How to Lose Fat and
Gain Muscle

How many of us have tried to lose fat at some point of our lives?

Almost all of us, right?

It is the most asked, most googled, most challenging problem when it comes to health and fitness.

Whether it is health reasons or just looking good in mirror, excess weight affects your daily life so much. It can be a huge burden on thoughts all day, or even a traumatic experience for some.

Maybe you tried to lose fat countless times before but failed every time. Or this is the first time you decide to get in shape.

No worries.

Sometimes success comes from the simplicity.

In this guide, I’ll explain everything on losing fat that you need to know, the most effective and the simplest way possible.

Why and How Our Body Store Fat?
(The Simple Explanation)

Our bodies adapt to survive since the ancient times.

We need to survive, even if we can’t find food for days or even weeks.

It is fascinating to know that a human being can survive 8 to 21 days without food and water, and up to two months without food.

And that is thanks to your fat storage in your body.

The first energy source for your body is carbohydrates, because it can be quickly converted to energy and used.

Fats and protein are also important for energy but they are more of a long-term source.

But the problem with carbs is that we tend to overeat them because simple carbs such as bread, pasta, dessert, chocolate are freaking delicious.

When you eat simple carbs more than your body needs, they are converted to energy very fast. And it is usually more than the body needs at that time, so your body converts the extra energy into body fat to use in case of a future food shortage.

So, by far, the number one reason for the fat in your body is simple carbs like soft drinks, dessert, bread, sweets etc.

This is one of the biggest misconceptions, that if you consume fat, you’ll store that as fat in your body and gain weight.

That’s simply not true.

As I explain above, the number one criminal is mostly carbs.

Now that you know why and how we create fat storage, let’s get to how to get rid of in a healthy way.

How Can We Lose Fat in a Healthy Way?

The most important thing you should know is there is no one type of food or drink that magically burn your fat.

It is a process that you create with diet and exercise.

You probably come across countless of posts about a certain tea that burns belly fat or 10 best food to burn fat while you watch TV on your couch. That’s not because they are true or they work.

It is because we are lazy, we want fast and easy results and that’s why so many people google them all the time.

Losing weight is simple math.

If you take more calories than your body needs that day, you gain weight. Because your body store that extra energy as fat as explained above.

And if you take less calories than your body needs that day, you lose weight. Because your body use your fat storage to compensate the energy needed.

That’s called calorie deficit.

If you spend 1600 calories a day, and you take 2000 calories, you gain weight.

But if you take 1200 calories, you lose weight.

It is that simple.

And to lose fat in a healthy way, you need to keep that calorie deficit between 300-600 calories.

Because if you create 1000 calorie deficit every day, yes you will lose weight fast. But how much of that weight will be fat, and how much will be muscle?

If you are losing weight very fast, believe me, you’ll definitely lose your precious muscle mass with that fat. And we don’t ever want that.

I’ll explain why muscle mass is so important in the next chapter.

And with those very high calorie deficits, your body can enter starvation mode which you’ll definitely don’t want.

In starvation mode, your body stops burning calories and lowers your metabolic rate to survive, and this makes losing weight very hard.

Also, with that much calorie deficit you’ll probably lose control of yourself and start eating more than before you start your diet.

That’s why so many people fail at weight loss and gain all that weight back in a couple of days or weeks.

To make sure you mostly lose fat storage, you need to create 300-600 calorie deficit, and maintain that regularly.

By that way, your body won’t go into starvation mode, you won’t lose your muscle mass, and you make sure you lose fat.

The Importance of Keeping Muscle Mass While Losing Weight

One important aspect mostly overlooked when it comes to weight loss is muscle mass.

Your muscles are crucial for you.

Every movement, every daily activity done by your muscles. We simply need muscles to survive every day.

Lifting objects, picking something from floor, doing sports that we love, running, walking, cycling, everything you do in daily life requires them.

They are so important to live a quality life every day.

That’s why we never ever want to lose muscle mass.

And it is freaking hard to create them.

Muscle building process is extremely complicated and takes such a long time. You can’t force your body to create half a pound of muscle tissue every day, you’ll end up gaining tons of fat instead.

That’s why most people can gain 1-2 pounds of lean muscle mass a month.

Think about going to gym, working out for hours every week regularly, following a strict diet, only to gain max two pounds of muscle a month.

