wind up looking skinny instead of the toned, muscular physique you want. You need to eat enough calories every day to maintain your ideal body weight. Obviously, this does not mean you should start eating 6,000 calories every day, but again, you need to keep a careful count on your calorie intake.
Not Eating Before and After Working Out
Your body needs fuel, otherwise, it starts to break down all your muscle gains into glucose for fuel. Your body particularly needs fuel during intense workouts, as well as the hours afterward. After you work out, your metabolism speeds up, and unless you eat, it’s your muscles that get broken down. You need enough carbs to keep cortisol from turning your muscles into glucose. You also need to eat less than the number of carbs that send your body into the too-much-energy-input mode.
Consuming Too Much Fat
Sure we have all heard about good fats and bad fats. But when it comes to losing fat, your intake of fats (good or bad) should not be more than 30%. The reason why is simple. Fat of any kind has 9 calories per gram, compared to 4 calories per gram in carbs or proteins. The math is simple. The more fat you eat, the more calories you consume, and the more difficult it is to shed off weight.
Eating Too Many Carbs
Refined carbs are not your friend when it comes to weight training. You do need carbs, but not the ones in those sugary drinks, muffins or donuts. You need to watch how many refined carbs you’re eating. That means cutting back on all that tempting junk food you are so used to. These snacks are high in refined carbs and actually destroy your appetite.
Insufficient Protein Intake
Nobody’s asking you to binge on protein shakes, but you do need a certain amount of proteins to help build muscle mass. When you replace fats and refined carbs with proteins, you start to build muscle or at least maintain it. This is very important when you’re also trying to lose fat. You don’t want to lose your gains along with it! Protein and exercise should keep you buff for longer.
Weak training intensity
You see too many people making this fundamental mistake at the gym. Light weights with many repetitions are not going to give you the results you want. Each set you do needs to be relatively heavy. The generally accepted rule is to lift 65% of your maximum. If you don’t know your maximum, then you should just make sure your final set is hard to complete.
Lack of Cardio Cardio training is key to burning off fat if you’re really serious about it. If you’re not doing cardio right now in your routine, you won’t lose weight anytime soon. You need to mix up cardio with your weight training for best results. Focus on steady-state cardio and keep the pace as moderate as you can. You don’t want to end up doing too much cardio and breaking down your muscles. Just enough to keep the fat burning while you build muscle through weight training. You don’t necessarily need to run on a treadmill. Just switch on Mag Rack fitness and yoga on your HughesNet cable package, and follow the aerobic exercises in your living room.