So who is Martin Berkhan? If you are looking for a fat burning/muscle building diet then you may just want to get familiar with this guy. If you have come across bodybuilding literature, you will have likely believed having 6 pack abs all year round is next to impossible.
Well Martin Berkhan has decided to defy this logic, holding a body fat of 5-6% for over 3 years. Is this just down to great genetics and a fast metabolism? No, Martin Berkhan was a chubby kid growing up and simply developed a way of life which allows him to stay lean without foregoing his favourite foods. You can read more about the Lean Gains Muscle Building Diet by visiting his blog.
My Introduction to Martin Berkhan’s Lean Gains Fat Burning/ Muscle Building Diet
From September to December, I was extremely busy blogging, my economics degree, playing football/soccer working as a lifeguard and still wanted to workout to maintain the body I had built for myself over the summer.
I decided I would allocate 1-2 hours of training per week which constituted to 2-3 bodyweight workouts per week using Convict Conditioning to gain strength.
Well it is January now and I can say I successfully maintained my bodyweight, gained strength and even kept a similar body fat level. So just how did I stay so lean on 2 workouts per week.Well I came across the Lean Gains guide by Martin Berkhan which I will admit has amplified my results.
Lean Gains Guide
You could literally spend hours of your life reading the great information over at Martin Berkhan’s Lean Gains site, but here is a little overview of the Martin Berkhan Lean Gains Guide:
- Intermittent fasting: daily 16 hour fasts with 8 hour feeding window
- For women it is 14 hours fasting with a 10 hour feeding window
- Fasted training
- Majority of calories ingested after workouts click here for the best post workout meal
- Clean eating most of the time
- 2-3 meals in 8 hour feeding window
- Lower carb days on non training days eating in a calorie deficit
- higher carb days on training days/lower fat intake eating at a slight calorie surplus
- Protein kept high most of the time due to satiating effect
Lean Gains For Fat Burning
Some Foods To Avoid For Fat Burning
I am not going to bore you with the foods you already know you should be avoiding such as processed foods and sweets and chocolates, but foods that are generally labelled healthy and diet friendly could be actually compromising your results. This information was taken from an interview by Martin Berkhan over on Fitness Black Book.
Nuts, protein bars and dried fruit. Nuts being a natural food are labelled very healthy for you and a source of good unsaturated fats. Nuts however, pack a higher calorie density than a chocolate bar and is just so easy to overdo it with nuts. For a better source of fat, consider eating more fish.
A protein bar is just a chocolate bar with slightly more protein content with a crappier taste. 300 plus calories for a bar you can eat in a few minutes is diabolical. When burning fat, this takes up a lot of your calorie allowance and doesn’t even fill you up. Protein bars are just glamorised candy bars, stay away from them.
Fruit is definitely your friend when it comes to burning fat but dried fruit such as dates and raisins are just sugar lumps with added fiber. These snacks have a high calorie density again and do little to quell your hunger.
When it comes to calories, something that people tend to forget is there are calories in the things you drink. I did say I wouldn’t bore you with advice you already know such as avoid soda pops, but protein shakes could do you more harm than good in your quest to burn fat. Are you drinking protein shakes throughout the day because you are too lazy to cook or eat real food? Well, being honest with you, if you are too lazy to even chew your food, you were probably going to fail in your fat burning quest anyway.
Did you think smoothies, vitamin drinks and fruit juices were safe from this post? Think again! This is just another way for corporations to get money off you, using bogus scientific evidence against you to get you to add more vitamins to your diet. The truth is a lot of people who drink these stuff or take excess vitamins are actually over doing it.
When you overdo it with vitamins, you wind up pissing them out anyway, vitamins cannot be stored by the body, so excess vitamin intake is just a waste of your hard-earned cash. Get your vitamins and minerals from a balanced diet of wholesome foods like eggs, meat, berries, vegetables ,fruits and some starches. If you are still paranoid, take your multivitamin with your first meal.
Lean Gains Guide Muscle Building Diet
So on December 16th, I finished all my university essays and exams for that term and now had a month off. I embarked on a new challenge to develop the perfect male body. This meant I needed to pack on some lean muscle to my upper body including my waist, so I paired Martin Berkhan Lean Gains Muscle Building Diet with Visual Impact For Men. Just leave out all the HIIT as fasting and HIIT have very similar effects.
To use the Lean Gains Guide as a muscle building diet is simple. You still follow all the core principles but you just eat slightly more to ensure you build lean muscle with no fat gain.
So on low carb non training days you may eat at a 10% calorie deficit ensuring fat burning and on training days eat at a 30% calorie surplus with the same macros.
In this muscle building phase, the muscle building diet is more relaxed, but remember we are after lean muscle gains, not the gain as much weight as possible as bodybuilders do, before doing a cut phase. So don’t abuse the feeding window by eating like a pig.
Some More Information On Martin Berkhan- The Lean Gains Approach
You don’t need to eat 6 meals a day to boost your metabolism. Short term fasting will not slow down your metabolism as the 6 meals a day approach will have you believe. This slowing down of metabolism can take up to 3 days to kick in. Fasting while performing resistance training ensures no muscle is lost while at the same time burning fat. I hope you enjoyed learning a bit about Martin Berkhan and his Lean Gains Muscle Building diet which is also great for fat burning.