Category Archives: Build Muscle

Busting The Myths Around Weight Training For Women

There are many myths and stories around weight training for women. Like “Women shouldn’t do deadlifts”. Or “Don’t go heavy or you’ll become bulky”. Or even “Tone up with high reps and just a little weight”.

Weight Training For Women

By and large, most of this is stereotypical nonsense. And not all of it is spouted by lay people. Even trainers who should know better carry around some misconceptions about weight training for women. Here’s how women should approach weight training.

Train With Real Weights

Women are protected by their hormones from accumulating large volumes of muscle mass the way men do when they heft heavy weights. No matter how often you lift weights or how hard you train or take protein supplements, as a woman you won’t develop the bulky physique of a bodybuilder.

That happens only when you take steroids and eat more calories than you burn off every day. And women bodybuilders who achieve this goal have worked specifically towards it, following a completely different workout plan than typical weight training that most women are interested in.

Train Heavy

Going the fat burning route with lighter weights is not great as weight training for women. Muscle tone depends on the density of your muscles. When they are dense, they look hard and firm. Lifting heavier weights causes a hypertrophy of muscle cells, leading to denser mass. On the other hand, lighter weights with more reps leads to fluid collection in your muscles which give you a pumped look.

That’s why lifting heavier loads for fewer reps will have you looking strong without bulking up massively. The myth that has been faithfully reproduced across generations that lifting lighter loads is better for women is rooted in the inherent belief that women are fragile and can’t handle anything harder or heavier. That’s ridiculous. There are some women who can handle workouts many men would struggle with.

So forget light workouts. To get a hard body, lift heavy. Deadlifts and squats are better than isolated body part exercises. Multi-joint exercises involving compound movements bring confidence and greater strength.

Weight Training For Women – How Much Is Good?

There isn’t a set weight that will make you hard and strong. What matters is choosing weights that are heavy – for you. As you grow stronger, this will change. If you can lift a weight at 3 to 6 reps comfortably without sacrificing form, it’s ideal to start with.

The single sensible difference in weight training for women is to aim for higher reps than men because of their lower ability to recruit muscle units during exercise. So where men would do 1 to 5 reps, women should aim for 3 to 6 in every set.

So now that you’re convinced that the best weight training for women involves heavy training involving multi-joint compound movements, what are the best routines and workouts to follow? Let’s talk about exercises that you can benefit from.

Weight Training For Women – Which Exercises Are Best?

Before going further, you must understand that to enjoy the greatest advantages from weight training, you will have to do those lifts, and do them correctly following proper form. Some of these lifts will not be easy, especially when you’re getting started. But don’t give up. After all, if weight training were easy and effortless, everyone would have a hard, toned body!

The best exercises for building muscle and getting a hard, lean, sexy body are:

1. Barbell Squats
2. Barbell Deadlifts
3. Chin Ups
4. Bench Dips
5. Dumbbell Shoulder Presses
6. Sit Ups
7. Incline Dumbbell Presses
8. Calf Presses

Work these into a routine. Perform the first exercise and then rest for a minute before beginning the next. Go back and forth between the first 2 exercises until you’ve done the target number of sets. Then move on to the next two workouts.

You are better off with short and frequent exercise sessions. Longer workouts tend to leave you exhausted and reluctant to continue. If you lose motivation, you won’t stick with it long enough to see results. When you leave the gym, you should feel refreshed and energized, not worn out and longing to just rest and relax for the remainder of your day.

Stick with this routine for 4 weeks. Once you reach a point where you can comfortably handle 5 reps for 6 sets each, you can increase the weights by 2 to 4 kilograms. Never try to overdo things when you raise your weights. That can lead to injury and soreness. Work your way slowly into the higher load and let your muscles grow used to the heavier weights.

Typically you will start seeing results from your workouts within 6 to 8 weeks. By combining this with an aerobic or cardiovascular routine involving walking or jogging, and stick with your weight training for 3 to 5 sessions a week, you can sustain that lean, hard, sexy look forever.

