So you want to build some muscle?
These are some of my best tips for packing on muscle.
1. Implement compound exercises into your programme. Compound lifts hit more muscle groups and stimulate your body to produce more growth hormone and testosterone that your body needs to build muscle and become stronger. Try adding squats, deadlifts and an overhead press to your regime.
2. Use strength training in your programme. Again using heavy weights will stimulate testosterone and growth hormone so that your body can grow. A tried and tested method is the old 5x5 method. Not only will you be getting stronger, but a by-product of strength training is muscle hypertrophy.
3. To build muscle you need to be in a calorie surplus. This means adding more calories to your diet than your body needs, your body will then use the extra calories to build muscle if you training correctly. Now how many calories you need will depend on your body type, but a good place to start is by adding an extra meal into your nutrition plan and go from there. If you find it hardto add calories a meal replacement shake is ideal, heres my favourite:
4. Don't change your exercise programme to much on the principle that you want to confuse your muscle. You cannot confuse a muscle, as a muscle is passive and it does 2 things, one is contract and the other is extension.
You need to train your muscle the same way over a period of time,this is called neural adaptive training. For example, increasing the amount of weight you use on a lift will force your body to adapt and grow so it can lift last weeks previous weight, when you add more weight to the lift, it will shock your body, eliciting an adaptive response to become stronger. Do this each week and you will see changes.
Changing exercises for a body part to often will not be beneficial as you will not be able to stimulate these neural adaptive responses.
5. Negative training has worked well for me in the past. This is when you increase the amount of time during the eccentric part of exercise. So the tempo would look like this in seconds, 1 second ( top of the movement),2 seconds (concentric part), 1 second bottom part of the movement) and then 4 seconds (eccentric part of the movement)
Utilising the time under tension principle and having gravity pulling that weight down, forcing your muscle to work hard to stabilise and lower the weight in a controlled manner is very challenging. Also this is a great way to get DOMS :D
So there are my 5 top tips for building muscle growth,compound exercises, strength training, using a calorie surplus, not changing your exercise programme every week and using negative training may help you to build some muscle. Give them a try and let me know how you get on in the comments section.
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