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How To Start A Muscle Building Program

Mar 15, 2008
Beginning a muscle building program can be a little confusing, since there's so much information out there. There are so many opinions floating around and most of them come from people who are not even qualified to give you advice.

So if you're just starting out yourself, you really want to take the time to learn how to weight train and work out correctly. If not, you'll have to "undo" alot of stuff you've done. So, no matter what you do, learn correctly the first time.

I feel that one of the main factors people don't stick with their muscle building routine is a lack of guidance in the beginning. They have no idea where to begin, so they get discouraged before they give themselves a chance to see results.

You need to have some basic understandings about how to work out and build muscle in general. This will make your time in the gym more productive and enjoyable.

In order to build muscle and lose fat, you need a combination of weight training, nutritional planning, and cardio.

Let's take a look at the role each of these plays in your physique development.

Weight Training

Weight training is the stimulus for building muscle. By overloading the muscle with resistance, you send a signal to your muscle to get bigger and stronger to handle the load that's been placed on it.

When you lift a heavier weight, over time, your body adapts to this by increasing the amount of muscle mass you have.

But weight training is only the first step you need to complete to maximize your results.

Proper nutrition

Good nutrition is extremely important when getting started on a workout program. You can have the most intense muscle building workouts you've ever had, but if you don't have good nutrition, you'll only see a fraction of the results.

You need to supply your body with the fuel it needs to respond and grow from weight training. You need protein and carbs in order to refuel your muscles after training. You also need quality, healthy fats for cell regeneration and organ protection.


Cardio is important for getting lean as well as for your overall health. Cardio helps in reducing body fat because it helps you expend more calories than you consume.

Your body burns excess fat to be used as energy throughout the day. So, by eating clean and doing cardio, you create a calorie shortage in which fat is burned.

Start your muscle building program by working out 3 days per week and training each muscle group 1 time per week. It isn't a good idea to start a weight training program by going to the gym 7 days a week. This can lead to overtraining and stopping all your chances of building muscle.

Use higher reps and lighter weights so you get accustomed to the exercises and the weight you should be using. Start slow and build a strong foundation here.

If you're doing the exercises wrong, you're going to have to change a lot later on, so start with light weight and learn how to do each exercise correctly. You can always add more weight later.

There's no need to kill yourself in the gym right now, you'll have plenty of time to increase the weight and intensity as you continue.

Before you perform your first exercises, you need to warm up by doing 3 or 4 warm ups where you use a heavier weight but don't tire the muscle. Once you feel ready, do 2 heavy sets with as much weight as you can comfortably handle for 8 to 10 reps.

Again, you want to start your program with lighter weights, so you can learn the form. From here, you can increase the weight over time.

Only train 2 muscle groups each time, doing 2 to 3 exercises for each muscle group. Your total time spent on your muscle building program each workout should be under 1 hour. Don't think that more time spent is better. It's the quality of the time that matters.

This is how you want to set up your muscle building program to start. From here, your main goal is to get stronger on each exercise. Increase the amount of weight and intensity you use and you'll soon start building more muscle than you ever thought possible.
About the Author
Want a step by step guide to build muscle and increase your strength? Check out trainer Shawn Lebrun's "The Beginner's Guide To Weight Lifting And Bodybuilding" Beginners Guide To Building Muscle
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