Muscle Gain Truth
Lately I’ve been getting a large volume of questions with regards to the truth about muscle gain and I wanted to go over a few important concepts in this article to give you the fundamentals on this topic.
With that said, although this article may seem to be geared more towards men, the reality is that women can really also get a huge benefit from following these concepts because more lean muscle mass also means more calories burnt each day which leads to the most desirable of results.
Some of the questions you may be asking is if it’s possible for you to bulk and gain muscle while reducing body fat, or if it’s possible to gain serious muscle weight without working out ALL the time.
I really believe you’ll find the truth with muscle gain is more simple than what you’ve been lead to believe and I invite your feedback at the end of this article.
Muscle Gain Truth #1: High Protein Diet
Usually the number one thing I find with most of my clients is that their perceived notion of protein in their food intake is much higher than it actually is. Although a chicken breast may weigh more than a hundred or so grams, the amount of protein it usually contains is only about 20-30 grams.
Protein is absolutely essential to the truth of muscle gain because it provides your muscles with the amino acids they require to function at their best, repair from damages induced by exercise and of course grow.
So how much protein should you be consuming each day? Well there are a ton of variables to consider from your age, sex, and genetics to name a few but a rough estimate is anywhere from 1-3 grams per kilogram of body weight.
Thus, if you weigh 60kg you should be aiming for a good 120 grams of protein per day particularly if you want to gain muscle mass.
If this sounds like a lot, it actually is and why I recommend supplementing with whey protein powder and I even have my mom having a protein shake mid morning after her exercise session. She’s found it not only a great resource for gaining muscle but also reducing her overall body fat ratio.
My favorite tasting whey proteins are Optimum 100% Whey and Gaspari Nutrition Myofusion.
Muscle Gain Truth #2: Bulking and Reducing Fat
I believe one of my biggest muscle truth problems when I was a teen was that I thought I could gain muscle and reduce fat at the same time. Although this is not completely ridiculous, trying to do the two together at the same time is near impossible unless you are very gifted genetically or have the cleanest healthiest diet plan 7 days a week.
So what is the real truth?
Well the real truth is that even fitness competitors make sure their goals are clear when they are training. They go through several weeks of muscle bulking and then shift their objective to cutting for another several weeks thereafter. Let’s go a few more steps deeper…
Muscle gaining or bulking phases are most effective when your diet is full of carbohydrates, healthy fats and extra protein and water. Making sure you are providing your muscles with all the nutrients they can get from a variety of food sources along with 2 or 3 whey protein shakes a day will get the best results possible.
Instead of trying to do both at the same time take the pressure off and try to focus on one objective at a time.
Muscle Gain Truth #3: Warming Up & Flexibility Training
If you’re finding that you are still not getting the best results with the two above factors in place then you will want to take a good look at how much time you are spending warming up before your workout and how much time you are spending on your flexibility training afterwards.
So many of us always try and cut time by skipping this, but the truth is that in order for you to gain muscle you need to give the adequate time for your body to warm up through at least a 5 minute light cardio session.
Warming up is critical because it tells your body to start pumping blood faster to your muscles and deliver the appropriate nutrients and oxygen so that they can output maximum power. Maximum power is one of the most important elements in gaining muscle as our body needs this signal for continued growth.
And of course with this kind of intensity we need to balance it out with the other half – flexibility training. As you may have guessed stretching allows us to gain as much range of motion as possible and the greater the range of motion the greater our ability to exert force with different angles by our muscles. This directly results in a gain of muscle to compensate putting our limbs through the different angles.
If you doubt this then take a look at the physique of gymnasts…doesn’t get more well rounded than that!
Muscle Gain Truth: Conclusion
The topics discussed for muscle gain truth to be had may be just a reminder but if you put all three tips together you are going to maximize your body’s ability to gain muscle and increase your resting metabolism so when you are in your period of cutting and bringing definition to your abs it will be that much more feasible.
Have any questions or feedback about muscle gain truth? Be brave and leave a comment below…
This is an excellent article! Thanks for posting this, I have been wondering about this for a few weeks and has really cleared up some confusion for me.
What would you recommend doing for a warm up? Can drinking too much water cause problems when trying to bulk up?
Awesome really glad to hear that Walter, thanks for the feedback. With regards to warming up any cardio which gets you to a light sweat is good, treadmill, elliptical, jumping rope, etc. You may also want to reference this article – https://weightlossandtraining.com/warming-up-and-stretching
Not likely at all that drinking too much water can cause problems with bulking up, in fact it will most likely help!
Will doing too much cardio (i.e. running on a treadmill 4-5 times a week) stop the muscle gain?
Great question Alex and the unfortunate answer is most likely! Through experience I can say that a lot of cardio will definitely cut into your muscle gain, that is why it is a good strategy to focus on muscle building for a while and then go into a phase for cutting down fat. One strategy I can suggest for muscle gain is so with super high intense cardio with interval training. This will keep your cardio duration low and your muscle mass high.