Whether you’re a gym regular, just beginning to get back to a workout routine after a sizeable absence, or you’re taking your first serious try at getting in shape, it’s no surprise that building muscle isn’t a random process. Yes, some lucky people have a predisposition for packing on lean muscle, but even the scrawniest person can earn the body of their dreams with enough dedication. Building muscle isn’t a random process. It involves daily dedication, as well as a complex understanding about how muscle is made, which occurs both at the gym and in the kitchen. Know the science behind building muscle to secure the body of your dreams.
Building Muscle 101
So exactly how long does it take to build muscle? This is one of the most commonly asked questions when it comes to working out and bulking up. Summer always seems to be just around the corner, and we’re in no rush to head to the beach without our gym-sculpted bodies.
Muscles build when they experience a level of damage, which is why effective workouts burn afterward. Think of it this way: every time you cause damage from overexerting yourself during a workout, your brain sends the necessary tools throughout your body to help it grow both stronger and better. This is not an overnight process. Rather the science behind muscle building involves a mixture of several key factors, including genetics, nutrition, exercise, and rest.
While genetics are clearly out of our control, controlling your diet and exercise and ensuring that your body receives enough sleep to heal is the recipe for building muscles fast. Therefore the rate at which you build muscle directly depends on the food you eat, the effort you put into workouts, and the amount of rest you allow for yourself.
What to Eat to Build Muscles
If you’re trying to bulk up, you’re likely aware that working out isn’t enough for getting in shape. What you eat matters as much as what you do, and it’s essential to eat a diet structured around gaining muscle. Remember that building muscle involves eating the right meals before and after workouts and might also include taking additional supplements.
Foods that aid in building lean muscle are those that are high in protein, while also balanced in nutrition. Top meat options include chicken breast, lean beef, turkey breast, pork, bison, and lean jerky, while seafood options include tuna, tilapia, salmon, shrimp, and scallops. Other protein options include eggs, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, and milk. Meanwhile vegetarians and vegans can sort through options including soybeans, beans, edamame, quinoa, chickpeas, peanuts, buckwheat, tofu, almonds, and brown rice.
Protein powders are also an excellent way to easily consume enough protein in a day. Largely considered to be the most effective protein powder for building muscles, whey protein can easily be added into post-workout shakes to support muscle gains.
Tips for Working Out
Now for the other majority of the muscle building equation: working out. While eating right will get your body in check, working out is needed to sculpt it to perfection. Working out to build muscle involves an all-over dedication to sculpting each part of your body at the gym. This means focusing on overloading your body, varying your exercises, and being consistent with your workouts.
In order to force your body to build muscles, it’s necessary to progressively overload it in order to force your body to bulk up. This means it’s necessary to use heavier weights overtime and not to plateau in your workouts. Focus on raising your weight increment, even if it’s only for a few reps. It’s equally important to vary your exercises so that your body doesn’t adapt to a set routine. Manipulate your ranges and switch up your workouts to keep your body guessing so that your muscle building will not become stagnant.
It’s also essential to be consistent with your workouts. In order to maintain and grow your muscular build, be sure to stick to your workouts. However, you need to also be aware of your body’s limitations. Don’t push yourself beyond your capabilities. Injuries will only result in time off from working out, which will hinder building muscle. Make sure to give your body proper time to heal between workouts, and don’t forget to get enough rest. Remember working out is all about balance, and building muscle relies on the harmony of proper nutrition, athletics, and rest.