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Building muscle takes a lot of hard work, time, and patience. Unfortunately it won’t happen overnight, and it most likely won’t happen without a plan. So if you’ve been trying to build muscle but haven’t see a lot of success, then keep reading. Or if you would like to start focusing on building muscle but aren’t sure what to do, then this is also for you. Here are my top tips for how to build muscle and get stronger in the gym.
Have a Workout Plan
Building muscle requires you to have a thorough strength training program. You want a program that hits all of the major muscle groups: chest, back, legs, shoulders, biceps, triceps, and abdominals. You also need to make sure that you choose an appropriate weight to lift and the right rep and set range based on your goal. I wrote an entire article about different set and reps ranges that you can read HERE.
If you want to build muscle, you’ll want to make sure you’re working in the 8-12 rep range. However if you want to build strength you will also want to incorporate some lifts in the 1-5 rep range. So then what about if you want to do both? If you’d like to build muscle and strength, then incorporate both rep ranges into your workouts. For example choose one or two big exercises to do in the 1-5 rep range, and then do your remaining exercises in the 8-12 rep range. However if you are a beginner to weight lifting, I highly recommend working in the 8-12 rep range for a while. When you do less reps, it means you’ll be lifting heavier weights, which can put you at risk for injury if you’re not proficient with the exercise yet.
Check out my FREE Beginner’s Weight Lifting Program here.
Have a Nutrition Plan
If you’re trying to build muscle, then you need to make sure you’re eating enough calories to support this. Oftentimes I see a lot of people wasting their time in the gym because their diets aren’t supporting their goals. Gaining muscle requires eating in a surplus. Basically you can’t be on cutting your calories and expect to see any muscle growth. This is really important to understand, because if your goal is to lose weight, then you’ll want to focus on goal first before you focus on gaining muscle.
Not only do you need to be eating an excess of calories, you also need to make sure that you’re eating enough protein for your size and activity level. The research is really split on how much protein people should be consuming. However typically it all agrees on somewhere between .5-1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight. This means that a 200lb person needs to eat anywhere from 100-200 grams of protein each day. If you need help deciding exactly how much protein is right for you, then check out my one-time custom macro offering and let me take the guesswork out of it!
Putting it All Together
If you’re ready to get serious and starting working towards gaining muscle, then I would start by putting together your nutrition and workout plan. If you’re an experienced exerciser, then you might be able to write your own workout plan. Make sure to be strength training at least 3x a week to see the best results. And also make sure to never train the same muscle group two days in a row. Your body needs a chance to recover and get stronger.
If you need help putting together a workout plan, check out my Lean Strength Program. It’s a 4 week workout guide that focuses on building muscle. I can also help you figure out the right nutrition plan for you. Check out my different macro coaching offerings to see which one is best for you.
Once you have a plan it place, it’s time to get to work! Stay patient, as building muscle takes a long time. So don’t expect overnight results. However if you work hard, you will start to see some results within a few weeks!