Simple Guidelines to BUILD MUSCLE

Today What I am going to tell you is just a simple set of guidelines to remember when you train in the gym. And for those who haven’t started yet, I suggest you do: otherwise what else are you reading this site for – go back to watching reality television!). You have no idea just how much lifting weights can increase your mood, self confidence and ego, and release stress. It seems like hard physical labor just pushes some evolutionary buttons in a man and makes him happier and those around him happier to be in his company.

1) Never train without bringing a high-protein post workout meal- This one is basic; a workout is a catabolic process which causes damage to the muscle fibers. Your muscles grow because the body is able to repair the damaged parts and adapt making it thicker. Therefore the growth occurs not in the workout itself but in the recovery phase which follows right after a workout.

After a workout there is a time frame in which nutrients can reabsorbed by the damaged cells almost instantly: that window is just within an hour after the workout. After that the body goes in its normal state. That is why it you need to prepare a post workout protein rich food to be taken RIGHT after the workout. I don’t care if you live only 2 blocks, 3 blocks, or just next to the gym, your only excuse is if you actually live IN the gym.

Aim for foods that have very fast absorption rate: Whey Protein is best for this goal, and research shows that whey added with casein powder increases the rate of muscle recovery. Eggs are also perfect, I used to eat 5 hard boiled eggs after training and yeah it works but nowadays I eat them raw after workout. Don’t go for the fancy eggbeaters eggwhites: they don’t do jacksh*** for muscle! Ain’t nothing better than the real thing and besides it is the cholesterol found in eggyolks that fuel the reparatory process which lead to muscle growth; Just be sure to increase your vegetable intake as well.

For the Whey Protein I recommend Gold Standard Natural Whey, Vanilla

It simple and it taste good, delivers good quality protein.

2) Always Lower the Weights Slowly – Concentrate on the cadence or the lowering part of the move when you lift. This will accomplish 2 things: first you become less prone to injury because the way you lift will be less haphazard. Two, it has been proven that the lowering portion of the lift produces more micro tears in the muscle which will lead to more growth (if left to recover properly).

You must time your lift in this manner: 1 second weight up (REALLY EXPLODE on the way up!), hold at top for another second while contracting the muscle, then 2 seconds down. Now that’s one rep. you will notice that you will be able to do fewer reps with this method, let’s say you can do 12 with a 50 pound dumbbell in dumbbell concentration before, with this you will only be able to do maybe 6 or 8 which is okay: now your reps become higher quality than before and each and every one of your lift stimulates more growth.

3) The larger muscle groups come first – your workout cycle consists of workouts which will complete a whole body cycle. For example: today you work out chest and triceps, two days from now you work out back then biceps, then 2 days after that you workout your legs: that is one complete cycle. Notice that in each workout the smaller muscle groups go last. Because the smaller muscle groups aid in the movement of the larger group’s move.

Example: in a bench press (for chest) is assisted by triceps. Therefore if you exhaust the triceps earlier, your bench press will suck, therefore your workout intensity will decrease = decreased results.

The same reason I don’t advocate a cycle in which today you workout chest and biceps then the next workout day you workout back and triceps: in that method the biceps would have been exhausted in day1, which is not practical since biceps aid in most back workout moves.

4) Do 8 – 12 Reps per set – 6 to 12 is the magic number for hypertrophic adaptation. Less than that you go into the strength training zone leading to insufficient workload to lead to muscle damage then hypertrophy and more than that leads to an endurance training that only improves the number of reps that you can make and not the size nor does the weights that can be lifted more than 20 reps stimulate growth. When you can do more than 12 reps in a certain move, increase the weight by 20% until you get to the 6-12 zones again.

The poundage you’ll be able to carry will rise before you even notice it; and the good part is that you do it with the right form (see principle number 2) and you can carry it for at least 6 reps. The same goes, if you can’t even do 8 reps in the first set: reduce the weight. The repetitions that you can do in the next set will normally go down so you need at least 8-10 reps for the first set with the same weight you will use in the following sets.

5) Drink 1 liter of water during the workout – Your body is 60-70 % water; but your muscles are at least 80% water. Nothing hinders the adaptive mechanism of a workout than a dehydrated body. When I workout I make sure that I have with me a liter of water most of the time I bring it in a reused 1.5 L coke bottle filled with either H2O or fresh coconut water.  -Yup coconut water works magic!

6) Use a full range of motion – In body building or in any workout wherein your goal is to increase muscle mass: a full range of motion is required in order for any adaptive response to occur. A full range of motion utilized in a workout will tax all of the parts of the target muscle, from origin, to the belly, to its head. Result: you will get a full looking muscle after workout. That is actually one of the principles of the renowned: Charles Glass the trainer of champions.

charles glass

Glass, training Kai Greene

Now you don’t need to pay thousands of dollars in personal training package; you might as well read all of the articles in this website especially the research section.

I will leave you here with these six principles. They are easy to remember but keep in mind that these basic are often neglected. If you just started out, just apply these six principles into your regimen and I assure you: as sure as the sun will grow into a red star 6 billion years from now, eating up our entire solar system leading to an apocalypse; your muscles will respond well (or better than before if you’re already into lifting without applying these principles before)  and you will experience growth in your muscles like you never did before.

Enjoy your transformation

A-Lifter- Don't forget to leave your comment/feedback below.  If this article was helpful, I am sure our book Real Talk Muscle will help you even more in your quest for muscle gain. Check it out you can read the first few chapters as well.
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