Here’s the thing: The more weight you lift, and the more often you lift it, the more your muscles grow. And it’s best to forget building mass overnight. If it were fast and easy, without drugs that is, there would never be a bodybuilding competition. So, what is the best way to build muscle mass?
Plenty of people workout with gym memberships and with home exercise equipment. But the truth is that building muscle mass on purpose takes more than that.
It’s going to take:
- Dedication to a regular and scheduled workout and fitness program
- A healthy and structured diet
What you’ll get from your determination is the best body you can build — and actually see the results of your dedication.
7 Steps To Building Muscle Mass
When you can’t gain muscle mass it’s usually from doing the wrong exercises the wrong way along with the wrong diet.
These tips should kickstart your efforts and muscle growth quickly.
1. Consistent Workouts
Well, as you already know, working out on a regular basis is a must! And regular doesn’t mean a sorta hit and miss program that assures you will be in the gym x amount of times this week?
You need to be so regular whether it’s in a gym or at home, that they can set their clocks by your arrival and know exactly which days you will and will not arrive.
Don’t take any of this for granted, and don’t set up phone apps to remind you! Instead, buy a large desk calendar, work out an exact day and time schedule on the calendar and tape it somewhere that it becomes part of your life.
Working out on a regular basis needs to become as much a natural part of your life as brushing your teeth. Exercising for mass is not working a chore into your schedule, but scheduling your life around your workout.
2. Compound Exercises
The best and fastest mass results will come from heavy compound lifting.
Compound exercises just mean exercises that work several joints and muscle groups at the same time.
The most common compound weight lifting exercises include:
- Bench Presses
- Overhead or military press
- Knee Sleeves and Squats
- Pull down cables
- Leg Press
Compound exercises make it easy to keep adding weights to your workouts which build muscle and strength. More strength means more ability to work hard to build the muscles, but you’ll need stamina and endurance to stand the test.
When you’re training 3 times a week and always trying to lift more than last week, plan on adding about 1/2 pound of muscle mass a week. And only if you are concentrating on what you eat as much as what you lift.
3. Utilize Cardio
Yоu muѕt have good stamina fоr strength training exercises.
Fоr thіѕ you want to weave in cardiovascular exercises оr aerobic exercises into your workout routines. The cardio will build уоur stamina, endurance, аnd motivate уоu tо to sustain the strength training exercises.
Some people do this with one day for strength, the next for cardio. Some people combine strength and cardio into the same day?
Time constraints could be one thing to consider as you decide how to get in your cardio.
Cardio isn’t all on exercise bikes and treadmills
Don’t think running is the only way to get in your cardio for building stamina. Lifting weights as fast as possible for shorter periods of time is giving your heart an extreme workout as your building muscle mass.
You definitely don’t want to get into excessive amounts of “traditional cardio” because it will actually slow down your metabolism and reduce muscle tissue.
The best option is a lot of diversity over routines. Diversity will keep your muscles from getting “the drift” and stop bulking up.
So far we know the best way to build muscle mass includes regularity, strength, and cardio training.
Regularity means making workouts a definite part of your life. On the other hand, routines are muscle-building killers!
Your body and muscles have a tremendous ability to remember what you’ve made a habit of with regular exercise. This muscle memory responds by knowing what’s expected and always taking the easy way out, instead of allowing the muscle fibers to tear down.
In fact, your body can get the hint in as little as a couple of weeks, exactly what routine is coming next. That’s why it’s essential to change up your workout schedules and the actual exercises you’re doing no less than once a month.
What you eat while building muscle mass plays a huge part in your success.
You already know that protein is a building block of muscle tissue. Check out this post for foods that make up a healthy diet for muscle building.
Figure on eating about 1 gram of protein for every pound of your body weight every day.
- Lean meats
- Whey protein from milk
- Egg protein
- Protein from beans, peas, and legumes
Good protein bars can be a healthy and effective diet snack.
Fiber is important to your diet
Just for starters, a high protein diet stands a good chance of creating constipation. With constipation you’ll likely wind up with bloating, rumbling in your stomach, no appetite, and cramps.
When this occurs you will naturally determine that you’re having a bout of lactose intolerance — and curtail your protein intake.
High fiber foods:
- Whole grain foods
- Brown rice
- High fiber vegetables
Don’t Cut Calories
A calorie is a scientific method to calculate how much energy provided from food is required to provide the energy for you to move. (that’s my personal definition. It really has to do with heat and water)
The real point to you and your efforts to building muscle mass is that without enough calories you won’t have enough energy or food value to build muscle tissue.
On the other hand, if you’re not eating what’s known to be the best calories, you can wind up gaining unwanted fat?
As a bodybuilder, you must stay conscious of the difference in good calories and bad calories to ensure you get the calories needed for muscle growth.
Bad calories are calories indeed – but do not provide good nutrition and come from foods like these:
- Processed foods (foods in boxes, cans, and packages)
- Artificial ingredients
Good calories come from:
- Meats (not sandwich meats which are packed with sugar and artificial ingredients)
- Fresh and frozen vegetables and fruits
- Beans, legumes, whole grains
If you go into a calorie deficit your body will go into a mode to conserve energy and stop building muscle. If you get your calories from junk food, you will start gaining fat instead of muscle.
The answer is simple: Eat healthy foods and eat plenty of healthy calories. Instead of eating 2 or 3 meals a day, divide your intake up into 4,5, or 6 smaller meals a day. This way you keep your metabolism fired up with a constant muscle building supply of the foods it needs.
6. Workout Log
If you’re serious about building the best muscle mass possible, get serious about keeping stats.
Keep an ongoing written log of everything you do during your workouts. All you need for this is a rather sturdy spiral notebook.
Divide a page into columns that include from left to right:
- An Exercise
- Weight (if you’ve included HITT in any way, include times)
This is about as basic as it gets. It’s best to include a record of your highest weight lifts and how many reps you accomplished.
This simple workout log will keep you motivated and on track to know at a glance where you came from, and where you stand now.
Begin your workouts of course with a warm up time. Then move to heavyweights on a barbell, and if you get into squats and lunges take care of your knees with knee sleeves.
All statistics confirm that you get stronger using barbells than you will using the same weight on dumbbells. You can lift heavier with barbells simply because they are easier to stabilize. Barbells give you the advantage of focusing on the lift, and not which hands is doing what.
Lifting more weight is going to force your muscles into growth that brings both strength and mass.
Move from your heaviest lifts and exercises with barbells into dumbbell training for best results.
- Lift heavy with a lot of compound muscle strength training
- Include limited cardio
- Keep a regular workout schedule
- Maintain high protein, high carb from vegetables, high fiber diet
- Keep a workout log
The main thing about adding mass, a lot of mass, is to remember it’s not going to happen overnight. If you want it, plan on devoting your life to it. That’s the best advice you’ll ever get, right there.