The slower you can lose body fat, the more muscle you’ll retain.
Lose a pound or less per week. That means your offseason has to be very, very effective at gaining muscle without too much fat.
Protein builds muscle. But protein in excess, however, can be used as energy or converted to body fat. Using protein as energy means less body fat is being used as energy. So, having the right amount of protein is optimal. Gross overages of protein isn’t going to help you build muscle or retain it.
Carbs are key to retaining muscle.when dieting with a lower than normal carb intake, your carbs can be targeted to help you retain muscle, maintain energy levels, and keep your metabolic rate high.
Set protein levels high enough but not excessive. If you are active, seeking muscle, training hard, drink plenty of water, and want the best recovery, then go with 1-1.25 grams of protein per pound of lean body mass per day.
Set fat levels at no higher than 20% of total calories.
Set carb levels as high as possible while still staying on pace with weight loss.
Target your carbs to support muscle retention.
Cycle carbs if a prolonged low-carb run is necessary.