The right way to lose weight and gain muscle
Many people go about losing weight the wrong way. Some people try to starve themselves with super low-calorie diets, while others follow a low-carb or low-fat diet. These diets can leave you in poor health, with a damaged metabolism. A healthy diet would be one that had the right mix of protein, fat, and carbohydrates for the individual.
There are three main ways that your body loses weight. 1. Water or dehydration 2. Loss of lean weight which is loss of muscle and 3. Loss of fat. Water and muscle is something you don’t want to lose. The more muscle you lose, the lower your BMR (basal metabolic rate) will be. Your BMR is how many calories your body uses per day at rest. In my last post, I showed you how to calculate your BMR and how to add your activity level. That’s the first thing you’ll need to know.
Once you know your daily caloric intake, you can now divide your calories into proper macronutrient ratios. Macronutrients, that is, proteins, carbohydrates and fats. A good place to start would be a 1-2-3 ratio. One part fat, two parts protein, and three parts carbohydrates. That equals six parts. So take your daily calorie intake (DCI) and divide it by six. For example, let’s say our DCI is 3000 calories per day. 3000/6=500. So each part will have 500 calories. That would mean 500 calories from fat, 1,000 calories from protein, and 1,500 calories from carbohydrates. There are 9 calories in a gram of fat, 4 calories in a gram of protein, and 4 calories in a gram of carbohydrates. (1g fat = 9 cal) (1g protein = 4 cal) (1g carbs = 4 cal). So if we do the math, it would be 500/9 = 55.5g of fat per day, 250g of protein and 375g of carbs per day. This is just a good starting point. If you’re doing a lot of high-intensity training, you can go for a 1-2-4 ratio. As you progress, you can find the ratio that works best for your body, but I would never recommend going below 0.8 grams of protein per pound of body weight. Every cell in our body is constantly recycled. Our new cells come from the protein we consume every day.
Now how do we use this information to lose weight? The answer is zigzagging your calories to build muscle while losing fat! Remember that the more muscle you have, the more calories your body will use each day! For 4-5 days a week, reduce your caloric intake by two calories per pound of lean body weight. These days should be your light training days or your rest days. On the remaining 2-3 days, increase your caloric intake by 2 calories per pound of lean body weight. These should be your heavy or intense training days.
Losing healthy fat is done at a slow pace. This is one of the most effective ways to lose weight and increase muscle mass.