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Last updateWed, 18 Sep 2019 12am







    Tuesday, September 17, 2019-6:54:44P.M.






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BBJ Fitness Corner | Health and wellness fitness myth: Once you stop training, your muscle turns to fat

“ ‘LOOK at “The Big Hit”: when he stopped working out — his muscle turned into fat. Now that he’s training again his fat turned into muscles.’

Whenever gym members and clients bring this ‘theory’ up I share my certified personal trainer and fitness nutritionist response, which is you can’t transform fat into muscle, and muscle can’t turn into fat,” Gold’s Gym personal trainer Jerry Diaz said in an interview with Variety.

Muscle and fat are two completely different systems in our body, he added.

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Gold’s Gym personal trainer Jerry Diaz works with the “Turkish Get Up” to get back in the flow after taking a two-week vacation.  Contributed photo

When an individual works out, he needs to eat a lot of calories to ensure that his body can recover and rebuild muscle. He burns calories every day so he stays lean and toned. But if he stops training for whatever reason and keeps eating the same way, his body has not only lost the extra calorie-burn from workouts, but it will also lose muscle mass that it no longer needs. It won’t take long for an individual to start building layers of fat if he doesn’t make the necessary adjustments with his eating habits and total daily calorie or energy intake. His body will transform, resulting in muscle loss and fat gain.

This is the reason why people think muscle “turns” into fat. Muscle loss is a result of muscle tissues breaking down because they are no longer needed. At the same time fat is added because of overeating.

“Based on my experience, when I can’t train for longer than seven days, I will eventually observe a reduction of strength and endurance,” Diaz said. “If my body got used to circuit-training which builds muscle endurance and performance-conditioning, and then I chose to stop for a week or two, I would maintain the same body composition and look, but my conditioning would not be the same.”

Diaz said he prefers “not to take too much time off even when I’m on vacation. I prefer to do a daily full-body workout with body-weight exercises like primal flows, pushups, squats and lunges, or a light run to maintain my circularity system. This really helps me maintain my strength and conditioning so once I’m home, I can continue with my strength and conditioning training program without being prone to injury.”