A lot of us work on muscle definition before the summer – trying to achieve the best form and show their crafted body on the beach. The aim is melting the fat tissue with the best possible preservation of high-quality muscle mass.
But in this process, we meet a series of questions and an even greater number of different answers to these same questions. So try to avoid the following 6 most common mistakes people make in muscle definition:
Unreasonably raising the level of physical activity
One of the most effective ways to stop metabolism is to suddenly increase the level of intensity of physical activity; at the same time, you are on the restrictive diet in order to melt excess fatty tissue. Namely, the reason for this is the existence of several mechanisms. The body tries to protect and maintain the existing state using these mechanisms.
When you are exposed to excessive stress (such as 2 pieces of training daily with a high amount of aerobic activity), while you are on diet with drastically reduced calorie intake, the body fights. And it fights by adapting to the new condition by lowering energy consumption, which ultimately means – slow metabolism.
A slowing metabolism and weakened responses of the central nervous system lead to a reduced total consumption of fatty tissue.
Begin the process of melting fat tissue gradually, with light calorie restriction from the initial eating habits.
Also, in training introduce changes slowly and gradually, duration, frequency and training effort. All that in order to keep the body constantly challenged. But also in new adaptation needs, because exactly that process gets the results.
Reducing carbohydrate intake to zero
A series of studies confirmed that high-quality complex carbohydrates are an important factor in maintaining a healthy level of T3 hormones. It is the thyroid hormone responsible for the proper functioning of metabolism. Studies in which subjects responded over a period of 2 weeks to a diet of 0 grams of carbohydrates showed a 47% decrease in their metabolism.
In addition, exercise performances have been significantly weakened because glycogen (which this diet does not replace) is involved in the production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate), from which energy is generated.
At the same time, another group of subjects consumed 120-130 g of complex carbohydrates per day and levels of T3 hormones remained at healthy levels. The lowest level of carbohydrate that causes only minor changes in T3 level was 50 g.
When starting with the introduction of changes in your diet, do not drastically remove carbohydrates and reduce them to zero.
Try a gradual reduction in total weekly carbohydrate intake and with different daily intakes (carbohydrate cycling). This has proven to be an excellent way to maintain metabolism and dissolve fat tissue.
Avoiding the “filling day”
As you have higher levels of body fat, you have a higher level of Leptin hormone in your bloodstream. One of the most important functions of this hormone is the transmission of information to the brain. Info is about the amount of energy the body has stored (in the form of fatty tissue) and the amount of energy that comes from the bloodstream (calories, especially carbohydrates).
If the levels of this hormone are low, the brain sends information to the body to reduce energy consumption. One of the mechanisms through which this happens is the lowering and slowing down of metabolism. After only one week of a diet, levels of Leptin can drop by up to 50%, resulting in a slowing down of metabolism.
The “filling day” has its place in the diet due to the recovery of levels of Leptin. It is very important for muscle definition. On the “filling day,” you should eat in such a way that proteins and carbohydrates are for all meals, with minimal levels of fat. It recovers Leptin and accelerates slow metabolism.
The lower the fat content of the organism, the “filling days” should be done more often, and the recommendation is once a week.
Insufficient diversity in foods for muscle definition
When talking to nutritionists, many point out that there is no food that is best or significantly better than others. Every foodstuff (in fact, talking about unprocessed foods) has its own nutritional value and a micro nutrient composition that is different from others.
Therefore, if you limit yourself to only a few foods, such as chicken breasts, rice, and broccoli, it is a big risk that you will miss some micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) that these foods do not contain.
When choosing foods, beware of diversity. Take protein from a variety of high-quality sources: from turkey and chicken, through beef, other red meat, and fish, to legumes and seeds.
Avoid eating uniformly and not only because of the lack micro nutrients. Such a type of diet can get you bored and make you drop out of the whole process.
During a diet, the aim is melting excess fat. Many often opt for increased protein intake, with reduced intake of fat and carbohydrates.
But a longer period of implementation of a high-protein diet with low carbohydrate levels can negatively affect the balance of calcium in the body.
This is due to a disturbed acid-base balance of the organism and acidity when the body begins to use the supply of calcium from the bones. In addition, these situations in the chronic state can lead to the formation of, for example, kidney stones.
In these diets, we recommend dietary supplements containing calcium and vitamin D. Vitamin D helps in the absorption of calcium and protects the bones from destruction. And if the bones are good, then the muscle definition is worthy.
The use of less weight and a lot of repetition
Still, among the people lives the myth that heavy weight training and fewer reps are solutions for gaining muscle mass; while low weight and a large number of repetitions are a recipe for acquiring a muscle definition. But this myth cannot be further from the truth.
Namely, you can achieve the results with a caloric deficit, and it is much easier if you increase calorie consumption.
The goal is always to maximally conserve muscle mass as it is a significant consumer of calories. Therefore, in order to maintain muscle mass, it is also important to maintain the training at a high level (high weight and a small number of repetitions).
Thus, in the same way, that (in the caloric surplus) muscle mass is achieved, in the deficit is achieved the muscle activation and preservation of previously acquired muscular tissue.
So, practically speaking, the series where you work 6-8 reps to the maximum weights you can handle, with a calorie deficit, is the combination that will lead to your fitness goal.
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