11 Tips for Effective Muscle Gain
Muscle growth is a complex physiological process that requires a lot of time and commitment. Unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation about the best way to gain muscle. Follow 11 scientifically proven tips to gain muscle fast and effectively!
11 Frequently Asked Questions About Bulking
1. What is the best resistance to building muscle?
Contrary to popular belief, the mere fact of lifting heavy weights won't necessarily turn you into a lean body (this will require adding in a good calorie surplus). While weightlifting speeds up the process of building muscle, it's not always easy or affordable to join a gym or invest in home fitness equipment. Here's how to build muscle in both directions: with heavy weights or light resistance and body weight.
In order to develop a good muscle base, lift the heaviest weight possible for 8 to 12 repetitions. There is no ideal weight. It all depends on your genetic or naturally developed strength when starting your bodybuilding program.
Several studies have shown that the weight you can do a maximum of 8 to 12 repetitions causes the most muscle gain. [1, 2] Depending on the exercise and your fitness level, this is about 60-80% of the maximum performance you can achieve in one repetition.
Once you pass the initial phase of muscle growth, you must continue to add weight if you want to see progress. Every 3 to 6 weeks, reevaluate your loads. If 8-12 reps becomes easy, add weight, otherwise you risk sluggish and not getting results. ( 3 )
Resistance band and body weight
It is often mistakenly believed that the only way to stimulate muscle growth is to lift heavy weights in the gym. And while dumbbells are a quick way to build muscle, there are other ways to do it. Just do more reps and sets to get the same results!
In fact, it's entirely possible to tone your glutes, core, chest, and back with bodyweight exercises (or exercises with a resistance band) that you can do at home quietly without leaving your living room.
The key is to "feel the burn". You have to push the reps and sets until you feel the muscles engaged. Unlike weightlifting exercises, where you can add resistance to suit your needs, training with bodyweight and resistance belts is a constant resistance. To increase density, you must therefore increase volume. You may also need to train more frequently during the week.
Benefits ? You may feel less pain after bodyweight or resistance band training than with heavy weights. In addition, this type of training is safer because it is a closed-chain exercise and the effect is often less.
Do you know?
Muscle growth is mainly caused by an increase in the size of muscle fibers and not by their number. (4)
2. What is the ideal number of groups for you?
The set is the number of times you perform a certain movement (repetitions) and the period of recovery. For example, a 3 x 8 push-up is 3 sets of 8 push-ups per set. The rest period is usually 1-3 minutes between sets (more on this later).
The ideal number of sets for effective mass gains is a controversial topic in the bodybuilding world.
There are big differences depending on your level of fitness. During the first few weeks of training, beginners generally show the same muscle gain with one-set workouts as they do with multi-set sessions. On the other hand, more advanced athletes will get better results with multiple set sessions because the training stimulus from one set will be too weak to get the muscles to begin the process of adapting.
Either way, if you want to see visible results, you have to reach the point of fatigue or even muscle failure! why ? Well, simply because the hormones will realize that performing a movement requires more muscle than is currently available, and the body will manufacture more of it. And if you want to grow muscle mass in a specific area, you need to focus on that area by doing several sets that include those specific muscles.
Once you have passed the initial building phase, or if you are very focused on building muscle quickly, a good general rule of thumb is 4-6 sets.
Another strategy is to gradually increase the load on the muscles in each group. So start your first set with a lighter warm-up weight, then add a little more weight to each set. You do it right if you are close to failure, or even failing to achieve your goal in your last streak.
good to know
Do as many repetitions and sets as possible until your pose or technique comes to a stop. Continuing if your posture is incorrect may result in injury. Always control your movements and respect the limits of your body and physical condition. One of the biggest challenges is knowing when to stop, and that comes with many years of practice. Go to tip 7 for more information about paying so you can't.
3. How many reps per group?
The number of repetitions for each set depends on your exercise and fitness goals. For example, it is reasonable to do 30-60 push-ups, but 30-60 push-ups would be too much for most people.
If your goal is to build muscle, stick to a set of 6 to 12 repetitions of the same exercise. Once you can do many repetitions of the exercise with good posture, move on to 20 reps of exercises such as push-ups, rows, squats, etc. Once you can do 20 reps in good style, add another set and reduce the reps to 6-8 reps per set. Add reps again when you can complete all sets with good technique.
4. Should I rest between sets?
It all depends on your dreams!
If you're looking to build one muscle by doing many repetitions of the same movement, rest 60 seconds to 3 minutes between each set. You'll know you're comfortable enough when you feel like you can attack the next group feeling fresh. The idea is that by giving yourself time to rest, you will be able to move forward each time.
However, you can group multiple muscle groups at once. A Superset involves training one muscle group or one side of the body, then training the opposite muscles with little or no rest in between. For example, you do a bunch of push-ups and go straight to a group of Superman guys. Both exercises are opposing the same muscle group (think pushing and pulling movements).
