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PHIL HEATH – HIS WORKOUT PLAN AND DIET

Phil Heath and his main parameters

  • Name : Phillip Jerrod Heath
  • Nickname : “The Gift”
  • Place of birth : 12/18/1979, Seattle, Washington, USA
  • Height : 175 cm
  • Competitive weight : 113 kg
  • Off-season weight: 127 kg
  • Residence : Arvada, Colorado, USA [1]
  • Favorite cheat meal: Italian food
  • Favorite Exercises: Scott Bench Biceps Curls, Biceps Squats, Chest Press 
  • Favorite sport : basketball, football
  • Hobbies: reading books, playing video games 
  • Favorite music : Rock, Hip-Hop
Phil Heath training plan and diet

Interesting Fillet Facts

  • He trains at the Armbrust Pro Gym in Whit Ridge, Arvada, Colorado.
  • While attending the University of Denver, he played basketball.
  • After playing 66 matches, he quit basketball and started bodybuilding.
  • In 2003 he competed in the first bodybuilding competition.
  • Received the title of Mr. Olympia 7 times in 2011 – 2017
  • His first title Mr. Olympia won in 2011 when he defeated Jay Cutler (winner of Mr. Olympia 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010)
  • As a bodybuilder, he now eats 6 to 7 times a day, but his diet was limited as a basketball player. He only ate 3 times a day. 

Phil Heath and his parameters

Arms: 56cm

Legs: 81cm

Calves: 51cm

Neck: 57cm

Waist: 74 cm

Phil Heath has been involved in sports since childhood. At the start of training, he weighed 84 kilograms. During the extensive preparation for the first competition, he managed to gain up to 97 kilograms. Finally, his competitive weight in the NPC ( National Physics Committee ) in 2003 was 87 kilograms. In this competition, he took first place in his weight category and also won the absolute title. Nicknamed “The Gift” or “Dar,” and thanks to the first competition’s success, he again took to the competition podium just 8 weeks later. In the overall victory, he lost only one point.

However, he realized that he had lost the competition due to his genetic predisposition and began to train smarter. Phil graduated from college with a degree in Information Technology and Business Administration. The decision to take up bodybuilding instead of basketball ended up being very rewarding for him. So let’s take a look at his workout and diet plan to see how he built his winning temper seven times in a row.

Phil Heath training plan and diet

In 2014, Phil Heath became the fourth richest bodybuilder today . At the time, it was valued at approximately $ 5 million. Since then, his total winnings on Mr. Olympia costs 2,375,000 dollars.

The most famous wins

2015 – Mr. Olympia, 1st place

2014 – Mr. Olympia, 1st place

2013 – Mr. Olympia, 1st place

2013 – Arnold Classic Europe, 1st place

2012 – Mr. Olympia, 1st place

2011 – Mr. Olympia, 1st place

2010 – Mr. Olympia, 2nd place

2010 – Arnold Classic, 2nd place

2009 – Mr. Olympia, 5th place

2008 – Mr. Olympia, 3rd place

2008 – Arnold Classic, 2nd place

“To be Mr. Olympia is a big responsibility on the competition stage, but even more off-stage. I am satisfied that my personality and hard work help others to achieve their goals. I live by the motto: “Train hard, intelligently and have fun!” Make sure you’re constantly faced with new goals and enjoy the journey, however wild it may be. ” 

Phil Heath mr.  olympia training plan and diet

Phil Heath and his training plan

A Heath workout includes three to five exercises for each muscle and lasts about two hours. He focuses on a technical exercise like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Ronnie Coleman, who were also multiple winners of Mr. Olympia. His workouts differ slightly depending on whether he prepares for a competition or after a competition.

“My annual goal is to be bigger and better than last year. The competition is intensifying, so I’m under even more pressure. It couldn’t be easier. If I want to continue to win, I must overcome myself. This constant race does not mean that I do something crazy at the gym. I follow basic bodybuilding exercises. I train each muscle from different angles. I’m trying to fix my weaknesses, and my training plan must be challenging and help me progress.” 

Muscle training

Phil’s workout starts with a short cardio workout as part of his warm-up. Below you can find the training plan he trained with: na, Mr. Olympia.

Monday: quads / hamstrings / calves

  • Romanian Deadlift – 4 sets of 8-10 reps
  • Lying Leg Raises – 4 sets of 8-10 reps
  • Seated Leg Raises – 4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Leg Press – 4 sets of 15-20 reps
  • Leg Press – 4 sets of 15-20 reps
  • Seated Bends – 7 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Extension legs on the simulator – 4 series of 10-12 reps
  • Squats with a barbell with two hands in front of the head – 4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Leg Press – 3 sets of 12 reps
  • Haken Drep – 7 sets of 7 reps

 

Tuesday: chest/triceps

  • Bench press with one hand on a bench with a positive incline – 4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • One-handed fold on a positive incline bench – 4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Bench Press – 3 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Pec Deck -7 series after 10-12 reps
  • Extension of the arms on the block with a reverse grip – 4 series of 10-12 reps
  • Bars – 3 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Bench press with a large barbell with a narrow grip – 3 sets of 10-12 reps
  • French press lying and with a barbell – 7 sets of 10-12 reps

Wednesday: Rest

Phil Heath: training plan

Thursday: back/biceps

  • Bends on the horizontal bar with a wide grip for touching – 3 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Tilts on the horizontal bar with a narrow grip for the touch – 3 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Barbell Rows – 4 sets of 12 reps
  • Two-handed forward bend dumbbell pull-ups – 4 sets of 12 reps
  • Incline Dumbbell Curls – 3 sets of 12 reps
  • Extension of arms on the block with an even grip – 7 series of 10-12 reps
  • lifting the bar for biceps – 3 sets of 12 reps
  • One Arm Dumbbell Raises – 3 sets of 12 reps
  • Seated Dumbbell Curl – 3 sets of 12 reps
  • Scott Bench Dumbbell Curls – 7 sets of 8-10 reps

Friday: shoulders / trapeze

  • Press from behind the head on the Smith machine – 4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Standing Dumbbell Lifting with Two Hands – 4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Barbell Rows to the chin – 4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Standing dumbbell lifts with one hand – 7 series of 10-12 reps
  • Dumbbell Shoulder Raises – 4 sets of 12 reps
  • Barbell Shoulder Raises – 4 sets of 12 reps

Saturday: Cardio

Sunday: Rest  [5]

Volume workout

Fila is coached by the famous Hanna Rambod, who invented a unique workout program called Fascia Stretch Training (or FST-7). Combining this technique with other proven exercises helps Phil gain a particular muscle mass while preparing for a competition.

FST-7 means performing 7 sets of one exercise after 6-12 repetitions with a 45-second break. You can choose between stretching and isometric contractions during the break, which are performed after every other series.

Phil Heath: training plan

Phil says you don’t need to invent any new exercises if the ones you use work. Another tip from this phenomenal bodybuilder is that you don’t have to deplete energy in a fitness center to build muscle ultimately. Especially if your body isn’t recovering fast enough or is not responding to training the way you would like it. So, smart exercise is the key to success. Most people will never find a training system that works best for them in their life.

Phil Heath and his meal plan for Mr. Olympia

After waking up – BCAA drink

  • 230 g chicken breast, 1.5 cups egg white, BCAA drink with L-glutamine
  • 340 g beef, 225 g sweet potatoes
  • 340 g tilapia, steamed asparagus, and 1.5 cups white rice
  • 340 g chicken breast, 225 g baked potatoes, two servings of BCAA s L- glutamine
  • 340 g tilapia, steamed broccoli, and 1 cup white rice
  • Post Workout – 2x Protein Drink, BCAA & L-Glutamine
  • 340 g steamed beef with spinach
  • 2 cups egg whites, two whole eggs, and steamed spinach

Before bedtime – amino acid drink

Phil Heath and His Bulking Diet

The Phil Heath diet is in bulk, mainly about gaining massive amounts of muscle without excess subcutaneous fat. In February 2018, a video was released in which Phil explains his meal plan:

In this video, he says he gets up at 5: 00-5: 30 am, 8-9 weeks before the competition. After waking up, he has about half an hour of cardio on the fitness steps or treadmill. It uses a heart rate monitor and smartwatch to achieve a heart rate of 145-150 pulses per minute. This will ensure effective fat burning. Then he returns home for breakfast. It consists of about 230 grams of minced chicken, 1.5-2 cups of egg whites, and about 60 grams of carbohydrates – regular rice in milk or oatmeal. According to Phil, oatmeal contains fiber, which helps in the absorption of food. Breakfast Supplements Multivitamin, Fish Oil, and Vitamin C.

Phil Heath: meal plan

During the day, every 2-2.5 hours. Adding all his meals together, we would get a daily caloric value of about 6400 kcal, which decreases slightly towards his cooking. These dishes include, for example, 340 grams of cooked chicken, beef, ground turkey, or white fish. These are its primary sources of protein in addition to egg whites. In total, he takes about 500 grams of protein a day and advises serious bodybuilders to get at least 3 grams per kilogram of their weight. As for fish, he prefers tilapia in the first place.
He also stressed that he prefers it because of its low mercury content. Towards the end of competitive training, fish becomes almost the only source of protein. And 230-340 grams of meat at the end of cooking is a lot of tilapia.
Towards the competition’s date, he cuts down on carbohydrates to emphasize his muscles but remains visually significant. Of the 8 meals a day, only four will include carbohydrates.

Phil Heat training and diet

In terms of water, Phil drinks between 4 and 7 liters of water a day, but during the last week before the competition, only one large bottle of water a few days. However, the amount of meat remains the same.

“This is how we get a contoured vascular look.” [8] “I drink about 4 liters of water per day in the volume phase. It is useless to fill in liters and liters of water if you are not getting enough carbohydrates. My non-competitive diet is more organized than it was a few years ago. I used to be wrong with the food, but now I’m sticking to the plan. Even a simple change can drastically change the way my body looks. “

Phil Heath a Jay Cutler

ne of the great

Do you know the adage that to become a champion, you must first defeat the champion? Over the past seven years, Mr. Olympia has been training members all year to dethrone reigning champion, Phil Heath.

Names like Jay Cutler, Kai Greene, Dexter Jackson, and Sean Roden stood alongside Phil during the final round of the competition to see Phil defend his title of the world’s best bodybuilder again. In 2017, a new face appeared on the stage next to Phil – Mamduh “Big Ramy” Elsbye, but the result remained the same when Rock caught the microphone and announced the winner “Phil Heath” again.

Phil continues to move closer to his goal of winning the tenth Mr. Olympia, which he announced as his target two years ago. Observing his determination, enthusiasm, motivation, effort, self-confidence, and winnings, it’s hard to refute this goal. Olympia 2017 was on behalf of the top three bodybuilders: Heath, Rama, and rookie William Bonac. Muscle expressiveness lagged behind competitors for Sean Rodin, who was second behind Phil in 2016. Over the past year, it has dropped from second to fifth place. Dexter “The Blade” Jackson also paid for a more massive and better fit for the competition, but his place was moved down to the fourth.

It was another great year of competition, culminating in a performance reminiscent of the legendary Arnold Schwarzenegger. Phil is only missing one title to compare him with Ronnie Coleman or Lee Haney for eight consecutive titles and two titles to fulfill his dream.

The next year is guaranteed to be exciting as Phil underwent surgery on two large abdomens shortly after the last competition. His training will undoubtedly be significantly different from the last one to reach 100% of his potential on stage Mr. Olympia 2018.