For a more comprehensive and detailed program about fat loss and staying slim, take a look at Shaun Hadsall’s “14 Day Rapid Fat Loss” here. Jason Ferruggia has an excellent program on gaining muscle which can also be of help. Take a look at it here.

How To Build Muscle Mass And Cut Fat

“Lose fat gain muscle” is the mantra of the bodybuilding crowd. So, if you want healthy and toned physique it is time to lose the ugly fat and learn how to build muscle mass.

Why do you want to lose fat and gain muscle? Do you want it for health reasons, or is it for a holiday, for a competition or just as a challenge to yourself? People choose to lose fat for a variety of reasons but you can’t take up this challenge half-heartedly and hope to build muscles.

Achieving a low body fat percentage is not at all easy. The body has evolved over thousands of years trying to store fat for a bad day and it is not going to change it habits just because you want to. Your life henceforth will revolve on achieving your low body fat goals.

It is crucial to get yourself and those close to you involved in this long drawn out process. This step to decide to start gaining muscle, with a 100% committment to do all that is needed, is the key to your success.

Before you start planning you need a goal.

* What is the aim of your build muscle lose fat program?
* How much fat do you want to lose?
* What is a realistic number to achieve in say 3-4 weeks?

Don’t aim for something like “lose 15 percent fat in 3 weeks”. That is impossible. Instead set ambitious but realistic targets. Pin your goals all around you – in your car, on your bathroom mirror, on your bedroom wall where you will see it the first thing in morning. Post pictures of people who have gained the body they dreamed off from fitness magazines. Post pictures of amazing transformations both the before and after pictures. All these will help to keep you focused on the goal.

Nutrition is key to good health and proper weight loss. Trying to reduce calorie intake does not work as your body kick starts its safety mechanism to start hoarding fat by producing more of lipase which is a lipoprotein that stores fat in the body by slowing down metabolism. During this phase the body also sacrifices its muscle tissue for its energy needs.

You will show amazing weight loss results but the body is actually losing muscle tissue instead of fat. You will gain back all the weight you lost in a few weeks time as body stores all the lost fat and some more in case you pull this stunt once again.

Your aim is to lose fat while gaining muscle. So, don’t reduce your calorie intake. Instead look around for muscle building tips that will help you build muscle but slowly lose fat.

Advice for those wishing to know to how to build muscle mass and also lose weight is to eat 6 meals a day spread out through the day. So if you start off at morning then at regular intervals you should consume 250-300 calories/ meal depending on your calorific needs, spread over 6 meals.

Here’s a sample plan, if you eat at 6.30 am in the morning, plan to eat meals at 9.30 am, 12.30 am, 3.30 pm, 6.30 pm and 9.30 pm. This requires careful planning so you eat a balanced meal consisting of all food groups of fruits, vegetables, proteins and carbs.

Essential fats, omega3 and omega-6 fatty acids found in fish, proteins about 1.5 gm/kilo body weight and whole grains with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables will keep your body well-supplied with nutrition and lead to fat loss while you gain muscle. Of course you need to do strength training to gain the muscles you wish for.

5 Secrets To Muscle Growth Using Any Program

Over 90 percent of the people who dream about building big muscles never ever achieve their dream simply because they lack certain key requirements. There are 5 secrets to achieving success with any muscle growth program you choose. Instead of obsessing over what program to adopt or which is the best system for you, choose a program that appeals to you and then apply these secrets to get the results you want.

Secret To Success In Building Muscle Is Consistency

If you consistently and without fail perform your routines as laid out in any proven system and stick to it you will see results. For some the results can be noticed sooner while others have to wait years. But those who never miss a session, who always pump the weights to the point of exhaustion will see their muscles developing. If you notice that you are missing more than a few workout sessions per month and several over the course of year then choose a program that suits your lifestyle. Ensure that you put in the required time at the gym no matter what your schedule or life demands. Those who are serious about building muscle mass don’t look for excuses not to workout. In fact they find ways to hit the gym.

