Who doesn’t like a toned body with well-defined muscles that help you look good in everything? Plus, muscles aren’t just for show; they help regulate blood sugar, keep the bones and joints healthy, and provide you with energy throughout the day (among other benefits).
However, it’s not that easy to bulk up. Heck, it’s not even easy to get a toned body with some muscular definition!
To reach your muscle-building goals, you need to understand how the muscle tissue behaves under stress and what makes it grow. Next, you need to know how to maintain any growth you’ve reached and how to be patient in the process.
A quick word of caution – muscle-building is a process, and even though you can do a few things to speed things up, nothing is going to work overnight!
On the other hand, if you follow all the steps, time will pass by a lot faster and you’ll start seeing incredible results. Today we’ll talk about how muscles work and how to get to your dream body shape.
How Do You Get Muscles?
The main way of getting strong and big muscles is through exercise. However, the exercise needs to be intense enough to injure your muscle fibers. That’s why weightlifting is the most recommended method for muscle building.
When the fibers get injured, this triggers a body’s natural mechanism that kicks in and helps create new fibers. As the process continues, the muscles grow in size and strength until they reach their full potential.
Plus, there are a couple of hormones that also help with muscle growth by making sure the cells in charge with the repair reach the right spot and by managing overall growth. For instance, resistance training triggers the release of growth hormone which puts the metabolism to work and helps turn amino acids into protein which are used by the muscles.
That’s why the products designed to support your efforts contain essential supplements for muscle gain. If taken correctly, these promote growth and help reduce fatigue and soreness
How to Build Up Your Muscles?
Luckily, you don’t have to sleep at the gym to get contoured muscles! However, it’s important to understand how to work out, which exercises are the most efficient for you, and how to integrate rest into your program.
With the right type of exercise, you only need two or three rounds of 20 to 30 minutes per week in order to see results. However, as you get used to the intensity and duration of the exercises, you’ll need to switch up and build your own routine.
Here are some of the exercises you can include in your routine (after your warmup):
- Pushups, squats, lunges (these are exercises that only work with your body weight and are great for beginners)
- Exercises with free weights (dumbells or anything you have around the house)
- Resistance band
- Working on a stationary weight machine
Each set should have about 15 repetitions in a row. Take breaks in between sets (about 1 minute) and complete as many sets as you can without injuring yourself. If you want to see some sign of progress, keep track of how many sets you’re doing. If there’s an increase, it means you’re getting stronger.
Quick tip: when choosing your weights, don’t go for the heaviest or the lightest! Choose the ones that make you feel that nice burn after one set of repetitions.
Muscle growth is affected by a wide range of factors, but anyone can get stronger. Furthermore, if you don’t like the gym, there are other ways to work out and feel good about yourself. So keep active and consistent in your efforts!
*Photos by Sandra Seitamaa