 This IFBB professional and seven-time Mr. Olympia title holder is determined to keep fighting and push for even more Mr. Olympia titles. He hopes to break the current record of 8 Mr. Olympia titles and get exactly 10 of those titles. Phil intends to “present bodybuilding in a way that people can identify with while maintaining respect for the sport.” He is currently a member of the Make it Fit Foundation, which aims to raise awareness about autism. He is president of his nutritional supplement brand, Gifted Nutrition, which he founded in 2014. 

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Tips

SQUATS – CORRECT TECHNIQUE, BENEFITS AND TYPES

The primary and most popular exercise for strengthening the legs and back is the squat. The fitness enthusiast will not miss a single “leg day.” But are you sure of the correct execution? Do you know all kinds of squats you can use to spice up your workouts? What other benefits does this exercise have? The answer to these and other questions about squats can be found in the following article.

What are squats?

Squats are one of the best functional exercises for strengthening the lower body. When done correctly, you will strengthen your legs, buttocks, and your abs or core. However, the main advantage is that you can do the exercise anytime, anywhere, without the need for special equipment. But the wrong technique can lead to injury.

If we focused on squats in terms of their use, you would find yourself squatting almost all the time. When your keys fall, you bend over, or you do a specific type of squat when you want to tie your shoes. The only difference between these actions and targeted squats is that you consciously think about proper posture and muscle strengthening when you squat.

Squats - Correct Technique, Benefits and Variations

What muscles are trained during squats?

Squats are primarily designed to strengthen the muscles in the legs and back. However, thanks to the correct posture during their execution and several squat variations, you can use many more muscles. 

During a standard body squat, you connect:

  • quadriceps femoris
  • biceps
  • quadriceps
  • inner thigh
  • buttocks
  • rectus abdominis muscles
  • caviar

If you are using squat weights or trying other squat variations, you can also use your muscles:

  • back
  • forearms
  • shoulders
  • external and internal muscles of the press
  • triceps
  • biceps
What muscles are strengthened during squats?

Correct squat technique

The correct squatting technique will help maximize your effort and prevent injury or muscle damage. How to do it? 

  1. Stand up straight with your feet hip-width apart with your toes pointing forward.
  2. Pull your shoulders back slightly and tighten your stomach.
  3. Stretch your shoulders or place your hands on your belt.
  4. Inhale, lower yourself slowly, bend your knees, and slightly push your buttocks back.
  5. Keep your back straight; do not bend it.
  6. Stop when you reach a position where your knees are bent at a 90 ° angle, and your hips are parallel to the floor – stay in this position for about 2 seconds.
  7. Place your weight on your heels, slowly straighten your legs and return to an upright position with an exhalation.
  8. For best results, repeat the exercise at least 10-15 times in a row.

Most common squatting mistakes

  • You don’t go low enough – with the right squat technique; your hips should be parallel to the floor. However, if you do not squat low enough to reach this point, not all the required muscles will be used.
  • Straining your knees is a widespread problem when doing squats. This not only makes it impossible to do the exercise correctly, but it also creates a lot of unnecessary stress on the knees, which, as a result, damages your joints and tendons.
  • Work your knees inward – when lifting, your knees should point outward, not inward. When you point your knees inward, it will be easier for you to squat, but the exercise does not make sense.
  • Hunchback – It is essential to keep your back upright while squatting. Otherwise, it can lead to injury. Therefore, you should avoid bending or unstable spine.
  • Lifting the heels off the ground – Squats should be done with the weight on the heels. This is because if you put your weight on your heels, you will ensure that your muscles are safely and correctly balanced and loaded. Therefore, never lift your heels off the floor when lifting.

Benefits of squats

Squats not only strengthen your muscles, but they hide many other benefits. You can also improve necessary activities such as walking, sitting, or lifting and carrying heavyweights. But that’s not all! Find out what other benefits you will get from regular squats. 

These are:

  • maintains correct posture
  • they help burn calories – a 64 kg person can approximately burn up to 133 calories in 15 minutes of intense squatting [11]
  • improves flexibility and stability
  • strengthens the lungs and heart
  • helps prevent injury
  • supports joint health
  • supports strong bones
  • improves driving speed
  • improves digestion and blood circulation in the body
Correct squat technique

Types of squats

 With different squat variations, you also engage other essential muscles in the exercise and spice up your workout. However, remember that if you are new to training and squatting, you should focus on understanding the correct technique for basic squats and then try other, more complex forms. You can also use various tools such as dumbbells, fitness bands, or resistance bands, kettlebells. , chairs or fitness ball. See what types of squats you can include in your workout plan.

Bulgarian squat

Before doing the Bulgarian squat, you need to prepare one, one hand means – an elevation, a low chair, or bench. Stand with your back to the platform and bend your right leg so that you place the top of your foot on the platform. This will be your starting position. Then bend your left knee and begin to squat until your right leg’s knee almost touches the floor. Make sure your shoulders are back, your back is straight, and your weight is on your heels. If you want to make the exercise more difficult, you can take dumbbells.

Bulgarian squats

Sumo squat

Your leg width should be slightly wider with this type of squat than with the classic squat. Therefore, stand so that your feet are slightly farther apart than the width of your shoulders. The feet should be slightly outward. Bring your hips and shoulders back, keep your back straight, and begin the squat. Stop only when your hips drop just below knee level.

Smith Squat / Multi-Press Squats

The Smith Machine, or the so-called Multi-Press, is an excellent tool for those who have trouble squatting and find it challenging to keep their back straight. This device always maintains one trajectory of movement from which you will not deviate. This is a classic squat design, but with the weight you place on the harness. However, be careful that the heels do not come off the floor due to the weight in the starting position or, conversely, during squats. Adjust your weight so that you feel comfortable and safe.

Weighted squats

Once you master the basic bodyweight squatting technique, it’s time to add an iron! There are several ways to do this. Or add a dumbbell, kettlebell, or barbell to the squat. When using a dumbbell with one hand, make sure that the weight does not automatically outweigh you. When using the barbell on your back, make sure you don’t overload and injure yourself.

Correct squat technique

Overhead Squat

In addition to the lower body , this squat option also includes your abs and muscles in your back, shoulders, and arms.

The squat’s starting position is the same as in the classic squat, but we keep our arms straight over our heads. To complicate this exercise, add weights, a barbell, or a ball.

Jump squats

This is a plyometric movement, which effectively means that you are doing aerobic squat exercises. Therefore, it is required that you do as many movements as possible and quickly. The jump squat technique is identical to the classic squat, but you push a little more with your heels and jump out as you get up. We recommend adding weight to this squat only when you have mastered the technique.

Squats near the wall

Stand with your back to the wall and squat slowly. The back and head should always touch the wall. Slowly move slightly away from the wall to create an essential squat position – your knees are bent at a 90 ° angle, your feet are pointing forward, and your thighs are parallel to the floor. You must remain in this position for at least one minute. You can put a barbell or kettlebell on your knees to complicate things. While this is not a dynamic type of squat, it works out your thighs and glutes.

Side squats

Five aerobic types of squats. Get into the starting position of the classic squat and slowly move down. However, stay in this position, do not rise, but step with your right foot to the side. Make sure your hips are still at the same height during this movement. Then repeat the same movement with your left leg to return to the squat position. You can repeat the movement a few more times to one side and then change sides. You can also use a fitness elastic band or expander exercise to make it harder.

Squats on one leg

The ideal exercise for the muscles of the thigh and buttocks and achieve better stability. Take the starting position of the classic squat and extend one leg in front of you. Move down slowly. You can stretch your arms out to get the best balance. Keep your leg still extended. Just do as much as your body can. Do not push your knees inward and try to maintain as much stability as possible.

Crouched Plie

The best kind of squat for toning your legs that doesn’t look like a classic squat simultaneously. Take the same stance as the sumo squat, with a broader stance, extend your arms to the sides and move down. However, with full squats, your weight does not remain on your heels but instead on your toes. Therefore, stand on your toes in a squat and spread your knees so that you feel as much pressure as possible on your inner thigh muscles. This ballet style squat is wildly popular with women.

Of course, there are many squat options, so we’ve picked the most basic and most popular ones for you. What about you and the squats? Do you include them in your workouts? What type of squat do you like the most? Please share your opinion with us in the comments. If you liked the article, be sure to share it with your friends.

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Review

IS IT TRUE THAT MUSCLE PAIN AFTER EXERCISE IS A PREREQUISITE FOR MUSCLE GROWTH?

Do you know the situation when the next day, after an intense workout for a couple of days, everything hurts? DOMS is a syndrome of delayed muscle pain. Many consider it to be a sign of practical training and muscle growth.

However, is muscle pain essential for muscle progress and growth? Are training sessions without subsequent muscle soreness ineffective? This article will learn all about the factors that affect muscle growth, delayed muscle pain syndrome, and its importance for muscle building.

How do muscles grow?

Muscle hypertrophy

One of the human body’s exceptional properties is its adaptability, which also applies to muscles. Through lifestyle changes, muscle tissue gets the opportunity to grow, although each of us grows muscles in our way and at our own pace. Through strength training, the need to adapt is awakened in the body, which leads to muscle hypertrophy. Hypertrophy is an increase in the volume of an organ or tissue due to the expansion of its constituent elements. Strength training is one of the most common ways to develop more extensive, more prominent muscles. There are two types of muscle hypertrophy- myofibrillar and sarcoplasmic.

what is muscle hypertrophy

With myofibrillar hypertrophy, muscle tissue increases, or rather myofibrils , its contracting part. Without them, muscle movement would be impossible, and myofibril hypertrophy increases strength and speed. This is due to an increase in myofibrils in the muscles, which increases fiber strength and density. 

The second type of hypertrophy is sarcoplasmic , which increases energy reserves and endurance. Between the bundles of muscle tissue is sarcoplasm, a fluid that fills the space between the muscles’ tissues. During sarcoplasmic hypertrophy, the volume of this fluid in the muscles increases. Muscles appear more prominent, but this type of hypertrophy does not increase tissue or strength. 

What affects muscle growth?

It has been known for years that muscle growth occurs when lifting heavyweights. One of the pioneers of strength training was Milon of Croton. His workouts will surely surprise many bodybuilders even today. Milo was an ancient wrestler and won the Olympic Games 6 times in a row. What was his secret? He lifted and carried a newborn calf on his shoulders. He did this training for over 4 years, and the calf turned into a full-grown bull. The calf training was strength training. Due to the animal’s growth, the load gradually increased, which led to an increase in the wrestler’s muscle mass. This story is about 2600 years, and since then, knowledge of muscle work has increased immeasurably.

The muscle growth process can be divided into three stages – from stimulation to altering muscle protein synthesis. The process is divided into [4] :

  1. initial stimulus,
  2. molecular signaling,
  3. synthesis of muscle proteins.
how muscles grow

According to scientists, the second stage is molecular signaling, that is, molecular processes are activated by training and are involved in increasing muscle protein synthesis. These signals lead to a temporary increase in the rate of protein synthesis in muscles. Simply put, you start exercising, and the increased exercise triggers signals that lead to a higher rate of protein synthesis. When it comes to muscle pain, the first stage – the initial stimulus – plays the most significant role.

