How to Build Muscle
We will spend some time exploring several ‘How to Build Muscle Workouts' to get you the results you need and the body that you want. These workouts will get you new muscle mass faster than a more standard regimen.
There is no overnight way to gain muscle mass, it takes time and effort, but following these tips will get you results much quicker. The topics we will talk about are proven to get you results, but you must put forth the effort to get those results.
There is no easy way to enlarge the muscles of the body. It is all about the work you put in.
How to Build Muscle Mass by What You Eat
Eating is the key to gaining. You will not gain muscle mass if your body does not have the fuel it needs to build that added muscle.
Plan on eating an additional 500 calories over what you should use to maintain your current weight. If you are working on building muscle mass these extra calories will be needed.
Muscles burn fat. It is that simple. The more muscle mass you have, the more food your body needs to keep it fueled. Extra food also helps to repair muscle tissue that will need repair from heavy workouts you are doing. This is how to build muscle mass properly.
How to Build Muscle and Lose Weight
Eating whatever you want is not the way to plan your diet. The normal calories you eat, plus the additional ones, need to come in more healthy ways.
Muscles need protein in combination with the correct carbohydrates. Eating a pint of ice cream or an entire cake is not the way to go about getting your calories in.
This type of eating will just put fat on throughout your body. It will not aid in building muscle mass.
Without the proper nutrients, your body will not use the fuel you put in to gain muscle mass. It will simply become fat that will attach to different parts of your body.
Always check the labels of foods and make sure you are consuming the right combinations of lean proteins, vegetables, and carbohydrates to get the results you need. This combination is how to build muscle mass efficiently.
How to Build Muscle: After-Workout Foods
Another muscle building workout tip is to think about what you put in your body after you have worked it out. Once you have put your body through a tough workout, it needs fuel.
Insulin levels drop and glycogen runs low. Having a protein shake after a workout is a great way to get all the nutrients your body needs quickly and easily.
A full meal can be eaten after a workout, but often it takes time to prepare that food and your body is not always in a state to digest a full meal easily. The nutrients need to get in your body as quickly as possible to help repair and grow muscles.
How to Build Muscle With 5 Core Exercises
Gaining muscle can be achieved by having five core exercises built into your workout routine. Dumbbell squats, power cleans, dumbbell bench presses, dumbbell rows, and military presses are essential to your body gaining muscle mass.
These exercises need to be done with proper form every time, so consulting with a trainer before you start your lifting regime is key. If they are not completed with correct form each time, you will not get results from them.
These exercises engage muscles throughout your body, which improves your overall health as well as develops the muscles to be able to help you focus on other areas of your body as well.
Keeping Track of Your Workouts is Essential.
You need to know where you started to help you get to the results you want. Keeping track of every exercise you do, with the amount of weight and reps, will be key to achieving your goals.
Each workout needs to challenge you more than the one before it, so you must know what you were able to accomplish the last time. You also do not want to put too much emphasis on one muscle group, so knowing which ones were worked and spreading workouts out will help gain results as well.
A simple notebook bought at a convenience store will work. You can buy or download more specific workout forms to track your workouts if you prefer.
Consistency Is Key
It does not matter how much muscle mass you have when you start, or how much you lift on day one. If you give up after a couple of workouts you will never gain muscle.
Workouts and eating habits need to be followed every day. Your body will give you the results for the work you put in.
If workouts are done consistently, your body will begin to show results. If you push yourself just a little bit harder every time you workout, you will start to see results.
Results do take time, but giving up after just a few workouts will leave you with no differences in your body or muscle mass.
A Workout Plan is as Important as a Diet Plan
The same muscle group cannot be worked on with every workout you do. If you do this, your muscles will be overworked and not gain any additional mass to them.
Planning out workouts is essential to prevent this from happening. Each workout should have a detailed plan of which muscles you will be working, the exercises you will be doing to work those muscles and the reps and amount of weight that will be used.
Planned workouts also push you just a little bit further. A long day, being tired, or just not wanting to be in a gym are all excuses that can lead someone to stop a workout early.
Planning each workout out in advance will take those excuses away. You will know exactly what you will be doing before ever stepping foot in the gym.
Rest is Just as Important as the Exercise
Believe it or not, rest builds muscle just as much as lifting weights does. Muscles need a chance to recover after they have been worked.
If you do not allow them the proper time to rest it will actually cause damage to the muscles by overworking them. Once you have worked your muscles, they continue to gain mass and burn fat all on their own, if they are allowed proper time to rest and recover.
Never Lift for More Than 45 Minutes at a Time.
After 45 minutes, your body will start to slowly shut down. Testosterone will no longer be produced, which makes lifting the weights almost pointless.
Having the mentality that you need to lift as much as possible for as long as possible every time you walk through the gym doors is the wrong way to be looking at it. This can actually cause damage to your muscle and you will see no results.
Building muscle mass is not something that will happen overnight. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to get the results you want.
If you go into the gym every time pushing yourself just a little bit more and follow the tips we just shared, you will see results.
