So, you have taken your New Year’s resolution seriously, and have been using your gym card daily for the last six months. You must already have seen the first results – your belly has started to shrink and you have started to become more muscular. But the results you have been expecting the most – the large, muscular arms and pecs and legs, that would make you more attractive – somehow fail to arrive. It has certainly been the case for me – one hour of workout six times a week, and besides losing some fat around my waist, my arms are not growing as they should. So, I started digging into forums and blogs, and I will now share the results with you.
1. Not enough rest
It might be surprising at first, but if you think of it, it makes sense. During training with weights your muscle suffers small tissue injuries. These injuries are healed while you rest – and the new tissue your body grows is responsible for your muscles to be stronger and bigger. If you don’t give your muscles enough time to recover, the results of your training will not be the ones you expect.
What to do: give your muscles enough time to recover. In my case, I do arms training twice a week, several days apart. Besides, it’s always a good idea to have at least one “lazy day” each week, to allow your muscles to relax. Take the time to walk, read, get your hands on the latest Royal Vegas promotions and leave training aside for the day.
2. Not enough nutrition
This is especially a problem for those trying to lose weight and build muscle mass at the same time (like yours truly, for example). As a famous fitness blog put it, “to put on size, you can’t eat salads all day”. Muscle growth needs energy – and to build a strong muscle mass you need a slight calorie surplus. Losing weight is about creating a calorie deficit in your body, while building muscle mass is about gaining weight, so…
What to do: don’t expect spectacular muscle growth while you are on a diet. When you reach your desired weight, change your diet to one that promotes muscle mass growth. Be sure to avoid unhealthy foods as much as possible, go easy on the carbs and choose protein rich meals instead.
3. You are doing it wrong
While workout is no rocket science, for the best results you have to do it right. There are rules regarding all exercises – full range of motion, no cheating, no overworking, no stress, and so on. Genetics also have a say in how much muscle you can put on your bones in a given timeframe – some people only need a few weeks to look like The Rock, others can work tirelessly for months and only show a slight improvement.
What to do: take time to research the exercises and learn to do them right. Be aware of your limits, don’t try to achieve more than you can. Be patient, keep working and keep track of your training – the results will surely appear.
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