According to scientists, the initial stimulus includes 3 factors

  • Mechanical stress
  • Metabolic stress
  • Muscle damage

With mechanical stress in muscles, in addition to mechanical changes, chemical changes also occur. Mechanical stress is involved in cellular signaling, which turns on the mTOR protein (mechanistic target of Rapamycin). In the body, mTOR functions to coordinate the metabolism and eukaryotic growth of cells with inputs from the environment, such as growth factors and nutrients. [12] [13]

Another factor is metabolic stress, which is involved in muscle growth through metabolites in the blood. There are several, and they include creatine, lactate, and also inorganic phosphate. Accumulation of byproducts can be due to “cell swelling” – an increase in the muscles’ water. This is another name for intracellular hydration, and according to several studies, hydration-controlled swelling can increase protein synthesis and decrease proteolysis (protein breakdown).

Muscle damage is an inflammatory response in which several types of white blood cells are trapped in the muscle’s damaged part to take care of the damage. As a result of the release of leukocytes, a process associated with the growth of “satellite cells” is triggered. They are activated through exercise, and their role is to bind to muscles, thereby supporting muscle fiber recovery and growth. Thus, from this point of view, it can be argued that muscle damage also has a specific effect on muscle growth.

what affects muscle hypertrophy

By mechanical stress, we mean strength training when the muscles are stressed, and muscle damage is ultimately the training result. It is a muscle rupture that leads to DOMS, delayed muscle pain ( DOMS, DOMS ). 

Muscle pain and muscle growth

What is DOMS?

The abbreviation DOMS refers to the effect of training or other physical activity in which cracks form in the muscle tissue. Scientists say that delayed muscle pain occurs 12-24 hours after exercise and peaks on the first or third day. Everyone’s body is unique, so muscle pain has a different duration. 

You have been exercising regularly for several months, maybe years, and notice that you do not feel muscle pain for a while. Does this mean that you are doing something wrong? DOMS mainly affects two groups of people – beginners and people who have made changes to their workouts. You remember for sure that in the beginning, your muscles ached regularly, and gradually it disappeared. When you make changes to your workout, there is also a change in load and higher adaptive response. 

As mentioned, muscle pain after exercise can vary. The main symptoms are muscle soreness and stiffness. However, there are also symptoms to look out for, such as decreased muscle range of motion, muscle swelling, and tenderness when the muscle is touched. 

Is muscle pain an indicator of muscle growth?

After the introductory chapters, we answer the key question – is muscle pain an indicator of muscle growth? The expectation that muscles will have higher weight and strength will logically trigger a response from the body. Conversely, with regular exercise at approximately the same intensity, muscle pain may not appear at all. The body can adapt to increased stress. Therefore, if you train steadily for several months, your body will get used to it. 

the duration of muscle pain after exercise

Another essential fact: DOMS does not affect all parts of the muscles in the same way. Examples are the forearms and deltoids (shoulders), after training, which may not develop typical DOMS. This is also supported by a 2013 study that found shoulder muscle pain was not similar to biceps or leg muscle pain.

muscle pain training

Three different studies, conducted in 2010 and 2012, examined the link between muscle pain and muscle growth. A 2010 study focused on 20 days of intense training, and as a result, there was an increase in muscle damage associated with reduced rest time. What were the consequences? This led to a breakdown. One 2012 study found that muscle activation was diminished due to DOMS from a previous workout. Again the exact opposite result. The most interesting finding came from another 2012 study that looked at muscles’ functionality with a sore throat… Like the previously mentioned studies, the result is surprising as the study participants showed a 50% reduction in strength. Of course, there is a large amount of research on this or a similar topic, but three independent sources lead to the same conclusion – muscles do not grow faster with DOMS.

muscle pain and muscle growth

On the other hand, 2010 studies show that muscle pain can contribute to muscle growth to a certain extent. Powerlifters use higher weights during training and longer breaks. On the other hand, some bodybuilders train with medium weights and shorter breaks between sets. Which option is best for muscle hypertrophy is not entirely clear, although both work well for gaining muscle mass. As mentioned, in addition to metabolic stress and mechanical pressure, muscle damage is also present during muscle growth… Therefore, muscle damage is not the only prerequisite for muscle building, as even training without subsequent muscle soreness causes muscle growth.

To summarize, it can be said that severe muscle pain does not necessarily mean high progress in muscle building, and conversely, minimal or no muscle pain does not necessarily mean slow progress. Genetics, diet, exercise program, and regeneration also affect the development of muscle pain. So, just because your friend brags about severe muscle soreness does not mean that his or her muscle-building progress will be more pronounced. 

There are also the following statements about the absence of a connection between pain in muscles and their growth.

  1. You can make progress after exercising your calves and shoulders without severe muscle pain.
  2. Irregular exercise causes decreased muscle growth and increased muscle pain.
  3. As you increase your training frequency, muscle pain decreases, which can promote muscle growth.
the effect of muscle pain on muscles

After training, however, we also present you with a chapter for those looking for advice on how to get rid of muscle soreness after exercise. We have selected several tips and tricks, ranging from conventional to non-traditional, to support muscle pain reduction [7] [15] [16] :

  1. Hydration – Drinking water before, during, and after exercise has been found to affect men exercising in hot, humid environments. Whether you prefer an air-conditioned gym or run in the park, drinking enough fluids will help you relieve severe muscle pain the next day.
  2. Massage – According to a 2012 study, post-workout massage is effective on muscles. Also, it supports cell repair and function. Recently, one of the most popular massage tools is the massage roller. This is a great, comfortable massage that can help reduce swelling and speed up muscle recovery.
  3. Coffee – The beneficial effects of coffee on muscles have been proven in many studies. Results from one of them even claim a 48% reduction in DOMS after exercise. Also, caffeine also has significant pain-relieving effects.
  4. Cherries – Whether fresh or juiced, cherries contain antioxidants and anti-inflammatory ingredients. Try drinking cherry juice for a few days as a treatment for sore throat.
  5. Don’t overdo it – this advice may sound vague, but significant training changes are a common cause of muscle soreness. Increase the intensity of the exercise gradually, so you can prevent muscle soreness and, at the same time, improve safety during exercise. Using excessively heavy weights for training will not lead to better results, as building muscle and strength also depends on patience.

You are wondering how best to recover from your workout and get rid of severe muscle pain? 

how to reduce muscle pain

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Tips

ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER: TIPS FOR EACH MUSCLE GROUP

Have you ever asked yourself, “What would Arnold Schwarzenegger do?” These 31 tips will answer that question and help you build muscle.
Long before he made $ 25 million for his film roles, Arnold Schwarzenegger wrote monthly articles for bodybuilding magazine Joe Weider, who is also considered the godfather of bodybuilding. Although Arnold did not receive any journalistic awards for his work, he later collected his ideas and training in his bestselling book, The New Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding, which is still used today as an excellent source of information bodybuilders.

Arnold Schwarzenegger advises: 31 tips for every muscle part tips

To gain the best knowledge from one of the strongest minds in bodybuilding, we bring you Arnold’s 31 workout tips on how to develop your dream body.

General training tips

  1. Choose the right exercises for growth.

Hard training is just as crucial as training-wise. “To become massive, you first have to be strong,” wrote Arnold. “Newbies and advanced bodybuilders shouldn’t focus as much on refinement as on height.”

Arnold Schwarzenegger advises: 31 tips for every muscle part tips

With these thoughts on Arnold, you should focus less on isolated exercises and prefer complex exercises. Bench presses, squats, deadlifts, forward bends, or power shifts are examples of good complex exercises that require the coordination of multiple muscle groups. These exercises should form the core of your training plan.

In addition to being more complex than their isolated counterparts, these movements have the significant advantage of allowing you to train with heavy weights aimed at the target muscle group. Arnold believed that performing these movements and overcoming oneself plays the most significant and crucial role in gaining strength and volume.

2. Use heavy weights and low reps

For Arnold, choosing the right weight is just as important as choosing the right exercise. Eight reps of 160kg squats is a better muscle boost than 40 reps of 45kg.

Start with fewer reps for warm-ups (but not to lead to complete muscle wasting), then add weight with each set and increase the number of reps until you reach your peak,” wrote Arnold. “Usually, there was a person next to me to help me climb the top or gain weight.”

Arnold Schwarzenegger advises: 31 tips for every muscle part tips

Arnold didn’t just focus on weight. He wanted to make sure the weight was within the target range: “I have a limit. I never do less than six reps for most movements and never more than 12. This rule applies to most parts of the body, including the calves. “Therefore, make sure you select the correct weight in the given rep range.

3. Don’t settle for a routine

Few know that Arnold has an advanced degree, but he didn’t need a degree to discover that yield reductions could be applied to exercise. Doing the same exercises for a long time without significant changes loses value over time. It happens when a bodybuilder gets into a training routine.

Based on a specific structure, I changed exercises regularly. I was happy to shake my muscles so that I didn’t leave them in a stereotype. “Arnold always planned his workouts as homework. As soon as he realized that one exercise was no longer working, he replaced it with another. He was never afraid to experiment with exercise or alternative training methods. He was always looking for new ways to get bigger and better if the old methods were ineffective.

4. Overcome failure with advanced techniques

In his book, Arnold defines various advanced training techniques as weapons to strengthen lagging body parts. Relying on trial and error, he tried various techniques himself and then focused on what worked best for him.

Don’t be afraid to apply techniques such as violent reps, negatives, drop sets, partial reps, rest breaks, or any other ideas you’ve read about to your workouts. After using one technique, notice how you feel, do not set each series until you are exhausted, but still, save the most difficult 1-2 series for each exercise.

5. Protect yourself from overtraining

In your eagerness to build muscle, you can get to the point where you want to throw it all away and flush it out. Still, Arnold warns against this counterproductive strategy: “There will be days when some part of your body will fall behind because you have overtrained and overworked. So often and so intensely that she never had time to rest, recover, and grow. “

Arnold Schwarzenegger advises: 31 tips for every muscle part tips

“The answer to this problem is to give the strengthened muscles a chance to recover and adjust the training plan so that they don’t overtrain anymore. Remember, when it comes to bodybuilding, too much can be as bad as too little. “

Shoulders

6.Volume is best created by pressure

Strenuous exercises like pressing and chin pulling work best to create volume in the shoulders. Arnold practiced these exercises mainly at the beginning of the workout when he had the highest energy level. He usually did barbell presses behind and in front of his head to complete the development.

7.Learn different ways to make one move

Small differences in how similar movements affect the target muscle group slightly differently give us a better stimulus.

Arnold was looking for alternative exercises that target the target muscle from different angles. For example, by using one-handed dumbbells instead of a large dumbbell for overhead lifts, he deliberately reduced the distance of the weight a few inches below the lowest point of motion. He then brought the one-handed dumbbells upward, increasing the range of motion.

8.Attack the shoulders with isolated exercises

Arnold used isolated exercises to increase overhead pressure and isolate the deltoids. Here he also looked for differences that improved the overall size over time. For example, when climbing on the front pulleys, you feel that other muscles are involved besides the back. Knowing how to move and create movement patterns across devices is critical for a bodybuilder to take his figure to the next level.

9Train the upper traps with your shoulders

Arnold trained them all at once because the upper traps receive some stimulation during various arm exercises. His primary exercise for the upper trapezoid was the “shrug.” However, several other movements were required to maximize this muscle, including deadlift, locomotion, and rowing. Since the range of motion of the shoulder bend is relatively small, Arnold recommends losing weight in favor of fully flexing the shoulder as high as possible.

Biceps

10.Gain volume with a massive barbell with a biceps curl while standing

Arnold loved the bicep curls to get baseball biceps. Looking for a specific movement to build muscle, he preferred exercises that allowed him to lift heavy weights and do a full range of motion, which allowed him to do 6 to 8 heavy reps. This is how he developed huge biceps and claims that this is a good start for your workouts.

