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What REALLY Builds Muscle

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People do all sorts of crazy stuff to gain muscle. From really strict diets to even drug use, there's a lot of nonsense on the internet and false advertising that promises a sculpted body overnight. As a result, lots of money is wasted on buying expensive new gym equipment and "magic" supplements. However, the reality is that you don't need to go bankrupt to attain the results you're looking for. What you need to build lean muscle is a well-structured workout plan, a proper diet, rest, and above all, hard work. If you REALLY want to build muscle, start it out by following these rules:

Eating the Right Amount

The first rule to muscle gaining is making sure you are eating the right food and consuming the right number of calories and proteins your body needs. It is recommended that you should consume 1.7 to 1.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body mass per day. When eating out and ordering food, choose an extra half of chicken or more beans. Oh, and don't forget, stay away from processed foods!

Keep in mind that you'll need to have a daily surplus of 400-600 more calories than you would normally need if you were not working out. This is one of the biggest mistakes beginners do, they focus on the exercises and completely neglect their caloric needs. If the body is in a calorie deficit it won't have enough spare energy to build up more muscle. And we all know that without muscle gains, you start losing motivation and you ultimately quit going to the gym.

Make Sure to Rest

The second rule of gaining muscle is making sure your body gets enough rest. This is often neglected. The body needs time to repair the muscles, and if you workout every day, you will not be giving your muscles a chance to heal and grow. If you are in doubt whether a specific group of muscles should be working out or resting, follow the golden rule of never train an aching or sore muscle. Muscles tend to take about 3-5 days to heal fully. If you cannot wait that long, getting a professional massage can help reduce the time needed for recovery.

Add More Weight

Rule number 3 is to keep adding more weight over time. Some people have been lifting the same amount of weight for months. In order to build muscle, you must progressively be adding more weight. When it gets comfortable lifting with a certain weight, then you know it's time to add some more.

There is the story of an ancient Greek Olympian called Milo that instead of using weights for training, he would instead lift a calf in his arms and carry it a certain distance. He would do this every day, and over time, as the calf grew bigger he would be carrying more and more weight as well. On the first day of the Olympics, he was able to carry a full grown bull the whole length of the track.

Whilst this story is probably more myth than actual truth, the moral of it is very important. In order for muscles to grow, they need to be exercised with heavier weights over time.

Train with Friends

Most people are really motivated when they first start working out. However, in many cases, by the third week, they are sitting at home watching TV instead of heading out to the gym. Why is this? well, if you fail to comply with any of the rules mentioned in this article, chances are that you're not getting any of the results that you were expecting.

You have to keep in mind that in order to gain muscle, you have to workout regularly. If a muscle is not used, it will reduce in strength and size over time. Hence, it's important to workout at least 3 times a week.

Training with friends is a great way to keep yourself from becoming lazy. You are less likely to miss a workout if your friends are working out with you. Believe me, it becomes more challenging and fun trying to surpass your friend's rep count.

Less Cardio

Don't get me wrong, this doesn't mean that you should completely cross out cardio from your workout plan! Cardio has many health benefits, however, overdoing it will consume your body's caloric reserves that would be used to build muscle instead. Remember the 400-600 calories surplus mentioned earlier? That's right, if you waste away this surplus in cardio exercises you'll be in a caloric deficit, and that equals to ZERO gains! It is important to do cardio, just be careful not do too much of it. If you keep track of your daily caloric intake, it'll be easier to avoid this pitfall.

Most guys think that they can have the body of Arnold Schwarzenegger in a matter of days by simply lifting some weights. They, of course, are doomed to fail. If it was that simple, everybody would look like Arnold. Building muscle requires dedication in and out of the gym. It takes a lot of hard work but is worth it in the end.

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