Depending on where you start physically, it may take a little longer than you hoped. Follow everything we talked about and you will see results.
Missing even one step in what we talked about will curb your results. Each piece is important on its own. But, without working with all the other pieces we discussed, there will be no new muscle mass for you to talk about.
How To Build Muscle Workout Routines
These will work for Beginners through the Advanced Weight Lifter.
1. Dumbbell Squat
• Stand up straight while holding a dumbbell on each hand (palms facing the side of your legs).
• Position your legs using a shoulder width medium stance with the toes slightly pointed out. Keep your head up at all times as looking down will get you off balance. Maintain a straight back. This will be your starting position.
• Begin to slowly lower your torso by bending the knees as you maintain a straight posture with the head up. Continue down until your thighs are parallel to the floor.
Tip: If you performed the exercise correctly, the front of the knees should make an imaginary straight line with the toes that is perpendicular to the front. If your knees are past that imaginary line (if they are past your toes) then you are placing undue stress on the knee and the exercise has been performed incorrectly.
• Begin to raise your torso as you exhale by pushing the floor with the heel of your foot mainly as you straighten the legs again and go back to the starting position.
• Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.
Caution: Be cautious with the weight used; in case of doubt, use less weight rather than more. The squat is a very safe exercise but only if performed properly. You may use wrist wraps for this exercise if needed.
2. Dumbbell Power Cleans
• Grab a dumbbell in each hand and hold the dumbbells at your waist on the outside of your body.
• Bending at the knees squat downward and then explode back upwards.
• At the same time swing the dumbbells outward and upward and catch them at shoulder height with your palms facing towards the ceiling.
• Lower the dumbbell back down to your waist and repeat the motion for the desired amount of repetitions.
Tips: 1. Use the momentum from your legs to get the dumbbells up to your shoulders, don't curl the weight. 2. Focus on your form before choosing a heavy pair of dumbbells.
3. Dumbbell Bench Presses
• Lie down on a flat bench with a dumbbell in each hand resting on top of your thighs. The palms of your hands will be facing each other.
• Then, using your thighs to help raise the dumbbells up, lift the dumbbells one at a time so that you can hold them in front of you at shoulder width.
• Once at shoulder width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. The dumbbells should be just to the sides of your chest, with your upper arm and forearm creating a 90-degree angle. Be sure to maintain full control of the dumbbells at all times. This will be your starting position.
• Then, as you breathe out, use your chest to push the dumbbells up. Lock your arms at the top of the lift and squeeze your chest, hold for a second and then begin coming down slowly. Tip: Ideally, lowering the weight should take about twice as long as raising it.
• Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions of your training program.
Caution: When you are done, do not drop the dumbbells next to you as this is dangerous to your rotator cuff in your shoulders and others working out around you.
Just lift your legs from the floor bending at the knees, twist your wrists so that the palms of your hands are facing each other and place the dumbbells on top of your thighs.
When both dumbbells are touching your thighs simultaneously push your upper torso up (while pressing the dumbbells on your thighs) and also perform a slight kick forward with your legs (keeping the dumbbells on top of the thighs).
By doing this combined movement, momentum will help you get back to a sitting position with both dumbbells still on top of your thighs.
At this moment you can place the dumbbells on the floor.
Variations: Another variation of this exercise is to perform it with the palms of the hands facing each other.
4. Bent Over Two-Dumbbell Row
• With a dumbbell in each hand (palms facing your torso), bend your knees slightly and bring your torso forward by bending at the waist. As you bend, make sure to keep your back straight until it is almost parallel to the floor.
Tip: Make sure that you keep the head up. The weights should hang directly in front of you as your arms hang perpendicular to the floor and your torso. This is your starting position.
• While keeping the torso stationary, lift the dumbbells to your side (as you breathe out), keeping the elbows close to the body (do not exert any force with the forearm other than holding the weights). On the top contracted position, squeeze the back muscles and hold for a second.
• Slowly lower the weight again to the starting position as you inhale.
• Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.
— This exercise is not recommended for people with back problems. A Low Pulley Row is a better choice for people with back issues.
— Ensure perfect form and never round the back as this can promote back injury.
— Be cautious with the weight used; in case of doubt, use less weight rather than more.
Variations: You can perform the same exercise using a low pulley instead with a v-bar or with a barbell. This exercise can also be performed with supinated or neutral grips.
5. Military Presses
• While holding a dumbbell in each hand, sit on a military press bench or utility bench that has back support. Place the dumbbells upright on top of your thighs.
• Now raise the dumbbells to shoulder height one at a time using your thighs to help propel them up into position.
• Make sure to rotate your wrists so that the palms of your hands are facing forward. This is your starting position.
• Now, exhale and push the dumbbells upward until they touch at the top.
• Then, after a brief pause at the top contracted position, slowly lower the weights back down to the starting position while inhaling.
• Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.
Variations: You can perform the exercise standing or sit on a regular flat bench. For people with lower back problems, the version described is the recommended one.
A helpful article by WebMD: The Basics: Build Muscle for Better Health