11.Don’t stop if you fail

Some do biceps lifts to muscle failure, but Arnold didn’t stop. Having reached the top point, he gave himself enough time to complete the streak. Sometimes he did biceps curls with extra body movement to do a few extra reps to stimulate the muscles.

Arnold Schwarzenegger advises: 31 tips for every muscle part tips
  • Change the rotation of the one-handed dumbbell while lifting the biceps.

In the book, Arnold describes that he always included at least one one-handed dumbbell exercise in his workouts. In this way, feeling in an upward direction, as opposed to when doing the lift, he felt the best “peak” effect because the arm muscle is in the neutral position in which he started. Arnold performed a one-handed dumbbell bicep curl simultaneously with alternating repetitions. This later allows the body to rest more between reps.

  • Do more reps for some exercises.

Not every biceps movement was performed 6 to 8 times. Arnold identified some exercises, which he called “bodybuilding movement definitions,” and performed them with relatively lightweights in a series of 8 to 12 repetitions. Here he focused on squeezing and contracting muscles and maintaining maximum contraction over time. Among his favorites are the isolated curl, the biceps curl with forearm support on the Gironde bench, and alternating curls with one-handed dumbbells.

Triceps

  • Experiment with a healthy body part

Arnold’s chest and triceps were particularly vital parts, so he didn’t train them the same way as his biceps. Since his triceps were already strong, he did up to 20 reps per set to build muscle.

  • Set the goal of the exercise

It is foolish to do triceps exercises and not know which part of the triceps you are training .” This is excellent advice, but how do you apply it?

Arnold Schwarzenegger advises: 31 tips for every muscle part tips

Arnold offers advice he learned from legendary trainer Vince Girona: “Do 20 sets of one exercise and nothing else for that body part. Then notice where the pain is concentrated the next day .”

  • Add partial iterations after errors.

Arnold’s improved triceps exercise selection technique, there were partial reps. After making a full range of tension, he added 5-6 partial iterations of the top, bottom, or half movement to the series. Although he could no longer do any full reps and was limited to the peak, he still managed to do a few reps because his height propelled him.

  • Make additional streaks to strengthen the strengthening.

Arnold often added series to the biceps and triceps exercises, or in other words, he did the exercises one after the other to get a lot of blood into his hands. Blood carries oxygen and nutrients necessary for growth, but these additional streaks also allowed Arnold to achieve his ultimate training goal: “pump killing.” The different series for a smaller muscle group, such as the arms, are lighter than those for larger groups, such as the legs, although Arnold often did the same.

Legs

  • Make your weakness your priority.

If you have big breasts, it is natural that you want to show them off, and you will be doing more chest exercises in the gym. However, Arnold had the opposite approach. At some point, Arnold noticed that his calves were lagging behind general physical development. Instead of hiding his weakness, he solemnly cut off his pants’ bottom and put on shorts. Thus, he always reminded himself of his weaknesses and further strengthened them. He trained his calves more frequently, early in his workout when he was still fresh, and sometimes even between batches of larger body parts, which strategically helped him earn the world’s most recognized bodybuilding degree.

  • Try everything

Since Arnold had long legs, at first, his calves and his thighs were behind him. Therefore, on the day of leg training, he abandoned all training plans and, as he wrote: “It was tough for me to train my legs, considering that I have long legs, and therefore muscles.

Arnold Schwarzenegger advises: 31 tips for every muscle part tips

The so-called long-legged bodybuilder must explore different exercise options. Therefore, he advises you to include other exercises until you figure out what works best for you. Of course, you shouldn’t forget to change your daily routine to surprise your muscles continually. “

  • Change the relationship if necessary

You probably know how important posture is, for example, when squatting. During the squat, Arnold tested different leg positions to see how they affect different parts of the thighs. “If my legs were farther apart and my toes pointed outward, I would feel a thigh squat inside. The position of the legs greatly influences which part of the hips is most strengthened

Arnold liked to use different squats and lying on the machine; even while standing, he could use different leg positions to train each part of the leg.

  1. Use squat machines to improve.

Squat machines don’t have to be just a beginner’s tool. Arnold made it difficult to exercise them. He used a shortened movement – he only went down three-quarters in the squat and only a quarter cup. He called this technique “strength squats,” which allowed him to feel a burning sensation in his legs without struggling with weight balance.

Arnold Schwarzenegger advises: 31 tips for every muscle part tips
  • Add hamstring exercises

Although the hamstrings work during basic squats, pressure movements, speed control of the squat, and subsequent stretching, Arnold argues that it is necessary to do exercises that focus directly on these parts.

The deadlift is an excellent exercise for the whole body, and the Romanian deadlift focuses on the hamstrings. Strengthening the hamstrings is essential to reduce the risk of a knee injury, which can occur when the quadriceps’ muscle mass exceeds the hamstrings’ strength.

Abdominal muscles

  • Train your abdominal muscles indirectly

Arnold’s approach to abdominal training was mostly simple. He had several movements that he did in several repetitions. However, if you reconsider how hard he trained his core during his leg and back workouts, you find that he didn’t need to train him. Heavy and challenging exercise certainly played a more critical role in the strength and aesthetics of his belly.

Chest

  • Work hard to get the size.

Arnold’s significant chest development began with strength training as he acted as a powerlifter early in his career. He found that with a power base, it would be easier for him to reach size. Out of season, consider a powerlifting cycle that will help you strengthen and improve your performance before returning to bodybuilding training. As a personal record, Arnold stung 102 kg in 60 reps!

  1. Use multiple angles

Arnold included an essential, complex exercise in his training program to focus on the chest from different angles. In one article, he wrote: ” I knew the routine had to be simple and at the same time very complicated.  ” The basis for Arnold was to train on an upright bench with ups and downs, training as a powerlifter from time to time, rather than alternating several machines or using technical trends. Arnold continued pumping until the end of the workout.

  • Cyclic training pushed him to grow.

Arnold’s routine was based on the amount and frequency of training for each body part. His offseason training program sometimes included up to 26 sets on a more challenging day, while his chest was trained up to three times a week. He alternated between hard and easy days, strengthening the muscles of relatively different intensities to overtrain the chest.

Arnold Schwarzenegger advises: 31 tips for every muscle part tips

Arnold divided his back work into two types of movement: bends and rows for the width and vertical rows in forwarding bends for general reinforcement. When shaping the form, he used all possible types of variations, making bends by touch and overheating with weight, but at the same time without adding weight, he also exchanged rods – sometimes behind the head, sometimes back to the chest. By varying angles, he achieved better overall development.

  • Don’t forget about your elbows.

Standing biceps flexion with the elbows more at the sides has a better effect on the top of the broadest back muscle. In exercises with a narrow grip and an inverted grip, the elbows stay closer, which reduces the pressure on the upper part of the triangular muscle and affects the lower one more. This leads to the dependence of the elbows’ position on the effect on strengthening the various parts of the back.

  • Set a goal based on reps.

Many trainers usually do 3 to 4 sets per exercise. Still, in the event of failure, Arnold usually used a technique to achieve a certain number of repetitions, claiming that 50 reps is better than a certain number of sets.

He said, “In the first set, you do, for example, ten reps. In the second, you may already be doing eight reps, but you already have. When you do at least 5 in the third set, you will have 23. You will continue to do this until you reach 50, even if you need to do 20 sets. So I strengthened my strength on my mistakes and achieved success. “

  • Do vertical deadlifts with a gradual increase in weight.

Vertical lifts were an essential part of Arnold’s training. It had various popular variations (pull-ups on the lower pulley to the belt, pull-ups with a specially modified two-handed T-bar). Still, each was done with a lot of volumes and gradually increasing weight. Arnold followed a pyramid scheme in which he gradually increased weight based on a successful streak with reduced reps. Only the hardest streak resulted in muscle failure.

Arnold Schwarzenegger advises: 31 tips for every muscle part tips

It’s up to you if you want to train and grow like Arnold Schwarzenegger, but it’s certainly great to be inspired by his advice. As you may have noticed, his advice makes him feel how much he loves to exercise and how much he enjoys trying and “playing” with his muscles. Arnold is a great inspirer and idol of many, and there is nothing to be surprised at.

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Tips

3 TIPS TO TAKE YOUR WORKOUT TO THE NEXT LEVEL

You can keep doing the basic exercises over and over, but don’t expect your psyche and strength to get close to your goal. Professional development requires a conscious decision to increase your training efforts. Therefore, you should change your approach to training.

3 tips to take your training to the next level

Here are the three most essential tips you need to learn – and start practicing – as an advanced athlete looking to lift more weight.

Tip 1: Add Volume, Reduce Reps

Many beginner programs focus on repeating basic exercises continuously. After a while, your body will get used to the exercise and adapt to it, first through motor training as you improve coordination, and then through increased muscle and strength. However, if you want to know about your progress, you should focus on the appropriate exercises for each muscle group.

As a beginner, you have several chest exercises. However, as a seasoned lifter, you need to raise the bar a little higher, and one way to do this is to add more exercises that engage your muscles at different angles. If the mid-pect press is part of your workout, we recommend adding a positive incline bench load for the best upper pectoral workout. The extra volume allows you to work your muscles, allowing you to develop better fully.

3 tips to take your training to the next level

Adding sets of multiple exercises increases your volume (a factor that is directly related to muscle growth) and lengthens your workout. If you double the amount of exercise you do, you also double your time at the gym. We must not forget that additional exercise will increase muscle growth, so it will take you a little longer to recover.

Decision? Add volume, reduce reps. Instead of training your entire body three times a week, try splitting your workout into upper and lower body workouts or according to the muscle groups themselves. You can even separate your workouts into muscles that “push” (shoulders, chest, and triceps) and muscles that “pull” (back and biceps) and the legs themselves.

This way, you can train each part of your body twice a week or every fourth day, which gives you enough time to train each muscle group without dragging out your workout, although you may need to go to the gym more often.

3 tips to take your training to the next level

Tip 2. Explore different variations of your favorite exercises

Beginners practice basic movements that build muscle and strength. As you progress, you will learn how to use various devices and machines to help you build more muscle. Maybe you’ve learned how to do standing biceps curls with an EZ barbell or even a biceps curl with a massive barbell. Small changes (maximum grip and bottom grip) and placement (inside or outside of the shoulders) can affect your muscles and their growth.

 Like many exercises, lifts can be done with one-arm dumbbells, which provide more freedom in the shoulder joint. In turn, the pulley allows you to change the angle of the muscle’s tension, depending on where it is installed. You can do this exercise while standing or sitting with one hand in one hand instead of both.

3 tips to take your training to the next level

Certain types of lifts can also be performed on machine tools. That’s where the controlled path is. Since some equipment has its advantages, you can use several of them.

Since each type of equipment has its unique advantages and disadvantages, you must find a way to incorporate all the equipment available to you in your workouts. Learning to do the exercises in different ways can improve overall muscle development. You will appreciate it if you come to a crowded gym and cannot get to the equipment because it is always loaded. Try one of the alternatives, and you never have to wait again

Tip 3. Take on new challenges

 Do you remember all those heavy exercises and weights that you quickly lifted when you were a beginner? As you may have noticed, the more you exercise, the harder it is to master size and strength. Don’t worry; everything is going according to plan – the plan of nature. When you load your body in the gym, the muscles get bigger and stronger, and the tasks you set for yourself are suddenly easy to overcome. The growth of muscle fibers will help you meet this challenge faster in the future.

learn different variations of your favorite exercises

However, if you want to increase muscle mass and strength, you must continue to adhere to progressive overload principles. The point of progressive overload is never to get used to training.
If you no longer see your progress, it might be time to change your workout. Start by changing the order of the exercises you perform. You can also control volume, load, rest periods, intensity methods, or even adjust training intervals. Typically, changing your workout every six weeks helps maintain muscle growth, strength, and endurance. It will also help you maintain a fresh attitude towards exercise and exciting workouts.

3 tips to take your training to the next level

We are confident that you will be able to make progress in your athletic performance and fully enjoy your success with the help of this article. If you liked the article, please support it by sharing it so other athletes can learn to stay fit.

CAN YOU GAIN MUSCLE FASTER OR LOSE WEIGHT BY SHOCKING YOUR MUSCLES?

You will probably experience a real shock when you find yourself in a cold shower in the morning, encounter a bear in the woods, or find yourself in front of a New York subway map, although you have lived alone until now. Is it possible to “shock and confuse
The idea was quite popular with the P90X high-intensity exercise programs and fitness trainer Tony Horton. For faster and more noticeable results with this method, it is enough to continually load the muscles or otherwise shock and carry out an ever-changing training program. These can be strength training, karate, yoga, sprint training, and other sports from various fields of activity. In English, this term is known as Muscle Confusion.

Can you build muscle faster or lose weight by shocking your muscles?

Simply put, it’s about continually shocking your muscles with different types of workouts so that your muscles don’t get used to a particular type of exercise, so you continuously push your boundaries towards maximum productivity and prevent stagnation. Imagine you have strength training on Monday, CrossFit on Wednesday, running on Friday, and circuit training on Sunday.

I’m sure you’ve heard this idea several times from athletes who have been training for a year. But like everything, not all gold that glitters, and things are a little more complicated.

What drives successful training, and isn’t constant training changes and muscle shock necessary?

A well-designed training plan will allow you to achieve better barbell and body results in the long term.

What variables should your training plan follow?

  1. Workout volume is the work done during a workout, such as the number of sets and reps per workout or over a more extended period. We can also include the number of jagged or elapsed specified intervals here.
  2. Training intensity can be compared to difficulty. In strength training, we are talking mainly about the weight on the barbell, and in the running, we can talk about speed.
  3. Training frequency measures how often we train a muscle, run, or do another sport.

Don’t expect drastic results from one or two workouts per week, as if sleeping with a barbell. Simply put, you need to train “just right,” neither less nor more. 

How to train successfully?

Proper training planning leads to a sexy figure and excellent athletic performance.

Performing for a long time, you may want to consider a new type of training. Are you doing the same exercises with the same load and the same number of repetitions over and over? Have you been running the same hour every other day on the same route for a year now?

Then it’s not surprising if your performance doesn’t improve. Any long-term sports activity leads to the adaptation of muscles in your body. Strength will increase, some of the muscles used will grow, you will lose some fat, your overall physical condition, and your circulatory systems’ performance will improve to regulate and slightly increase your endurance.

However, while you are still giving the body the same boost, you cannot expect other adaptation results in chest growth after bench press exercises with the same load. Also, you can’t expect to run a marathon well if you run 10 kilometers every other day. 

Proper training planning leads to a sexy figure and excellent athletic performance

How to improve athletic performance and overcome stagnation in training and weight loss?

If you want to improve continually, you must also add and achieve progressive overload in your training, which will lead to a more vital training impulse, which will translate into better results in the long term. [five]

Progressive overload can be achieved:

  1. Large training volume in the form of more repetitions in exercises during training. To start, instead of 3 reps, do 4. You can also use repetitions of one exercise instead of the entire workout.
  2. Higher training intensity, which you achieve by increasing the load on the bar. Even those small pancakes weighing 1.25 kg make a difference. In particular, we will achieve greater mechanical muscle tension, which is one indicator of muscle growth.
  3. By shortening the rest intervals between sets, you achieve shorter exercise times and more metabolic stress, which is an indicator of muscle growth.
  4. As you slow down the exercise, you increase your time under tension (TSR) and increase metabolic stress.

How many repetitions per workout per muscle part is the smartest choice? This is a 40-60 rep range. We can move from the more powerful 4-6 reps in the compound exercise to the 8-12 reps of “bodybuilding” in the next exercise. [6] If you are not sure how to create a workout plan, our article will help us. 

How to overcome stagnation in training and weight loss?

3 mechanisms that stimulate muscle growth, without which there will be no result

Schoenfeld’s (2010) comprehensive work shows that three main factors are responsible for muscle growth from strength training. 

  1. Mechanical stress. You achieve more mechanical stress with more weight on the bar.
  2. Muscle damage is a manifestation of a training load noted on muscle cells by damage and the formation of microtrauma. Subsequently, they rebuild, and the muscles get bigger and stronger.
  3. You stimulate metabolic stress with more extended time under tension (STL) or more repetitions, called a “pumping series,” and you can think of this as the long-familiar “muscle burning during exercise.”

Periodization of training: Isn’t “muscle shock” and frequent training changes necessary?

The key to consistently changing athletic performance and overcoming stagnation is a well-designed training plan that considers the underlying mechanisms of muscle growth. Increasing the intensity of your workouts doesn’t go on forever. As part of training planning, increase the load in the mesocycle (mid-term training period) by about 4-8 weeks. 

This block should be followed by a roughly weekly unloading training phase, which does not mean coaching Netflix. In doing so, we can imagine reducing the training intensity by about half to fully reflect the training adaptations. Simply put, we can reduce the load on the bar or the number of reps performed. We can also use longer rest breaks between sets.

Muscle shock and constant training will not bring you the best and fastest results. On the contrary, they can extend the path to the goal. Imagine that your goal is to increase leg strength, and your workouts should focus primarily on strenuous, heavy strength exercises such as squats, deadlifts, or lunges. Instead, we will practice one bodyweight workout and replace another, such as HIIT. This will not help us achieve our goal. Paradoxically, performance would rob us of this strategy.

3 mechanisms that stimulate muscle growth

Rather than shock the muscles, sometimes it is better to change the exercises’ order in your workout for more motivation.

In a study by Enek Baz-Vallee and colleagues (2019), researchers found that changing the exercise order of an 8-week training plan based on a computer program results was less tiring for an experimental group of athletes than a classical training program where the control group trained accurately. The training plan is still the same. Both groups trained 4 times a week, went through approximately the same amount of training during the program, and achieved similar results. But this should not be confused with the principles of “muscle shock,” which are based on changing the type of training. [nine]

If you don’t have specific goals, doing each workout for a different sport can also be beneficial.

  1. Changing the training types during the week can be beneficial, as it does not quickly get boring and does not fit into the training stereotype. You can look forward to new workouts and be more motivated. But this, in turn, is a very individual question.
  2. By combining different sports (strength training, HIIT, running, Crossfit, etc.), you can work with virtually all athletic performance components, such as maximum strength, strength endurance, speed endurance, or general aerobic endurance to improve overall physical fitness. 
How to keep yourself motivated to exercise
Categories
Guide

10 FITNESS TIPS FOR BUILDING MUSCLE MASS

  1. give your body macronutrients, and your muscles will grow

The main reason many people fail to gain muscle is the lack of a balanced diet. To gain weight, you need to take in more calories than you burn during the day. The excess calories serve your body to regenerate and build muscle tissue that has been stressed during exercise.

The amount of excess calories is individual for everyone. If you’ve had trouble gaining weight in the past, try consuming 1.25 grams of protein per day along with 2 grams of carbohydrates per 0.5 kilograms of your body weight.

10 fitness tips

If you want to cope with a calorie deficit, make sure you take in the above amounts of protein and carbs at least one month before starting. This way, you are giving your body ample time to respond to the increased calorie intake. If you gain weight, then the body is getting enough calories. However, if you are not gaining weight, you should start eating more calories. We do not recommend consuming more than 1.5 g of protein per 0.5 kg of body weight. To gain weight, try consuming more calories, mostly carbohydrates.
2.eat at least every 4 hours
Getting the right timing for your meals is one of the most critical aspects when exercising and trying to gain muscle mass. Suppose you are trying to take in the minimum amount of fat. In that case, if you eat regularly every 4 hours, your body will remain in an anabolic state (muscle building state) because you are always supplying the necessary nutrients for their growth.

Eating every 3-4 hours is much more useful than eating 3-4 times a day in large portions. Have you ever eaten 1200 net calories for lunch? It turns out that the chicken with rice will climb through your eyes. It is far more practical for the body to eat 600 calories divided into 6 meals than to eat 3 meals of 1200 calories.
3.take BCAAs between meals and workouts
BCAA amino acids are a guaranteed method of utilizing the obtained proteins. They provide an immediate source of energy for your muscles, unlike protein foods or whey isolate. BCAAs enter the bloodstream relatively quickly. An immediate increase in BCAA’s will give your muscles the energy they need to synthesize protein.
Research shows BCAAs build and repair muscle. Increases protein synthesis, decreases muscle protein breakdown, and decreases muscle fatigue.

BCAA amino acids for regeneration

 Interesting is the American study The Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, which shows that using BCAA supplements 2 hours after meals , we prolong muscle protein synthesis. Although the study was done in rats, researchers don’t understand why humans should not take these supplements.

While we don’t have direct evidence that BCAAs support muscle strength and size, regeneration is essential to keep you exercising the next day, which is why you’ll build muscle, BCAA supplements contain a high concentration of the amino acid leucine, which is an essential stimulant of the mTor process and therefore muscle protein synthesis. Most supplements contain BCAAs in a 2: 1: 1 ratio – leucine: valine: isoleucine.

Leucine leads to the maximization of the mTOR process. To take 3.5 g of leucine, you need to take 7 g of BCAA 30-45 minutes before meals (2 times a day).

4.Sleep at least 8 hours 

We understand. With all these responsibilities and work, this point is very difficult to adhere to. However, lack of sleep can significantly affect your progress. During sleep, the body is relaxed and burns far fewer calories than if you are awake and doing something. Also, muscles regenerate during sleep, and muscle tissue is renewed.

Sleep for muscle growth

Another benefit of good sleep is the release of growth hormone. This hormone helps with muscle recovery. Note that a few hours of sleep deprivation can cause lethargy, irritability, hypersensitivity, and possible depression. This is enough to try to sleep as much as possible. Your body will recover and be ready for further training progress.
If you cannot sleep or restless sleep, try a sleep support supplement containing magnesium, ZMA, and Zmb, melatonin, or tryptophan.
5.Reduce the number of workouts, but increase their intensity
Other very common mistakes we make in training:
• doing too many sets
• we are not using a weight that is a challenge to our body
• we rest too long between sets
If your workout lasts more than an hour and 15 minutes, you are either doing too much exercise or resting longer than necessary between sets. Try to pay attention to this. Your shape will improve, and your muscles will grow, and you will spend less time in the gym. Instead of wasting time exercising, you can enjoy good quality food or sleep an hour longer.

