Can I gain muscle mass and get shredded at the same time?

 It is challenging to gain muscle mass and lose body fat at the same time. When we see a fitness model step on stage or grace the cover of a magazine, we tend to assume that they look like that all the time. The truth is that figure competitors/models go through a flow of training and eating to gain muscle, accepting that they will add additional body fat along the way. They do this because they know that in the future, their focus will shift to a training cycle and eating pattern that will facilitate fat loss while preserving most of the muscle mass they’ve gained in the previous months. 

As average folks, we have a skewed perception of how our bodies are supposed to look because of the media age we live in. We want the best of both worlds, and we want the results right now. 

Most people come to Arsenal because they want to lose weight, tone up, or improve their overall health. Some people tell us they don’t want to get too bulky, but no one tells us they don’t want to lose too much fat. When asking yourself if you’re going to gain muscle, shred fat, or do both simultaneously, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • What is your experience level? If you have never worked out before or have only hit the gym sporadically, you will probably see a quick increase in your overall muscle mass and decreased body fat. “Beginner gains” are common among new members and makes those of us who have been around for a long time extremely jealous.
  • What types of workouts are you doing? High-intensity workouts can be great for gaining muscle AND losing fat, but some are better for others, depending on the goal. Some days will feature more weightlifting exercises that will help build muscle, and some will focus more on cardio, which will facilitate fat loss. In a group class setting, we help members choose the workout days that will be most appropriate for their goals. Our personal training clients have custom programs designed around their individual goals. 
  • How is your nutrition? What you eat plays the largest factor in your ability to gain muscle or lose fat. If you’re lifting weights and under eating, you could see your hard work move you back because you aren’t providing your body the building blocks it needs to grow. If you are focusing on cardio and endurance but are overeating, you will see the scale continue to climb. 

What’s your goal? Build muscle, burn fat or both? What are some of the biggest struggles you’ve had in achieving your goal? What’s your reason for pursuing your goals in the first place? We are here to help, and we love assisting others in getting where they want to go. Schedule a time to sit down with for a FREE INTRO today.