In today’s world, people are becoming increasingly aware of potential health risks that crop up with years of unhealthy eating, stress and close to zero activity. They tend to search for quick-fix ways to negate the wrongs done on their body over years and find respite in cardiovascular training.
Not that I am against cardiovascular training but Cardio alone? Yes, I am against that!
When someone chooses to start with the process of getting back in shape or lose some extra pounds, they have an array of options at their disposal, them being:
- Cardiovascular Training
- Calorie Deficit
- Strength Training
- Cardio and Strength Training in conjunction
- Functional Training
Weight Loss, Fat Loss or Body Recomposition?
What one must understand is that there is a huge difference between Weight Loss, Fat Loss and Body Re-composition.
What a layman will call Weight Loss is Fat Loss for informed people and Body Re-composition for athletes. As a coach, one should always aspire to change the body composition of his/her clients.
Now what exactly is body re-composition? It simply means changing the way the body looks by burning down the fat and building some muscle simultaneously. This process is a tedious one in which the client might get confused by the weight being somewhat stagnant with just a little drop initially. This happens because the weight from fat gets reduced and simultaneously muscle fibers get bigger and stronger, hence adding on to the body weight.
The Focus of Weight Loss
The negatives of Weight loss is, one loses muscle mass as well as fat. Whereas, we should just focus on Fat being burnt and building muscle which in turn has many benefits some of them being –
- Increased metabolism
- Increased insulin sensitivity
- Decreased fat accumulation
- Better musculature
But there are a few pre-requisites for who can undergo body re-composition, under what circumstances and how do they hit the mark?
There are two processes that take place in your body every day and those are:
1. Protein Degradation: The breaking down of protein into smaller components like peptides and amino acids.
2. Protein Synthesis: The integration of peptides and amino acids to constitute protein.
The How of It
Ideally, the rate of protein degradation and muscle protein synthesis remains more or less balanced, thus the person is not gaining or losing muscle. But for the body to add more muscle, the rate of muscle protein synthesis must exceed the rate of degradation. How to do this? You must include resistance training in your schedule in addition to cardio. Resistance training is imperative as it induces muscle breakdown which signals the body to ramp up protein synthesis. Progressive overload is the key when it comes to inducing protein synthesis as it not only gives a pump at the site of worked muscle but also breaks it down to build it up again stronger and bigger.
Thus, the proper way of approaching Body Re-composition is to adhere to the thumb rule of resistance training mixed with cardio. Also, nutrition plays a decisive role. Changing the body composition of any person requires proper diet structuring which emphasizes on all three macro nutrients as well as micro nutrients. It boils down to trial and error method to see how a particular kind of body reacts to any diet protocol. But, for most people undergoing a re-composition, the diet consists majorly of proteins, fats and carbohydrates (in the same sequence). Carbohydrates must be kept in and around the workout so that it gets shuttled to muscle cells and not get stored as fat. There is intricate science behind all of this process of shuttling down essential nutrients to the muscle worked but that is for next time.