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How to Lose Fat and Gain Muscle Tone (8 Steps With Pictures)

By Holly / September 7, 2017

The best way to become fit is to focus on fat loss, instead of weight loss. It can be challenging, however, to try to gain muscles at the same time. The good news is that losing fat, while gaining muscle tone is doable. As long as you do the right things consistently, you can achieve your fitness goal in no time. You can kickstart your fitness journey by checking out these tips:

Ways to Lose Fat and Gain Muscle

Include a trip to the sauna

Heat therapy, including sauna, can help boost insulin sensitivity. The increase in your body’s core temperature will trigger your cells’ heat shock response. Heat therapy suppresses the inflammation, helping improve blood circulation to the muscles. If there is no sauna available, then you can achieve similar effects by taking a hot shower or soaking in a hot tub.

Get more ZZZs

You have to get at least seven or eight hours of sleep a day. If it is not possible, then you can sneak in power naps later in the day. Sleep plays a huge role in muscle building and fat loss, as well as your overall health. Your body will only function well when it has adequate rest. When you are sleep-deprived, your hormone levels will become chaotic and you will resort to mindless eating. It is definitely okay to skip a gym day when you are feeling under the weather.

Vary your exercises

Your body will hit a plateau when you keep doing the same thing every day. Plateau happens when your body has gotten used to the routine, and progress has become stagnant. The only way to prevent this is to vary your workouts. This means changing your routine every now and then. Make sure to plan your training ahead, and consider different activities that will challenge your body – it could be as simple as going for a hike!

Do high-volume strength training

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If you want to lose fat and gain muscle at the same time, then you have to lift heavy weights more often. High-volume weight training is strongly recommended for people whose goal is to reduce body fat while gaining muscles. When done frequently, your muscles will constantly use the stored carbs for repair and recovery, resulting in muscle gain and fat loss.

Stay away from carbs on inactive days

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You should not deprive yourself of food when you are trying to lose excess body fat and gain muscles. Starvation will only result in muscle loss and a slower metabolism, and this is not what you want. Your body needs carbohydrates to use as fuel, but you should consume less on inactive days to prevent excess fat stores. During those days, stick to healthy fat consumption and increased protein intake.

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Count your calories

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It is extremely important to replace the lost calories after a workout. Not consuming anything right after exercising will delay your recovery and muscle repair. While you must eat something post-workout, it is not advisable to consume more than you burn. You can either eat a full meal or grab a protein-rich snack immediately after your workout. Aim to get at least 25 grams of protein after every session.

Eat more lean proteins

Good protein sources include chicken, eggs, protein powder, Greek yogurt, nuts, and the list goes on. There are plenty of lean proteins out there for you to choose from. Eat a high-protein snack or meal within the 30-minute window after exercising. Your body breaks down muscle tissues when you exercise, so it will need protein to repair them afterwards.

Do a little less cardio


Regular cardio workouts are essential for a healthy heart, but you should not do it excessively when you want to gain muscles. It is important to understand that having more muscles mean your body torches calories at a higher rate. You may do cardio workouts in between your weight lifting days, but limit it to 20 to 30 minutes per session.

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About the author


Thank you for reading my article! I am Holly Nunan, a mother of three daughters aged four, six and eight. I'm an Exercise Physiologist with a passion for exercise, fitness, raising healthy children and natural and alternative remedies. I have a simple mission to help each reader that comes to our website to take away one new piece of healthy information that they can immediately apply to their life. If I've helped you find that today, it's mission accomplished!