Here’s How to Prevent Catabolism & Maintain Your Muscles You Build Over the Years

One of the biggest challenges for bodybuilders, athletes, or anyone serious about building muscle mass, density, definition, and strength is to avoid a catabolic state. It’s an often-asked question how to prevent catabolism of your muscles and keep gaining muscle mass? Nonetheless, if you’ve got this question or want to know about it, then read about it. Similarly, sample workout and nutrition information are included that will help to keep your body in an anabolic state.

how to prevent catabolism

Catabolism is one of the worst nightmares for bodybuilders. Neglecting adequate workouts, nutrition, and even recovery can easily lead to catabolism. Your body being in a catabolic state for a longer period can easily result in muscle loss and an overall decrease in your health. All the hard work you did for years will be drained. Nonetheless, let’s get into details and find out how to avoid it, what it means, what the damaging effects of catabolism are, and some common causes that lead to it.

Here’s How to Prevent Catabolism

Preventing catabolism is not rocket science, and it’s easily achievable, especially if you’re regularly working out. You need to take note of some key points, and we ensure your body will not get into a catabolic state.

Eat Small Meals

Avoid eating two to three large meals in a day. Instead, consume five to six small meals according to your diet plan or macronutrient if you’re calculating. And make sure all the meals include optimal levels of protein, healthy fats, and carbohydrates.

For instance, consuming meat, fish, starchy foods, and healthy fats help in keeping your metabolism high. Hence, it helps in developing and attaining your muscle mass. Similarly, ensure your body is well hydrated by drinking at least 1 gallon of water daily.

Pre & Post Workout Meals

Your pre and post-workout meals are equally important. For instance, eating small meals that include protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats before your workout helps keep you energetic for your intense workout sessions. On the other hand, your post-workout meal will help to repair the muscles that you break down during workouts.

Resting Is Essential

Make sure you’re taking enough rest. After working out and eating properly, your muscle grows when you take proper sleep. Your body needs rest to recover from the intense workout. Similarly, if you’re not resting properly, you will even increase the chances of getting injured, leading to a long break from the gym and muscle catabolism.

Proper Supplementation

You can also add some dietary supplements like creatine, BCAAs, and glutamine that helps prevent catabolism. It helps keep your body in an anabolic state while keeping you energetic, which helps in your performance in the gym and building muscle mass.

What Is Catabolism?

Catabolism means breaking down of complex molecules into smaller ones. Being related to bodybuilding, catabolism means breaking down of your muscle tissue. The opposite of anabolism implies the building of complex molecules from smaller ones, catabolism breaks your already build muscle tissues into smaller ones. Hence, once anyone goes into a catabolism state, they’ll start losing muscle mass.

In addition, those who struggle to maintain a regular workout routine with proper nutrition are often concerned with how to prevent catabolism or other problems that come with it.

Here Are Some Damaging Effects Once Your Body Gets Into a Catabolic State

Your body staying in a catabolic state for a long time can be dangerous. And two common damaging effects that you’ll witness are:

  • Excessive breakdown of your muscle tissues, which means excessive muscle loss.
  • Suppression of your immune system, growth hormones, digestive organs, and fatigue.

3 Common Causes That Lead to Catabolism

The three main causes that often lead your body to catabolism are:

Improper Diet

Development of your muscle is mainly due to adequate consumption of protein. At the time of training, your body draws the protein it requires to withstand the effort of a workout. For instance, an athlete who doesn’t follow a proper diet that includes optimal protein levels, healthy fats, and carbohydrates will suffer from muscle tissue breakdown leading to catabolism.

And this is why athletes are recommended to split their meals into multiple small meals you consume throughout the day rather than consuming three big meals. It’s a technique that provides your muscle with proper protein and prevents catabolism.

Not Training Adequately

An athlete who goes for a long break due to any severe injury or stops training for a longer duration, like five to six months their body will likely get into a catabolic state. Hence, it’s essential that you avoid taking a long break from training to prevent catabolism. Similarly, keeping your form in check and avoiding ego lifting is recommended to avert gym injury.

Not Taking Enough Rest

If you’re not sleeping enough and your body doesn’t get enough rest, it can go into a catabolic state. You break your muscles in the gym, and to make them grow, you must rest properly. Similarly, by not giving your body rest, your muscles will overwork and backfire.

Workout to Prevent Catabolism

For those who’re questioning how to prevent catabolism through the workout or which workout to do, don’t worry. Here we’ve covered two workout routines you can follow along with a healthy diet, which keeps your body energetic while maintaining an anabolic level.

Workout 1 – Full Body

Day 1 – Chest & Abs

Incline BB Bench Press315 – 8
Flat DB Bench Press315 – 8
Cable Crossovers315 – 8

Day 2 – Quadriceps, Hamstrings & Calves

Leg Extensions315
BB Back Squats315 – 8
Incline Leg Press315 – 8
DB Lunges315 – 8
Standing Leg Curls315 – 8
Lying Leg Curls315 – 8
Standing Calf Raises315 – 8

Day 3 – Back, Biceps & Abs

Wide Grip Pull – Ups310
Close Grip Lat Pulldown315 – 8
Bent Over BB Rowing315 – 8
BB Deadlift315 – 8
Hanging Leg Raises315 – 8

Day 4 – Shoulders & Triceps

Seated DB Press315 – 8
DB Side Lateral Raises315 – 8
Reverse DB Flys315 – 8
DB Shrugs315 – 8
Triceps Pushdowns315 – 8
Lying Triceps Extensions315 – 8

Workout 2

Day 1 – Chest, Shoulder, Triceps

Flat BB Bench Press315 – 8
Seated DB Shoulder Press315 – 8
Lying Triceps Extensions315 – 8

Day 2 – Back, Biceps & Abs

Bent Over BB Rowing315 – 8
Biceps Curls315 – 8

Day 3 – Quadriceps, Hamstrings & Calves

Leg Extensions315
BB Back Squats315 – 8
Standing Leg Curls315 – 8
Standing Calf Raises315 – 8

Diet to Prevent Catabolism

Make sure you’re eating correctly, if possible, according to your macronutrient. Similarly, here is one sample diet plan you can try to see how it goes.

Meal 1:

  • Whole Egg – 1
  • Egg Whites – 4
  • Whole Grain Bread – 2 Slices
  • Walnuts
  • Cup of Milk – 1
  • Apple
  • Banana
  • Multivitamin

Meal 2:

Meal 3:

  • Lean Meat
  • Whole Grain Bread – 2 Slices
  • Blueberries
  • Salad

Meal 4:

  • Salad
  • Walnuts
  • Pasta
  • Apple

Meal 5:

  • Whey Protein
  • Gatorade

Meal 6:

  • Salad
  • Fish
  • Milk – 1 Cup
  • Olive Oil
  • Banana

Our Closing Thoughts

We hope you’ve got an answer to how to prevent catabolism of your muscle mass, what it means, how it causes, its damaging effects, and why it’s essential to avoid it at all costs. Dedication and persistence are essential to keep your body in an anabolic state while avoiding catabolism and any injury while staying focused and keeping track of your workouts.

Satinder Chowdhry Avatar

Satinder Chowdhry