What Are You Eating Towards?
What Are You Eating Towards?
Looking to add muscle to your body? Looking to shed fat? Want to keep your current physique? There are some simple ways to ensure that you meet your fitness goals and get the body you’ve always wanted. Using simple metabolic calculators like we use on the Your House Fitness website, or like MyFitnessPal, will help you to figure out your body’s specific needs and will help you to stay on track with your fitness routine.
To add muscle mass you must place your body into a state of calorie surplus. Calorie Surplus means eating more than your body requires, known as your Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE). Adding muscle mass requires adding calories as well as consistent strength training to ensure those extra calories go to building muscle rather than get stored as body fat. Maintaining consistent aerobic and strength training is key to allow your body to put those calories to work as muscle mass and to allow your body to become efficient enough to use more of your fat as its fuel source at lower intensity and resting.
Using the calculator of your choice, start with a 300-500 calories above your Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE) with keeping strength training regular, at least 2-3x per week. Ensure that you eat plenty of vegetables, complex carbohydrates and lean proteins. Simply eating more will not result in muscle mass gain unless the quality of your food is high (no trans fats, no preservatives, no simple sugars) and your exercise is CONSISTENT. Eating excessively just to gain mass will result in gaining too much body fat so it is important that you keep yourself full on high quality food choices. It’s important to add more carbohydrates to your diet to refuel the muscle glycogen lost between vigorous strength training
Losing body fat can be tricky. Similar to gaining muscle mass, we must remember that maintaining regular exercise is key. CONSISTENT strength training 2-3x per week will ensure that you are building muscle and adding in moderate aerobic work 2-3x per week will help in using fat as fuel for that exercise.
Look to reduce your daily intake by about 200-300 calories, focussing on reduction of simple carbohydrates and eating quality protein and fats daily. This means reducing the potential for extra carbohydrates to be stored as fat and allowing your body to use its own energy stores. Small reductions over time are the best way to maintain consistency to keep us on track. Use your calorie tracker daily to help you and to give you a visual of your progress.
Maintaining your current physique is relatively simple, as long as we are still tracking periodically and not skipping or adding too many extra meals. The goal is to match your calorie intake with your TDEE as best as possible. Continue to use your tracker to watch your diet and try to spot any major fluctuations throughout the week and do your best to make sure you are not creating any major surpluses or deficits. Meal prepping is a great way to ensure consistent portions
daily, and as long as regular exercise is maintained, you should be able to maintain your current physique.
Even with maintaining we must be mindful to eat high quality proteins, polyunsaturated fats and fibre rich carbohydrates. While you might see slight fluctuations in weight by a pound or two, remember to weigh yourself first thing in the morning after your bathroom visit. This will give you your true weight before any eating or water intake, and will give you the most accurate weight. Don’t weigh yourself after a meal or later in the day as this will be inaccurate due to your daily food and water intake.
Most important of all is to be happy. While we might have a vision of our perfect body, make sure that it’s something you truly want and not something you’re doing to impress anyone else. Feel comfortable and beautiful in your own skin because you are! Staying healthy and active is one of the best ways to stay happy, and as long as we keep consistent, we can achieve anything.