Top 7 Tips to Build Muscle While on a Diet

build muscle while on a dietThis is your wake up call.

I’m writing this on the summer solstice – the first day of summer, if you will.  It’s at this moment every year that you start to realize, Shit, I need to get shredded for the summer.

Don’t worry.  I have you covered.

Use these top 7 tips to build muscle while on a diet.  This goal is accomplishable, but it takes a bit of dedication.  It’s a great strategy to use in order to get lean for the summer since your body fat percentage will drop if you do one of two things:

  1. Build muscle
  2. Lose fat

Our goal is to do both.

Tip #1: Eat in a Caloric Deficit 6 Days Per Week

I personally recommend eating 200kcal  – 500kcal below maintenance calories daily for these 6 days.  In order to calculate your maintenance calorie intake, a good starting point is bodyweight multiplied by 14.  So if you are 200lbs, your daily maintenance average intake would be approximately 2800kcal.  This means your daily average dieting caloric intake would be 2300kcal – 2600kcal.  If you perform a 24 hour fast for one of these 6 days, then you can eat 2760kcal – 3120kcal.

Tip #2: Eat No Starchy Carbs During the 6 Days in Tip #1

This means avoid foods such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, rice, bread, pasta, sugars, and all fruits.

Tip #3: Your Training Sessions Need to Be Dedicated to Building Muscle

The time to grow is during your training session.  This means that you will need to increase volume.  If you are in the mood of really trying something wild, try this out:

Exercise Sets Reps Rest Tempo
1A: Back Squats 10 8-10 60 40X0
1B: Chinups 10 8-10 60 40X0


Tip #4: Drink 30-80g of Fast Digesting Carbs and 15-40g of Fast Digesting Protein During Your Workout

The only carbs you’ll be ingesting will be during your workout.  All of these carbs will be dedicated to building muscle during the workout.  I suggest using Highly Branched Cyclic Dextrin or Waxy Maize Starch.  As for protein, I recommend Hydrolyzed Whey or Whey Protein Isolate.

Tip #5: Do Sprints on 1-2 Off Workout Days Per Week

Sprint for 10-20 seconds.  Rest 1-2 minutes.  Repeat for 10-20 minutes.  Now that is cardio.

Tip #6: Drink BCAAs During Sprint Workouts

The goal of these workouts is to lose fat.  That means instead of drinking carbs during the workout, you will only want amino acids.  I recommend 20-60g for the entire sprinting session.

Tip #7: Have a Cheat Night Once Per Week

So, 6 days of the week will be dedicated to eating below maintenance and very low carb.  On the 7th day, you feast.  Here are the rules:

  • Fast until 5pm.
  • Sip on 20-40g of BCAAs during the fast.
  • Eat whatever the hell you want from 5pm until bed time.  The more carbs, the better.  I suggest going out for dinner with your friends.
  • Eat slowly and only eat until you are 90% full.  The goal isn’t to stuff yourself, it’s to allow you to enjoy foods that are “forbidden”.  I use this word lightly because no food is forbidden since you’re allowed to have whatever you like on the 7th day.

Wrap Up

These 7 tips will help you build muscle while simultaneously losing fat.  Can someone say “Hello 6 Pack”?  This approach should be used as a short term approach.  A more sustainable program would involve adopting habits over time.  This way, you can maintain your awesome physique.

Either way, I use both methods with my clients in my coaching program.  Sign up by messaging me here and let me know if you are looking for a “quick answer” or a sustainable approach that will allow you to get your six pack and keep it forever.