Nutrition For Building And Maintain Muscle

On November 7th 2015, Integrated Fitness & Nutrition are launching our first six-week intensive program – [RECOMPOSITION]. The program is based on advanced training and nutrition protocols, understanding of exercise physiology and the practical experience working with recomposition clients. Over the past 18 month, the program has been continually refined to develop the best results possible.

For those of you unfamiliar with body recomposition, you can shoot across to the main website to find out more.

Many people are sceptical when you say that the aim is to increase muscle and strength, while losing body fat, all on the same program. For those of you who are interested in body recomposition or are unsure – read on. Here is an outline of training methods we use specifically for fat loss, which is an important component of the program.


Understanding Nutrition for Buildings + Maintaining Muscle

The building and maintenance of muscle mass should be the primary goal of any body recomposition program, particularly when the program will include an energy deficit to facilitate fat loss. Whether a client will build or maintain muscle mass will depend on their training age, experience and recent training.

A new client can expect to gain muscle while losing body fat – up to 4kg of muscle and 10kg of fat loss in 12 weeks – as measured by bioelectrical impedance. Intermediate level clients might gain less muscle, but lose the same amount of fat. Advanced clients will lose less fat and focus on maintaining their current muscle mass. These are all positive outcomes for each individual.

Please note: these are all nutrition strategies only. It is assumed that the client is resistance training, as this is how the body recomposition system operates.



Protein intake is the first area to focus on nutritionally. Protein intake is beneficial for building and maintaining muscle (particularly in an energy deficit), promoting fat loss and maintaining satiety. A protein intake of 1.5g/kg of bodyweight is the start point for most of our clients. Although this is higher than the government recommendations of 0.82g/g, there is significant evidence to support these recommendations for clients with the above goals.


Energy Intake

Energy intake should be kept as high as possible, for as long as possible. When it comes to fat loss, there will always be the temptation to cut calories too quickly. This is the domain of personal trainers who don’t have the knowledge of human physiology, an understanding how these systems work or a system they know that works. Instead, they freak out that someone has paid them for a result, and then throw the kitchen sink trying to attain this outcome. 

You do not need to cut out all caffeine, alcohol, carbohydrates or anything else to lose weight.

I digress. The primary benefits of keeping energy intake high are greater metabolic rate, easier to retain muscle mass (an important goal) and having more options for later on in the program. The first two there are pretty obvious, but it’s the third one that is most important.

The less we change while still getting a result, the better, The body can only adapt so much, so quickly. Therefore, there is no need to throw the every trick in the book early on in a program, because results won’t be any better than a balanced approach. By keeping energy intake high, nutrition also becomes an area that CAN be reduced, if need be.

If you go straight to a 1200kcal diet – cutting 500 kcal will have minimal beneficial impact on your body composition and will ruin your association with food. Both for no good reason!


Nutrient Timing

Nutrient timing is another important consideration. Generally speaking – carbohydrates should be combined with protein around exercise, and fats work well with proteins during periods of inactivity. These allow the optimisation of fuel usage at both low and high intensities – as required.

In practice, these protocols are adapted for the individual depending on their stage of progress, training age and body composition.



Eat more vegetables! While not the most advanced nutrition strategy for body recomposition, it is one of the simplest. Increasing vegetable intake will help satiety and deliver an abundance of nutrients, which is particularly important in periods of energy deficit.



There it is, the underpinning of the nutrition protocols that we utilise on our body recomposition system. I’m sure many of you are eating in a similar way and possibly getting results – now you know why. Others might see the potential to make a few changes to their nutrition intake, to get them their desired outcomes.


Why share this – shouldn’t it be kept secret?

I’m more than happy to share my knowledge. At the end of the day, I’ve picked up all of this information from university courses, continuing education and industry experts that I have sought out. I didn’t discover it, so I won’t charge anyone to see it.

Sure, other trainers might read this and then regurgitate the content to their clients, but that’s fine with me. It’s better that they have an idea of the systems they are using, even if they can’t explain it.

So put these into play yourself and watch the results come. If you would like to be coached by myself and James Kuhn on the [RECOMPOSITION] program – you can head to the website and sign up today. These principles will be put into personalised programs for you to get your desired results. Once we give you the plan, you can focus and achieve your goals.