Just getting started with your muscle building plan is tough, but it won’t be with pro tips.
In our last blog, we talked about what you need to do when it’s your first time at the gym. Give it a read if you missed it.
Now that you are nursing your sore muscles at home, you should focus on information that will help you to increase your muscle mass.
When you are at the gym and you are looking at all these buff and fit individuals, you start to wonder how they got to be this way.
Most of them will tell you that with proper nutrition and by minding the following details when they worked out:
1. Perfect your form when exercising
The hardest thing for beginners to perfect is form when exercising. When they are exercising they cannot get the movement and positioning of the weights or machines right.
The biggest reason for injuries is an incorrect form of exercises. It is also responsible for the lack of progress people make at the gym.
Take proper guidance from a trainer or read the instructions provided in our previous blog very carefully. Also, you can avoid injuries by having the right fitness gear.
2. Muscle Building by Groups
Focus on exercises that workout groups of muscles instead of isolated muscles. If you are working out one muscle at a time you will be expending more energy, which is not what you need to be doing as a newbie.
Go for the bench press, squats, shoulder press, etc. that use more than one muscle. You will have more energy for the remaining exercises.
Don’t forget to give our next blog a read. It will detail all muscle groups you should be focusing on as a beginner at the gym.
3. Amount of Reps
As a beginner, you should be doing 8 to 12 reps of each exercise.
You aren’t using heavy weights in the gym, at least as a beginner, so you can do more reps. The reps allow you to gain strength, muscle size, and definition.
4. Take a Day Off
The best thing that you can do for your body is to work out every other day. Your muscles need a long rest period in the beginning.
The tears and trauma that muscle fibers suffer when you first start working out is hard on your body. It is also why your muscles are sore the first time working out.
Giving them a day to recover is the best thing you can do for your muscle growth.
You can look at the full-body workout plan that we mentioned in our last blog. That type of workout, that involves the upper body, core, and lower body, is ideal for newbies.
5. Warmup and Stretching
One of the silliest mistakes that newcomers at the gym make is hitting the weights before they have properly warmed up and stretched.
Both of these actions prepare your muscles for the weight training. Going straight towards the exercises is simply abusing your muscles and it will not do you any good.
Another plus point is that stretching also soothes sore muscles as well.
6. Fueling Your Body
Muscles need nutrition. You can’t forget about eating well before and after going to the gym.
Your diet should be able to give you the energy you need at the gym and it should help your muscles recover and grow after you have worked out.
Proteins and carbs are your focus in the diet. You can look at our blog about body types and diets to learn more about nutrition for your particular body type.
7. Machines and Free Weights
It is a widely-known fact that free weight exercises, dumbbells, and barbells, are better for muscle building. As a beginner, you should also mix in weight machines.
The reason being the first point that we made. Your form.
Machines let you build your form for exercises because they are generally easier to operate. You can learn to pull and push weights while keeping your arms and legs balanced with the help of machines.
If you stick to the advice we have written down here and in our previous blogs, you should have energy left for cardio workouts.
You shouldn’t do cardio before the weight training because your muscles will be exhausted by the cardio. Either you should do it after the weights or do it on your day off from weights. Low to moderate cardio can be helpful after the weight lifting to burn the excess fat stored inside your body.
You can spend some time, 20-30 minutes, on a stationary bike or treadmill to complete your cardio.
All of the muscle building tips above will put your body at an optimum level for increasing muscle fiber. You should pay a lot of attention to each and every single point to ensure that you build muscle mass in the most efficient way possible.