You have to make a commitment to stick to your strength training program for years. It is not something that you can do for 4 months, 6 months, 12 months and then take time off and return 6 months later. You lose momentum and interest. Also, the gains made during the time you worked out are lost over time.

Find a program that you know is most suited to your needs and stick to it. Building muscle mass takes years of training and yet many folks want to see results in a few weeks or months and give up if they don’t see much progress.

Build Muscle Mass Through Patience

That’s right patience is another secret to effective muscle growth. Plan on training consistently for 3-4 years to gain the look you really want. That sculpted and toned physique is work of hours of training at the gym pumping weights, swallowing protein shakes, eating enough calories to fuel the muscle growth. It takes even more effort to simply maintain that look. Yes, don’t think even for a minute that you can work out for a few weeks, gain the muscles and sit out for the rest of your life enjoying the physique. No sir, it doesn’t work that way. You need to first put in years of effort to get those muscles. After 4 years you might finally be able to show off your body, if you stop at this point, a few years down the line you will simply lose your muscles, strength and all the hard work you put in. It is life-long commitment that you need to stick to. Choosing a program that you can stick to and enjoy doing is key to your long-term success.

Progressively Lift Heavier Weights

The next secret to greater bodybuilding success is to progressively increase weights. You need to keep adding weights and getting stronger. There is absolutely no way you are going to get big muscles if you don’t lift heavier weights. Strength is important to bodybuilding success so, don’t believe anyone who says that strength does not matter in this field. If you see natural body builders they are some of the strongest people you will ever meet. Build strength to build bigger muscles.

Eat More Than You Burn Off

Folks don’t pay attention to their nutrition needs when working out. They spend hours and hours lifting weight but baulk at the very idea of consuming enough calories to help those muscles to heal and develop. When you work out like crazy and exhaust your muscles it needs proteins, carbs and fats to rebuild and heal itself. Instead of providing it with quality proteins you give it salad and water. Naturally it refuses to bulk up. How can it? There are no building blocks to grow. Muscles can not grow on air and water. They need solid food laden with 30 gm of protein per meal, whole grains, fruits and veggies. You also need to eat more often for the muscles to get uniform energy. Aim for 6 meals a day. If you eat only healthy food the calories will help bulk up your body, you might gain a few grams of fat but on the whole it will be mostly muscles. So don’t worry about eating more.

Change According To Your Needs

Evolve and modify your training, diet and other routines based on feedback from your body and mind. Some things like more number of reps with lower weights work for some people, while for others heavier weights with lower reps is the key to gaining muscles. Some people respond well too certain types of food while others might not find any benefit in it. So modify and change your training to suit your body needs.

How To Build Muscle Fast

So you want to enter a muscle gaining anabolic state and do it quickly? Here are a few little known secrets about how to build muscle fast.

How To Build Muscle Fast

1. Eat Enough Calories

Whenever you talk about how to build muscle fast, the focus is on getting enough proteins in your diet. Little is said, however, about the other important factor – eating enough calories.

While it is true that muscle needs branched chain amino acids in sufficient quantity while you work out to gain mass, that alone will not ensure that you bulk up rapidly. Your body requires calories to fuel the various functions, and in the absence of enough of them in your diet, your system will break down muscle fibers to provide energy for cellular functions.

To grow and build muscle fast, you need the right combination of protein and total calories in your daily intake. You can conveniently calculate how many calories you must consume by multiplying your body weight in kilograms by 10, then adding 1000 to 1500 calories to this figure.

Because it can be difficult to eat that much in two or three big meals, many serious bodybuilders who are working on how to build muscle fast through strength training will eat 10 to 12 smaller meals over the course of their day, in between workout sessions.

2. Carbohydrates Matter

To provide fuel to your muscles for exercise, you need glucose. Glucose is a breakdown product of carbohydrate digestion. You must not only provide adequate glucose for the current exercise session, but also replenish muscle stores (in the form of glycogen) so that you’ll gain muscle bulk and be able to perform future workouts.

