So I have said it many times, by your twenties you muscle mass will peak, and from there it is down hill. Most of us can see the physical difference between a 20 year old and a 60 year old. It is not just the physical appearance of muscle that gets lost with age, there are many internal systems that get effected: your metabolic rate drops with less muscle mass, as well your bone density worsens, increasing your likelihood of fractures and postural issues.
So muscle may not come naturally past your twenties, but it doesn’t mean you can’t build it…yes you can build muscle and yes it’s going to take some grit. Building muscle is a two part equation: fitness and nutrition. First lets look at your fitness, in order to engage in protein synthesis you must perform resistance training. Lets not take the word resistance lightly, this means that on a consistent basis you are challenging your power and strength and resisting to your max. Most women mistaken this concept with “bulking” and shy away from this type of exercise, bulking comes more from hard exercise without any nutrition support, and thus you build muscle without burning the fat around it which looks like a bigger muscle. The suggestion is to ADD or BUMP UP the number of times (at least three times per week) you perform resistance training, and FOLLOW a fat burning muscle building diet plan…yes this does exist!
The second part to the equation is to consume not only the right amount of protein but at the right time. Take a look at the article published in the globe and mail : “Want to build muscle…it’s not what you eat but when” in this article it reiterates the importance of protein timing as a key for protein synthesis. Bottom line: Canadians will consume enough protein in a day, however because most protein is consumed at one meal, only so much is used for synthesis and the rest becomes energy (and if you don’t use that energy…you guessed it, it turns into fat). If we’re only eating 10 or 15 grams of protein at breakfast, we’re not consuming enough maximize muscle protein synthesis. Meanwhile, if we’re eating 50 grams of protein at dinner time, some of that protein is being wasted in terms of its muscle-building benefits. The key is to spread the amount of protein consumed throughout the day at each meal. Most people find this easy to do for dinner, but struggle when it comes to snacks and breakfast.
The key to bumping at protein is to know foods that are high in protein and begin to add them to your meals
The obvious: meat, fish and protein powder
The not so obvious: low fat dairy, such as low fat cheese, cottage cheese, ricotta cheese…as well as greek yogurt, beans, tofu, egg whites, luncheon meats, quinoa, hemp hearts and milk
Read the label too! Lots of low carb breads now contain large amounts of protein, as do drinks, check out this new drink sold at your local grocery store that packs over 10 grams of protein per serving: BLU DOT TEA
Let me know how you get more protein in your day: