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Five simple tips to help you build muscle without gaining fat

If people had the option to build muscle without gaining fat, 99% of the time they’d take that option, and rightfully so.

Sure, on paper it’s entirely possible to build muscle without gaining fat, but remember that we live in the real world, where not everything is black and white.

Building muscle is a tedious, arduous, long-winded affair that incredibly taxing, both physically, and mentally as well.

Because of this, only the strongest of willed will succeed, whereas most people will sadly throw in the towel and call it quits.

To help ensure that you’re one of the select few individuals that succeeds, however, we’ve compiled this list of six simple yet highly effective tips to help you build muscle without gaining fat.

Not only that, but we can actually do you one better, and can provide you with a number of tips that help you actually lose fat whilst gaining muscle, as opposed to simply stay as you were.

It doesn’t matter whether you plan on stepping on stage and competing, or if you simply want to look better in a tank top or shirtless, because here are our five simple tips guaranteed to help you build muscle without gaining fat.


Rest-pause techniques – Made famous by 4x former Mr Olympia Jay Cutler, the rest-pause technique is by far one of the most effective techniques for piling on lean muscle mass, and it is absolutely perfect for people who train alone, or simply who don’t happen to have a spotter on hand. 

For optimal muscle hypertrophy, high volume is essential, yet sadly the human body can only do so much in one go. You need to stimulate each and every muscle fibre to their absolute breaking points in order to stimulate new muscle growth, yet that is where most people struggle.

Basically, when you perform a rest-pause set, you will perform your working set as usual, making sure that you go to absolute failure.

Once you hit failure, however, rather than simply waiting a minute or two before beginning your next set, or simply moving onto your next exercise, what you instead do is wait 10 – 15 seconds, perform another one or two reps, and perhaps even repeat the process again.

Those 10 – 15 seconds give you just enough time to recover to perform another rep or two, whilst still leaving the muscle fibres under increased pressure and stress, which is where new growth will come from.


Complex movements – Super-setting is an incredibly beneficial method of building muscle, which we’ll take a better look at shortly, in the meantime, however, complexes, or complex movements, take it to a whole different level entirely.

Here you will actually perform three to four different exercises in a row, designed to place maximum stimulus onto your muscles.

In order to perform complexes, you will first select which muscle group you would like to target.

From here, you will perform one power exercise of 3 - 5 reps, one strength exercise of 6 – 8 reps, one isolation exercise of 8 – 12 reps, before finishing off with a bodyweight exercise which should fatigue your muscle group, meaning you literally perform as many reps as possible.

By the time you reach the final exercise, that muscle group you trained will literally feel as if it’s on fire.

Be wary, to begin with you, will experience some pretty severe DOMS that will be pretty uncomfortable for the next few days.


Fasted steady state cardio – As you’re looking to build muscle, and ideally maintain your weight, possibly even dropping a little body fat, you should avoid high intensity cardio training as that can result in hindered muscle gains.

Instead, your best bet is to perform fasted steady state cardio 3 – 4 times each week. As it is performed fasted, you should ideally perform it in early in the morning not long after waking up, as you won’t yet have eaten.

The reason for this being so effective is that as you’re in a fasted state, your body will need energy to get it through the workout, which it will get from stored body fat, as opposed to muscle tissue.

Aim for 40 – 60 minutes, going at a slow and steady pace, and you’ll find your body fat percentages dropping, your muscle definition increasing, and your muscle mass in general, staying the same.


Super-setting – As mentioned, super-setting is another fantastic way of building muscle, whilst getting your heart rate up and burning calories in the process.

When you super-set, you basically perform one exercise, and after each working set, will immediately move on to another, alternating between the two.

So, for example, if you’re training chest, you may perform barbell bench presses, super-setted with bodyweight push ups.


Get a quality pre-workout meal in – A lot of people tend to forget about the importance of eating before working out, “pre-workout nutrition”, choosing instead to focus on post-workout nutrition.

Whilst post-workout nutrition is indeed extremely important, so too is pre-workout, which is why you need to get it right.

Ideally you want slow-release carbohydrates, such as oatmeal or pasta, along with a protein source. The reasons low-release carbs are ideal, is that they help to regulate blood glucose levels as you exercise, meaning that you don’t experience sudden energy crashes whilst you workout.

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Disclaimer: This information is for entertainment purposes only. We strongly recommend that you consult a physician before beginning any exercise program. is not a licensed medical care provider. The reader should understand that participating in any exercise program can result in physical injury and agrees to do so at his own risk. The findings and opinions of authors expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily state or reflect those of

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