Can you burn fat and build muscle at the same time?
The short answer is YES. There are some caveats though. So let’s look at the facts:
✔︎ In order to build muscle, your body requires a surplus of energy beyond what is required to support your total daily energy expenditure (TDEE).
✔︎ Your body can get that muscle-building energy from 2 sources: 1️⃣ - Daily food intake. 2️⃣ - Energy stores in the body aka. body fat.
✔︎ If you eat less calories in a day than what is required to cover off your TDEE and muscle building efforts, your body will break down the fat stores and use them for energy.
Sounds simple right?
Let me hit you with just a couple caveats:
✔︎ Your body DOES still require adequate protein intake in order to build lean muscle tissue.
✔︎ A focus on food quality while being in a caloric deficit will enhance your ability to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time.
✔︎ If you are in a major caloric deficit for too long, your body may go full survival-mode on your ass, at which point, even if you feel that you still have more fat to lose, it’s going to say “to hell with you, I don’t give a shit if you wanna look hot in that new bikini, I’m going to protect you from starvation and certain death”.
Key takeaway - there is a balance of energy intake vs. energy expenditure required to burn fat and build muscle effectively. If you can find that balance, you are far more likely to be successful in achieving the body composition that you are looking for.