Building muscle doesn’t have to halt during the holidays. Yes, the Christmas season is a time for celebration, and with celebration comes festive gatherings full of overeating, massive food portions, calorie packed deserts and drink.
It’s true, the average person gains a few pounds during the holiday season. Guilt then sets in shortly afterwards and the January gym rush kicks in. Over this festive season, I am sure the last thing you will want to do is undo all the hard work you have put in.
Scrap all the advice you have heard of in the past,
“Eat this… avoid that… drink this instead of that… Don’t do that”
What if there were ways where you could overeat as much as you want without any worry of Christmas weight gain and still build muscle.
1.KEEP WORKING OUT
Keeping active over the Christmas period is crucial in keeping excess Christmas weight gain at bay. It’s the holidays, you have more time free time, so use this time to hit the gym and get a heavy, intense workout before you head into a food coma. In addition, the extra calories that you will be consuming during the holidays, providing you are being as active as possible, will do wonders for muscle growth. You don’t get bigger/stronger without eating more.
Now this doesn’t mean you must be in the gym every time you are free, but just make sure you are regularly being active to avoid fat gain. So, on a rest day this could mean press ups, pulls ups, chin ups etc.
That extra training, coupled with extra calories, can pay off in muscle mass.
2. TAKE IN EXTRA CALORIES ANYWAY
It is common knowledge that you cannot build muscle without a caloric surplus, in addition it is common knowledge that 99% off people will be deep into their winter bulk, so calories will already be higher. Therefore the Christmas period comes at a great time for most gym goers.
Increase further your caloric intake, don’t avoid the sugary meals but also don’t just use the excuse “I’m increasing my caloric intake”. Focus more on the meaty meals of turkey and beef. Both provide all the amino acids you need for muscle building and controlling
the Christmas weight gain. Therefore, if you are going to overeat, doing it with a overfilled protein-laden meat plate is definitely the best choice.
Don’t avoid the carbs. Carbohydrates are an essential piece of muscle-building. If you haven’t already been increasing your carbs during your winter bulk, then now is the time. They support muscle growth, prevent muscle-breakdown and provide the energy you need to work out hard, build muscle, and prevent unnecessary Christmas weight gain.
3. MORE FREE TIME, MORE TIME TO CHILL
The time off work, college, school allows you to get some extra sleeping and relaxing time. Use this extra time and try to grab an extra hour or two of shut-eye. Sleep is necessary for building muscle and sleep debt has many negative impacts on the body. It decreases testosterone which makes it much harder for your body to build muscle. In addition, sleep deprivation has been extensively researched to be a cause for weight gain.
So, catch up on your previous z’s if you want to build muscle during your winter bulk and control your Christmas weight gain.
Here are three simple ways you can pig out, worry free of the infamous Christmas fat gain and instead maximise the amount of muscle you build.
Eat more. Train more. Sleep more.