10 Muscle Building Facts Everyone Needs to Know
When it comes to building muscle, there are a lot of theories, methods, preferences, and variables that everyone has their own thoughts on.
The problem with having so much information available is we begin to start overcomplicating something — completely forgetting about the facts.
Building muscle isn't hard, there are a few basics that need to be followed in order to see growth.
What many people fail to understand is that the gym is only part of the equation — the rest comes down to getting enough rest, nutritious foods, and sleeping properly.
So when it comes to muscle building, there are ten things I think everyone needs to know. Anything more and you are starting to complicate things.
Let's check them out now.
10 Tips to Build Muscle
I'm sure it is no surprise to find protein on this list. It's the building block for muscles and it helps us stay fuller longer.
Eating .8 to 1 gram of protein per pound of your lean mass is a good place to start. Try to spread out your protein intake throughout the day.
2.) Eat More Frequently
Unless you are sticking with an intermittent fasting diet, eating five to six small meals a day will help keep your metabolism stoked and using food as fuel instead of your muscles.
Plan and prepare your meals in advance so you can enjoy food all day without the temptation of eating too much.
3.) Don't Be Scared of Carbs
Protein builds muscle, carbohydrates provide energy.
Eating a variety of healthy carbs provide energy for our bodies to perform. Stick to carbs such as veggies, quinoa, brown rice, and steel-cut oats.
The goal here is to eat the most nutritious sources of carbohydrates, not highly-processed junk.
4.) Get More Sleep
Too many times I hear friends tell me how they only got a few hours of sleep like it's a competition to see who can ruin their health quickest.
Adequate sleep is what allows our body to recover and our nervous system to be ready for another day.
If you aren't getting at least seven to eight hours of sleep each night, you're shortchanging your gains.
5.) A Strong Core is Important
No matter if you are an endurance athlete, powerlifter, or a football player, everyone needs to have a strong core and strong stabilizer muscles.
All movements that challenge your stabilizer muscles and any rotational movements will yield great gains.
6.) Work Your Glutes
When I tell you that sitting all day creates bad posture, tight hips, a bad back, and deactivating your glutes, I tell you from experience.
Sitting in front of a computer for 18 hours a day takes a huge toll on my body, so learning how to activate your glutes, do some corrective stretching, and active mobility work will all help improve your overall physique.
Your ability to build muscle will improve due to more efficient moving patterns and a lower risk of injury.
7.) Progress is Everything
The reason your body gets stronger and builds muscle is to adapt to the workout you are doing.
In order for you to sustain growth and improvement, you'll need to aim to add more weight to the bar, do more reps, or decrease your rest times.
Adding in new exercises and making your workouts fun will help you get through those tough gym days.
8.) Use Multi-Joint Exercises
Any exercise that utilizes more muscles will elicit a better growth response.
Doing certain isolation workouts are great to work on weaknesses, but if you want to get the best bang for your buck when it comes to working out, compound movements are king.
Add in some rotational, chopping, or swinging movements into your arsenal to get more range of motion.
Messing around with your phone during a workout keeps you from making the progress you want.
Taking two minutes in between sets to go creep on a girl or post selfies to your Instagram are killing your gains. Instead, try to limit the rest between sets.
If you really want a challenge, try to do a superset — alternating between two exercises with little to no rest. An easy superset would be to do push-ups followed by dumbbell rows.
This increases your intensity while allowing the body parts to get adequate rest between sets.
10.) Active Recovery
Getting adequate rest and recovery between gym sessions may be more important than the actual workout.
One thing I've learned over the years is it doesn't matter how hard you work in the gym, you can't out-exercise a bad diet and you definitely can't build muscle when you aren't recovering.
Take time for yourself to de-stress, do some active mobility work, foam roll, or get a nice deep tissue massage.
This will allow your body to relax, get the blood flowing, and get your body primed for the next workout.