Pump up the Protein

We all know how easy it is to put on a little extra padding around your middle during the winter months; even if you’re an avid cyclist those few extra pounds can still creep on what with festive food habits. Why not turn this unwanted extra flab into muscle instead by weight training? To do this you’ll need to increase your intake of protein for bodybuilding to have an effect on your physique, so read on to find out how…

As a cyclist, it’s a safe bet to say you’re probably already quite fit and active, so introducing a few more exercises into your regime shouldn’t be too difficult for you.

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There are hundreds of bodybuilding exercises that can help you achieve muscle perfection, but here are a couple of really quick and simple exercises to get you started:

Rope Jumping will help build muscle on your quadriceps.

Hold the ends of the rope in each hand. With the rope behind you on the ground, raise your arms and turn the rope over your head and bring it down in front of you. Jump as it reaches the ground. You can try different speeds and jumping techniques to vary things up.

Triceps Overhead Extension will help build your triceps. Attach a rope to a low pulley and select your appropriate weight. Grasp the rope with both hands and face away from the cable. Make sure you position your hands behind your head with your elbows pointing straight up. Extend your elbows and raise your hands above your head. For optimum muscle build, squeeze your triceps at the top of the movement, and slowly lower the weight back to the start position.

As stated before, it’s not all about the exercise – you’re going to need to increase the intake of protein in your diet to help your muscles grow. There are a few simple hints and tips to remember to ensure you’re upping your protein intake:

  • Eat at least one meal with meat everyday; chicken, turkey, fish and beef are so protein rich and incredibly versatile foods. Don’t exceed your meat intake though as it can contain lots of saturated fats, and always make sure you opt for lean meats.
  • Think toppings! Sneaking toppings onto foods in your diet can seriously help rack up your protein intake. Adding peanut butter on your toast, taking a hard-boiled egg as a snack to work, adding beans to salads etc are all simple ways of doing this. Swap natural yoghurt for Greek yoghurt as it contains a lot more protein.
  • Start drinking protein shakes to refuel post-workout – there are so many different protein shake flavours available, from chocolate to strawberry, vanilla and berry so there is something to suit everyone’s tastes.

Combining these exercises with an increase of protein in your diet should help you shift those podgy pounds into muscle, so good luck!