Rest between workouts

Follow the rule: 16-18 sets for large muscle parts, 12-14 approaches for small muscle parts. Pick a weight with which you can do 1-2 reps without too much trouble. However, don’t put on a weight that you can’t even feel the muscles you’re training with.
As for the rest between sets, they should not exceed the 90-second limit. Some trainers recommend breaks as close to 60 seconds as possible. Then you feel that you are the most “pumping” and stimulating the muscles. The only exceptions are squats and deadlifts, and it is a good practice to rest until your breathing is calm. Exercise contributes to oxygen deficiency, which will be replaced when you catch your breath.
6.eat lots of healthy fats
If you find it difficult to eat large portions, help yourself with fat, which, by the way, is an excellent source of calories. One gram of fat contains 9 calories, compared to carbohydrates or proteins, containing 4 calories per gram. Thus, fats have two times more calories in less quantity.

Healthy fats for muscle growth

Your daily fat intake should consist primarily of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. These are oils and foods such as avocados, olive oil, nut butter, nuts, seeds, oily fish, salmon, and mackerel.

Add omega-3 fatty acids and fish oil. Focus on at least 2 grams of omega-3s per day (EPA and DHA). To help digest them well in the morning, take them along with another source of fat. If you stick to the recommended amounts, they can help you burn fat, balance hormone production, improve brain function, and even promote healthy skin and nails.

7.Don’t skip leg day

We’re serious. You risk becoming a target for jokes, your feet will be recognized by the entire Internet community by some “meme,” or you will look like an inverted triangle. Plus, if you don’t train them, you will lose even more muscle. Train them diligently at least once a week.

Don't skip leg day

Studies have shown that doing musculoskeletal-supporting exercises (i.e., squats and deadlifts) triggers a hormonal response that triggers blood circulation without testosterone levels and raises growth hormone levels. It can aid in the preferred remodeling of lean body mass. In other words, you “swing” while burning fat.
Many coaches say that if they don’t do squats or even deadlifts, they won’t feel as strong on other lifts or feel as fast progress as they do when doing them.


8.Find yourself a sparring partner who will motivate you.
This point is significant. Mainly because the sparring partner motivates you to be responsible and stick to your training plan, you’d better go to workout if you have someone to complement each other and help each other. If you miss a workout with a sparring partner who relies on you, it’s like disappointing a good friend. There are days when you don’t want to go to workout, but you can get over it thanks to this partner.

Sparring partner

A sparring partner will also help you stick to the correct intensity with each exercise. This is always the first person to tell you that you can do extra reps to do the exercise harder or do another exercise better. Last but not least, you will maintain the correct rest interval with your training partner. You must rest until your partner finishes the approach, then it is your turn. This way, you will be in control of each other.
The pace you set with your partner will be decisive for you. Plus, being motivated by someone who helps you expand your capabilities and make a real effort can make a big difference in achieving your results.
9.Be smart about food supplements
Nutritional supplements cannot replace food because their name originated in accordance with their purpose – to fill the nutritional gap. We advocate a nutritious diet, but we believe that supplements are often essential during exercise. The first supplement you should get is a high-quality whey protein. It will provide the body with a fast-digesting and easily digestible protein – ideal before and after training. Studies have shown that muscle gain will occur faster with whey protein support than without it.

Pre-workout stimulants

The second supplement we consider a must-have is BCAA for the reasons stated above. Pre-workout stimulants , at least for us, are another supplement that we consider “must have”. Not only will they give you the energy boost you need to train, but if you choose the right formula for this stimulant, your performance will also increase . They only need to be dosed correctly.

Remember that pre-workout medications must be used consistently in order to benefit from them. Creatine monohydrate and beta-alanine have a positive effect on your performance. On the other hand, if you want immediate energy , look for supplements containing caffeine or citrulline malate.

# 10 get active at least once a week

You’ve probably heard about this a million times. But if not, we’ll add again: you don’t grow in the gym! In fact, you will achieve the opposite. Muscle tissue is destroyed during exercise, and it is only when you are not exercising that muscles recover , increasing their size and strength. Therefore, we recommend that you take a break for one day . We hope you noticed that we are not mentioning a rest day. We are talking about outdoor activities.

Leisure activities for muscle growth

This day’s goal is to give the muscles and nervous system a break from massive strength exercises, thereby actively promoting regeneration. Active relaxation can range from light cardio exercises to static stretching. Massages are also useful but not required. This day’s challenge is to stimulate circulation, relieve muscle pain, or improve other life areas, such as cooking.

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Guide

How to Exercise After 40: Useful Tips

An active lifestyle can prolong health and youth. After 40, you can and should go in for sports. You just need to consider some age nuances, which we will tell you about in this article.

How to Exercise After 40: Useful Tips

Age changes

The changes associated with aging are inevitable. What happens to our bodies when we cross the line of the fifties?

• The indicator of muscle mass falls. This is due to a less mobile way of life and slower movements.

• But the indicator of fat mass, on the contrary, is growing. And the less active movements, the more fat accumulation in the body.

• The flexibility of the body decreases, so do not neglect stretching after 40 years.

• Bones become more fragile, and the body needs additional calcium.

• There are negative dynamics in movements’ accuracy due to the uneven strength of various muscles (for example, the muscles on the right limb are more developed than on the left).

All these changes are inevitable, but they can be slowed down so that the body stays healthy, strong, and beautiful longer.

How to Exercise After 40: Useful Tips

The benefits of sports for those over 40

Why can and should I go in for sports after 40 years? What are the benefits of regular exercise for the body?

• Certain exercises can have a positive effect on the flexibility of joints and ligaments.

• Strength exercises will strengthen the muscles, which will better support the bones and the entire musculoskeletal system and protect it from injury.

• Muscle strength will have a positive effect on the accuracy of the movements.

• Cardio training contributes to the development of endurance, has a beneficial effect on the cardiovascular system, and increases the body’s overall tone.

• Regular exercise can help you lose weight and prolong youth.

• Exercise helps you deal with spine and joint problems.

Results will not belong incoming if you follow the correct training system after 40.

The specificity of training after 40 years

It is quite clear that training at 40 in the same way as at 20 will not work. Here, extreme care is required to avoid injuries, the risk of which is increased by the changes above in the body. Here are some things to watch out for:

• The training program should be designed according to the indicators of gender, age, height and weight, level of physical fitness, individual characteristics of the body, and suffered injuries or diseases.

• The main goals of the classes should be to improve the condition of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems, strengthen the heart muscle, increase the amount of muscle mass in the body, reduce fat, increase endurance, strengthen joints, and improve flexibility.

• The load and training frequency should be increased gradually, regardless of whether the person has trained before.

• Exercise should include doing cardio (aerobic exercise). The intensity should not be high to avoid shortness of breath. Examples of cardio training include cycling, jogging, brisk walking, swimming, stair walking, dancing. For this purpose, you can use exercise equipment that is safe for this age, such as a treadmill, exercise bike, orbitrek (elliptical trainer), or a stepper.

• It is imperative to devote time to stretching, increasing the flexibility of joints and ligaments, increasing muscle elasticity.

• Also, do not forget about training to improve balance and coordination of movements. Pilates or yoga are ideal choices at this age.

• Strength (anaerobic) training should also be part of an active lifestyle. Their intensity should be medium; in rare cases – high, exercise speed should be medium. If it is not possible to go to the gym, then at home, you can perform strength exercises with dumbbells, weights, wall bars, or a special bench installation.

• It is essential to follow your exercise technique to avoid injuries and strains. Therefore, before starting training, it is necessary to consult with a trainer, and in the case of practicing at home, perform exercises in front of a mirror.

• Recovery after training is the key to the correct course of the entire healing process. It includes proper nutrition, adequate sleep, and muscle relaxation, for example, in the form of massage (this can be either a trip to a specialist or buying a personal massager for all parts of the body).

How to Exercise After 40: Useful Tips

Exercise system

The number of approaches in one workout can be different – it all depends on your physical fitness level. The optimal solution is to hire a personal trainer who will select an individual program and monitor the correctness of the technique. The rest between sets should be long enough to avoid shortness of breath or muscle cramps and cramps. Once every 2-3 months, the training program must be changed so that the body does not adapt to the stress, and the progress does not stop. Include all muscle groups in work without focusing only on specific areas. Combine strength and cardio workouts.

Fitness myths for those over 40

Unfortunately, many people over the age of 40 forget about the need for regular sports and training. Because of this, there are many myths and misconceptions around fitness for those over 40. We decided to dispel the most important of them to understand why the sport is necessary and how to do it right.

Myth # 1: Any physical exercise strengthens muscles.

Fact: Fitness activities like Pilates and stretching are great for developing and maintaining flexibility, but they don’t impact muscle building.

Myth # 2: Strength training can help you lose weight.

Fact: Anaerobic fitness helps build muscle that is heavier than fat. Weight can, on the contrary, increase, although there will be less body fat. For weight loss, cardio (aerobic) training is more appropriate.

Myth number 3: older adults find it challenging to work with dumbbells and weights.

How to Exercise After 40: Useful Tips

Fact: if you increase the load gradually, starting from 1.5-2 kg, then over time, you can bring it up to 4-5 kg ​​and even more. The same applies to machines with additional weights. The main thing is to adhere to the correct exercise technique so as not to get injured.

Myth # 4: Swimming is the most suitable option for people over 40.

Fact: For swimming to bring maximum benefits and the desired result, you need to spend about 2 hours in the pool, while continuously swimming in different styles. Not everyone can devote this amount of time and energy. Therefore, swimming is best perceived as a pleasant and beneficial addition to basic training.

Myth # 5: If you are tired during your workout, you must stop exercising.

Fact: Feeling tired is a sign of training effectiveness. It is worth stopping if you feel unwell, you feel dizzy, nauseous, severe local pain, or find it difficult to breathe. Common fatigue is just a factor to be overcome.

Sport is useful at any age, and after 40 years, it is merely necessary. The main thing is to approach training correctly and carefully to avoid injuries associated with age-related changes.

Dad pumped up

To cross the threshold of a sports hall for the first time when you are already in your fifties is a real test. A feeling of insecurity, embarrassment, puzzled looks of others … However, the daredevils who decide to experiment will be rewarded in full and will then be able to admire their fit figure in the mirror every day. Unexpectedly, 45-year-old Patrick McAlinan became a fitness fanatic. 

Adult problems

According to Patrick, training is much more difficult for a 40-year-old than for a 20-year-old. After exercise, muscles need more time to recover, excess weight is reduced more slowly, and more effort is required to build muscle. But the result is worth it.

Until recently, Patrick looked pretty average. He was never distinguished by relief muscles, worked in an office, did not play sports. But he completely changed in just six weeks, following a particular program.

Had to sweat

First of all, to overcome the inner barrier and understand how to approach the machine, Patrick hired a fitness trainer. This is not a cheap pleasure, but otherwise, nothing will come of it. Patrick has an ectomorphic body type: narrow in the shoulders, relatively thin. This type of person has difficulty gaining muscle mass. This means that work with heavyweights is necessary and, accordingly, good technique, which cannot be obtained without an instructor.

In addition to pulling iron, Patrick also does circuit training for all muscle groups and cardio series. So it gets rid of body fat and increases endurance.

Money in the body

The trainer calls his system “time under tension.” This refers to the seconds when the muscles are tense. “Either your body weight is used, or additional resistance is involved. I combine different methods and achieve hypertrophy [muscle growth] much faster than during regular training,” he explains.

Another new expense item for Patrick is sports nutrition: proteins, creatine, vitamins, etc. The high-protein diet has helped to gain muscle mass and recover faster after exercise. It was not easy when meeting with friends who didn’t deny themselves anything, but Patrick understood: there would be no result without a diet.

