One of the most common questions I recieve is "can you build muscle and burn fat at the same time."
There's been so many theories over the years about whether or not you can put on muscle and burn fat at the same time. Some believe you can. Some you can't. But I can tell you from my experience that you can. And I'm going to tell you exactly how I manage to do it.
First off everybody is different! (Obviously) so what works for one doesn't necessarily guarantee it will work for another. But the chances are better than not!
I used to struggle to build muscle and burn fat together because I made a small but detrimental mistake that always had me doing one or the other, but never together. I always trained well. So that wasn't the problem. It was what and how much I was eating that was the problem. I would either eat too higher calories and put on muscle and fat, or I'd eat too little calories and burn fat and muscle.
I'm going to avoid getting technical, if you want that, you can find that easily online! I'll be as general as possible. The moment you over eat your body stores excess energy as fat. So by over eating yes you have plenty of energy to work out and build muscle. But you also store more fat.
When you under eat, your body runs out of glycogen and food to feed on so it starts breaking down the muscle for energy. This is clearly not what you want when trying to put on size.
So the key is to regulate your calorie intake to an amount that is slightly under the amount of energy you use. A lot of people measure this daily. I tend to measure this weekly. This allows me the freedom to have days where I consume a diet of calorie deficit, and some days a diet of calorie surplus. I don't mind going over my caloric needs on one day if I know I will go under the next. So I just measure it weekly. As long as by the end of the week I've consumed fewer calories than I've burned (by a small but effective margin) I will consistently burn fat. I'll also add that it's extremely important for your diet to consist of a large amount of protein. And enough carbs to restore your glycogen levels.
I have around 2,200 to 3,000 calories a day. If I don't work out I'll burn 2,300 a day. If I work out twice for example I'll burn 3,100. But I usually sit somewhere in the middle. The other benefit to this is that it's easy to maintain. When ever I've had very low calorie diets I've only ever maintained them for a maximum of 8 weeks before I mentally break, then binge eat and jump off the diet! But the way I eat now I'm never starving and I really enjoy the foods I get to eat.
Another trick you can use is carb cycling. The idea behind this is to speed up your metabolism up by keeping it guessing. Your body becomes less responsive to what it continuously receives. This is why diets generally start to lose their effect after 6 weeks or so. The exact same happens in weight training. That's why it's important to always shake it up with training routines and with your diet. By tricking your metabolism and having one high carb/ low fat day followed by a high fat/ low carb day, so forth is an extremely effective technique. Because you don't give your body time to adjust. So it's constantly trying to match whatever stimuli you give it!
If you want to check out exactly what I eat, find it here in My 7 Day Meal Plan. Where I cover how many meals I have a day, what time and why.
Thanks for reading and I hope this helps you. Don't forget to subscribe to my email list where I give away free content weekly.