Don’t Lose Muscle

Coach's Notes

I have a number of guidelines for VIGOR Training, but just one rule:

Don’t Lose Muscle!

Muscle loss contributes to:

  • insulin resistance and diabetes
  • loss of strength
  • reduced metabolic rate
  • flabby arms and squishy legs
  • loss of joint integrity

Research shows that as you age, a lack of lean mass is worse for longevity and quality-of-life than being too fat.

I’m not trying to convince you to look like a jacked-up meathead. This is about health, fitness, and longevity. You should strive to build enough muscle that people believe you spend more time at the gym than at a fast food restaurant, though.

So, if the rule is “Don’t Lose Muscle,” what causes muscle loss?

Excessive endurance training. Calorie restriction. Insufficient dietary protein. Lack of sleep. Chronic stress. Hormone imbalances.

Don’t get me wrong…I’m not saying it’s okay to be fat as long as you have enough muscle. Excessive body fat is still bad for your health and longevity.

But if you try to get rid of the extra body fat by following a calorie and protein-restricted diet and doing a ton of cardio, you’re headed for trouble.

Anyway, this is the lens through which I view all nutrition, exercise, supplementation, and lifestyle choices. I hope, over time, you will too.

If a diet, exercise, lifestyle, or supplement choice has the potential to cause accelerated muscle loss, it’s a non-starter for me.

If you’d like to read a little more on the importance of muscle, check out my article 7 Body and Mind Benefits of Building Muscle

I try to simplify the process of getting and staying fit, while inspiring you to put in the work necessary to make it happen. Following the rule of “don’t lose muscle” is a great place to start.

Coach’s Notes is a collection of insights, recommendations, and tutorials to help my VIGOR Training member-athletes get more out of the program. Though non-members may find the content to be informative and applicable, I’ve written them as though I’m speaking directly to one of my athletes.

Tom Nikkola

Tom Nikkola

Founder, VIGOR Training

Tom is the founder of VIGOR Training, powerful fitness programs for those committed to getting to the gym. He uses his 20 years of experience, and observation, and education in health and fitness to write, teach, and train men and women to feel, look, and perform better than ever. When he’s not working, you’ll find him hanging out with his wife Vanessa, or playing golf with their grandson Asher.