|Part 1 | Part 2|
In the first part of this article series you learned how to get started with your leaning out phase of your summer plan - As you might have spent the winter months predominately focusing on adding new muscle mass to your frame.
Now you need to deal with the consequences of any added fat mass. Luckily, if you followed the steps in the previous article, you are now halfway there and should be seeing more muscle definition with your end goal clearly in sight.
Finish up the plan by taking the following steps for the remaining 4 weeks and you should be more than confident in your new and improved image for the summer months that lie ahead.
Make Sure You Are Getting Enough Essential Fatty Acids
One of the most beneficial things that anyone can do for their health is make sure they are getting enough essential fatty acids. These are potentially the most all-encompassing beneficial supplements out there.
Most people do not consume enough EFA's through their dietary intake so it is going to be simplest and most effective to obtain them in the form of fish oil capsules. This is an excellent way to ensure maximum health.
View Fish Oil Products Sorted By Top Sellers Here.
Some of the benefits you will see from regular inclusion of them in your diet is improved thermogenesis, anabolism, and a host of others.
In supplemental form, aim to consume 6 grams per day.
Remove Excess Fruit
As you are now getting close to the end date of this diet it is time to start restricting yourself slightly to get rid of that last little bit of stubborn fat that just seems to want to stick around.
The best way to lean up quickly is going to be to reduce the carbohydrate content of your diet further. The reason for this is because at this point you do not want to start reducing your protein intake as on a low calorie diet, if you couple that with reduced protein you could start seeing a reduction in lean muscle mass - something you definitely want to avoid.
Furthermore, dietary fat is necessary to ensure that your hormones are being regulated and for other normal body processes, so cutting these back to below 15% of your total dietary intake is not a wise move.
Carbohydrates on the other hand, can be lowered as the body does not require them in order to function (note that if all carbohydrates were removed you would start running off ketone bodies however this is more of a consideration for those adopting ketogenic diets, while for this diet you will still likely be consuming enough carbohydrates in the diet not to have to worry).
So this week you are going to eliminate most of or all the fruit you are consuming. Keep in mind this is not a long term diet as you likely wouldn't want to eliminate them permanently since they do supply vitamins and fiber, but for a few weeks it should not do you too much harm provided you are taking a good multivitamin and getting enough vegetables.
View Multivitamins Products Sorted By Top Sellers Here.
You may still want to include a piece of fruit right around your workout to help fill up your liver glycogen stores however later in the day it should be avoided.
Ensure Protein Is At Least 1 Gram Per Pound Of Body Weight
Now, as mentioned in the last point, if you are not taking in enough protein on a low calorie diet you are going to risk losing lean muscle mass. Since muscles are basically your calorie burning furnace, this is something that definitely needs to be avoided at all costs.
The best way to do that is to ensure you are getting at least the minimum recommendation of one gram of protein per pound of body weight. If your diet is very low calorie at this point, consisting of mostly this protein intake, a small amount of healthy fat and vegetables, you might want to bump protein intake up to 1.5 grams per pound of body weight for extra security against the loss of muscle tissue.
At this level, it is almost guaranteed that so long as your training is intelligent (you aren't doing hours upon hours of cardio training or marathon lifting sessions) you will not see any noticeable declines in muscle mass.
If you do choose to up your protein intake to the 1.5 grams per pound then also be sure to drink a little more water to go along with it. The excess protein will require the kidneys to work slightly harder, processing and breaking down the amino acids, so aid your body with this process with a greater intake of water.
Limit High Sodium Foods
Now that we have reached the final week before the diet is over, it's time to get serious. At this point hopefully you are noticeably leaner and pretty much where you want to be. The final step to getting truly defined is to watch and limit your sodium intake.
Since sodium does play a role in water bloat, as mentioned above, eliminating high sodium foods from your diet is the best way to prevent any issues with this. Check the ingredient list on some of the flavorings you are currently using, as many of these are high-sodium.
Examples here would be soy sauce, boullion, salsa, fat free cheese products, any tomato based products and so on. Try and use natural herbs and spices for this short time instead.
So if you have diligently followed the above tips, you are hopefully now confident in the way you look and are ready for summer to come. Remember too, next year you can reduce the process you need to go through when trying to become lean by still monitoring your diet somewhat during the off-season.
You do not need to use your 'bulking' period as a time to get fat as it does only require so many extra calories per day to add lean muscle mass. Anything more is just overkill and will be added to fat, thus adding to your worries later on in the year.
Keep a nice and controlled diet, with a small calorie surplus and some cardio work supplemented in and you may be able to cut your diet phase next year down from 8 weeks to 4!
|Part 1 | Part 2|