Hi guys its Carl here from Maximum Sports Nutrition.
Let me ask you a question. Do you want to get shredded and in the best shape of your life ready for summer? If the answer is yes then you are in the right place.
Today’s guest post is by Maximum Sports Nutritions good friend Kevin Rail. Kevin is a professional fitness trainer and nutritional expert and trust me this guy really knows his stuff. How do I know? Well I know this from personal experience, as he actually helped me achieve this exact goal back in 2015, where over 7 weeks I managed to drop a massive amount of body fat at the same time as packing on a really good amount of good quality lean muscle.
Check out Kevin’s 11 Tips for getting shredded for summer below:
Kevin Rail: Do you know that feeling you get on a hot summer day when you take off your shirt, walk down the street and feel people staring at you from multiple directions? If you know the feeling that means one of two things you either did your homework, put in the effort and made necessary sacrifices to deserve those stares because you were in great shape, or people were staring because you looked terrible and were completely out of shape.
Be advised that getting to the point where people are looking because you look amazing takes dedication and discipline. Although it may not come overnight, it can definitely be done in a reasonable amount of time if you follow the right game plan and its definitely not to late to be in the best shape of your life by this summer. Below is a solid list of 11 ways to make the magic happen.
1. Understand that it starts with your mindset!
Getting ripped doesn’t start at the kitchen table or the weight room. It starts in your head. You need to create a vision before you do anything else. If you are not mentally straight or motivated to take action, how easy do you think it will it be to honour your diet and workouts? It won’t. In fact, you can plan on failing miserably.
Act like you are already in possession of that coveted ripped body that you so desire. Don’t let that visual out of your head for a second. This is often referred to as guided imagery. It’s like rehearsing without playing an instrument. Use a positive image of yourself as an instrument to obtain a ripped body.
2. Adjust your calories.
A person who is ripped has very little visual body fat. For abs specifically, the actual rule of thumb is, for most people you need to be in the single digits body fat % for them to be really defined. Do you think you’ll be able to see defined abs or muscles if they are covered in fat? It’s not likely.
That means you need to cut back on your calories. The amount here will differ, depending on how much weight you need to lose. As a general rule of thumb, it takes roughly a 500-calorie daily deficit to lose 1 lb. a week. If you feel you need to lose a generous amount, go with this number.
If your current diet is a train wreck, you should have no problem giving up some of the bad food choices that boosts your caloric intake through the roof.
Just an FYI, if you only have a few extra pounds, it might not be necessary to make such a drastic reduction. Cut back by say 250 a day.
3. Get your body fat percentage checked.
This is an often overlooked but important step in reaching your goal. When you determine your body fat percentage, you’ll know how much lean muscle mass you have.
When you are ripped, your lean muscle mass is high and body fat percentage is low. That’s the overall goal.
There are many ways to get tested, but underwater, or hydrostatic, weighing is one of the most accurate. If you do not have access to this system, any other type of body fat measuring will suffice. Just make sure to get tested every couple of weeks and use the same system under the same conditions each time. You will then be able to track your progress and make adjustments accordingly.
4. Choose your foods wisely.
Your body relies on proper nutrition to make it run smoothly. Getting ripped takes hard work so you best make sure to eat the highest octane fuel you can. Base your diet on foods that are quality sources of carbs, protein and fat. Carbs will give you energy, protein will help with muscle rebuilding and fats help with hormone production and joint function.
Stick with foods like beef, turkey, chicken, eggs, cold-water fish, nuts, seeds, whole grains, sweet potatoes, beans, fruits and vegetables. Try to keep these foods as close to whole natural foods as possible and free of contaminants. Canned peaches, for example, are not healthy. They’re laced with sugar and preservatives.
5. Eat multiple meals through the course of the day.
In order to maintain quality muscle, you need to keep a good supply of nutrients flowing to them on a regular basis. That’s where the magic of multiple meals comes into play. As an added benefit, your blood sugar levels will stay even and energy will be high.
Aim for five or six meals a day and space them two and a half to three hours apart. Balance each one out with a serving of protein, carbs and fat. You know from above what quality foods are so this should come easy to you. An example of a healthy meal option might be something like baked or broiled salmon with steamed Brussels sprouts and a baked sweet potato. In this meal you have healthy sources of carbs, protein and fat.
