Strategies for Fast Muscle Gain - Total Body Workouts
Many guys that are trying to gain muscle start out with a lot of enthusiasm, which is good. However it's the "long haul" that is going to get to your destination, meaning you have to be very consistent to see any gains. Here are a few strategies for making fast muscle gains when you start out as a new bodybuilder.
Depending on your body type, you be either working hard to keep the fat off or just trying to put any weight on because you are skinny. I myself struggled for a long time with being skinny, and came to realize that increasing my caloric intake drastically was the answer for putting on some weight. However, if you want to put on lean muscle mass you really have to be strict - not only in your workout regimen but also in your diet. Depending on who you listen to, they are about a 50/50 split as to importance.
If you a beginner, don't listen to the "big boys" if they are saying to copy them. In the beginning you want to do a whole body routine, or maybe a 2-way body split routine, rather than the complex split-routines most advanced guys use. The reason for this is you need to build up your strength first to a level that allows you to do more advanced stuff, at first your body isn't ready for it. For a good whole body routine, follow something like this:
Chest/Shoulders - Bench Press, Pushups, Dips, Shoulder press
Back - Bent-over Rows, Pull-ups, Pull-downs, Machine rows
Legs - Squats, Leg press, Lunges with weight
Overall - Try doing deadlifts. Difficult at first, but worth it
These are some basic, compound movement exercises that are working many muscles at once and are more intense than most other exercises. Try starting out with two exercises from each group above, and do about 4-5 sets of 10-12 repetitions each. If you do too much at once, you will burn out fast from overtraining. Be focused, intense in your workouts, and don't take long breaks between sets. To start out you will be wiped out from doing even 3 sets of 10-12 exercises (don't do them all each day) and this is good. Working intensely will boost your testosterone level tremendously, which helps muscle growth more than anything. Keep working out by switching the exercises every other day so your body doesn't get too accustomed to them. Rotating your workout schedule is good, but you should workout at least 3 times a week to make good, solid gains. Being consistent is the key!
I would be not be doing this routine justice if I didn't add a few words on diet, since that is the other 50% of the whole process of gaining muscle. Many guys hear that you need to eat a ton of protein, so that's ALL they from then on. This is bad, since your body can't survive without carbohydrates. You should eat a balanced diet, but if you are working out hard simply increase your protein intake to about 1-2 grams per pound of bodyweight. Don't eat junk food, it will only kill any attempts at building muscle! If you want to build muscle fast, you must stick to a healthy diet, maintain a regular workout schedule, and keep the intensity up as much as possible.
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