Muscle and fat are two distinct tissues that cannot be converted from one to the other. If you stop exercising your muscle tissue will shrink (atrophy), which means it may feel like fat but in actual fact your muscles have lost tone and decreased in overall size. Also, when muscles become smaller they do not need as many calories to function, which means your metabolism slows down and your required number of daily calories is also reduced which will have an overall effect on your body fat and weight if you do not alter your diet to adjust for the lower muscle mass and decreases eneergy expenditure.
There are no ‘magic’ hours that you should be eating. People associate late-night eating with a greater chance of weight gain because we usually consume more calories at night. The current recommendation is to start your day with breakfast and eat every 3-4 hours throughout the rest of the day. Ensure to keep lunch the same size as dinner so that you will be less likely to over-indulge at night. Lastly know that you can enjoy a small, late-night snack without the fear of waking up heavier in the morning.
During a workout your muscles undergo minor tearing as we are purposely overloading them to create a change. Once you finish your training session, while your body is resting, the muscle then starts to rebuild and repair itself, growing bigger and stronger. During this rebuilding process the muscle utilizes your fat stores as an energy source. As well as fat the muscles also require other nutrients such as protein and certain vitamins and minerals that you must try and receive through a well balanced diet. Which is all part of the lasting benefits of including resisitance training in your exercise regime. Lastly it is vital to give your muscles time they need to grow and develop, therefore recovery is a key issue that you must always address when planning your training schedule.
Your body needs more water than you are aware of. Normal, healthy muscle is made up of more than 70% water and water is also one of the primary ways that vitamins and minerals are transported around the body.
If your intake of water is low then you are at risk of losing strength and generally you will feel tired, this is because water helps you to get rid toxins built up in the body, inadequate water intake will allow for a greater toxin build up leaving you feeling sluggish. Drinking water can also control your appetite as it can make you feel fuller so you don’t need to eat as much.
Although exercise is an important contributor to successful long-term weight loss and management, to reap the rewards of all your hard work in exercise and fitness training, it is essential to establish and maintain a healthy and balanced diet. This will not only enhance your weight loss but provide you with the nutrients your body needs to function correctly, recover post training and continue to improve with exercise. However within a balanced diet you can treat yourself from time to time as a reward for all your hard work.
Research has shown that dark chocolate does have some health benefits due to the antioxidant effects of cocoa. That however does not mean that all dark chocolate is healthy, i.e. sugar is added to improve its taste which can lessen the effects of cocoa. It must also be consumed in moderation, eating a whole block in one sitting will certainly negate the positive effects it may have on you. So read the nutritional and ingredient information carefully before you purchase just any ‘dark chocolate’.