The 4 Crucial Steps To Shred ‘Core’ Fat And Build Lean Muscle

July 26, 2010 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug


  • Diet
  • Intensity
  • Consistency
  • Workout structure based on goal

Failing at getting shredded?

(I’m not talking about building muscle for bulk. I’m talking about the actual definition of muscle)

If so, it will be because you have lost focus at one of those points.


The Goal

To build lean muscle mass

The Benefits

  • Will eventually turn into mature muscle.
  • Mature muscle is muscle that tends to stay, whether you workout or not.
  • More lean muscle mass means that you burn fat, even when stationary. Because you would have increase your metabolism.
  • Want to diet down to focus on cutting? (No problem)
  • Want to train 6 days a week without damaging your muscles? (No problem)
  • Want to cut back on weight training for extended periods of time to focus on cardio? (No problem)

Now lets explain the points.

#1  Diet

I put this at no.1 because this is probably the core reason why you can’t shift those annoying layers of fat that sits around your hips and lower abs.

The Myth

You need to lose fat first to build muscle


Not exactly true. Yes, I know that was the headline of this post

You Need To Lose Fat First To Build Muscle!


But that was just to catch your attention ;-). But if you watch your diet, you should be just fine.

Now, I know that you all will have different body types and will be at different stages at your current levels of fitness. But lets focus this explanation based on someone that is…

Of average build (5’10 male, weighs 80kg, has a fair amount of body fat)

The Explanation

A common method of building muscle and get ripped is to split your year into a ‘bulking phase’ and a ‘cutting phase’

  • The bulking phase – You consume a stack load of carbs and calories.
  • The cutting phase – You cut back on the carbs and calorie in take.

This can work quite well for some. But there are a few reasons why I wouldn’t recommend this approach.

  1. There’s a good chance that you’ll lose a lot of the muscle mass that you would have built during cutting phase.
  2. You could actually ‘gain’ a lot more fat during the bulking stage (Aren’t we meant to be getting shredded here?)
  3. This technique can put stress on your body and sometimes lead to future health problems.

Does this mean that there is no efficient way to get shredded if you’re already struggling to get ‘shredded’ while eating car?

Of course not.

Before I talk about the actual diet, let me introduce you to the concept of…

Carb Cycling

Now, carb cycling isn’t exactly new and some of you might even know of the concept. Either way, allow me to explain.

The idea is that you consume a certain level of carbs only when needed and only in the morning/ after workouts.

The Benefits

  • Burn fat and build muscle within the same week
  • Prevents the slow down of your metabolism
  • Easy to follow

How to structure a carb cycling diet?

Daily carb intake (5’10 male, weighs 80kg, has a fair amount of body fat)

  • High(er) carb days = 320g protein, 334g carbs, 30g fat
  • Moderate days = 320g protein, 255g carbs, 30g fat
  • Low(er) carb days = 320g protein, 196g carbs, 33g fat

3 Day Workout Week

  • 2 Core workout days = High carb intake
  • Remaining workout day = Moderate carb intake
  • Allow one extra ‘non-workout’ day = Moderate carb intake day
  • Off days = Low moderate carb intake

Now that you understand the concept of carb cycling, it should be pretty simple to structure your diet around this for at least 8-12 weeks.


Here are some nutritional posts

Killer Foods for Fitness (part 1)

The ‘DONE-FOR-YOU’ Hardgainers Workout Routine Plan/ Meal Plan

The Ultimate ‘Done For You’ Bodybuilding Regime (Greek)

After this point you will need to evaluate what you have achieved.


The point of all of this to to get shredded. Which still means less carb in-take. So after you have evaluated what you have achieved, you’ll need to drop your daily carb intake by approximately 20 grams every 3-4 weeks.

The example again:

  • High(er) carb days = 320g protein, 334g carbs, 30g fat
  • Moderate days = 320g protein, 255g carbs, 30g fat
  • Low(er) carb days = 320g protein, 196g carbs, 33g fat

Your current carb intake =

  • 334g
  • 255g
  • 196g

Your new carb intake (Minus 20g)

  • 314g
  • 235g
  • 176g

But you only keep doing this if fat loss has slowed then. If it hasn’t then no changes need to be made.

Remember the tweak rule

No drastic changes, because that is one sure way of losing muscle mass during a fat loss diet.

