Getting in shape can be challenging, and once you get there, things will not be much easier. Maintaining that strong physique involves lots of dedication that needs to go beyond regular intense workouts and eating the right diet.
Luckily, this doesn’t mean that from now on, your whole life needs to revolve around staying lean. Instead, you can try to establish a routine that will allow you to “run on autopilot” and stick to the right habits without even thinking about them. Don’t worry if you’re not sure where to start. This article will guide you through the list of best practices that you can turn into lifelong behaviors for maintaining a shredded body.
The tips below range from eating a diet full of protein to avoiding alcohol, getting enough sleep, setting exercise goals, and mixing up your workouts.
Now, check out the daily habits listed below and consider adding them to your regimen so you can watch your muscles grow!
1- Set Goals and Track Your Progress
Achieving goals will help keep you motivated and focused on your end result: being shredded and healthy. But to achieve goals, you first need to set them. You can set multiple goals based on your current situation, including reaching a certain weight, losing a certain amount of fat, increasing muscle mass by a certain amount, running a marathon by a certain date—the possibilities are endless.
Make sure that as you reach your goals, you reward yourself so that you stay focused on the process instead of being discouraged by the final result. Rewards can take different forms, depending on your needs and preferences. For instance, some people may be dreaming about working out with a celebrity personal trainer, while others may want to get themselves a new pair of gym shoes they’ve been eyeing for a while.
2- Stick to a Protein-Rich Diet
Protein is one of the essential elements in any bodybuilding diet. It is crucial for building muscle and recovering from workouts. Ideally, you should consume at least one gram of protein per pound of bodyweight if you want to gain and/or maintain muscle. Make sure to spread out your protein intake throughout five or six meals in a day. Avoid going overboard, though, as excess protein, especially from animal sources, can lead to conditions such as constipation or kidney stones.
Some of the muscle-building diet essentials include egg whites, chicken or turkey meat, cold water fish such as salmon, tuna, trout and sardines, beans and legumes, lean red meats, whey protein, and plenty of water to drink with and in-between your meals.
3- Get Enough Sleep
Getting enough rest isn’t just essential for your health; it’s also vital to your muscle-building efforts. Sleep is when most of your hormones, such as growth hormone and testosterone, are released. When you don’t get enough rest, your brain also naturally craves sugar to keep your body going, which can lead to weight gain. Therefore, you should aim for getting between 7 and 9 hours of sleep every night for best results.
If you’re having trouble sleeping, try to go to bed and wake up at the same hour every day, including the weekends. In addition, make sure that your bedroom is dark and comfortable, consider investing in a high-quality mattress, and instead of scrolling on your phone before sleep, read a book instead.
4- Try New Workouts
Doing the same workout over and over again is likely to lead to boredom and a loss of motivation. To avoid this, try out a new workout every few days and rotate between different exercises and routines.
For instance, even though cardio helps with fat loss, too much of it can also become boring and tiring. So, try alternating between different cardio modes: running on the treadmill one day, swimming another day, cycling on another day – and so on. This way, you won’t get bored with any particular form of cardio and it will be easier for you to maintain your motivation.
5- Avoid Alcohol
Alcohol can have disastrous effects on your body composition due to the fact that it contains a lot of calories without providing any nutritional benefits. Alcohol also interferes with sleep patterns and insulin sensitivity, which can slow down fat loss and contribute to weight gain. Additionally, too much alcohol can also lead to overeating because of increased appetite and cravings for unhealthy foods that are often associated with drinking alcohol, such as fast food or sugary foods. With that in mind, try to limit your alcohol intake as much as possible.
6- Don’t Skip Breakfast
Eating breakfast is one of the best habits to adopt if you want to lose weight or build muscle. Skipping breakfast causes an increase in cortisol levels and blood sugar levels, which can lead to increased hunger later in the day and overeating at night. It’s better to kickstart your day by eating a bowlful of healthy breakfast instead of munching on a protein bar when you’re on your way to work.
7- Drink Plenty of Water
Drinking water helps keep your body hydrated and improves your overall health as it helps remove excess nitrogen, urea, and ketones. Drinking plenty of water is especially important if you are trying to build muscle and lose fat because both processes require an increased amount of nutrients and water in order to occur effectively.
Aim to drink at least eight glasses of water daily so that you remain properly hydrated at all times of the day. If you find it hard to drink that much water every day, then try adding some lemon juice into the water for added flavor. You can also try drinking flavored waters with no added sugar or sparkling water.
The tips above are related to only a few habits that you can try to establish if you want to have a strong and ripped body and are a good starting point. Once you get into the habit of using these practices on a regular basis, it will be much easier for you to keep up with them in the long run – which is precisely what you need to do if you want to build a strong and healthy physique and keep it for years to come.
Start setting goals that will allow you to track your progress, eat a diet that’s rich in protein, drink plenty of water and avoid alcohol, don’t skip breakfast, make sure to get enough rest, and try new workouts to break up the routine. Good luck!