Are you just starting and want to build up more muscle mass? Then there may be more to it than you expected in advance. Do you think you can easily build up five kilograms of muscle mass in 3 months? Unfortunately, that is not possible! Building muscle mass often takes several years and requires commitment and perseverance. By applying some simple rules, you can speed up the process.
Tip 1. Train with a fitness schedule
The first tip is to train with a fitness schedule. A schedule gives you a good guide and ensures that you know what to do. This is often motivating. Do you train without a schedule and don’t keep track of your progress? Then you’re more likely to make less progress.
Moreover, as novice athletes, you often don’t know which exercises you can do best. Or how many sets and repetitions you need to hold for more muscle mass. By putting together a sports schedule, or having it done by a personal trainer, you have a guideline that you can follow well.
Tip 2. Train mainly with compound exercises
The second tip is to train mainly with compound exercises. Compound exercises can be recognized by the fact that you train multiple muscle groups simultaneously and move multiple joints at the same time. These exercises require a lot of strength and energy, making them ideal for building more muscle mass.
Of course, you can alternate this with isolation exercises, with which you only train 1 muscle. But the basis of your training should consist of compound exercises. Sample compound exercises are Squat, Bench Press, Deadlift, and Pull Up.
Tip 3. Eat enough calories and protein
To build muscle mass, you must get enough protein and calories. A strength athlete has an ‘increased’ protein requirement of 1.8 to 2.2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight. It is useful to know your body mass index and read more about your BMI calculation here to set a charity.
Do you have the option to have your fat percentage measure? Then this is even more convenient! This allows you to calculate your calorie requirements well. Based on this, you can determine how many calories you need daily. Want to grow more muscle mass? Then sit about 300 – 500 kcal above your maintenance needs every day.
Protein-rich products include low-fat cottage cheese, Skyr yoghurt, chicken breast, beef, pork, many fish species and protein-rich meat substitutes.
Tip 4. Sleep adequately and provide relaxation
Adequate sleep is essential to growing. A few nights of poor sleep can get in the way of your progression. Too much stress is also bad for your health and your fitness progression. Therefore, it is important to learn to deal with stress by relaxing enough and working on the things in life that cause stress. Therefore, it is important to find a balance between training and rest to build up more muscle mass.
Too many physically demanding workouts, without working on your recovery, can lead to overtraining. This is what you want to avoid as overtraining actually reduces strength and muscle mass. Your sports performance can go down dramatically. So get enough sleep, an appropriate fitness schedule and plenty of rest days.
Tip 5. Moderate with alcohol
You went out on Saturday, and you drank too much alcohol. You sleep poorly on Saturday and Sunday you can’t get enough food. On Monday, there will be another breast training on the program. You find that you haven’t gotten stronger or slacker than you were the week before. That’s not so crazy. Your body hasn’t recovered from the weekend.
If you put it on 1 or 2 times a week, you run the risk that your progression will stagnate, and your energy to exercise decreases. My advice is, therefore to moderate with alcohol or not drink at all. Of course, enjoyment is essential, and a beer or wine should be possible. But as is often said; enjoy but drink in moderation!
Tip 6. Track your progress in a log
A logbook, such as an Excel document or a fitness app, is a useful tool to track your progress. This gives you a better idea of how your progress is going. Do you notice that you’ve landed on a plateau? Then it’s good to explore what that might be.
Do you sleep and relax enough? Then it may be that the training stimulus has worn off. It is then time to vary by, for example, adding an extra set or working out with other fitness reps.
Tip 7. Don’t forget to train your legs
Don’t forget, leg day! Some regular men don’t train their legs. At the same time, this is important to do. Often they find it less fun to do and focus on their pectoral muscles and arms. You often hear the excuse ‘I do football’, but this is a very different kind of tax. Strengthening your leg muscles brings your body more balance.
You probably will get less fat mass if you also train your legs well than if you don’t train your legs at all. Also, training your legs provides more muscle mass, as a lot of growth hormone is released. Your leg muscles are the biggest muscles of your body, so don’t skip this muscle group!
Tip 8. Try to improve yourself every workout
To build muscle mass, you must strive to take one step more every step. This can be done, for example, by increasing the weight or number of repetitions. Normally, you don’t do this every workout. Sometimes you have a lesser day. But if you find that your 2-3 training sessions are not progressing in a row, it is important to find out what can be done.
By aiming for more repetitions or increasing weight, you will continue to stimulate your body to move forward. This will make you stronger and build up more muscle mass. The training principle behind this is called super-compensation. Of course, you can read more about super-compensation
Tip 9. Don’t train too heavy for more muscle mass
A big pitfall that I have often found myself guilty of myself is that I trained too heavily. Every training session you want to break a new record. It is important not to train too hard every workout. This means that especially during the compound exercises, you ensure that you usually have 2 to 3 repetitions left in the tank. Do not always go full and into muscle failure. When you constantly ask too much of your body, there comes a time when your muscles can no longer recover sufficiently.
In this case, too, overtraining can arise, resulting in unpleasant complaints and injuries. Of course, it is good to train hard because you want to get stronger. But alternate this with periods when you train less heavily, and the intensity decreases. For example, take a rest week to do some light cardio or lower your weights and do more repetitions than you normally do.
Tip 10. Keep going to the gym consistently
The last tip for more muscle mass is simple. If you want to build muscle mass, it is important to keep training consistently. If you don’t train well for a few weeks to months a year or don’t have a healthy lifestyle, it causes you to fall back every time. The only way to break this vicious circle is to keep training well.
In that respect, fitness is, unfortunately, a thankless sport. When you are a little less strict for a period, your level will quickly deteriorate. Fortunately, your body will soon pick it up when you put nutrition and training back in order!