Getting bigger muscles is a goal for many that train – and indeed many that don’t. However, there is a lot more to getting “big” and gaining mass than simply finding a cheap gym membership and hitting the weights. Of course you have to train hard, that’s a given, but muscles are often created and defined by diet more than effort alone. Here we look at some top diet tips for growing muscle mass, and where you need to focus to best see gains.
Whatever the motivation, more and more people are training to get bigger (muscles) rather than just to slim down. Whilst your metabolic rate and general genetic makeup will affect the end results, there are things that all people can do to gain size.
Your body needs protein to function generally. But protein is the food which fuels muscle growth. If there is a limited supply, or the body uses that supply for other purposes, such as hormone production, then your muscles will be starved, and things that are starved do not grow. So…
One aim is to eat a gram of protein per pound of body weight per day. So if you weigh 200llbs, that’s 200grams. To grow muscle mass you need to understand food, almost become a nerd. Look at labels for food makeup, and aim for that target of 1:1. Then…
As well as fuel for the muscles, you need to eat more generally. To gain weight you need to consume more calories that you expend. That doesn’t mean free reign on anything, but you need to have a surplus of good calories to “grow”. Now anybody can gain weight right, but it’s how you do it and where on the body that counts. An excess of 500 calories a day will gain you 1llb per week. That’s a good place to start.
Hit the biggest muscle groups first. Think back, chest and the oft-avoided legs. If you’re no beginner, focus on specific muscle groups. For beginners, look for cheap gym membership and then any muscle workout will be highly beneficial.
Hit the weights on alternate days. Muscles grow when they are resting and repairing, not whilst being used, so give them a chance through rest.
Try to have carbs post workout as this will slow down the breakdown of the proteins to be more effective on rest days.
If you cut down on eating, your body limits the production of new proteins, so keep things ticking over regularly.
Attention to Detail
These tips may seem a little harsh, but it’s attention to detail that matters. Remember you’re trying to gain muscle mass, not reduce weight. But that’s different to just putting on weight – you need to monitor things carefully.
We all have muscles, but more importantly we can all attain muscle growth too. Like any training, you’ll need to work hard in and out of the gym, but then the results will be worth it!