Shredded, chiseled, ripped, sculpted or whatever, are the adjectives we all use for the same look we are after. And that look looks pretty damn good. We all want the chiseled boulder shoulders, the meaty pecs and the abs you could grind cheese on. But getting that look, it can be pretty brutal and agonizing journey.
You might be wondering why. Well, that’s because you need to achieve two goals. Get lean enough and gain enough muscle mass. You might achieve either one of those things by either cutting or bulking respectively and achieve them easily, but trying to do them both at the same time can be real killer.
This entails every meal you put in your mouth to be incredibly “clean”, training very hard and as a last resort if you still don’t see any of the results you want, starting with cardio exercises. Well, we might be able to help you out at this point. Hold the thought about cardio and then completely forget it. Why?
Because although cardio may effectively burn calories, it may be the most detrimental physical activity to the modern man. Not only is it boring as hell, it is exhausting and most important of all, it doesn’t help in gaining more muscle. So, what follows is a list of 5 things that you can do that will help you save your muscle mass while getting ripped at the same time, without having to do the dreaded cardio:
Become a master at dieting
We all know the first prerequisite for starting your cut is to start eating clean foods, start buying some lean meats, fruits and veggies and throwing away all the unhealthy fast carbs. However, this isn’t enough. Throwing away the junk food is only partially effective. The way to real changes is when you put yourself on a caloric deficit.
What this means is that you take in fewer calories per day than you actually burn. The body will compensate for this difference by starting to burn your fat. Calculate what your maintenance caloric daily needs are and then eat about 500 calories less. It’s that simple.
The 500 calories are a good starting point since it’ll allow you to measure if you are comfortable with that amount, and you would be able to quickly re-adjust it if it’s too much at first. Test it out for at least a month. If you are ok with it and are not having any issues, that you should start seeing results very quickly. And if all those calories come from clean and healthy foods, the results will be coming a lot sooner.
Incorporating IF into your overall lifestyle has proven to be one of the fastest ways you can see results, provided you do it properly. The premise is simple, you consume all of your daily calories and macronutrients you would’ve usually eaten throughout the day, in a set time interval in the range of 4-8 hours.
Outside of those 4-8 hours-time interval, you would be fasting, only allowed to drink some low calorie beverages like water or green tea. This type of dieting has been put to the test hundreds of times and has been shown repeatedly to decrease insulin levels, which in turn helps with weight loss; increase the amount of HGH (Human Growth Hormone) and even repair cells and help with their recovery.
That’s what science has to say about its benefits, but another simpler reason what IF works when it comes to getting you ripped is this, you have to plan it ahead. Knowing the exact time when you are going to eat next, makes it very hard to put in some snacks in your meal if the meal you had already planned contains totally clean food.
A common mistake many people make is thinking that failure to get to a single-digit body fat is because of their slow metabolism, so they turn to cardio. If you’re thinking the same thing, we’ve got another solution for you – start using fat-burner supplements.
Fat-burners should be used by people who are working hard at the gym and eating clean, yet still aren’t able to shed their fat fast enough. These supplements are filled with special ingredients that work synergistically with the aim of helping you burn the extra calories you have consumed and lower your body fat.
These are the benefits they provide:
- They increase your metabolism. You process food faster and burn more calories.
- They suppress your appetite. You have less food cravings between your meals.
- You feel more energetic. You can still have an intense workout despise consuming less calories.
- Increased thermogenic effect. You lose more calories while digesting the foos, allowing you to lose more body fat while maintaining muscle mass.
Fat-burners are an excellent addition to your cutting diet which can give you a real edge making the fat loss journey much simpler and much more enjoyable.
Drink more water
This is the most obvious thing you should do, yet the most elusive. The majority of people simply forget that they should be drinking more water when they are trying to cut. If we take into consideration that more than 70% of our bodies are made up of water, then it stands to reason that we should drink more water throughout the day to keep it that way. If you don’t drink it, you start getting really hungry.
This is when your body starts looking for any moisture it can find and absorb its water, which can seriously set back your diet even completely destroy it. If you’ve found the right diet for you and are enjoying its benefits, yet still want to binge, it would be better to have a glass of water than eat some junk food.
Use high reps
There’s another thing you need to change besides your diet in order to get the shredded look. You need to be building muscles with a sculpted and dense look and the optimal way to achieve that is by develop as many muscle fibers as possible, which you can do by using high reps over a lot of sets.
High reps can be pretty exhausting both mentally and for your muscles. In order to reach the end of each set, your body will start recruiting more muscle fibers. This has the effect of fully working and exhausting the entire volume of the muscle rather than its strongest points and can really help you get than shredded look.
You should be aiming at doing 5 sets of 15 reps with a weight that’s going to present a challenge, yet will allow you to finish the prescribed sets and reps and with a good form. That would usually fall in the range of 60-70% of your one rep max. You can see a more noticeable effect when working out on a machine which will help you isolate the muscle and you will be able to get some crazy pumps.
Abs can be perfect for this type of exercising, so start by doing sets of 20-40 reps and slowly go up. This will target your core muscles perfectly and add slabs of meat to your waist.
That’s it. Top 5 guidelines that will help you shed that stubborn fat and get you ripped without even having to look at a cardio machine. If you’re not planning to start running, you should stick to your dieting. Drink a lot of water, choose the right fat-burner and start training with high reps and get pumps that’ll make you buy new shirts.