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Forget Christmas and Thanksgiving, we all know the Super Bowl is America’s favorite holiday.
It’s one of the most watched TV events every year — it’s also the perfect excuse to stuff ourselves with wings, beer, nachos and hero sandwiches. It’s a trap, sabotaging any and all muscle-building and fat-burning schemes. A typical Super Bowl meal ranges anywhere from 2,000-5,000 calories!
Here are six tricks to help you enjoy both the game and your abs.
SEE ALSO: The 10-Min Super Bowl Halftime Workout
You want to deplete yourself and treat the event as one big re-feed meal. Cut your daily carbohydrates intake by about 25-45 percent two to three days before the game. If you normally consume 300 grams of carbs a day, cut it back to 200 or less. By depleting your glycogen levels, your body will look to soak up those extra calories to compensate. You will also improve your insulin sensitivity so your body can absorb nutrients at a better rate. In addition, the you’ll be in a slight caloric deficit which will work in your favor so you pig out while watching the pig skin.
Just remember that you’re trying to balance out your week. Fat loss does not happen in just one day, as long as you don’t over-consume throughout the weekend you won’t add fat.
Just remember: Big game, big workout. Perform a high-volume full-body routine with a high-intensity cardio session a couple of hours before the game. The workout (shown below) will help deplete your glycogen stores. In addition, intense cardio has been shown to burn twice as many calories for up to twelve hours after the workout. Basically, all the food you shuttle in will help grow your muscles and not your waist.
It can take up to 30 minutes for food we eat to reach our stomach. This can be a problem when you’re hungry because, ironically, your brain doesn’t know you shouldn’t be hungry. Consume a protein shake 30 minutes before the game. If you attend your Super Bowl party with a full stomach, you will be less likely to consume extra calories. Many Super Bowl foods contain large amounts of carbs and fats; having a protein shake will ensure you hit your recommend amount of protein for the day.
Swap out a full-calorie beer for a light beer. Don’t take this as an edorsement to drink, alcohol can be detrimental to muscle gains. While one or two beers can be beneficial, anything more can hold back your fat loss. When we consume alcohol our bodies have to work twice as hard to break it down. This slows down the digestion of other nutrients in order to break down the alcohol calories first. Liquid calories are easier to add up as well. That said, consuming light beers can save you about 300 calories throughout the night.
Take a tip from the athletes here, downing a lot of water is a solid plan for fans too! Being slightly dehydrated can lead to a 1% reduction in strength. Try to drink at least a liter of water while the game is on. This will counterbalance the alcohol and keep you feeling full and away from the snack table.
You splurged; now it’s time to pay the price. Again, fat loss does not occur in one day. Consume 1,000 less calories the day after the game to make up for the damage you might have done. If you’re lean bulking, take in 500 less calories the next day to prevent unwanted fat gains.
The Super Bowl is a great way to get together with friends and family but remember to enjoy the moments and do not use the Super Bowl as an excuse to go off the deep end. Your gameplan should be to do everything in moderation — that will lead to a game-winning touchdown for fat loss!