Your metabolic goal is to replace all the glycogen that is broken down by your muscles during exercise, as well as providing adequate reserves so that the system is never tempted to breakdown muscle to generate enough energy. When you eat enough carbs, your body continues in an anabolic (muscle building) phase.

Carbs work through the hormone called insulin, which is a powerful muscle building hormone. By stimulating your pancreas to release insulin, a high carb diet will promote protein production and gluconeogenesis which leads to glycogen stores increasing in muscle fibers, making them swell up and grow bigger.

3. Protein Is Also Vital

It is virtually impossible to build muscle fast if you don’t eat enough protein. Branched chain amino acids in a high protein diet are the building blocks for new muscle fiber production. Without these blocks, you simply cannot build muscle. It’s like trying to construct a house – but without bricks or wood!

Your ideal requirement of protein while bodybuilding is 1 to 2 grams daily per pound of bodyweight. If you weigh 150 pounds, you need 150 grams of protein every day in your diet. It is convenient to break this down into small servings taken through the day. Chicken, fish, whey protein and eggs are excellent sources of protein for muscle building.

4. Eat Many Small Meals

With the average calorie requirement during active muscle building being around 3500 to 4000 calories, you might have to break down your intake into 6 meals of 650 calories each.

Now it may appear as if 650 calories isn’t much, and you can easily manage it without much planning. But it is better to follow a disciplined and planned approach towards your bodybuilding diet because you need to space out your meals evenly through the day to prevent sudden surges and dips in blood levels of your hormones like insulin.

Maintaining blood glucose levels more or less constant over the course of the day, and ensuring adequate concentrations of amino acids at the time of your workouts are of paramount importance in how to build muscle fast.

5. Consume Good Fats

Too many bodybuilders make the mistake of thinking that all fat is bad. It is not. Fats are important for your muscles to grow. The blood levels of testosterone, an anabolic hormone, are directly related to your fat intake.

The only exception to this rule is just before a show, when many bodybuilders will trim down their fat intake to look good on stage. But at this level, they cannot expect to gain muscle.

6. Load Up On Calories Pre-Workout

Slow burning carbohydrates are helpful just before a workout because they will provide enough energy for your muscles during exercise. Since these slowly digested carbs like pasta and rice take a while to get converted into glucose, you should eat them around 30 minutes before beginning your session.

The benefit of loading up on calories before a workout is that you can continue each session for longer and avoid an energy crash afterwards. For the best results, mix in a serving of protein or take a protein shake.

7. Eat Well After Workouts

After each workout, make it a point to eat fast burning carbs and proteins. A convenient form is a protein shake with extra sugar mixed in it. Other supplements can sometimes be helpful in building muscle fast. The reason for this boost in amino acids and glucose is that workouts break down and destroy muscle fibers, which get rebuilt or replaced during the rest period that follows.

A single serving of a protein shake can provide around 45 grams of protein and 75 grams of glucose. Taking this drink shortly after you finish a workout can deliver the best results.

8. Drink A Lot Of Water

Dehydrated muscle will shrink rather than grow. Muscle size is considerably smaller when adequate water intake does not follow bodybuilding exercise. You should make it a point to always drink plenty of water and fluids during your body building effort.

9. Use Supplements

Body building supplements are a secret to how to build muscle fast. While it is possible to develop muscle without them, it is definitely faster when you use protein powder, creatine, glutamine and multi-vitamin dietary supplements.

10. Get Enough Rest

Without rest, your muscles will not grow. It may sound paradoxical when you ask about how to build muscle fast and are told to take adequate rest. But the fact is that muscles grow bigger and stronger during the rebuilding phase between workouts.

By ensuring enough time between exercise sessions and a sufficient concentration of muscle building nutrients in your diet, you will ensure that your muscle building effort progresses at the fastest possible rate. For a detailed bodybuilding plan that will help you devise a personalized program to build muscle fast, check out this website on Jason Ferruggia’s best selling course.

