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🏋️‍♂️ 20 high-protein, low-calorie foods for muscle gain

The days may be getting shorter this weekend, but The BarBend Newsletter will never skimp out on your weekly ray of fitness sunshine. (That sounded less corny when it was pitched in Slack…)

Here’s what we’ve got to end your week with:

  • Six key benefits of using the elliptical machine.

  • The best high-protein, low-calorie food options.

  • Live 2023 Mr. Olympia coverage.


Give the Elliptical a Chance

Credit: Pixel-Shot / Shutterstock

The elliptical machine has been a constant in gyms and on late-night infomercials for decades.  But despite some fluffy advertisements about these ubiquitous cardio machines, there are some serious benefits the elliptical offers that you simply have to know about.

Locking your upper and lower body into a fluid range of motion, many cardio-hungry fitness enthusiasts find the low-impact nature of the elliptical easier on their joints when compared to the pounding rhythm of a treadmill. This ability to mimic the human gait makes the elliptical one of the more pleasing pieces of cardio equipment to attach yourself to.

If you’ve been guilty of ignoring this gym staple, read the article below to find out what you've been missing out on. 


Pro Tips for Protein

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If you lift weights, you know that protein is awesome. If you don’t lift weights, but you’ve read the preceding sentence, you now also know that protein is awesome. Losing weight and bulking can also sometimes be awesome, and they each become much easier to accomplish when you use the 20 low-calorie protein sources we’ve rounded up below

This list is packed with classic low-fat bodybuilding foods like chicken and egg whites, as well as meatless alternatives that really knock down the caloric content. 

If you want to build muscle and stay lean, this list of protein-rich, low-calorie foods should be the foundation of your daily intake.


Crash on Zeus’ Couch

Credit: Chris Bernacchi

The Olympia, the year’s biggest bodybuilding contest, takes place this weekend, and BarBend is home to all your coverage needs. The main show begins on Friday afternoon and culminates on Saturday night as Hadi Choopan looks to defend his Mr. Olympia title against the likes of Derek Lunsford and Samson Dauda.

If you just want to catch the high points, keep an eye on our live results page below throughout the weekend. And be sure to tune in on Saturday evening as the whole thing comes to a head in Orlando.

Everything Else

Jog Your Memory

Credit: djile / Shutterstock

  • Should you be running or jogging your way to a healthier version of yourself? We run down the pros and cons of both here.

  • The wall sit, everyone’s least favorite post-practice punishment, is good for more than just making your face contort like an extra in a Buster Keaton movie. Get past your bad memories of it and embrace your relationship with a nearby wall.

  • Cardio machines can do more than help the agoraphobic raise their heart rate — they can be a valuable indoor tool for all kinds of steady-state and interval-based work. Here are the best cardio machines for 2023.