Work Your Entire Body
Avoid isolation exercises which work very little muscle. A few examples include dumbbell fly’s, triceps extensions, and cable movements.
You should focus on exercises that work large amounts of muscle, know as compound movements. Stick to free weights and include exercises like Dead Li!s, Squats, Rows, and Chinups in your routine.
Lift Heavy Weights
You need to challenge yourself in the gym to build strength and muscle. Each week you should try to add a little more weight to your exercises or complete more reps. A good rule of the thumb is to work within 80% of your 1 rep max. For example, if your one rep max for bench press is 180 pounds, you would use 144 pounds. Keep your rep range low like 6 to 10. If you can easily crank out more than 10 reps you’re not lifting heavy enough.
Proper nutrition is o!en overlooked by a lot of guys who want to gain weight. This is a big mistake you don’t want to make. One of the most important components to gaining weight & muscle is eating more
calories than you’re burning. You can train all day, but if your not eating enough you won’t support muscle growth. Typically, skinny guys are notorious under-eaters. They over estimate their caloric intake, resulting in little to no weight gained.
Q:How do you know how many daily calories you need?
Answer: Take your current bodyweight and multiply by 18 – 20. This is a good starting point.
Increase Your Protein Intake
Protein plays an important role in repairing and building new muscle. When you strength train you’re breaking down muscle tissue with the hope they will repair and grow bigger. But without sufficient protein your missing they key nutrient responsible for building lean muscle and burning fat. As a guideline you should eat a minimum of 1g protein per pound of body weight. So if you weigh 160 pounds you should be getting at least 160g of protein daily.
Staying hydrated improves your performance & decreases fatigue. A study determined that muscle cells actually grow faster when they’re well hydrated. As general rule of thumb drink at least a gallon of water over the course of your day.
It can difficult to consume the amount of calories required to build muscle as whole food meals. Thankfully, protein and meal replacement shakes make a super simple and convenient way to add quality calories to bump up your daily requirements.
Include calorie-dense ingredients in your shakes such as:
Natural Peanut Butter
Get Some Sleep
Getting enough sleep each night is essential to building muscle. You produce growth hormone when you sleep, which in turns builds bigger muscles, promotes fat loss, reduces fat storage and supports your immune system. If you aren’t sleeping enough each night, it’s going to dramatically impact your progress. Aim for at least eight hours of ever night, nine if you can.
Longer Rest Periods
Because you’re li!ing heavy weights, rest long enough between sets to regain your strength. Two-to-three minute rest periods between sets works well. Don’t rush it. If you force yourself to perform another set before you’ve recovered, you’ll struggle resulting in slow progress. You can use a stop watch to make sure you’re getting enough rest between sets.
Play Fewer Sports
Often times you must prioritize your activities when your main goal is weight gain. Most endurance sports like basketball will burn loads of calories and hinder your recovery, two
things you don’t want when bulking up. Try limiting yourself to low or moderate intensity cardio for 20-to-30 minutes. Two or three cardio sessions per week will keep your heart healthy. But if you’re struggling to gain weight, you might consider backing off your cardio routine and re-assessing.
Building muscle takes time, consistency and hard work. Adopt the mind set that training for size and strength isn’t a sprint, but a marathon. Every training session you complete builds upon the previous one. If you hit a plateau and your gains are stalled, eat more, lift heavier, and don’t give up!