It’s estimated that about 40 to 60 percent of all bodybuilders use steroids to some degree. It can help push along your weight-lifting career, but the side effects aren’t worth it in many cases.
There are more natural ways to go about building muscle mass. Protein is your friend. You’ve got to change up your diet to include more of it. It’s also recommended to eat several small snacks during the day on top of eating your three big meals.
When it comes to exercise, go big or go home, and don’t forget to take rest days.
These are only a few tips to keep in mind. Check out this guide to learn more about bulking muscles.
Protein Is Your Friend
When you exercise, you tear your muscles apart. They repair themselves and bounce back stronger than before. This is the essence of bodybuilding.
Until your muscles heal, your entire body will be sore. That’s why you need protein.
Protein contains the amino acids that are vital for muscle repair. It also stimulates further muscle growth.
This isn’t to say that you should eat a steak every night. Consume lean proteins like chicken, fish, eggs, nuts, seeds, legumes, yogurt, and hummus.
If you find that you’re not getting enough protein from your diet, protein powder and supplements are always an option. There are many deer antler velvet benefits for bodybuilders.
Carbs Are Important Too
While protein is important for building muscle mass, consuming carbs is almost as crucial.
By eating healthy carbs like rice, bread, pasta, oats, and potatoes, you increase the levels of glycogen in your body. That will give you more energy, which means you’ll be able to go harder in the gym.
Eating carbs after your workout will increase your body’s insulin levels and prevent it from breaking down protein as quickly.
Eat Several Smaller Meals
When it comes to staying in optimal health as a bodybuilder, eating is your bread and butter. Treat it like it’s your job because it kind of is.
Understandably, you’re busy, but eating one large meal isn’t going to be enough. You’ve got to have a hearty breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
On top of working the big three into your schedule, you should also eat several smaller meals. Keep a few snacks on you at all times. That will ensure your body is getting the nutrients it needs for muscle growth and recovery.
Go Big or Go Home
If you’re going to build muscle, don’t spend your entire time in the gym doing bicep curls. Sticking to one type of exercise isn’t enough to give your body the challenge that it needs.
On top of your regular curls, do squats, pull-ups, deadlifts, and bench presses. These exercises will stimulate multiple muscle groups and help you maximize your gains.
Whatever routine you decide to go with, make sure all your muscle groups are getting the attention they need at least twice a week.
Cut Down on Your Cardio
You need to consume calories to build muscle. Since doing cardio burns calories off, it’s sort of counterproductive to your goals.
This being said, you still need to do some cardio, but only spend one gym day on the treadmill. That will help you bulk up while still staying heart-healthy.
Have a Shake Before You Work Out
Again, as a bodybuilder, protein is going to be your best friend. One of the best sources is a protein shake that contains a single scoop of whey powder.
Make sure that you drink your shake before you hit the gym. It will increase protein synthesis throughout your body.
If you find that the protein shake is too gross to stomach through, eat a sandwich. As long as it contains deli turkey, American cheese, and wheat bread, it will have the same effect. Your body won’t be able to process it as fast as it does the liquid, but it’s better than nothing.
Take Rest Days
You should do some kind of exercise every day, but that doesn’t mean you always have to go as hard as possible. If you do two intense sessions back to back, your body will have no time to recover.
You want to feel pumped after your time in the gym. If you wear yourself out too much, you’ll end up skipping days, which will halt your progress.
Limit your brutal gym trips to three times a week. For the rest of the week, work on your target areas, but take things easy.
Get Some Sleep
As you sleep, your body spends time repairing itself. During the night, it also releases muscle-building hormones.
You should aim for at least 6 hours of sleep every night. Getting 8 is ideal, but depending on what kind of schedule you have, that might not be possible for you.
If you have some trouble getting to sleep every night, try buying a pair of black-out curtains. Dark and cool rooms are the most ideal for resting.
You should also attempt to go to bed at the same time every night, and don’t scroll through your phone when it’s time to hit the hay. Electronics give off blue light that can disrupt your sleep patterns.
Methods for Building Muscle Mass
There are many methods for building muscle mass that doesn’t involve steroids. The simple acts of planning your exercises, sleeping, getting enough carbs and protein, and taking rest days will go a long way.
For more bodybuilding tips and tricks, visit the Lifestyle section of our blog.
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