Are you struggling to build muscle in your fitness journey? If so, you are not alone! Many active people struggle to build muscle at some point during their fitness journey, typically because they are unconsciously making a variety of mistakes that can hamper muscle gain and slow down progress towards their fitness goals. Lucky for you, we are here to help you overcome these obstacles. Keep reading today's blog post to learn the five essential steps to building muscle to make sure you are enabling your body to reach your goals.
Prioritize your nutrition
One of the main reasons you may not be building muscle is because you are not eating enough food, which can either mean enough in quantity or type. This might mean you either need to eat larger portions, more frequent meals, or different types of food.
The type of food you are eating is more commonly the issue at hand. Aim to eat a high protein diet while also consuming healthy fats and carbohydrates to build muscle mass.
Get plenty of rest
It is essential to prioritize rest within our busy lifestyles. For your general health as well as your muscle growth, aim to sleep at least eight hours per night so your body can recharge and your muscles can repair and rebuild.
Listen to your body and take days off from the gym when you need to. Rest days are vital to muscle recovery and growth and are needed to recharge our bodies. Aim at taking at least one rest day away from the gym per week.
Lift over cardio
One reason why you may not be building muscle mass is because you are engaging in too much cardio exercise. This is a common mistake, as many people do cardio workouts alongside strength training in the hopes of cutting fat while building muscle.
What many people do not know is that performing both cardio and strength training exercises at the same time can actually hinder your muscle's ability to rebuild, resulting in the slow development of muscle mass. Try alternating days between cardio and strength training workouts to ensure you don't slow down the building of muscle.
Stay consistent with your diet and workouts
Consistency is key with building your muscles. In order to most effectively develop muscle mass, you must develop and stick to a workout routine, or else your body will not respond to your exercises.
Try to work out every part of your body at least once a week, every week. Similarly, try to stay consistent with your diet and rest patterns. If you regularly take a week off from working out, or frequently stray from a healthy diet, you will set yourself back on your fitness journey.
Continue to gradually push yourself
At your own interval (aim for every few weeks or every month) try to add weight to what you can already lift comfortably. Try to consistently push yourself to lift heavier weights, not necessarily to complete more reps. Set yourself targets to achieve: when you can easily do three sets at a certain weight, increase the weight by 5% to challenge yourself. By adding weight to what you are lifting, your muscles will continue to build and you will see a physical change in your physique.
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