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Why Am I Not Gaining Muscle Or Strength Even Though I Weight Lift?

Updated on October 31, 2011

Are you weight lifting, but are not gaining any muscle or getting stronger? While weight lifting can help you build muscle, you still need to have a good diet, get proper sleep, and lift weights correctly. Without those, weight lifting will not help you build muscle. In fact, you could lose muscle if your diet is lacking in proper nutrients.

How To Build Muscle: Proper Diet

If you want to gain muscle mass you need to be consuming an excess amount of calories. You also need to get enough protein, carbohydrates, and even fats. Protein is responsible for building and repairing muscle cells. Carbohydrates give you the energy required for working out and also prevent protein being used as energy. You need the carbohydrates to be used as an energy source, not your protein intake! Also some fats are needed to get those extra calories. Saturated fat is responsible for elevating testosterone levels. Higher testosterone levels will help you build muscle. Carbohydrates should make up most of your diet, protein second, and fats should make the least of your diet.

Get proper sleep to build muscle

Human growth hormone is released when you sleep at night. You need proper rest so your damaged muscle cells can repair and get stronger. Without proper rest, you are hindering your muscle gains. A person should be getting at least 7-8 hours of sleep at night. Don't be staying up late talking on the phone, playing video games, partying, or whatever is preventing you from getting proper sleep.

Are you overtraining your muscles?

How often are you working out? You should NEVER work out the same muscle group the next day! Your body needs to recover from the previous workout. At least 72 hours is required so your muscles can fully recover, perhaps more depending on the type of workout you did. It is actually best to work each muscle group once a week and split it into 3-4 days.

You reached a Muscle building or strength plateau

Are your workouts the same every week? This could be the reason why you are not gaining any muscle or strength. This, however, will depend on your fitness level. Try changing your workouts to different rep schemes, add more volume, or do different exercises. This may give your body the shock it needs to build muscle and strength.

Also make sure you are using proper form on the exercises you do. 3-6 reps build strength mainly and 8-12 builds muscle. If your lifting too light or too heavy, then you will not continue to build muscle or strength.


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    • 10in30 profile image

      10in30 6 years ago from southern california

      Good solid info!

    • molometer profile image

      molometer 6 years ago from United Kingdom

      I think strength comes from doing actual work for 8-10 hours a day.

      Later in life I worked out for many years but I think my strength came from years of hard manual labour when I was a carpenter many years earlier.