Building lean muscle or toning up is most peoples’ main goal when it comes to working out. Not only does it make them look good and slim, but it also makes them physically stronger. But what exactly is lean muscle?
The Lean Muscle Debate
You may think that lean muscle is different from regular muscle. If you were learning about muscle in biology class you wouldn’t learn about lean muscles specifically, because there really is no such thing as lean muscle.
Let’s break it down; “lean” means absence of fat. Muscle is a band of tissues that have the ability to contract. Muscle is mostly made up of water and protein, which is why it is important to follow a high protein diet when trying to gain lean muscle.
There are different types of muscles in your body, the ones that are most visible after shedding the fat is the skeletal muscles, which are the muscles that are connected to the bones.
No matter what, when you are working out you are shedding your fat, so in retrospect, all muscle is lean. Either way you look at it, you are getting lean, slimming down, and building muscle.
Lean Muscle Mass
When trying to calculate your lean muscle mass it refers to the amount you weigh minus the amount of fat that you have on your body. This means that it is literally calculating the weight of everything such as; organs, blood, bones, muscle, and skin, and the only thing it is not calculating is your fat.
The best way to get this information is by using a body fat scale, but you can also use the following formula to help determine your lean muscle mass;
Lean Body Mass = Body weight – (Body weight x Body Fat %)
Lean muscle mass can be gained through body building or weight training, and it is the amount of muscle on the body that is separate from any other parts such as your bones or fat.
Gaining Lean Muscle vs Fat
It is important to know how to gain lean muscle yet still avoid gaining fat. When your body is adding mass such as muscle it wants to add fat along with it.
It is challenging to convince your body to just add muscle and avoid adding fat, especially if you are consuming more calories than you are burning. When your body stores extra calories, they get stored as fat, not as muscle, which can cause you to gain the wrong type of mass.
To gain lean muscle without gaining any additional fat you need to increase your carb intake in the morning at breakfast, this way you have all day to burn the carb calories off. Another great way is to lift weights and increase your weight as you get stronger.
Men vs Women
It is easier for men to gain lean muscle because they have more upper body muscles in their body, and even more specifically they have more fibers in their muscles than women do making them stronger. Another is the chemical balance of testosterone.
Testosterone is an important chemical that is needed when building muscle, and there is more found in men than in women. But that doesn’t mean that women can’t achieve lean muscles, it just means that they will achieve less lean muscle.
On average the percentage of skeletal muscle that is found in a man’s body weight is about 42% while a women’s skeletal muscle falls at about 35%.
But there are more physiological differences in the bodies of men and women that can cause a difference in the amount of lean muscle they can build up. A man’s body is more likely to convert calories into muscle while a female’s body will convert calories into fat deposits.
Overall, lean muscle mass just means the ability to shed fat from your body while still being able to maintain your muscle building. There are many different things you need to look at when trying to build lean muscle, which can make it difficult.
And even though it is easier for men to build lean muscle, women are still able to build muscle and get lean too.
You should eat a high protein diet to help build your lean muscle mass, but never take illegal supplements to try and appear more toned, these can cause more issues than not.
Practicing healthy work out regimens and knowing what areas to target is important when trying to get lean muscle.