How To Gain Muscle – In 10 Simple Steps

So you want to know how to gain muscle? Well, it isn’t easy. It takes some time and disciplined effort. But it certainly is not very complicated or impossible. Just keep in mind the reality that there are no short cuts to speed up the process, and stick to a structured approach that will steadily help you build muscle.

how to gain muscle

In this report we will discuss 10 important principles that everyone looking to bulk up must know.

1. Eat More Calories

Most food items have labels indicating their calorie count and composition. The first step is to use that to determine how many calories you’re already eating. Start your effort to gain muscle by consciously adding 500 more calories to your daily intake. This should include a gram of protein for every pound you weigh.

2. Eat On A Schedule

Too many bodybuilders fail to gain muscle because of a lax approach towards eating. A bodybuilding diet is important both for the kind of things you eat and the frequency of meals. If your goal is how to gain muscle, you must eat five or six small meals over the course of a day. Your diet should be rich in protein and carbohydrate with the right mix of nutrients, vitamins and minerals. Avoid saturated fat. Drink plenty of water.

3. Take A Supplement

Good nutrition is the basis for gaining muscle. If all you do is exercise hard, you’ll not bulk up unless you also eat right. Even with a healthy diet and frequent meals, it can be hard to meet your body’s requirements of protein and calories. This is where a dietary supplement can help. A protein shake can supplement your dietary intake and provide a rich source of branched chain amino acids needed for muscle growth.

4. Rest

Muscles grow while you are resting. So make sure that you get enough sleep in between workouts. Seven hours of sleep every night is found to help you gain muscle faster. Train 4 or 5 days in a week to allow your muscles enough time to rest and recover. Any mental stress from overworking or nervousness can alter your body’s hormonal balance and adversely affect muscle gain.

5. Reduce Cardio Workouts

Maybe you’ve made cardio routines and aerobics as part of your bodybuilding workout. It’s time to stop them and focus instead of exercises that build muscle. Keep your cardio workouts to under 30 minutes per session and no more than 2 days a week. You might run on a treadmill or do more intense sprints for short bursts mixed with light jogging for a few minutes.

6. Short, Intense Workouts Are Better

Too many bodybuilding programs focus on doing more exercise sets. This helps build endurance but may not help bulk up. If your focus is on how to gain muscle, then you’re better off doing heavier exercises for fewer reps and sets. Each workout should last under an hour. Each set should only run between 45 and 60 seconds. That way you are stressing your muscles and stimulating them to grow.

7. Train Your Entire Body

When you engage most of your muscle groups in a workout, your body releases hormones that stimulate muscle growth. Balancing your training sessions to uniformly exercise all parts of your body provides the best results. You will also be able to avoid injuries caused by too much strain on one muscle group.

8. Try Split Routines

Exercising your whole body is important to gain muscle. Doing lifts or workouts that concentrate on a single muscle or group are not helpful at this point. Instead, plan your bodybuilding workout to train all major muscle groups in a single session. Another option is to do upper and lower body workouts on alternate days. Exercises that stress multiple muscles in a group are better. Squats, presses, pull ups and deadlifts are examples of these routines.

9. Stretch

To gain muscle, you require consistency with your workouts. When you exercise hard, your risk of injury goes up. Ensuring that your muscles remain supple and flexible will minimize this danger. Stretches help you limber up and prevent muscle injury. You can also get a massage or use a roller to loosen up taut muscles before and after workouts.

10. Vary Your Routine

Boredom is another reason why you’re tempted to abandon your plans to gain muscle. That’s why you should keep your bodybuilding workouts interesting and fun. Change your routine every month or two. You may change the exercises you do, or the number of reps and sets, or even just the order in which you carry them out. Recording the details of your workout in a journal helps you monitor this and make changes from time to time.

By following these 10 simple principles, you’ll be able to gain muscle steadily and improve your overall health and fitness as you do it. Once they become habits, you’ll find yourself automatically doing these things over and over, enjoying the results from your healthy lifestyle for many years to come. Following a trusted and proven program that will show you how to gain muscle steadily and reliably is of even more value. Jason Ferruggia’s ‘Muscle Gaining Secrets 2.0‘ is one of the best that we highly recommend – to learn more about it, click here.