Can you burn fat and build muscle at the same time?

The simple answer is “yes” but the better answer is “it depends”. Ultimately you need to be asking better questions. Losing fat and building muscle are fairly simple processes whether you do them at the same time or separately. It all starts with being realistic about where you are, where you want to be, and when you want to be there.

so many programs!

It’s hard to separate the gimmicks from intelligently designed muscle building and fat loss programs. We have our recommendations below.

Burning Fat / Building Muscle

How Does Your Body Grow Muscle?

Muscle growth occurs when the rate of muscle protein synthesis is greater than the rate of protein breakdown. In other words, when you break down muscle fibers through training thereby damaging them, your body goes to work repairing those damaged fibers and forming new muscle fibers. And you know...

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Increase Your Activity and Clean Up Your Diet

You'll almost always hear that nutrition is more important than exercise. I get what people mean and it's true you'll never be able to train hard enough or often enough to lose fat if you eat too much. On the other hand, you'll never be able to build muscle if you don't eat enough. Nutrition is...

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Now is the time

Turbulence Training

Created by Craig Ballantyne, Turbulence Training is a circuit-training style workout program with several levels of intensity. You won’t be lifting really heavy weights on this program or even focusing on sets and reps all that much. Rather you’ll be working through full-body circuits of exercises designed to push you to your physical limits without breaking you. Minimal equipment is needed and the program is ideal for a home workout. Detailed video walkthroughs are provided for every workout.

Muscle Gaining Secrets 2.0

Created by Jason Ferruggia, Muscle Gaining Secrets 2.0 is a solid educational and instructional program for beginners and skinny guys. It gives simple, practical instruction and teaches you how to design a workout on your own. You’ll be doing more athletic upper / lower body workout splits combined with high intensity workout “finishers”. This program works better in a gym environment or at home if you have the right equipment. Also gain ongoing access (paid) to new workouts, videos, and the Renegade Coaching Community.


Body Transformation Blueprint

Created by Sean Nalewanyj (Nal for short), the Body Transformation Blueprint is a complete muscle building and fat loss guide based on simple, tried and true principles that just make sense. You’ll be doing traditional bodybuilding style workouts couple with “bulking” and “cutting” diet cycles to achieve the most efficient muscle gains and fat loss. You’ll want access to a gym and a variety of equipment for this program. In addition to a comprehensive guide and video instruction, you’ll also get access to personal email coaching.


It doesn’t take much equipment to start building muscle and burning fat but in most cases at least some equipment will make your training time more efficient and productive. Building a home gym is easier today than it’s ever been but it’s tough to know what you really need. The six pieces below when used in conjunction with bodyweight exercises are all you need to build an amazing body!

Pull Up Bar

If you decided to only do bodyweight exercises you'd be making a great choice but you would still need a way to pull yourself up. That's why a pull up bar of some kind is essential and the first piece of equipment I recommend. The benefit of a wall or ceiling mounted pull up bar is stability. There are door mounted bars that just hang but I don't trust them. Go for the stability and quality of a mounted bar.

TRX Suspension Trainer

Absolutely the most versatile piece of equipment in existence, suspension trainers enable you to perform dozens of exercises (some that you couldn't perform any other way) and use your bodyweight as resistance. Used in conjunction with a weighted vest, you might be able to accomplish all of your fitness goals. 

Weighted Vest

One of the things people don't consider is that when they lose weight they automatically reduce the weight they're lifting - think about pull-ups, pushups, and squats. A weighted vest can counteract that effect. Plus weighted vests are excellent to wear during cardio workouts to drastically increase your calorie burn. 


Kettlebells are the most versitle weights around. Lift them, press them, carry them or swing them. There's not much you can't do with kettlebells. This adjustable kettlebell (10-40 pounds) will give you the variety of weight you need for a variety of exercises. It would be best to buy two so you can do excercises like loaded carries.

Resistance Bands

Another "piece" of equipment with a variety of uses, resistance bands allow you to warm up, stretch, and provide assistance with exercises like pull-ups and dips. They are excellent for use in recovering after an injury or to workout sore muscles as well. 

Fitbit Alta HR

Not exactly "equipment" but the Fitbit Alta is a surprisingly accurate heart rate and activity tracker. In addition you can track your overall progress in a variety of ways including logging your workouts and the quality of your sleep - all important aspects of achieving your best health.

Burn & Build


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