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New Year - Get Buff with These 15 Top Tips

Get Buff

WELCOME TO 2017 Muscle Food fans!

2016 was a weird one, so we walk into 2017 with a new found optimism to not only do good by ourselves, but for others!

Make sure you begin this year as you mean to go on and get yourself in the best shape of your life with these top tips from some of our best loved writers and contributors.

Phil Graham – Renowned Competitive Bodybuilder and Performance Nutritionist

Phil Graham

1. Don't underestimate the power of food! Eat!

Don’t focus on dieting every day of the week, take 1-2 days out of the diet where you eat above and beyond your deficit in a controlled manner.

This is especially true for those who are incredibly lean for metabolic, performance and adherence reasons.

2. When will you get a chance to see what’s underneath?

Getting lean is important but recall the leaner you get, as a result of eating less and expending more energy is time away from creating an optimal environment for strength/mass gain.

Likewise for those looking to add mass, staying in a surplus for too long can prove counter intuitive especially if you’re adding unwanted fat too fast.

3. Beyond Aesthetics

Too many people focus on the aesthetic benefits of fat loss over the more important health benefits (until sh*t hits the proverbial fan)

Solid health is essential for your long term progression with aesthetic and performance enhancement. Know that weight loss via tactful caloric restriction independently improves a host of key health markers.

Some key examples include glycemic control, insulin resistance, and reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.

Rack of weights

Courtney Pruce – Professional Dancer, Personal Trainer & Founder of TheCleanEatingGuide

Courtney Pruce

1. Eat MORE!

Diets that are too low in calories are difficult to sustain and means weight loss will quickly stall as they put your body in an incredibly stressed state and suppress your fat burning hormones. Therefore make sure you’re eating enough every day.

2. Concentrate your carbs

Concentrate your carbohydrate intake around the 90 minutes window in which you are training & avoid consuming carbohydrate for breakfast.

3. Do work outs & activities that you actually enjoy

Don't force yourself to do forms of exercising you hate! This way it won't become a chore and you're more likely to stick to it. If you don't like the gym things like boxercise, spinning, group HIIT workouts and swimming are all great! 

Paul Swainson – Head of the FutureFit School of Personal Training

Paul Swainson

1. Think about the time of day you exercise

The best time to work out is whatever time you can do and want to on a regular basis. Once you’ve decided when you’d like to work out, you can plan your nutrition accordingly.

For example, if you like to exercise first thing in the morning, you probably haven’t got time for a big breakfast. So you’ll need to decide if training ‘fasted’ is appropriate for your goals, or perhaps if having an easily digestible shake or smoothie 15 minutes before you get going is needed.

2. Think about fitting your transformation into your lifestyle

We all have family and other commitments to fit into our lifestyles, and finding the balance plays a huge role in your likelihood of success. Map out what resources you have and are prepared to give right at the start, as that will determine what’s realistic to achieve for you.

3. Be realistic

Don’t just plan what you think you ‘should’ do. If you begin with a plan that you know is achievable, you always have room to make further changes later once you have begun to form new habits and perhaps have more motivation to make more significant changes to your lifestyle.

Hazel Wallace – AKA The Food Medic and Full Time Medical Student

Hazel Wallace

1. Dream big, but start small

A New Year’s resolution doesn't need to be anything grandiose, the key is to start small and build a habit first.

For example, instead of making a resolution to lose ½ a stone this year, start by creating a habit to reach that goal – such as making a resolution to swap your morning cup of tea and biscuits for a pot of low fat Greek yogurt.

2. Keep a food diary

Unless you consciously track everything you’ve eaten in a day, it’s easy to forget about the little extras that seem to sneak into our diet.

By writing down your food intake, we are forced to acknowledge what we are eating and it makes us think twice before grazing mindlessly on snacks throughout the day.

3. Take a “selfie”

Whether you share it or not, take a weekly picture in the same mirror, wearing the same clothing, and by comparing the pictures from week to week you will notice the gradual changes your body is making. If that’s not motivation enough, then I don’t know what is!

Lloyd Stevens – Personal Trainer

Lloyd Stevens

1. Have fats – but the right ones

Eating fat does not make you fat! Eat healthy fats daily, as they are essential for androgen production, brain function, anti-inflammatory properties and many more physiological functions.

Make sure your daily split of fat consists of 33% saturates, 33% monounsaturated, 33% polyunsaturated.

2. Give yourself 21 days

This is the time it roughly takes to create consistent healthy habits. Be patient because you will not see results happen overnight. In most cases people have been storing body fat for years so expecting that problem to go away in a short span of time is wishful thinking.

3. Keep yourself accountable

Get a partner involved or publicly telling your friends and family what your goals are. After all, no one likes being proven wrong.

What are your top tips for getting in shape this year? Let us know your thoughts on Facebook

Have YOUR say in the comments!

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