There are three main contributing factors at play when building and creating the physique you always imagined you’d have. Those factors are training, nutrition and rest. There are other facets of this lifestyle that also contribute to your success such as your mindset, drive and your consistent use of superior supplements [insert any Advanced Genetics product here], but the one that really matters the most is probably your nutrition. You may have heard the old saying, “you cannot out-train a poor diet” and there is a lot of truth in that statement. For that reason, you must always be on point with your nutritional practices if you’re actually serious about making headway in the bodybuilding game. In order to ensure that you are, here are what I would consider to be the top 3 nutritional practices that are conducive to fulfilling all your physique goals.
Practice #1: Prepare Your Meals in Advance
You have to learn that when trying to build as much muscle as possible while maintaining a lean and healthy body composition, it’s important to always have the meals you need on hand and ready to go at any given time. This will negate the instances whereby you will make hasty nutrition decisions that will have you going through the drive-thru versus going through your cooler bag looking for your next meal. I highly suggest you take a couple of hours throughout the week, perhaps on two separate days, and cook and prep all the meals you’ll need for the week. Store them in containers in your refrigerator so that you can grab and go anytime. You will find that not only will this save time, but it will significantly contribute to your continued success.
Practice #2: Have a Contingency Plan
Second to having all of your meals prepped and ready to go, would be having a contingency plan should something go wrong in your planning. Sometimes, despite your best efforts, the food you bring with you goes bad and you can’t eat it. Other times, you jump in the car only to realize that all of your planning was left by the front door on your way out. In matters like this, it’s important you have a second option that closely resembles the meals you had prepped and had expected to consume. So, it would be a great idea to find restaurants in the area you’ll be in that offer healthy food and meal options, also it’s important to know where local grocery stores are so that you can pop in and grab a few items to hold you over for the time being or if need be, simply keep a healthy stockpile of Warzone Whey on you at all times so that you can slam a protein shake at any point to help preserve and maintain all that hard earned muscle.
Practice #3: Be Consistent and Precise
There will always be a lot of discussion revolving around best practices for nutrition when it comes to building muscle and staying lean. Topics covered in these discussions include what types of foods you should be consuming, portion sizes, macronutrient ratios, high days, low days and everything else in between. The thing to remember is that most of those options can and will work and there is no one diet that is designed to meet everyone’s demands. So, what do you do then? Well, you pick one option and stick with it as consistently and as precisely as you can until you find out if it works for you or not. It’s really as simple as that. You cannot continuously change things up with your nutrition because you’ll never have a chance to see if what you’re doing is working or not. Pick one way, stick with it, evaluate its effectiveness and then move on or don’t.
The most important aspect of nutrition to keep in mind is that however you go about it, your plan has to be something that you can actually enjoy and like eating. If you’re always choking down your meals because you don’t like the taste, consistency or texture, then you’ll never make it. Find foods you like to eat, figure out how much of each you need, prepare in advance, create a plan and stick to it, know what to do if the plan has to change without notice and simply do your best to cover all your nutritional bases. If you can be successful at doing all of these things, then you will find success in bodybuilding as well.
Author: Dana Bushell
Dana Bushell, a graduate of St. Francis Xavier University (BAHK, B.Ed) is an Educator, Writer, Strength and Conditioning Coach, Nutrition Advisor, Contest Prep/Lifestyle Coach and former competitive bodybuilder, who has been involved in the Fitness Industry for over 25 years. He has worked and written for major fitness publications and many popular bodybuilding sites, is a Gym Star Team member and works hard at teaching and promoting a fitness-based lifestyle in his career as a Physical Education Specialist.