Can you build muscle and burn fat at the same time? According to new studies, yes, you can. In this short video, Jeff Nippard investigates what’s necessary to achieve both goals.

Building muscle and losing fat at the same time can be a challenging goal, but it is possible with the right combination of diet and exercise. Here are some tips to help you achieve this:

  1. Increase protein intake: Protein is essential for building muscle and losing fat. Aim to consume at least 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight each day.
  2. Lift weights: Resistance training is crucial for building muscle. Focus on compound exercises that work multiple muscle groups, such as squats, deadlifts, and bench presses.
  3. Do high-intensity cardio: Cardiovascular exercise is essential for burning fat. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is particularly effective for burning calories and improving cardiovascular fitness.
  4. Watch your calorie intake: To lose fat, you need to consume fewer calories than you burn. However, to build muscle, you need to consume enough calories to fuel your workouts and support muscle growth. Aim for a moderate calorie deficit of 300-500 calories per day.
  5. Eat healthy, whole foods: Focus on consuming nutrient-dense, whole foods such as fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and healthy fats. Avoid processed foods and sugary drinks.
  6. Stay consistent: Building muscle and losing fat takes time and consistency. Stick to a structured workout and nutrition plan, and be patient with your progress.
  7. Get enough rest: Adequate rest is crucial for muscle recovery and growth. Aim for at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night, and give your muscles time to recover between workouts.

So it seems that building muscle and losing fat at the same time is more than possible for 4 groups of people: those who are new to training, those who haven’t been training for a long period of time, those who are overweight, and those who are on certain performance enhancers.

In order to understand this a little better, it’s important to grasp the basics of nutrition. Your body needs protein in order to gain muscle, but it needs to be in a calorie deficit to burn fat.

One thing many people fail to realise is that stored body fat works like fuel in the same way that calories do when consumed. So, if you’re higher in body fat than normal, your body won’t need as many calories from food, but will still be able to function normally and build muscle.

If, however, you’re much leaner and therefore have less body fat available, your body simply won’t have the fuel required to build muscle optimally.

Ollie Lawrence, a personal trainer based in Manchester, talks about how many people work hard in the gym, but then let their appetite get the better of them.

“When we exercise, we tend to feel hungrier – and psychologically we feel we can ‘eat more’ because we worked out. When we perceive something as ‘healthy’ we tend to eat more of it – because we can, right? Sadly this is a sure-fire way to ruin all your hard work”

How it’s done…

If you want to build muscle and burn fat at the same time, you need to do 3 things:

1. Train for muscle growth.

2. Be on a high protein diet (roughly 1 gram per pound of bodyweight every day).

3. Be in a calorie deficit of around 20% of your maintenance calories. So, if your maintenance number was 2,500, you’d want to consume around 2,000 calories per day.


Building muscle and burning fat at the same time, also known as “body recomposition,” can be challenging because these two goals require different approaches. However, it is possible to achieve both goals simultaneously with the right combination of exercise and nutrition.

Steps to Build Muscle and Burn Fat Simultaneously
1. Resistance Training: Incorporate weight lifting and other resistance exercises to build and maintain muscle mass.
2. Cardiovascular Exercise: Include aerobic exercise to burn calories and improve cardiovascular health.
3. High-Protein Diet: Consume a diet high in protein to support muscle growth and repair. Aim for 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight per day.
4. Caloric Deficit: Be in a caloric deficit to burn fat, but still consume enough calories to support your exercise routine and maintain muscle mass.
5. Consistency: Stick to your exercise routine and diet plan over the long-term to see results.
6. Patience: Building muscle and burning fat takes time, so be patient and persistent.

Remember to consult with a qualified healthcare professional before starting any exercise or nutrition program, especially if you have any medical conditions or concerns.