Posted on: 5 September 2019Share
When you lose weight, it is difficult to tell the composition of what you lost without significant and consistent body fat testing. If you are losing lean body mass more than fat, your metabolic rate decreases and if you regain weight, it's likely to come back exponentially. There are strategies to increase the likelihood of losing body fat instead of muscle.
Try FatMax Testing
Typically, when you think about exercising to burn calories, you believe when you exercise longer or harder, you will see better results. Although it is true that you will burn more calories, you are not always burning more fat. A FatMax test involves analyzing your fat oxidation at different levels of exercise intensity. Generally, people will see an inverted U-shape, with lower intensity exercises burning the least amount of fat. As your intensity increases, fat oxidation also increases to a point. Your fat oxidation will gradually drop off at high intensities, although there are individual differences. The goal is to find the right exercise intensity that allows you to optimize your fat loss, so you are not mindlessly exercising and not seeing results or only ruining your lean body mass.
Increase Your Protein
Eating a diet rich in protein may not necessarily increase the amount of fat you burn, but it can reduce muscle loss. The amount of protein you eat will be contingent upon your goals. If your current goal is just fat loss with limited muscle gain, you may only need 30% of your calories from protein. For people who are serious about putting on muscle while attempting to lose body fat, more specific protein goals may be necessary, such as one gram of protein for each pound of your current body weight. It may be helpful to have specific testing to determine your body composition so you can calculate your protein intake based on your amount of lean body mass instead of overall weight. As your weight and body composition changes, you will need to recalculate these values.
Any form of resistance training or weight-lifting will be beneficial to aid in fat loss and building strength, but do not be afraid to lift heavier weights. Building muscle requires you to create controlled damage in the muscle fibers so the muscle becomes bigger during the repair process. If you are lifting minimal weights, you may not put enough stress on your muscles to make a difference. Resistance training and lifting weights is a critical part of body recomposition. Building lean body mass makes it easier to burn fat throughout your fat loss journey and can drastically change the way you look and how your clothes fit, even when the scale does not move.
Making the distinction between fat and weight loss will force you to be more mindful of how you eat and your exercise routine. The ultimate goal is to incorporate lifestyle changes that optimize fat loss without sabotaging lean body mass. Look into a fat loss program to learn more.