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6 Things You Must Do To Increase Muscle Size

Jan 26, 2008
If you have gotten to the point in your training where you want to actually start gaining weight by increasing muscle size, you have to take a lot of things into consideration. Nothing in personal training ever comes easy, but putting on muscle mass is especially tricky. If you want to make sure you keep progressing towards you goal of looking ripped, be sure you are following these basic guidelines.

1. Protein, Protein, Protein

Foods packed with protein are the building blocks of muscle growth. Yet a surprisingly large number of trainers get sufficient amounts of this vital macronutrient. Make sure you get protein in every one of your meals, aiming for around 1 to 1.5 pounds per pound of body weight. It shouldn't be too much more than that, though.

2. Don't Forget Your Fats

Fats aren't just what give fast food eaters big guts. They have a bunch of different essential functions in the body. One of which is the maintenance of testosterone levels. If you testosterone drops too low, you are going to have a much more difficult time getting the body you want. Try to make the majority of the fats you eat the "healthy" kind, like polyunsaturated and monounsaturated. You can get these by eating fish, olive oil, avocado, and certain kinds of nuts

3. Pay Attention to Your Calories

Large muscles need a lot of calories to maintain. If you were trying to lose fat before, you might have to adjust your thinking about caloric intake. A lot of people who are frustrated with their progress simply need to eat more.

4. Get Smart About Cardio

Cardio is essential for any good fitness program. Besides giving you physical endurance, it also burns fat, which helps give you that "cut" look. But you are already lean, you risk letting your cardio burn your muscle as well as your fat if you do it too often and too heavily. Still make sure cardio is a part of your fitness routine, but consider cutting back if your main goal is building muscle.

5. Make sure you are progressing

Doing the same exercises with the same weight every week will just keep you where you are. Instead, throw a workout that isn't a normal part of your routine every once in a while. It will work your muscles in different ways, which will encourage them to grow. Also make sure your weights are steadily increasing. This can be tricky, as you don't want to add weight too soon or too late, but steady progress is a must for continuous muscle growth.

6. Sleep

This one is unfortunately neglected most often. It can be tough to do everything you need to do during the day, plus train, plus get a solid eight hours every night. But if you want to make the most of your training time, you need make sure you body has adequate time to recover and grow muscles. Try experimenting with your daily schedule to see what you can do to sleep more. Even and extra hour or half and hour can help you get larger muscles, faster.
About the Author
Chris McCombs and his team are known as the Personal Trainers Orange County. Chris owns Positively Fit Inc. which helps people all over Orange County lose fat and get the body they want. You can learn more about Chris at http://www.socalworkout.com
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