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Question
Posted by: P | 2004/03/05

muscle building after weight loss

I am an ideal weight for my height - 50kgs and 1.57m tall. I don't want to lose weight. But i was an overweight underactive child and I now want to convert all the excess fat (my range is 26-28% and should be between 20-24% acc to body IQ) on my body to muscle - of which i have almost none. i have started body conditioning classes twice weekly at the gym, along with a single kata box class weekly. Tis means three muscle building hour long sessions weekly. Otherwise i do cardio, with one day of rest - will this programme give me results? and if so, how soon can i see results if i follow a good diet also

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Our expert says:
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It should give you some results - there are a few things that may help you though. Firstly, you can't convert fat to muscle - the two types of tissue are not interchangeable. What you have to do is to build muscle from scratch, and then the fat will gradually 'disappear'. So, the goals for your training would be: 1) to build muscle, and 2) to assist in the loss of fat, and these are two independent processes.

In terms of building muscle, the body conditioning classes will help, although I'm not too sure about what goes on in many of these classes. You must make sure that for building mass and especially muscle mass, that you are eating enough proteins and carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are important as the body's main source of energy during exercise. Feelings of fatigue, lack of energy, tiredness are all indications of a lack of carbohydrates in the diet. Foods that contain carbohydrates include rice, potatoes, pasta, bread etc. Any starchy food is a good bet.

Then, in terms of proteins, you must try to eat meats, fish, eggs etc. as good sources of proteins. Ideally, these types of foods should make up 30% of your diet, with carbohydrates about 60 to 70%. Fats should be kept to a minimum of about 10 to 20%.

Then finally, keep in mind that you must train properly to increase mass, and eating well is not enough on its own.

If your aim were to build muscle, the following guidelines will help you:
• Perform 6-10 reps at a high intensity - use a weight that you could lift 12 to 15 times
• Perform 3-4 sets
• Rest 30-60 seconds between reps
• Train each muscle group at least once or twice a week
• Allow 48 hours rest between each muscle’s workout

If your aim were to tone muscle, the following guidelines will help you:
• Perform 10-15 reps but at a much lower intensity - use a weight that would allow you to lift the weight at least 25 times.
• Perform 4-6 sets
• Rest 30-60 seconds between reps
• Train each muscle group at least once or twice a week
• Allow 48 hours rest between each muscle’s workout

For weight loss, cardio is the way to go. My first impression of the programme is that you could do a little more cardio in the programme - the kata box would count as a cardio session and if you could do 2 more sessions, that would be ideal.

Other than this, it's just a matter of staying with it, and being patient.

Good luck

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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