So, you’ve been putting in time in the gym. You’ve even tried your best to stick to your daily meal plan, avoiding late night food runs as much as possible. But, what gives, you ask. Why exactly are your muscles, specifically your washboard abs, still not showing yet? Well, it may because your body is holding too much water, causing your skin to look inflated and covering all the gains you’ve worked so hard for.
Creatine, for example, is notorious for causing weight gain via water retention. However, other factors may cause it as well, namely sodium in your diet and even dehydration.
Fortunately, there are ways to get rid of all the extra water, and these tips below will help you with that.
- Reduce sodium intake. The more sodium in your daily meals, the more likely your body will store extra water. Avoid processed foods like soups, canned goods and frozen meals as much as possible. Try to minimize the amount of salt you use when preparing your meals as well.
- Drink more water. No, we’re not kidding. If dehydrated, your body stores extra water until it gets enough. Drinking enough water will allow your body to perform at its peak, minimizing water retention.
- Go to a sauna. If you ever need to shed a little weight before a big event, try going in the sauna. This will help you sweat out a lot of your excess water weight. Although, exercising and working out does the same thing just as well.
- Stop taking creatine. Creatine pulls water into the muscle, increasing protein synthesis, which makes it great if you want to add size to your frame. If, however, you want to lose weight and want to look shredded, you may want to stop taking creatine for a few days.
- Drop the alcohol. Again, dehydration does your body no good, especially your weight, and alcohol is notorious for causing dehydration. If you’re prepping for an event, or really just want to show off the beach bod you’ve been working hard for, you may want to drop the booze.
- Don’t forget your vitamins. The lack of vitamins, such as vitamin B1 and B6, can lead to unwanted water weight. Taking a multi-vitamin helps, but natural food sources such as bananas work just as well, if not better.
Just a fair warning, though, muscle definition, or “dem gains”, as most people would like to call them, will only show if you really put in the work and already have a low body fat percentage.