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Whether you are trying to maintain muscle or build new muscle mass, protein is a key component to partner with your resistance training workouts.
Researchers have found that many who choose accelerated work-out programs without meeting their daily RDI (recommended daily intake) of protein may not only fail to reach their intended muscle-building goals, but actually may experience physical problems.

Protein is a macro nutrient that is necessary for the proper growth and function of the human body.  There is considerable debate over the amount of protein each person needs to ingest per day.  However, the current daily recommended amount of protein is 46 grams for women who are between the ages of 19 and 70 years.  It is also recommended that men between the ages of 19 and 70 consume 56 grams of protein.  Anyone suffering a deficiency in protein can experience muscle atrophy and impaired functioning of their body, in general.

Whether you are trying to maintain muscle or build new muscle mass, protein is a key component to partner with your resistance training workouts.  The loss of either proper protein levels or consistent resistance training can result in a loss of muscle mass, over time.  Including both in your regular workout routine will help prohibit muscle wasting and help restore any muscle tissue you have lost.

Resistance or strength training, such as lifting weights, builds and maintains muscle mass.  By placing loads on your muscle tissues in a particular body area, it encourages those muscles to grow stronger.  Lifting weights can help prevent the loss of muscle mass that comes with physical inactivity.  Although cardio exercises are important for heart and lung health and do contribute to some muscle building and/or maintenance, strength training targets focused muscle groups more effectively and helps produce more appreciative muscle mass.

Reducing your risk of muscle loss also depends, in part, on the amount of protein you intake.  If you are a focused exercising individual, your protein usage must cover your body’s non-muscle amino acid needs, as well as the amino acids your muscles need for proper protein oxidation and breakdown during the exercise regimen and the protein repair and maintenance that happen following your workout session.  Most people can benefit from including 1.4 grams of protein per 2.3 pounds of body weight in order to maintain their current muscle mass.

In addition to ensuring you consume sufficient dietary protein, the quality and quantity of your weightlifting sessions will contribute to how well you maintain or grow the muscles you have.  It is important to include two to three workouts each week that target all major muscle groups – arms, shoulders, legs, core and back.  This will contribute to your muscle fibers remaining strong and in good health.  Performing between eight and 12 repetitions, while using a weight that is manageable, yet challenging, for the last few reps can help benefit you physically and prevent the loss of muscle mass.

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