Circuit and superset exercises also add an aerobic component to your strength training . Circuit training consists of skipping the recovery periods and moving directly to the next exercise. This training method gets your cardiovascular system working more than strength training alone. Circuits and super sets are a great option if you are relatively fit and looking to build muscle while losing fat!
Watch the videos below to see how pushups and superman exercises work with opposing muscle groups (known as an antagonistic hypergroup):
5. How many workouts per week?
Body aches associated with strength training is known as DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness). It is very important to resume or start strength training with extreme caution. Aim for minimal repetitions and sets if you haven't been weight training for a long time (or even done so at all). Body aches can limit your ability to train multiple times or lift heavy weights, counterproductive to your goals. Make sure you understand the benefits of overcompensation and the difference with overtraining.
DOMS can occur one to two days after the first strength training session and usually gets worse on the second day. Even if the pain persists, another session of weight training two to three days later can help reduce this pain. A simple walk is enough to circulate the blood, supply the muscles with oxygen and reduce the build-up of lactate.
Athletes who have never done strength training before should aim for one strength training session in the first week and two to four additional sessions. Everything is important! Bodyweight training, yoga, pilates, running, cycling, swimming or even dance lessons!
Do not forget
Muscle development is a long process. If you rush, you will end up hurting yourself, which can lead to serious damage. Trust the training process, be slow and be patient. Always take a break of 1-2 reps that you can rule out if in doubt.
For beginners, two sessions of strength training per week are sufficient. The best comprehensive program that works all major muscle groups. These programs are often called "full-body exercises" (6). Here are some examples of guided exercises that will work all your muscles in the adidas Training app: full body with weights (use dumbbells or water bottles as weights), full body workout (8 minutes), 10 minute HIIT tabata, and many more!
Intermittent training is also a good way to ensure there is enough time for muscle recovery. You will work every major muscle group twice a week if you do split training 4 days a week. The most common types of interval training involve breaking up the exercise into upper and lower body exercises or push-ups and pull-ups.
One popular way to use this feature to split exercises is to target the legs and lower body one day of the week, and then the arms and upper body the next, before returning to the lower body. This type of training is intended for advanced athletes because it adds significant additional difficulty, which is necessary to promote muscle growth due to the principle of progressive overload (7).
More advanced athletes can train as many times a week as needed to promote muscle growth (instead of muscle fatigue due to overtraining). Keep in mind that as the number of workouts increases, the protein intake should be higher (read for more information on protein, as well as the calculator).
Many athletes also use "training blocks". They train intensively for 3 or 4 weeks, then take a week off every three or four weeks, depending on their level of experience and their propensity for injury.
Create your own workouts with the adidas Training App Creator - you can choose your target muscle group(s), difficulty, workout duration and equipment!
6. After how many weeks do the first results appear?
If you are new to the sport of bodybuilding, you will improve your strength quickly, but your muscles will not necessarily grow. why ? Simply because the strength gain you get in the beginning is the result of better coordination within and between your muscles (and thus optimal activation and better interaction between your muscles). Muscle growth requires constant additional motivation to train.
But the real question to ask is: What kind of results do you want to get?
Building muscle mass increases metabolism, which makes the body more efficient at using food as fuel. Muscle weighs more than fat. So you may gain weight by doing weight exercises regularly, but you will most likely lose fat. In this case, you will notice that some parts of your body appear slimmer (such as the waist) while other parts appear larger (such as the thigh muscles). This is a good sign and another reason to stop focusing on the numbers on the scale.
Diet also plays an important role in your ability to "see" results. Try adding more protein to your diet and you may notice an increase in your visible curves! You'll also need to cut calories to get a more "cut" frame, but this is not recommended if you're already eating a healthy, natural diet. The body can go into starvation mode and eat all those hard-earned muscle!
Finally, genetics plays a role. People tend to keep fat in certain places, have a certain physique, and be healthy at certain weights. No matter how hard you work out, you may never get chocolate abs. But it's okay! As long as you keep lifting weights and increasing the intensity, you will progress.
Nutrition and genetics play a role in the growth and development of visible muscles. Be gentle with yourself! Focus on the fun of getting stronger. Rest assured knowing that you are healthier no matter how you look in the mirror.
7. Should I push my muscles to failure?
Pushing to fail sounds dangerous (and can be). But pushing muscle to failure is also a great way to induce muscle growth. Pushing to failure means: until you can't do another actor well. If someone performs that last rep with poor technique, it means failure in the past, which at worst can quickly lead to injury and at best simply backfire.
A great way to push yourself to failure with bodyweight exercises is to do many repetitions of the exercise until the technique stops following you. For example, do as many push-ups as possible and stop when your hips and/or shoulders hang toward the floor. Rest for a minute, then do another set and note the number of repetitions possible. Try to do more repetitions and/or sets in your next muscle-building exercise.
