- Exercise & Fitness
The Secret to Building Muscle Revealed
If you have a hard time building muscle then you need to read this article.
When you realize why your workout might be holding you back, borrow tactics from a prisoner and follow a few basic tips you will be well on your way to a muscular body.
By the end of this article you will finally be able to pack some meat onto those bones.
Why Your Hardgainer Workout Doesn’t Work
When you look at all of the other “hardgainer” workouts out there they all seem to want to overload you to spark new muscle growth. This might work for some people that have a hard time gaining muscle but for a lot of people it really taxes the nervous system. It can bog you down so much that you can’t recover quickly enough to make muscle gains and you just break even.
You don’t want to break even; you want to end up with more muscle than before. So how do you do it?
One simple way to fix this problem is to shorten your workout. Most hardgainers will shrug this suggestion off because they won’t feel like they’re working themselves hard enough; they’re use to the over-taxing workouts that everyone else does. But if you structure your workout correctly you can pack on muscle in less time because you give your body a chance to actually heal. Overtraining keeps your body from being able to recover completely and that means no muscle gains for you. So try this out before you brush it off as nonsense.
One technique you can use is to stop doing so many isolation exercises. Don’t focus so much on individual muscles; aim to work on whole muscle groups with compound exercises. Exercises like squats and deadlifts are natural movements that call upon many different muscles at once. This allows you to get a full body workout in less time while still recruiting a TON of muscle fibers. You could do an A/B split by having two different days that you alternate back and forth to ensure your body has time to recoup. It could look something like this.
- Squats - 1 Set of 20 Reps
- Flat Bench Press - 2 Sets of 6 Reps
- Military Press - 2 Sets of 10 Reps
- Stiff-Legged Deadlifts - 2 Sets of 12 Reps
- Chin Ups - 2 Sets of 8 Reps (add weight if you need to)
- Standing Calf Raises - 3 Sets of 15 Reps
A workout like this will allow your muscles time to recover and it’ll get you out of the gym faster. You want to choose weights that are a challenge for you to use with each and every exercise. Since we dropped the volume you’ll want to raise the intensity by using heavier weight, but still perform the exercises in good form. Now let’s borrow some muscle building tactics from a questionable source.
What You Can Learn From a Prisoner
Many people that go to jail end up coming out a lot more muscular than when they went in. How do they do it? It’s not like prisoners are the most intelligent people, so what advantages do they have over you?
Well first, they’re not going anywhere; they’re stuck in jail! Building muscle takes time and if you hop from flashy workout to workout then you’re never going to see the benefits from your workouts. You need to commit to a specific workout and be in it for the long haul. Give the workout time to show progress before you toss it aside.
Secondly, prisoners are consistent. They have a set schedule that they have to stick to in order to not get in trouble with the warden. They have a specific time in their day where they know they’re allowed to workout so they get it done quickly to ensure that they don’t miss the opportunity. They don’t put it off for other things; workout time is workout time.
And lastly, prisoners know how to follow directions. If they disobey then they suffer the consequences! There’s no reason to try to cut corners and take the easy route with your workouts. Do what is proven to work and stick to it and I’m sure that it’ll end up working for you too. That being said, here are a few basic directions you need to follow in order to build muscle.
Mass Building Tips
The biggest thing that is going to help you gain muscle is eating MORE FOOD! You can’t build new muscle unless you have excess calories, so you need to consume more calories than you burn. You need to ensure that you are consuming lean sources of protein like chicken breast, salmon, egg whites, cottage cheese and tofu. You also want to be sure that you’re consuming meals that digest slowly. So you want to drop a lot of the sugary food in your diet and exchange it for things like rolled oats and flaxseed.
You’re also going to want to avoid cardio because you want to be focused only on building muscle for now. If you were to do cardio, especially long distance steady-state cardio, your body will start to realize that you don’t need all the muscle you have. In fact, a lot of the muscle building “gurus” out there today use to be endurance athletes like cross country runners. Their training held them back from building muscle and as soon as they strictly focused on building muscles they blew up and packed on slabs of meat!
Another thing you can do to help boost your muscle building efforts is to start taking supplements. You don’t have to take supplements but they can help you see results a lot quicker. Just remember that they are called supplements for a reason; they are to be used in addition to a nutritious diet in order to fill in the gaps that your food doesn’t cover. So don’t start drinking strictly protein shakes and think you’re doing your body a favor. Take proven supplements like creatine or whey protein along with whole foods and you’ll reach your goals a lot quicker.
These methods are proven to help pack muscle on even the skinniest of frames. When you avoid overtraining, workout like a prisoner and adhere to the mass building tips above you can be sure to build new muscle. Now building muscle shouldn’t be such a dreaded and impossible task.
© 2010 Ben Guinter