Lose fat osing muscle

Lose fat without losing muscle.

If your goal is to cut down and reveal your new 2020 gains, then your body needs to be in a calorie deficit. Hunger pangs, rage and a loss of performance and energy are all part of this process, depending on the number of calories you’re dropping anyway. Here’s how to lose fat without losing muscle.

And because your body is in this calorie deficit, you’ll tragically start to lose some muscle mass *cries* as your body fight for energy to maintain itself.

Whilst recomposition is possible, a process of gaining lean muscle and dropping fat, it can be challenging to achieve.

Here’s the best way you can lose fat without losing muscle.

Maintaining Muscle and Cutting Fat

Lifting Heavy

In order to maintain as much muscle as possible whilst burning through fat you need to be in a calorie deficit. Coupled with this, you also need to be frequently training to ensure protein synthesis is still occurring and muscles are getting nutrients delivered from a healthy blood flow, priming them for recovery.

Changing your program to heavier weights here could work well, as you’re working muscles as hard as you can, whilst conserving energy to function through the day and not end up screaming at your boss or putting yourself into too much of a deficit.

Ideally you want to be aiming for around a 20-30% decrease in calories required for maintenance on non-training days.

This is going to keep you fuelled for workouts and give your muscles fuel to build and maintain muscle mass. And absolutely key in your attempts to lose fat without losing muscle.

national bodybuilding vegan protein

Cycle Calories

So we’ve said, you’re not going to lose fat without being in that calorie deficit. So in order to cut fat and keep muscle how you plan your calories is key.

In order to get more from those heavy workouts and trigger best chances at maintaining muscle then upping calories to around (not over!) maintenance level on days in the gym can be a great way to keep your muscles as fuelled as possible.

Cycling and then dropping calories again by that 20-30% on the non gym days keeps you in that overall deficit.

You’ll find you have more energy and get a bit of a mood boost on those workout days too, helping you stick to your plan to lose fat and keep muscle.

Supplements for maintaining muscle mass and lose fat

Supplements can be a great way to protect your muscle whilst in a calorie deficit. Using a lean protein can also help you keep protein intake high, with fats and sugars lowered.

It’s also important to remember that thinks like caffeine, can help boost metabolic rate and crucially, help you feel energised and focused throughout this process.

Here’s some ingredients to look out for when it comes to losing fat without losing muscle:

Calcium HMB

Calcium HMB was shown in studies to protect muscle mass even whilst participants were in a calorie deficit.

It can prevent muscle atrophy, and has also been found to increase muscle mitochondria biogenesis or the adaptation of muscle to stresses from exercise. [1] , [2]

This basically makes it a perfect product to help maintaining muscle whilst losing fat.


Chromium impacts your bodies insulin sensitivity, this impact helps control your appetite, maintains energy and ensures muscles are properly fuelled.

Studies have linked this trace mineral significant reductions in body weight as well as increases in lean body mass, with a reduction in body fat. [3]


Caffeine, the form of a supplement or a black coffee is a zero calorie way to keep energized and focused, stopping you from hitting the order button on a takeaway pizza.

Caffeine is also known for its ability to boost up metabolic rate and help reduce appetite. Just remember to avoid milk and sugar, as this could turn it into a calorie bomb.

Recommended Supplement for Fat Loss and Muscle Gain/Maintenance 

Fighters Core – Lose Fat, Keep Muscle

Fighters core fat burner

There’s a few options out there for you to choose from, but we recommend Fighters Core. It’s been designed from the ground up with all the key ingredients to speed up the recomposition process. If you’ve found something better, let us know!

Speed Up Fat Loss and Muscle Gain – www.fighterscore.com


Protein is absolutely key to this process and so in order to prevent protein breakdown and muscle cells being used as fuel for your bodies energy.

A lean protein supplement like National Bodybuilding Co. Protein can help with feelings satiety and a reduction in hunger pangs, whilst keeping protein intake high. Why are we recommending vegan protein? Because it’s been found to take longer to digest, and also will reduce the amount of fats and sugars you are consuming.

Here’s our current favourite lean protein – National Bodybuilding Co. Protein

Increase Protein Intake

We know without enough calories your body will breakdown existing muscle cells for fuel. This process is called protein degradation. The opposite of this process is protein synthesis. Which is the creation of new protein cells.

When you hit a calorie deficit you are at a high risk of protein degradation occurring, as your body searches for energy. By increasing protein intake to 1 gram per pound of body weight each day, you’re fuelling your muscle cells directly.

This will force your body to look elsewhere for its fuel and should help promote the breakdown of fat, which is the only other place it can get it’s fuel from.

Do you always lose muscle when losing fat?

Normally most people will see some muscle loss when cutting fat, but there are a few workarounds to minimise the effect and even see some muscle gain. Keep protein high, lift heavy and cycle calories are the three keys to avoid muscle loss when losing fat.

Lose Fat without Losing Muscle – Final Word

Maintaining or even building muscle whilst cutting fat isn’t impossible. It just takes a bit of smart training and being strict with a high protein diet and eating enough calories for maintenance and 20-30% under on non training days should see quick success.

To speed things up even further, look for supplements with HMB, Chromium and Caffeine alongside a clean lean protein (whey isolate or vegan protein).

Visit Fighters Core for fat loss and muscle gain here.


[1] Beta‐hydroxy‐beta‐methylbutyrate supplementation and skeletal muscle in healthy and muscle‐wasting conditions,  J Cachexia Sarcopenia Muscle. 2017 Aug; 8(4): 529–541


[2] Long-term Effects of Calcium β-Hydroxy-β-Methylbutyrate and Vitamin D3 Supplementation on Muscular Function in Older Adults With and Without Resistance Training: A Randomized, Double-blind, Controlled Study, The Journals of Gerontology: Series A, Volume 75, Issue 11, November 2020, Pages 2089–2097,  https://academic.oup.com/biomedgerontology/article/75/11/2089/5898559

[3] Effects of chromium on body composition and weight loss, R A Anderson, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/9763876/