Thinking about the energy and dedication to create something so precious, you’ll never want to lose them with such a bad eating plan so easily.

If you cut back your daily calorie intake drastically, you can lose so much of your muscle mass with the fat storage.

That’s why you need to carefully plan your daily calorie deficit.

Can We Really Gain Muscle While Losing Fat?

When you consume less calories than your body burns, your body goes into catabolic state.

Catabolism is breaking down complex structures to smaller parts. Digestion is a catabolism. Your body breaks down the food you eat to glucose, fatty acids, and amino acids and then use them to repair your cells or fuel the body.

Anabolism is the opposite of catabolism.

When your body combines the amino acids to create complex proteins and use them to repair a muscle tissue, it is anabolism.

Gaining muscle while in calorie deficit may seem against the biology because your body in a catabolic state, but it is scientifically proven that we can really achieve that.

In a study conducted in McMaster University, young men were subjected to low calorie, high protein diet and intense resistance training.

Over the 28-days the subjects lose body fat and gain lean body mass, while also enhancing their strength and performance.

So, it is completely doable.

But you don’t have to build muscle. The important thing is to keep muscle mass or limit to a small degree while losing weight.

Just know that you don’t have to choose whether you should lose weight first and then get in shape by adding muscle mass.

Because it makes you feel like those are two complete different goals and might be confusing to follow.

You can do both at the same time without losing your precious lean mass.

Now that you know it is possible, you are ready to learn how.

Action Plans to Start Losing Fat Right Now

I strongly believe that sticking to a simple and effective plan is very important to get results.

You need to take action to reach your goals.

It is good to educate yourself about your body, healthy eating, and exercises. But as long as you only keep reading all those different types of diets and workout styles, you’ll only confuse yourself with tons of data.

And with all that confusion, it becomes harder to take action every day.

That’s why I have three simple steps you need to know to lose fat while preserving your muscles.

And these are scientifically proven facts.

1. Get Enough Proteins

Your body uses protein to repair and build tissues, and it also apply to muscles.

When you are on diet, making sure of getting enough proteins is one of the crucial things to preserve muscle mass.

Proteins take a long time to digest, so your body spend plenty of calories just to break them down to amino acids.

And because they take long time digest, they are very good at hunger control. Proteins make you full longer than most of the carbs.

So, they are essential when you are losing fat and keeping lean mass.

Don’t overeat proteins. Aim for 0.5-1 gr/lbs. body weight. For example, if you are 150 pounds, 100 gr proteins every day might be a good start.

Eat plenty of different type protein sources: Meat, chicken breasts, fish, eggs, plant-based proteins like quinoa, beans, legumes.

2. Add Strength Training to Your Exercise Routine

Strength training is crucial for gaining or maintaining muscle mass.

Cardio is good for cardiovascular health and burning calories, but it does not work your muscles like strength training.

You need to work your muscles with heavy training so that your body can repair them stronger every time.

That’s how your muscles grow.

You can go to gym or do bodyweight exercises. You can learn all you need to know about bodyweight training in our guide.

Incorporate strength training to your exercise routine at least 3 times a week.

Don’t do intense cardio exercises on the same day that have strength training workouts. Try to do cardio exercises on off days, 2-3 days a week.

That way you will tear your muscle tissues and your body will repair them every week. This is crucial for prevent losing your muscle mass while losing fat.

3. Choose A Low Calorie Deficit

As I have mentioned above, a calorie deficit of 500 calories is a good start.

Don’t be tempted to increase it to 1000 calories a day, because it will result a certain and serious muscle loss.

500 calorie deficit is safe, and mostly unlikely to affect your energy and hunger, according to this study.

You can calculate your calorie expenditure using online tools. It depends on your sex, age, height, weight and daily activity.

Once you know your daily calorie expenditure, you can take out 500 calories from it, and now you know how much calories you need to take every day.

You can learn more about creating your own diet in our guide.

Final Words

There are some more things to consider when it comes to fat loss, but those three are the most important things, I believe.

I also think at this point you already knew you have to cut simple carbs like processed foods, desserts, candies, soft drinks to lose fat.

If you follow these rules, sleep 7-8 hours a day and add strength training to you exercise routine, there is very small chance that you will fail.

So, start now and tell us how’s it going.