I eat right. I workout. Why am I not gaining any muscle or losing fat?
It amazes me how often I hear this question. Hell, I’m amazed how many times I asked this question before realizing everything I knew was wrong.
Let’s start with a few quick facts:
- You aren’t eating right. You might think you are. You aren’t. Accept that now.
- Working out and working out effectively, and with a plan, are very different things.
- You didn’t even mention sleep. Your resting body is when you recover and build muscle.
Great. Now that you’ve gotten this far, let’s continue. We should know by now that if it comes in a bag, box or other packaging, you shouldn’t eat it. If it has ingredients you can’t pronounce, you shouldn’t eat it. If you’re not sure how it was raised before it was killed, you shouldn’t eat it.
Here’s a list of six foods that will help you burn tremendous amounts of body fat while at the same time assist with significant muscle gains in addition to proper sleeping and a directed exercise plan.
- Eggs. Eat as many as you like. Eggs have good cholesterol. Don’t even blink twice at downing six eggs every morning for breakfast like I do. You’re not going to do anything bad to yourself.
- Mackerel. Not my favourite smelling fish but it has much higher Omega 3 fatty acid content than other fishes like tuna. It also contains zinc which allows for maintenance of testosterone levels. Mackerel is also known for fighting chronic inflammation which is a byproduct of heavy weight training. Fish of all type are known to help maintain a healthy heart and lower your blood pressure, which are both qualities that reduce the risk of strokes, sudden and catastrophic heart attacks and abnormal heart rhythms. Mackerel can also prevent inflammation, reduce arthritis and decrease the risk of conditions like dementia, diabetes, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and Alzheimer’s disease.
- Chocolate Milk. Personally, this is a hard one for me because I know how chocolate milk is actually made. However, it includes the two main types of proteins: fast digesting and slow digesting.
The fast digesting protein in chocolate milk is whey, while the slow digesting protein in the drink is casein. As an additional benefit, chocolate milk has a great deal of sugar, which adds to the overall number of carbohydrates. These benefits actually work in conjunction with one another. The fast and slow digesting proteins aid in muscle building, while the added carbohydrate content allows your body to recover from intense periods of exercise much faster.
- Vinegar. Yes, vinegar. Vinegar is beneficial for building muscle quickly because it allows your body to push the types of nutrients you ingest directly into your muscles and away from the fat cells that get naturally stored in your body. Muscle growth via an increased intake of nutrients is a key part of building a physique both muscular and lean. If the nutrients are absorbed into the fat cells in your body, however, they essentially go to waste and not only makes muscle more difficult to build but make the fat cells harder to burn off.
- Raspberries. Raspberries are an unlikely but pivotal ally to anyone trying to build muscle quickly. For starters, eating raspberries on a regular basis is proven to improve a person’s digestive health. A healthy digestive system allows your body to more efficiently process all of the foods you’re eating during your daily meals, which makes nutrients act in more beneficial ways overall.
- Water. When people think about the types of things they should be eating and drinking to build muscle as quickly as possible, few actually think of water as a viable solution. What those people don’t realize is that muscles are made up of around 80 percent water, so maintaining proper hydration is incredibly important to not only building new muscles quickly but keeping the ones you’ve already worked so hard for. Studies have shown that if a person’s water composition changes even by as little as one percent, it can dramatically impair their ability to build new muscle even after the most intense workouts. Dehydration both impairs a person’s ability to exercise properly and negatively affects the body’s recovery process.
- And coffee. I hate coffee. I’ve never had more than a sip. Coffee is a great tool in the fight to build muscle as quickly as possible due to its high caffeine content. In addition to healthy foods as natural fuel for the body, adding caffeine to your diet allows you to work out harder and for longer periods of time, both of which are key factors to building the muscles of your dreams. Personally, due to all the negative effects of coffee, I’d rather take a pre-workout mixture like MAX ATP, but coffee is readily available, so it makes the list.
Try adding these to your diet and see if you notice any improvements over the next six weeks. If not, do some research on the importance of sleep and a directed exercise plan.