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How To Burn Fat Without Losing Muscle

How to burn fat without losing muscle? There are a few steps you can take to make that happen.

When trying to lose fat, you will need to be in a caloric deficit. And it is incredibly hard not to lose muscle when you are not fuelling them properly with enough calories. Is it possible to burn fat without losing muscle? According to Max Posternak, yes.

Max Posternak is the founder of Gravity Transformation, a website focused on giving tips and training guidance for people looking to improve their fitness and lose weight. His YouTube channel has over 4 million subscribers.

He shared a few steps you need to make to help you burn fat without losing muscle. Check it out.

upper body workoutsSource: Courtesy of CrossFit Inc.

How To Burn Fat Without Losing Muscle

1. Caloric Intake Based on Current Body Fat Percentage

The less body fat you have, the more prone you are to lose muscle. This is because when you are overweight, your body doesn’t need to break down muscle tissue to get energy, it will tap the fat cells for it.

Here is a quick table of how much you can reduce your calorie intake (in percentage to your calorie maintenance) depending on how much body fat you have:

CategoryBody Fat (Male)Body Fat (Female)Calorie Deficit
Contest prep< 8%< 17%2.5-7.5%
Obese> 26%> 35%40-50%

This means that, for example, if you are an average male (body fat between 15 and 21 per cent), you can reduce your caloric intake between 20 and 30% of your calorie maintenance. This way, it is likely you will lose weight, but not so much that you will be losing muscle too.

2. Maintain Training Intensity

Another tip to make sure you burn fat without losing muscle is to maintain your training intensity as you cut down on calories.

The calorie deficit will make it harder to keep training as hard as before and your recovery will also take a hit. However, if you want to maintain your muscles, you should try to maintain the same intensity of your workouts.

Train to Failure How to Get a Stronger Lower Back Back Exercises Ranked Best to Worst lay pulldown variations

3. Calorie Cycling

This is basically eating more calories in one day and fewer calories in others.

For example, if you need 2,300 daily calories to maintain your weight loss, instead of eating every day around 2,300 calories, you can cut back on two days (Wednesday and Thursday for example) and you will be able to eat more on the other days, above your initial 2,300 calories.

Just make sure you are eating the right amount of calories weekly and don’t deviate from it too much.

4. Eat Enough Fat

Sounds backward, but it is true. You should eat enough fat if you are trying to lose body fat. “It turns out that fats can not only be good for fat loss, but they’re also essential for optimal hormone production.”

Make sure that at least 20-35 per cent of your diet is made up of fats. Out of all the fats, you should try to get more omega-3 in your diet.

Related: Is Seafood Good For Weight Loss?

5. Avoid Excessive Cardio

Doing excessive cardio sessions can make maintaining muscle much more difficult during a cut phase.

If you are in a caloric deficit and doing a lot of cardio, your strength training sessions will get more difficult to recover from, which in turn will hinder tip number 2 in this list of how to burn fat without losing muscle.

6. Limit or Avoid Alcohol

how to burn fat without losing muscleSource: Wil Stewart

“Alcohol impairs in fat loss and also leads to muscle wasting.” As it enters your blood, fat burning is highly suppressed so the fatty acids in your blood are stored as fat cells.

Related: Why Athletes Are Likely to Drink More?

7. Get Enough Fibre and Protein

Another great tip to burn fat without losing muscle is to consume enough fibre and protein throughout the day.

Both protein and fibre help increase the feeling of fullness and without eating enough protein during a cut, you will definitely lose muscle mass.

Fibre is good for health, body composition, and is highly satiating, which will help you eat less frequently, thus eating less overall and achieving that caloric deficit without difficulties.

8. Eat a High-Protein Breakfast

A high-protein dish as your first course in the day will help keep you satiated and ensure you are having enough protein for the remainder of the day to keep building muscle.

If you are doing intermittent fasting, then “breakfast” here would mean whenever you break your fasting period. Just make sure you eat lots of protein first.

5 Best Breakfast Meals to Burn Belly Fat Faster

9. Maintain a Consistent Eating Schedule

Research shows that being inconsistent with your eating schedule increases hunger and cortisol while impairing insulin sensitivity and the thermic effect of food. All of this slows downs fat loss.

And that was Posternak’s tips and tricks on how to burn fat without losing muscle. To have a deeper understanding of all of what was mentioned above, click on the following video.

VIDEO – Burn Fat Without Losing Muscle

If you want to understand more about how to burn fat without losing muscle, check out this curated list of articles from BOXROX that we think could be helpful to your body transformation journey.

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