We all know that 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity physical activity is one of the keys to good health. But what if you want to take it further than that? If you’re interested in making major improvements to your appearance as well as your health, there’s no better option than bodybuilding. Now, there’s no magic solution that will give you your dream body overnight, but if you know a few bodybuilding tips, you can better results in less time. And it’s not as complicated as you might think! This bodybuilding guide will help you learn everything you need to know about building your best body, all you have to do is keep reading.
Table of Contents
Focus on the Big Five
A well-stocked gym is a veritable playground for fitness enthusiasts. It’s full of all sorts of complex machines with the ability to target even the smallest, most specific muscle. But when your goal is to build mass, there’s no need to spend time on single-joint movements and isolation exercises.
There are only a few workouts that deserve the bulk of your attention, and they are known as the big five of weightlifting. These exercises include squat, deadlift, bench press, overhead press, and barbell row.
All five of these exercises are multijoint, or compound lifts. They engage all of your major muscle groups and, because of that, enable you to maximize your results.
Though the fancy machines can be enticing, it’s better to stick to free weights (dumbbells and barbells) when it comes to building muscle mass.
Form Always Comes First
Now that you know the lifts that you should focus on, let’s talk about form. Without proper form, you’ll not only increase your risk of injury but will delay your results as well. Yes, perfecting your form takes time, but far less time than recovering from an injury resulting from improper lifting technique, such as a rotator cuff tear.
As we mentioned above, compound lifts are the most effective; however, they’re also more difficult to master than single-joint movements. Because of this, it’s a good idea to practice your form in front of a mirror or with a personal trainer before attempting to move any serious weight.
Start with the lightest weight possible. Once you feel comfortable with the motion required for each exercise, you can begin adding the weight necessary to make it a challenge.
Each exercise is different, but there are a few main points to remember as you lift.
First, keeping your spine in alignment is of the utmost importance. Your back should always be straight, with your ears in line with your shoulders. For most lifts, your feet should be shoulder-width apart and you have to be careful not to lock your knees, as this can lead to fainting and injury.
Make a Plan and Stick to It
Going into a workout without a plan is a recipe for disaster. Whether you’re doing a home workout or going to the gym, you should have a plan in mind. Write down your exercises for the day, as well as how many sets and reps you’ll do of each, and follow your own instructions once you get started.
If you’re unsure of the best route to take with your workouts, don’t be afraid to reach out to a personal trainer or an experienced bodybuilder for advice. They can help get you off on the right foot, ready to carry on by yourself for the remainder of your bodybuilding journey.
We’ve all been there before. You find a routine that works for you, you’re feeling good and making progress. But after a while, your results begin to dwindle and suddenly you’ve hit a plateau.
Having a routine is great, but it’s essential that you don’t allow yourself to fall into a rut. To do so, use the principle of progressive overload. This might sound complex, but it simply means to increase the challenge to your muscles over time.
There are several different options to do this. You can, of course, increase the amount of weight you’re lifting, but you can also increase your reps, adjust your lifting speed, or shorten your rest periods between sets.
The key with progressive overload is to take your time. Don’t try to jump in intensity too quickly, or you’ll risk feeling discouraged or injuring yourself. By increasing the difficulty of your weightlifting routine little by little, your efforts will be more effective in the long run.
Another way to avoid feelings of discouragement is to keep a log of your progress. Write down how much you lift and how many reps and sets you complete of each exercise every day. Once a week or so, take measurements of your muscles as well.
In doing so, you can look back and see your results in writing, reminding yourself that you are making progress, even when it feels like you aren’t.
Know Your Limits
As important as it is to push yourself and increase the intensity of your workouts to see better results, it’s even more crucial to know your limits. The perfect bodybuilding routine is one that challenges you without pushing you beyond your breaking point.
If you feel pain at any point during your workout, stop immediately. You should also avoid lifting to absolute failure. As we’ve already mentioned, the importance of form cannot be overstated. If you’re lifting to absolute failure and sacrificing form, chances are, you’re going to get injured.
You should always have a rep or two left in the tank when you finish a particular exercise. And if you’re trying to test your max, lift to technical failure instead. This means you can’t do another rep without losing good form.
Make Improvements to Your Diet
In order to build mass and strength, you’re going to have to gain weight. This means your body needs to be in a positive energy balance: you’re taking in more calories than you’re burning.
