Toning Up….

…is the term we all use

the one you can’t exactly put your finger on what it means…but at the same time

you just know 🙂

first things first this is NOT the same as losing weight

so when you say

‘I want to lose weight and tone up‘ that’s GREAT…but it’s very rare you can pull that off at once

if anyone that has been to gym and ever noticed on the InBody weight will go down/muscle mass down/body fat up

that’s why really

when you’re dropping weight you’re essentially eating into muscle tissue

so its kinda like a 2 step process

the next step – maintain weight (maybe even gain a kilo or 2), maintain or gain lean muscle tissue and LOSE FAT

this is what people search for once the weight loss stage and the buzz of that wears off

and it does!

you cannot lose weight forever 

you can, however re-set your thinking and have alternative goals (ie fat loss)

this is a longer term process don’t get me wrong and if you’re dropping 0.20 > 0.25% per week on the scanner on average

you’re doing very well!


Here are 5 Steps to Building Lean Muscle Tissue (you may not have opened this email had it been titled that < haha)

(side note: this does not mean you’re going to turn into Arnie overnight)

This is really where you’re going to look and feel your best aesthetically/shape wise

Here goes 🙂

Your diet could be perfect for building muscle, but without an appropriate training stimulus (load, set/reps, rest, tempo, etc.) you will be wasting your time.

Studies show that training is a bigger stimulus for muscle growth than nutrition. Even in severely restricted diets (very low calories – around 800/day). Strength/Resistence Training prevents muscle loss as long as protein makes up 40% of the total calories (so around 320 calories from protein or 80g/day).

Unless you are training every day, a split routine is not the best way forward. You will not stimulate muscle groups frequently enough. Whole-body routines ensure the body is adequately stimulated, often enough, for muscle building to take place.

That’s why we do this at DM Elite 🙂 we fell into the trap before doing ‘leg days’ etc but we find this works waaay better now.

Protein (meats, fish, dairy, eggs, tofu, soy-based products) are the priority when it comes to macronutrients. There are a few things to consider here: total protein and when you eat it.

Total Protein – we all know that building muscle requires protein. So it makes sense that building ‘extra’ muscle requires a slightly higher than normal protein intake.

What does this look like in practice? Protein requirements vary depending on your body weight. To be in the ballpark for optimal intake you are probably looking between 1.8-2g of protein per kg of body weight, per day.

If you weight 75kg and aim for 2g/kg, this would equate to 150g of protein or, approximately, 5 cooked supermarket chicken breasts per day. For some, this is a lot to eat in a day. For this reason, many consume some of their protein intake in liquid form with a shake or whatever.

I also like Grenade/USN/PHD Protein bars as they satisfy my chocolate cravings, taste pretty good and are filling. In fact…I probably eat too many of them and I would be just as well just eating a Mars Bar ha ha.

When building lean muscle, carbohydrates are your friend…you NEED them. As weight training, predominantly uses glycogen (stored carbs) as an energy source, it’s important we replace these to supply the body with the energy needed to perform the work we want it to.

From a practical perspective, you need carbohydrates to make up 40-50% of your total calorie intake. Most of these should come from quality sources (VEGETABLES, rice, sweet potato, potatoes, oats, etc).

Having a source of quality carbohydrates on your plate (making up a third of the size of the dish, at least) is a great start with something sugary kept for post-training.

4: Overall CALORIES

This is the most complex equation to work out.

AND probably the toughest to get your head around trying to head a little more to get results you want.

As a simple marker, On your scan sheet if your goal is to maintain weight and bring body fat down you’ll be somewhere between Basal Metabolic Rate and Recommended Daily Intake…

…maybe even hitting recommended daily intake for the week

for example – my BMR is 2000 calories/Recommended 2500-2800 dependant on how active I am

if I wanted to drop weight I would look to hit 2000 daily/14000 weekly or 10-20% under to create Deficit

to maintain muscle mass and lose fat assuming I was training regular would be 2500-2800 daily.



This was summed at nicely at the weekend when One of the UK’s leading Strength and Conditioning coaches coined the phrase ‘Invisible Training’ when it comes to describing rest, and he is spot on in this assessment.

Muscle growth and any adaptations to training take place not during the session itself, but in the period following training from minutes after to 48 hours post-workout.

If your rest is poor quality (bad sleep or poor quantity sleep) or disrupted recovery (training too hard, too often) the adaptations to training won’t take place.

It doesn’t matter how good your training, nutrition regime are they will not compensate for poor rest. We often think we can survive on less and less sleep. The question is: do you want to survive or thrive?

Personally, with 2 young kids right now & early starts I have to be realistic with that as do a lot of you all.

However if you are staying up the late for the sake of it and aren’t seeing the changes you’d want to see

And you can’t understand what you’re doing wrong

This may be the Number 1 thing that’s holding you back from seeing/feeling change

Hope that helps

Any questions

Please ask 🙂

About the Author lisa

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