6. Eliminate alcohol.
Yeah I know this one sucks guys, but If you are serious about your game plan, you need to walk away from the alcohol whilst you are cutting. There is no more destructive beverage in the world when you are trying to cut. Especially when consumed in excess.
Alcohol not only reduces your testosterone levels, but it also fills you up with empty calories and slows down your metabolism. That’s not the best recipe for muscle gain. You are better served drinking water as your sole beverage. Not only does it hydrate your muscles, but it flushes impurities from your system.
7. Perform multi-joint weight training exercises.
You may know multi-joint exercises as compound movements. These terms are interchangeable.
As the name implies, multiple joints and multiple muscles work in unison when you are lifting weights. This, in turn, causes a high recruitment of overall muscle fibre when it comes to your physique. The more muscles you recruit, the stronger, bigger and more defined you will get.
Include exercises like clean and presses, bench presses, dead lifts, pull-ups, lunges and rows in your workouts. You can obviously do other exercises, but just make sure these make regular appearances.
Be sure to use proper form too. Move through a full range of motion, never use momentum and only lift weights that you can manage. Going heavy is OK as long as you can honour your form.
8. Take short rest breaks between sets.
Keeping your rest time between sets short and sweet will help boost your testosterone and growth hormone levels, it will also mean that your workout will be much more intense so your heart rate will remain much higher throughout your workout which can further assist your efforts to get ripped. Aim for no more than 60 seconds rest between sets and 30-45 is even better.
9. Integrate cardio into your workouts – I love hill sprints.
You may ask yourself, why hill sprints? Well, you’d be hard pressed to find a form of exercise that taxes your body with more intensity. When you are galloping up a hill as hard as you can, you end up getting a huge release of testosterone and growth hormone. Couple that with the fact that your metabolism gets vaulted through the roof, and you have a brilliant way to carve away fat and make your muscles look more defined.
10. Include some key supplements into your program.
Hard work alone can get you a long way when you’re trying to get ripped, but sometimes you need a little edge to push yourself that little bit further. There are a couple of products I would recommend outside of your usual supplements. Firstly find yourself a good thermogenic fat burner, these products can raise you’re core body temperature to burn fat throughout the day, they also aid in speeding up your metabolism as well as suppressing your appetite, which can be very useful, particularly if you are eating at a calorie deficit.
We recommend EPH25+ this is currently by far our most popular fat burner and what’s more we are currently giving away free samples with a small postage charge to get yourself a free weeks sample CLICK HERE!
Another great product for shredding fat as well as adding lean muscle would be a high quality PH supplement like Epistane, this product is particularly useful for adding lean muscle, whilst reducing water retention and burning excess fat.
Always remember to use these types of supplements as directed and don’t forget about the rest of your steps. Products like this can give you a huge advantage when used in conjunction with a solid eating and weight training program, but they are not a substitute for good diet and exercise.
11. Don’t forget the importance of sleep.
You might feel a good pump during the day but it is actually during sleep that your muscles are repairing and building. This is mainly due to the growth hormone and testosterone release that you experience. Many people neglect to get to bed at a decent hour and they will pay the price with diminishing gains.
Since you are giving up alcohol for a while though, you probably won’t be in the pub and if you are training hard you should be ready for bed when the time comes, so it should be quite easy for you to hit the sack at a decent hour. Aim for 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night if you can. If not, get as close to that as possible.
Now you should be well equipped to turn heads this summer. If you have a bad day, get over it and move forward. Part of life is making mistakes. A bigger part of life though is learning from them and getting stronger both physically and mentally.
Carl Maximum Sports Nutrition: Well there you have it guys these are 11 really solid tips and if you follow them you will definitely start to get some great results ready for summer, Kevin also made a couple of supplement recommendations. The first supplement Kevin mentioned using was a good fat burner and if this is something that can be really effective if your goal is burning fat, I would highly recommend checking out our EPH25+ free sample to see what you think. I personally use this in a morning before the gym along with my pre workout and then I have a second cap with my lunch and it definitely works, in the last couple of months I have cut down to around 1 stone of body fat and EPH25+ has really helped me to get there.
The other product mentioned was Epistane and I can confirm this is fantastic for cutting, in fact it is by far our most popular supplement that customers purchase for cutting, you can read our full Epistane review here
I hope you enjoyed the article and if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask in the comments below or just pick up the phone and talk to one of the team here at Maximum Sports Nutrition, we’re in the office Monday – Saturday and would love to hear from you if you need any extra help.