And while any source of calories can technically help you do this, the quality of your calories matters if you want the best results possible. For example, eating a large number of cookies and cakes will give you a lot of calories. But you’re probably going to gain more fat than you’d like.
The goal here is to gain as much clean muscle as possible, meaning that your diet needs to be as clean as possible as well. You don’t have to dive too deep into macronutrients and get scientific with your diet, but it’s wise to at least familiarize yourself with protein.
A good rule of thumb is to consume 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per pound of your body weight. So if you weigh 150 pounds, you want to aim for 150-225 grams of protein per day.
Aside from protein, the bulk of your diet should be made up of plenty of fruits and vegetables, as well as healthy fats and carbohydrates. Despite what certain fitness programs will tell you, fat isn’t your enemy. If you should avoid anything, it’s sugar and highly processed foods.
Let’s be honest, consuming hundreds of grams of protein a day can be hard work. But this is why protein supplements exist! Mixing some protein powder into your post-workout shake is a fantastic way to get an extra boost of protein in your diet.
There is a wide variety of protein supplements on the market, from whey protein to plan protein. Do your research to decide which is best for you and your preferences.
Regardless of the option you choose, 20-25 grams of protein added to your shake will do the trick. This is just enough to give your body what it needs for optimal muscle repair and growth.
On top of protein, you could buy sarms to take your muscle-building potential up a notch. Once again, however, remember that research is key to choosing a product that you feel comfortable with.
And for the best results, your own research isn’t enough. Before you introduce any supplements into your diet, it’s extremely important that you consult your physician. Just because something has fantastic reviews doesn’t mean that it’s the best choice for you and your body.
Many workout supplements are harmless in most situations but can react badly with certain prescription medications and underlying conditions. Getting the green light from your doctor beforehand is a great step toward protecting yourself and your health.
Get Plenty of Rest
You have a weightlifting plan and you’re excited to start so you can begin to see results. Intuitively, it might seem like the more exercise you do, the better your results. But this is actually a common mistake made by beginners and experienced lifters alike.
In reality, one of the best bodybuilding fitness tips we can give you is to take your rest seriously. This means working out smarter, not harder, and ensuring that your sleep schedule is as close to perfect as it can be.
Work Smarter, Not Harder
In other words, don’t train every day. This will set you back on the road to your goals and can lead to an injury that will prevent you from training for weeks, even months.
Your training program should include 3 or 4 workouts per week. There should be some movement in between, such as some light cardio exercises, but your days off should be for rest and recovery.
As long as you’re training every major muscle group every week, you’ll see results. This is why the big five are so helpful – you’ll hit every major muscle group without much effort.
Assuming you’re of working age (between the ages of 18 and 65), you need 7-9 hours of high-quality sleep per night. Now, you might be thinking, what does this have to do with bodybuilding advice? Well, the answer is simple: everything!
Don’t let that post-workout pump fool you. You do not build muscle while you’re working out. The increase in muscle size directly after exercise is the result of an increase in blood flow to the body parts targeted during your workout.
As you go through your weightlifting routine, your muscles are actually torn apart. It’s when you’re sleeping that your body goes to work rebuilding the affected muscles, making them bigger and stronger than before.
And the better sleep you get, the more efficient your body will be with this process. If you aren’t sleeping enough or your sleep is poor quality, your body won’t be able to devote the energy necessary to building muscle.
Getting exercise should improve your sleep quality, but if that’s not enough, there are a few other things you can try. Aim to sleep during the same window every day; for example, 10 pm to 6 am. Yes, even on the weekends! Regulating your circadian rhythm can do wonders for your quality of sleep.
You should also have a calming nighttime routine to help get your body in sleep mode. Put the screens away an hour or so before bed and focus on soothing activities such as reading, yoga, or self-care instead.
Use These Bodybuilding Tips to Get Your Dream Body
Anytime you’re researching fitness advice, keep in mind that the fitness industry is worth almost 100 billion dollars for a reason. You’re going to see all sorts of expensive products promising stunning results in virtually no time. But the vast majority of these products aren’t worth your money.
Instead, keep it simple. Using these bodybuilding tips will give you better, longer-lasting results. Remember, your health should always come first. Take things slow and be patient with yourself, the results will be worth it!
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