Health on a plate

On weekdays, it isn’t easy to keep track of your diet. While cooking healthy meals does not involve much culinary skill, it is time-consuming. Therefore, Patrick began ordering food through a specialized service, making sure to provide himself with the necessary amount of calories and micronutrients to gain muscle mass.

According to Patrick, such a service is expensive and can be done without it. Fitness aficionados usually carve out time on Sundays, preparing countless food containers and smoothies for the week ahead.

Patrick understands that regular gym attendance and a strict diet are not for everyone. However, he is ready to stick to his routine in 10 and 20 years. The fantastic result inspires him that he achieved in just a month and a half.

Seen enough

Theo Pettaras, 53, from Sydney, has accomplished a similar feat. Despite being busy, the Australian entrepreneur found time to improve his health.

Inspired by the example of his wife’s friend who lost weight, he managed to lose 20 kilograms, gaining muscle. Now he sticks to a healthy diet and goes to the gym five times a week, giving himself no indulgences.

Salad rushes to the rescue.

A person, even with ingrained habits, can change for the better. 40-year-old Australian Luke Baileys founded a chain of restaurants that prepare healthy salads and rolls in flat cakes. He was motivated to do this because after moving to Chicago to work in an IT company, he gained 50 kilograms in four years. On a foreign mainland, he ate exclusively fast food and was steadily getting fat.

Categories
Guide

Post-workout nutrition for muscle growth

To gain muscle mass, you need to train a lot – everyone knows that. Obsessed with getting quick results, novice athletes fixate on “hardware” and disappear in the gym for days. Often, they forget that muscles cannot form out of thin air. To build them up, the body needs a lot of energy and protein. However, this does not mean that you need to eat everything, and the more, the better. Quite the opposite – you need to adhere to a special diet and diet. Particular attention should be paid to post-workout nutrition.

Eat For Anabolism: Pre- And Post-Workout Nutrition For Muscle Growth |  Bodybuilding.com

Basic nutritional guidelines for muscle growth

Proper nutrition during the training process involves adherence to the following principles.

  1. 5 – 6 meals a day – preferably every 3 – 4 hours.
  2. Eating high-calorie foods – up to 70% of the total diet. Muscle mass grows only if the amount of incoming energy exceeds the amount of consumed resources.
  3. Limiting consumption of fast carbohydrates and fats is better to give preference to foods with a low glycemic index and vegetable fats.
  4. Compliance with the drinking regime – you need to drink as thirst and a lot.
  5. Compliance with the balance of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats is approximately 35% / 60% 20%, respectively.
  6. Distribution of food throughout the day – portions should be approximately equal, while most of them should preferably be eaten before 17.00.

We take into account the physique.

Five SureShot Ways To Build A Chiselled Physique

Why do some athletes grow muscles by leaps and bounds, while others do not notice training results? Physiologists say that it depends on the somatotype and distinguishes three body types – ectomorph, mesomorph, and endomorph. Each of them has its characteristics and features that determine the possibility of increasing the mass. Given the following information, you can “trick” nature and achieve better results.

SomatotypePhysique characteristicTraining featuresDiet
Ectomorphlean physique, fast metabolismmuscles build up long and hardemphasis on complex carbohydrates, protein – 3 g per 1 kg of body weight, reduce the consumption of fatty foods, it is advisable to use sports supplements
Mesomorphnormal physique and metabolismfast visible resultreduce the consumption of fats, protein – 2-3 g per 1 kg of weight, any carbohydrates are allowed
Endomorphfull physique, slow metabolismmuscle mass is gained easily and quickly, but body fat is presentminimum of fats and carbohydrates, emphasis on proteins – up to 60% or more of the daily diet, do not use gainers

How much should you eat after training?

After an intensive exercise in the gym, the so-called anabolic window opens in the human body – a state of the body where there is a deficiency of nutrients – proteins and carbohydrates (therefore, the state is also called a protein-carbohydrate window). You can quickly compensate for the deficiency that has arisen with the help of food. And since the average duration of the anabolic window is 40 – 90 minutes, you need to eat precisely during this time. However, not everything is so simple, and there are several opinions on this matter.

  • To prevent further muscle breakdown, eat right after exercise.
  • You need to eat after 1 hour, during which the body will burn its fat reserves.
  • You need to consume only proteins that will help restore damaged muscle fibers.
  • It is better to give preference to carbohydrates, due to which the energy potential of the body will be restored.
  • You can eat both proteins and carbohydrates since the body needs them to ensure muscle growth. The main thing is to keep within the period of the anabolic window.

Any of these opinions have experimental confirmation and real results of muscle gain. And the only thing to consider is whether the person ate before training. If not, you should eat as soon as possible after class. If the exercises were performed on a full stomach, you could take your food intake time.

What to eat after training?

4 Steps to Speed Up Muscle Recovery After a Workout

For significant muscle recovery and mass gain, the body needs protein and carbohydrates. But it would help if you didn’t forget about fats either – their lack leads to metabolic disorders. Fats are obligatory for consumption; you just need to control their amount. So the post-workout meal for men and women might look like this.

NutrientAmount needed after exerciseBenefits and impactRecommended food
Protein2-3 g per 1 kg of weightbuilding material for muscles, maintaining metabolism and immunity, transmission of nerve impulses between body cellslean meat, fish, low-fat dairy products, eggs, legumes, nuts
Carbohydrates5 – 8 g per 1 kg of weightenergy source, building support structures, RNA, DNA and ATP, maintaining osmotic pressurecereals, coarse wheat pasta, fresh vegetables, unsweetened fruits
Fats1 – 1.5 g per 1 kg of weightenergy source, protection of the body from hypothermia, maintenance of metabolic reactions and the structure of cell membranesvegetable oils, seafood, oily fish

After a morning workout, when the whole day is still ahead, and additional consumption of the body’s energy resources is ahead, it is better to eat more high-calorie foods. After an evening workout, just before bed, you can limit yourself to protein intake. For heavy exercise, they can be supplemented with a small serving of slow carbohydrates.

What to drink after exercise

Still, mineral water, green tea without sugar, natural fresh juices, or compotes made from unsweetened fruits are the best drinks during the period of muscle gain—drink throughout the day, and especially during exercise, when the risk of dehydration increases. The amount of fluid consumed is purely individual, so it is better to focus on your feeling of thirst.

TOP 10 foods for gaining muscle mass

The post-workout food for muscle growth for girls and men should contain the following foods.

  1. Curd (low fat) is a slow protein source and one of the best foods for muscle growth. Cottage cheese saturates the body with vitamins B, PP, and C. It increases hemoglobin levels in the blood and strengthens the nervous system and bone tissue. Reduces the risk of developing atherosclerosis and obesity.
  2. Eggs are a protein source, healthy fats, vitamins, iron, and phosphorus, thanks to which muscles regenerate faster. Researchers at the University of Illinois recommend eating eggs to boost protein synthesis.
  3. Chicken fillet – contains a large amount of easily digestible protein, amino acids, vitamins, and minerals. The product is rich in magnesium, which helps fight fatigue and normalizes the nervous system’s functions. However, do not forget that chicken fillet is a low-calorie food.
  4. Salmon (mackerel, sardines) – contains a large amount of omega-3-unsaturated fatty acids, which reduce the risk of muscle injury during exercise and help avoid the characteristic pain. Scientists at the University of Washington are looking at eating oily sea fish to boost protein synthesis.
  5. Ricotta – Whey cheese contains high amounts of casein and albumin. Members of the International Society for Sports Nutrition claim that eating ricotta promotes rapid muscle building. British scientists are in solidarity with them, focusing on the fact that this type of cheese increases the body’s endurance and strengthens bone tissue.
  6. Whole Grain Bread – It contains slow carbohydrates that fuel the body and helps maintain its energy potential.
  7. Potatoes (baked) – a source of carbohydrates to replenish energy deficits after exercise. Experts from the Journal of Applied Physiology are confident that a small serving of potatoes after training will not lead to body fat formation and will be beneficial for the body.
  8. Quinoa (grain cereal) is a protein, fiber, amino acid, trace elements, and B vitamins. According to a study by American scientists, the composition of quinoa protein is close to milk protein, and the chemical composition of grain is indispensable for active physical exertion. (Quinoa can be replaced with buckwheat – the composition is about the same).
  9. Cherry juice – rich in antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, promotes quick recovery after exercise. Scandinavian researchers claim that cherry juice increases the body’s performance and normalizes blood pressure after exercise.
  10. Mate (Paraguayan tea) is an excellent drink that tones up and, according to British scientists, helps to recover faster after the training process.

What foods to avoid?

“Brutal” appetite is a good indicator of a fast metabolism. But do not follow his lead and eat everything. The diet should be of real benefit, so it is better to exclude the following foods.

  • Animal fats.
  • Sweets.
  • Beer.
  • Fast food.
  • Foods with food additives.

It is also important not to consume both fats and carbohydrates simultaneously – this causes the appearance of body fat. Both are a source of energy, so it is better to separate them – there are carbohydrates after training and a little fat during the day.

Sports nutrition for weight gain

In addition to traditional foods, sports nutrition – specially formulated supplements – can be included in the muscle-building diet.

  • Protein is a fast-digesting whey protein with an optimal amino acid composition. The recommended serving for fast muscle growth is 20-30 g immediately after training, before meals.
  • Gainer is a protein-carbohydrate mixture that replenishes the body’s energy deficit. Take immediately after exercise and take into account the amount of protein consumed.
  • Creatine Monohydrate is the optimal form of creatine that provides energy metabolism in the muscles. 3-4 g of the supplement can be taken neat, along with a gainer, protein, or 2 g arginine.
  • BCAA – a complex of three essential amino acids for the human body – leucine, isoleucine, valine, providing muscle recovery, increased strength, and fat burning. Take immediately after exercise or during a long workout.
  • Vitamin-Mineral Complex (Opti-men or Opti-women) is an optimized supplement to improve metabolic reactions. Take within 1 – 2 months according to the instructions. After the end of the course, take a break for 1 month, after which the reception can be resumed.

Can I eat at night?

Often, the work schedule interferes with visiting the gym, and training has to be postponed to the evening. But this is not a reason to give up food because the body needs to restore energy reserves to maintain natural functions. In this case, the amount of incoming energy should prevail over the costs, which will provide the desired set of muscle mass. Therefore, you should eat before bed. As a late dinner, you should choose slow proteins, avoiding carbohydrates, and fats. Low-fat cottage cheese is best suited for this purpose – 100 – 150 g is enough. The casein contained in it will be absorbed for about 5 hours, supplying the body with energy to restore and build up muscles. To enhance the effect and diversify your menu, cottage cheese can be used with low-fat sour cream or kefir.

Errors that prevent weight gain

If everything is done correctly, then the muscle gain will be noticeable at the end of the first month of training. If no changes occur to the body or the mass gain has stopped at the same level, then, most likely, one of 14 mistakes is made.

  1. Exercise on an empty stomach.
  2. Late meal after exercise.
  3. Failure to follow a balanced diet.
  4. An arbitrary diet.
  5. Lack of calories to restore the energy deficit required for muscle growth.
  6. Insufficient fluid intake.
  7. Lack of protein to build muscle.
  8. The insufficient intensity and load of training.
  9. Lack of progress in loads and monotony of training.
  10. Skipping gym classes.
  11. Overtraining (overwork).
  12. Lack of rest.
  13. Lack of sleep.
  14. Overstrain at work, frequent stress.
  15. Systemic use of medications.

