Why Reaching Your Fitness Goals Is Primarily About Diet

If you’ve heard the saying that weight management is 80 percent diet and 20 percent working out, there’s something to it. You can’t out-exercise a bad diet, which is why your nutrition needs to be at the foundation of your goals. However, remember that what you eat isn’t just about feeding your muscles and reducing fat cell size. In fact, nutrition also affects the mind, which is why your diet can fight fatigue, help mentally get you through a workout, and get you excited about taking a new class or going up in free weights.

It really is mind of matter, and your “matter” is what you’re trying to control. It’s a great idea to work in tandem with a nutritionist and personal trainer if you’re at the start of your journey (or anywhere along the way). These experts can help you pinpoint what it is you want to achieve and map out the best way to do it. After all, if you don’t know what you want to do, how will you know the tools you need to get there?

Reducing fat cells

There’s no such thing as “losing weight” unless you get surgery such as liposuction. All you can do is reduce or increase the size of your fat cells. Everyone is born with a set amount. Diet is at the core of reducing fat cells, although it’s more complicated than calories in/calories out. Still, this is a very basic framework, and it’s important to understand the caloric content of what you’re consuming. Even more important is making sure what is within those calories to nourish your body.

Reducing the number of calories you consume will likely reduce your fat cell size. However, even with working out, you can’t target fat loss areas. Everyone also has a natural shape and often pockets of fat that are too stubborn to move. The best way around this is to contour your body by building muscle in key areas to help off-set this natural tendency. That’s where muscle mass comes into play.

Some people, particularly women, shy away from building muscle because they think it will make them look too masculine. As a woman, this isn’t possible—women simply don’t have the hormone balance to achieve a masculine look. Everyone should focus on muscle mass because sarcopenia (age-related muscle loss) begins to really kick in during your thirties and increases with every decade. Muscles are important for daily activities, protecting the body, and keeping you strong.

Muscle mass

There’s no such thing as “toning.” Muscles can either shrink or grow. Toning usually means reducing fat cells and increasing muscle size simultaneously. However, simply strength training isn’t enough. Muscles need to be fed with protein immediately after a strength training session. Aim to consume at least 20 grams of protein right after a strength training session to kickstart the muscle healing process. If you don’t feed your muscles, and this includes the right amount of calories for you, they won’t grow. Worse, they might tear and be damaged from strength training without proper nutrition.

No matter your fitness goals, make sure diet is a critical part of the process. Otherwise, you’ll be working against yourself and will likely never see the results you crave.

Skinny Guys Build Muscle Mass? Yes! And Here are 4 Tips to Do It

There's absolutely nothing wrong by being skinny, but let's face it: most men want to have toned abs and bulky biceps and triceps – yourself included. Here are 4 brilliant tips to get started on your bodybuilding journey:

1. Activate Your Muscles 

After a good warm-up, proceed to workouts that stimulate your body muscle growth. Lifting weights, doing sprints, jumps, and isolation exercises are perfect for body building. Particularly, start your workout with compound lifts, such as deadlifts, pull ups, rows, squats, dips, and bench presses. Do compound lifts for at least three days a week. Lift weight not more than five days a week, though, because doing this daily may cause overworked muscles and make you feel too tired for the next week's workout.

2. Allow Enough Rest Time

Remember not to overdo your workouts and have some rest periods. Allowing at least 10 seconds every cycle, and at least a minute before proceeding to another type of workout are both proven techniques to regulate your breathing, avoid over-fatigue and collapse. Also, rest periods in between exercises are made to prevent dehydration by means of grabbing a bottle of water and replenishing lost fluids from your body.

Rest also includes getting at least six hours of sleep every night. This helps release the growth hormone effectively and also relaxes your muscles and eradicates stress.

3. Eat to Build

One of the important things to keep in mind in building your muscles is to eat right. But before you grab a grocery cart, you must know your current body weight first. Then, you need to target a gram of protein per pound (lb) of your weight on a daily basis. For example, if you weigh 160 pounds, then you need to eat 160 grams of protein per day. The next thing to do is to make a list of food to buy. It is recommended for bodybuilders to choose lean meat over regular ones, because this type of meat has more protein and less "bad" fat. Also, don't forget to eat starchy carbohydrates such as brown rice, oats, potatoes, seeds, and nuts.

4. Set Goals and Keep Track of Your Improvements

Do you want to be up and running until you reach your  fit body goals? Then, you need to find ways to motivate yourself to avoid junk food, continue with your body building diet, and focus on your workout routine. You can get motivated by setting realistic goals. For example, set your goal to 135 pounds on the bench press. From 95 pounds, be focused and challenge yourself everyday until you reach 135 pounds. Once you reach your goal, you will surely feel good about yourself and start setting your eyes on a higher number.

Another good way to get inspired is to record your progress. Write down your daily starting from Day 1, and take note of increasing the number of reps in your workout every week. You can also write down how many kilometers you've run, or record the growth of your biceps and triceps weekly.

Visit Healthyselfprograms.com to find out more about building muscle and the different methods available.