And if your goal is to gain muscle mass:

  • High(er) carb days = 330g protein, 412g carbs, 121g fat
  • Moderate days = 330g protein, 330g carbs, 121g fat
  • Low(er) carb days = 33g protein, 247g carbs, 121g fat

That’s the same example, but based on a body type that will gain muscle mass, yet get shredded.

If you are failing to build mass following the carb cycling technique after a few weeks, do this…


– Increase protein/ carb intake by 25% at the post workout meal stage

Still no gains?

– 2-3 weeks after that, increase protein/ carb intake by 25% at breakfast

Still no gains?

– 2-3 weeks after that

Increase protein/ carb intake by 25% with your post-workout shake (Which you take within one hour after finishing your workout.


All of these stages were described in this post…

The ‘DONE-FOR-YOU’ Hardgainers Workout Routine Plan/ Meal Plan

And this technique is a similar concept to tweak and repeat, which I talked about here…

Find Hardgainer Bodybuilding Success with: Tweak and Repeat

Since we are talking about shredding your core here, you might find this post of huge interest to you too…

12 Best Foods to Burn Fat and Build Muscle For Your Abs

#2  Your Intensity

We all know that I religiously talk about training insane.

I talk about it in two specific recent posts

  1. The Top 8 Reasons Why You’re Scrawny And The Other Dude Is Not! Point no.6
  2. The Only Way To Train Is To Train Insane

I won’t repeat what was said there. Just go and read them.

But one reason why you could be failing could be due to the level of your workout intensity.


Some Rules

  • Moderate intensity sessions for 30 – 60 minutes = Lean muscle mass – (What you need right now)
  • High intensity short workouts = Fat loss

You can actually gauge this based on your current body type. I explain how in the ebook

Build a 6 pac: From flab to flat

You could also add bodyweight exercises to your routine

How to increase your metabolism – The Exercises

And of course

The Unique Bodyweight Exercises Ebook (version 2.0)

#3  Consistency

Of course, all of this testing, tweaking and hard work is useless unless you actually stick to the bodybuilding lifestyle for the long term. Something which is a core goal at Stay-Fit Bug. Helping you stick to the lifestyle!

But it goes back to this goal…

To build lean muscle mass!

Which of course has big part to play when building ‘mature’ muscle. Scroll back to the start if you’ve forgotten the benefits (ALREADY :O ??).

Either way, a lack of consistency could be a reason why you are not yet shredded.

#4  Workout Structure/Plan Based On Goal

Again, I explain how to do this in the ebook Build a 6 pac: From flab to flat

However, I also covered the basics of this here:

How To Find Your Own Bodybuilding ‘Map’ And ‘Route’

But this still may also be a reason why are failing to shred those annoying layers of fat.

The problem covered here is the heart of what the next product will try to solve.

But Shaun, this post is so brief. I was expecting so much more!!

Of course you was, and I know that many of you have tried and failed at trying to get shredded. But the underlying reason of why you are failing will always come back to one of these points.

  1. Diet
  2. Intensity
  3. Consistency
  4. Workout structure based on goal

The actual process really is as simple as following the brief information you have read on this page. However…

  1. I understand that everyone’s goals, current levels in fitness, body types and genes are all different.
  2. I understand that you require some true solutions that touch on the emotional connection to the activities you take part in throughout your daily lives (work and fun).

We all have struggles and we all want to be shredded (Men and women). The headline is a common problem that I simply cannot ignore to solve… the Stay-Fit Bug way. A product that will incorporate much of what the Stay-Fit Bug brand represents to the full…

  • Innovative ways to build muscle (And keep it)
  • How to have fun and live a great bodybuilding lifestyle

Again, this is the foundation of what needs to be done, And I know that this product will make a difference to your life, and mine too, as you might know… my current goal is to build an 8 pac (Recent progress). I can only do that by shredding fat around my lower abs and following the information that will be provided in this upcoming product.

There is no said date… yet! And the only thing I need from you to ensure that this product rocks is your feedback.

We will lap up the rest of Summer 2010!

Now lets make sure that summer 2011 is a shredded one. FOR YOU!

Wear your results in S-curvish gear....

Wear your results in S-curvish gear….

See you in the comments.

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