Muscle growth mechanism

Human muscles are made up of water, protein, glycogen, lipids, acids, and other substances. Their development requires a balanced diet and physical activity. Under their influence, the so-called hypertrophy occurs – an increase in muscle tissue mass and volume. Thanks to it, the muscles adapt to existing loads, contract, and resist fatigue.

Theoretically, there are two extreme types of muscle hypertrophy (increase).

  • Myofibrillar hypertrophy – the process involves active muscle contraction and the development of their strength, without a significant increase in mass.
  • Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy – an increase in the non-contractile part of the muscles occurs due to the accumulation of protein, which causes an increase in their endurance and volume.

In real life, during fitness or other sports, muscle hypertrophy is a combination of two types of processes, with one of them’s predominance. So, myofibrillar hypertrophy predominates when exercising with power types, making muscles more robust, and sarcoplasmic hypertrophy is more characteristic of runners. While in bodybuilders, both types of hypertrophy are observed.

As for muscle growth itself (hypertrophy), this is a complex and multifactorial process that has not yet been fully understood. Today several theories are explaining its mechanism.

  • Acidosis theory – intense protein synthesis for building muscle is due to lactic acid formation, which damages muscle fibers, thereby activating the enzymes of breakdown and synthesis.
  • The theory of hypoxia – increased synthesis provokes temporary hypoxia, which the muscles encounter at the time of strength exercises. After all, lack of oxygen also damages muscle fibers, pushing their recovery and subsequent growth.
  • The theory of mechanical damage to muscle fibers – damage to muscle fibers due to stress- is considered a triggering mechanism for synthesis.

Thus, supporters of “destruction theories” are sure that the mechanism of building-up is based on the process of damage to muscle fibers. And the more they are injured during training, the more intensively they recover and grow during rest – the phenomenon of supercompensation of destroyed structures appears.

However, supporters of the “theory of accumulation” disagree with this point of view. In their opinion, muscle building occurs due to the activation of growth factors, which leads to physical activity. And the fewer muscle fibers are damaged, the more growth factors are produced, stimulating muscle growth.

The lack of a unified theory of muscle growth mechanism has led to the emergence of different approaches to the training process. Some athletes prefer to work “for wear and tear,” alternating between classes and rest. Others train more “carefully,” but without rest. The results of visiting the gym for both are approximately the same, which confirms all theories’ reasonableness and does not lead to a consensus. But be that as it may, but one fact remains unchanged – to build muscle mass, the body needs proteins, energy and rest. To compensate for their deficiency, you need to eat right and rest from training – it is at such moments that your protein synthesis is activated.

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Guide

Fitness versus age: how to train at 35, 45 and 55

How and how much you need to do in order to always be in shape.

We do not want to grow old, but we want to conquer Kilimanjaro and the hearts of Malibu rescuers at any age (play beach volleyball with children and grandchildren, of course, too). Each age period needs to choose the right nutrition and the type of activity. Fitness therapist Victoria Borovskaya tells what exercises to do and what foods to exclude from the diet at 35, 45, and 55 years.

35 years

What happens in the female body after 35 years? Quite profound changes: metabolism slows down; glucose tolerance is impaired, insulin resistance appears. Simply put, our subcutaneous fat is redistributed abdominal and begins to accumulate in the abdomen. That is why, up to 35 years old, women tend to increase in volume in the hips, buttocks, and chest, and after that, the hated centimeters are fixed at the waist. Due to the deficiency of male sex hormones, fat begins to be deposited on the back.

What to do?

The first thing to do is reduce sugar and salt consumption and start drinking, not tea, coffee, juices, lemonades, but plain clean water. Once you do this, four kilograms will go away by themselves in a week. Right, if you haven’t done strength training until the age of 35, then it’s time to start. It would help if you did it right: you can’t get off the couch and go to “pump up.” Most likely, problems with the hip joints are already making themselves felt, like pain in the lower back. It is essential to develop the pelvic floor muscles because these exercises aim to prevent urinary incontinence and organ prolapse. 

Training should be structured according to the principle of periodization:

  • retraction period, so that the articular-ligamentous apparatus, muscles, central nervous system adapt to the load;
  • developmental period (to improve their condition), shock period (strength, power);
  • When the body is recovering from the stress you put it before by building weights, the recovery period.

It will not be superfluous to cultivate the habit of walking from 15,000 steps a day because only non-training activity contributes to a good metabolism and the same weight loss. It is better to refuse cardio training to lose weight because, after 35 years, women are actively losing muscle mass. And if you want to walk along the beach in a bikini, and not in a pareo, the emphasis should be on clean nutrition and muscle development, and not losing weight to the state of a deflated ball.

45 years

After 45 years, you need to forget about sugar in food and drinks altogether. With age, the metabolic rate decreases, the level of sex hormones decreases, and a deficiency of thyroid hormones is added (the so-called subclinical hypothyroidism). You cannot continue to eat chocolates and rolls and hope that growth hormone (somatotropic hormone) will burn everything itself, as in 18 years.

What to do?

Stop tormenting yourself with endless diets, which, apart from breakdowns, stress, a bad mood, and even greater weight return by the boomerang effect, do nothing. Make it a rule to be active for at least 30 minutes a day and add strength training. Then you will be able to bypass the standard situation when a woman over 45 years old with proper clean nutrition and adequate physical activity cannot lose weight – it does not work just because of the provoked deficiency of various hormones, which will have to be corrected only with the help of a medical examination and a selected treatment.

Recommended workouts for this age should include exercises with a foam roller, develop and maintain the internal block (core muscles – a group of deep muscles that provide fixation of the spine), exercises to mobilize the cervical, thoracic, lumbar spine and develop its optimal flexibility. After 45 years, you also need to train large joints’ mobility, develop the muscles of the back and hips, and work with rotational movements. And do not forget about the essential thing – walk 15,000 steps a day.

55 +

After 55 years, the body’s maximum aerobic capacity decreases, the level of efficiency and endurance decreases, and the rate of recovery after training slows down. Bones become fragile, and movement slows down due to lack of mobility in the joints. And the most unpleasant thing is that muscle fibers’ function decreases and their mass and strength decrease.

What to do?

It is necessary to carry out strength training to maintain the work of skeletal muscles, increase or maintain mobility in joints, work on strength and endurance of muscles, introduce breathing and relaxation exercises, do stretching to improve flexibility, develop stability and coordination in various positions (sitting, standing, walking ).

You should not neglect aerobics, Pilates, or strength training. Still, it is highly desirable to conduct an initial fitness test to understand physical fitness and what aspect should be emphasized. Need to limit:

  • sudden changes in body position and movement;
  • strong slopes;
  • exercises with a heavy load on the articular-ligamentous apparatus;
  • racks on the head, hands;
  • bending;
  • prolonged static;
  • run;
  • group yoga, which does not consider the individual characteristics of the musculoskeletal system’s state.

Your training program should include exercises such as raises from a chair, squats against a wall, raises on socks, throwing a medicine ball, Pilates. Also, put a particular emphasis on training for women over 55 years of age on developing balance. With age, we all know-how, falls occur more often, are destructive, and after them, the body is more difficult to recover.

Super Intense Short Workouts: Effective or Not Very Effective?

Photo: Anon Krudsumlit / EyeEm / Getty

A set of exercises lasting four minutes helps to build muscle mass, maintain muscle tone and even promote rejuvenation, according to American physiologists. We figure out whether this is true.

What is “training for the lazy”?

From the very beginning, a catch awaits all lazy athletes. The authors of the course warn: you will have to study not four minutes a day, but at least 12. The effect of classes can be obtained starting with three approaches.

It is worth noting that some of these doctor’s methods, who also practice alternative medicine, are controversial by the American “Wikipedia.”

Then there are three hand exercises: lifting 90 degrees, lifting, and also circular movements. Each task must be repeated ten times, and then, without stopping, start the cycle anew. And so for four minutes. At first, it is recommended to do exercises without weights; then you can gradually add weight.

What is the use of a four-minute workout?

It is believed that such a course can motivate even the laziest to get off the couch. The authors also claim that exercise helps release nitric oxide, causing blood vessels to stretch and dilate. It helps lower blood pressure. As a result, the risk of blood clots decreases, the immune function improves, and muscle growth begins.

For many, this formula sounds motivating, but it is not easy to maintain nitric oxide in the blood.

Photo: Jonathan Borba / Unsplash

How to maintain nitric oxide in the blood?

First of all, you should follow a diet and consume vegetables with a high content of nitrates (nitric acid salts): celery, beets, spinach, various types of salads, namely watercress, arugula, lettuce. Nitrates in vegetables do not harm the body but, on the contrary, help to restore nitric oxide.

However, these are unstable molecules that degrade rapidly in the bloodstream, so their levels must be maintained continuously. This can be done with antioxidants that prevent nitric oxide breakdown. The substance is found in the same vegetables and stimulated by physical activity.

According to a study supported by the Japanese government, nitric oxide production benefits can be seen after ten weeks with 30 minutes of training at least three times a week.

Photo: Andrew Tanglao / Unsplash

How much exercise do you need to stay fit?

According to the WHO recommendations, to be in good shape, a person aged 18–64 years should devote 150 minutes a week to moderate physical activity and train intensively for 75 minutes. Of course, it is necessary to allocate this time—for example, 20 minutes of brisk walking plus ten minutes of running.

In theory, if you combine intense short workouts of 12 minutes a day with other physical activity, it won’t get any worse. However, there are some subtleties here.

Expert comments

Alexandra Vanzhula,

-medical-gymnastics methodologist

“All people have different body types. This includes weight, sex, age, and even character – I mean mobility, energy, or, conversely, phlegm. Any question must be approached consciously and understand what exactly you are capable of. On the one hand, the recommendation to exercise at least a little every day sounds reasonable. On the other hand, it is not clear what results in such training will lead to different categories of people: a 20-year-old girl, a 30-year-old woman after giving birth, or a 70-year-old man. Plus, I am against regular squats for untrained people because they put a lot of stress on the knees. “

Vadim Balyuk,

-certified personal trainer and nutritionist. Specialization: recovery from injuries, preparation for stress, training of amateurs and athletes in running, hockey, and tennis. Experience in the fitness industry for over 15 years

“If a person has never done anything and any training is difficult for him in terms of strength, motivation, time or knowledge, any short activity will be more useful than nothing. What effect do short workouts have on the body? Tonic. A four-minute load activates the central nervous system, brings it into a state of readiness for reaction, attention, and action. Therefore, if a person falls asleep at the computer at the working day’s height, a short activity will bring him some benefit. More significant results should not be expected.

Building muscle mass implies stressful quality, sufficient muscle training, the correct phase of its nutrition, and subsequent recovery. The saying “Exercise, eat, sleep” accurately describes this multifactorial system. It would seem, what is not training three times a day for four minutes? No, the muscle needs quality stress. Growth requires a load that will not be maximum but close to maximum.

I note the plus of this system: the latest research on muscle growth shows a high probability of accumulation of the training effect during the day. That is if you want a gluteus maximus or biceps, like Schwarzenegger’s, but time is running out, make a couple of approaches in the morning, a couple in the afternoon, a couple in the evening. In a daily cycle, this will have a positive effect. However, in addition to sets of four minutes, you will need additional weight – weights.

Takeaway: You can train briefly and several times a day, but if you want to get more effect, don’t try to shorten the training time.

How much do you need to study? If we are talking about “quiet” goals (weight loss and increased fitness), three times a week for 60-90 minutes is enough. “