Often times when embarking on a fitness plan, people want to know whether they should bulk up or cut down first. If one goes down the bulking route, then some fat gain should be expected, as you would be consuming more calories while trying to pack on as much muscle mass as possible. Of course, doing a “clean bulk” would be advisable so that the fat gain would be minimal. Others simply want to cut first, so that they can strip off the body fat and reveal a chiseled physique, even if the muscle mass isn’t all that prevalent. Another question can arise from these experiences, and that is, can one build muscle and lose fat at the same time? The answer is a yes, but. In this post, I want to explore how to build muscle while losing fat and lay out some ideas how to make it happen.
One possible circumstance in which someone could build muscle while losing fat is those who are pretty new or completely new to training. Beginner gains are great because the stimulus of working out is so new for the body that it responds by getting stronger and more muscular in order to handle its new work load. However, these gains eventually level off with more experience and not doing a straight bulk first to add muscle is going to limit the amount of muscle that one can add. This brings me to the next point..
Yes, one can build muscle and lose fat at the same time. However, neither will be occurring at the most optimal pace because neither is the sole focus. This is fine as long as the person isn’t focusing on getting huge but it can also backfire if the person miscalculates and doesn’t end up with as much muscle as they might have wanted. So, if one wants to add as much muscle as possible, a clean bulk would probably be the best idea and if one wants to cut then a straight cut might be the best idea but be aware the muscle loss will occur on a cutting cycle and the goal is to minimize.
Macro manipulation for gains
Macronutrients occur in 3 types: fats, proteins, and carbohydrates. The body doesn’t actually require carbohydrates for energy but they do offer many benefits and a very simple energy source for the body to use. Carbohydrates also seem to be the easiest macro to manipulate in order to induce fat loss, which explains the popularity of low carb or ketosis diets.
Another way to use carbs in one’s diet is to cycle the carbohydrates. This means to simply alternate higher and lower carb days in order to get the benefits of fat loss without having to go completely into ketosis. Carb cycling is a great way to preserve muscle mass while triggering the body to lose more fat. It can indeed also be used to build some muscle mass simultaneously. Now, I want to be clear and suggest that muscle building might not be possible throughout the entire cutting cycle but by cycling carbohydrates it is possible to at least initially gain more mass and then maintain as much of it as possible while losing fat.
Probably the best way I have found to implement this plan is to introduce the low carb days slowly and then ramp them up to get really ripped.
For instance, I have made only one day out of the week low carb, just to get my body switching to fat burning mode on that one day. Then, maybe a week or two later I will introduce another day. As time goes on the schedule may look like this:
Monday- Low Carb
Tuesday- High Carb
Wednesday- Low Carb
Thursday- High Carb
Friday- Low Carb
Saturday- High Carb
Sunday- Low/Moderate Carb
It is important to note that on the low carb days, my protein and fat intake increases, and I probably haven’t dropped any calories from my diet just yet. All I have done to that point, is manipulate my carb intake. This strategy should produce some muscle gain while allowing me to get leaner.
The next step is to increase the fat loss over the ensuing months. I accomplish this by introducing a two days low carb followed by a one day high carb diet. I find this 2/1 diet plan the most effective for losing fat while preserving muscle mass. This is a very basic carb cycling plan, which gives a lot of the benefits of following a low carb diet with fewer of the drawbacks of having to go completely low carb.
There are other strategies such as, linking carb intake to physical activity, so the more one works out on a specific day the higher the carb intake will be. This maximizes energy to get through those tough workouts. On rest days, the carbs would be lowered. Low carb to me means under 100 grams each day and often between 50-75 grams on the low carb days.
The best way I have found to build or preserve muscle while losing fat at the same time is by cycling carbohydrates, slowly but surely so that my body has carb depleted days where it switches to body fat for energy but also higher carb days to make sure my glycogen stores get replenished for muscle growth and performance.
Workout for Getting Ripped
Rusty Moore is a trainer and fitness expert who has released his 3 phase workout program, Visual Impact Muscle Building. It is designed to help get the ‘lean Hollywood look’ which has become so desired. It is one of the few programs on the market designed specifically to achieve this type of ripped physique without leaving a guy looking bulky like a bodybuilder. It is an ebook which is available to start right after purchasing, so there is no waiting around for the mail man to show up and deliver your package. You can start immediately. I have reviewed this program here: Visual Impact Review. If you are interested in getting ripped for roughly 26 cents a day and having a whole plan laid out for you step by step, watch the free video linked below and read the customer testimonials under that below. Plus, it comes with a 60 day money back guarantee, which makes it easy to try out.
Here’s what other satisfied customers are saying about Visual Impact methods:
“After following Visual Impact for 6 months I had taken my body fat percentage from 15% all the way down to a chiseled 6.5%.”- Gregory O.
“I’ve finally achieved the ripped six pack and body I’ve always wanted and I couldn’t have achieved it if I didn’t know the technique of shrink wrapping the muscles in the bonus phase!”- Atif A.
“Rusty, 42 pounds later, and with the body type I wanted!! Thank You so much. I love your exercise program, because you can personalize it…add a little here, change a set there. It never gets boring. As well, when I get up to work out, I always feel it’s DOABLE.”-Ange
“VIMB for Men review: The book is PERFECT! The program will give you the look of Abercrombie Models which is hot! The information AWESOME! It’s all you need to know to achieve whatever kind of physique you want. The program allows you for customization to achieve the look you like. It is divided into three Phases. I did Phase 1 for 3 weeks and gained 10 pounds of muscle and looking and feeling great.. and maintained my bf%”- Paul W.