The key to this tip is to push until you get too big and stop. It never helps to get hurt, so be very careful. Beginner athletes should focus on developing perfect technique before trying this training tip.
For example, below are 9 of the most common exercise mistakes to watch out for when pushing muscles to failure.
8. Should I cut out cardio if my priority is gaining muscle?
Aerobic or aerobic exercise can affect the body's ability to build muscle. If the main goal is to get big muscles, then reduce the cardio.
However, novice athletes are more likely to make big gains quickly if they do weight training and cardio. Being able to climb stairs without blowing out is good for your overall health! In addition, muscle growth will occur in a normal, functional way. For example, by including running sessions, you'll build important leg muscles and work your cardiovascular system.
Unless bodybuilding is your goal or muscle growth is stable, include cardio sessions in your workout.
9. What is the right diet to gain muscle?
Building muscle requires supporting muscle growth. Cutting calories to lose weight works against building muscle. In addition, the calorie requirement increases with the increase in muscle mass.
Correct Amount of Protein for Gaining Mass:
Protein is essential for building muscle. Eating adequate protein does not mean cutting out other macronutrients such as carbohydrates and fats. This does not mean that you should consume more than 25 grams of protein per hour (the maximum absorption rate for protein in humans). Supplements containing hundreds of grams of protein are a waste of money.
The right amount of carbohydrates for muscle gain:
Many people mistakenly believe that reducing carbohydrates is a great way to promote muscle growth. The body prioritizes carbohydrates as the primary source of fuel during high-intensity exercise (such as weight training or sprinting, through a physiological process known as glycolysis). If the body does not have enough carbohydrates to fuel the exercise, it breaks down the protein in the muscles and turns it into glucose to cover the energy expenditure of training. This has a negative effect on destroying the muscles that are being built!
* Less than an hour of training per day
** Approximately 1 hour of moderate exercise per day
*** From moderate to very intense training, 1 to 3 hours a day
**** Intermediate to very intense training 4 to 5 hours a day
Instead, eat a balanced diet of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. Protein should come from the diet, not supplements.
Correct Amount of Fat to Build Muscle:
Contrary to popular belief, eating fat does not make you fat. The macronutrients in fat are different from those in adipose tissue (fat cells in the body).
Adequate fat intake is important for good health, including the body's ability to gain and maintain muscle. Fats are essential to cell metabolism (that is, the ability of cell walls to absorb nutrients). Without fat, all the protein you eat could end up floating in your bloodstream, instead of ending up in your muscles.
It's important to understand that when you're trying to gain muscle, you need to eat more than just a diet to lose weight or maintain weight. Muscle weighs more than fat and requires more nutrition. If you eat the same number of calories and the same proportions of macronutrients, your body will use the muscle you are trying to build as fuel and that muscle will begin to melt away.
Eating more calories to build muscle will rebuild your body. You may notice that your body appears larger, especially at first. This sensation can last for 2 to 6 months, while the muscles redistribute. Then you will be thinner than ever!
Feel free to include more fats in your diet! A good rule of thumb is to eat around 30% protein, 30% fat, and 40% carbs daily. But you can adjust these ratios so that your body feels more energetic each day. You can also adjust these ratios for special occasions (such as pizza night), over the course of a day, a week, or (especially for women) a month. Don't worry too much about the type of fat you're eating; Just remember that less processed foods tend to contain more micronutrients (but they can also make you feel more bloated). Here are some delicious options:
- Nuts and seeds (such as chia or sesame seeds)
- Full-fat dairy products
- Cooking oils (especially olive oil and seed oils)
- Nut butters, such as tahini and peanut butter.
- Bread with butter and add butter to the bread
- Spreads, like pesto and tapinades
10. Should I lose weight to build lean muscle mass?
Strength training can be used to increase lean muscle mass while losing weight . Muscle mass does not necessarily increase (and may decrease) during weight loss. However, increasing protein intake and maintaining strength training while reducing carbohydrates and fats can help a person maintain or increase lean muscle mass.
Think of it this way: If total body weight decreases but muscle mass remains the same, the muscle-to-body weight ratio increases even though no muscle is growing. In other words, the lean muscle mass increased.
But cutting out too many nutrients from your diet can lead to metabolic damage, eating disorders, and other physiological problems. Be sure to consult a dietitian or nutritionist before starting a diet!
1. What else can I do to gain muscle fast?
Muscles don't build up during workouts, they break down. Muscles grow during rest because they allow the body to repair broken muscle tissue by being stronger than before.
Sleep eight to nine hours every night, especially during heavy workouts. Naps are also essential for serious muscle growth.
The most important part of gaining muscle (the same goes for all other training goals as well) is training regularly and consistently. Only through consistency will your efforts be rewarded and you will achieve visible results.