Take a look in the mirror. Are you happy with the amount of muscle mass you have? Whether you want to add a few pounds of lean muscle or you want to get as big as Phil Heath, there’s no denying that muscle makes the body. Having a well-rounded body of lean muscle mass doesn’t just look good, it can offer a variety of other health benefits. Let’s take a look at the benefits of muscle, and the best way to grow in minimal time.
Why Is Muscle Mass Important?
Weight Management: The more lean muscle tissue you have, the more calories you’ll burn while at rest. The number isn’t staggeringly high, but every little bit counts when it comes to burning excess calories and avoiding weight gain.
Neuromuscular Communications: Do you remember how awkward your body felt during puberty? It’s like your upper body wanted to move one way, and your lower body another. Resistance training can help to strength the neuromuscular connections throughout your entire body, ensuring your upper and lower body work together while avoiding that awkward disconnected feeling.
Protects Your Organs: Muscle mass is an excellent protector for your vital organs. Think about a boxer or MMA fighter: In order to protect their lungs and kidneys from strikes, they need to build up their core muscles.
Muscle Building and the Numbers
If your goal is to build muscle mass, there are certain acute variables that you should follow. According to a relatively new study , it really depends on whether or not you are a beginner or experienced lifter.
Muscle Mass for Beginners
If you have little to no experience with weight training, researchers suggest beginning with a preparatory phase program for 4 to 8 weeks, followed by a volume-focused program. First, let’s define a 1RM as it will be used for the rest of article. 1RM is short for one-repetition maximum, or the maximum amount of weight that you can lift with perfect form one time.
Exercises should focus on full body workouts. Select 1 to 3 exercises per major muscle group (quadriceps, hamstrings, chest, back, and shoulders). Using 80% of your 1RM, you will perform 4 sets of 6 to 8 repetitions. In between sets, you’ll take a 1 to 2-minute break.
Once you complete the preparatory phase program for 4 to 8 weeks, you can safely switch over to the volume-focused program. You will split your workouts into two days of legs, back, and biceps, and two days of chest, shoulders, and triceps. Use 70% of your 1RM, and complete 4 sets of 10 to 12 repetitions. You’ll rest for only a minute in between sets.
Muscle Mass for Advanced:
If this isn’t your first rodeo with building muscle, or if you’ve completed both the preparatory and volume-focused programs, it’s time for the intensity-focused program.
Again, you will split your workouts into two days of legs, back, and biceps, and two days of chest, shoulders, and triceps. Use 90% of your 1RM, and complete 4 sets of 3 to 5 repetitions. You’ll rest for 3 minutes between sets. The extra rest time accounts for the higher intensity you’ll experience.
Have You Tried One of the Programs Listed?
Which program were you most successful with? How quickly did you gain muscle? Let us know in the comments below!
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