Bodybuilders are known to follow strict methods to bulk up. With the advancement in health and exercise knowledge and technology, some principles of bodybuilding were not able stand the test of science.
Change the reps
The belief was to do 8 to 12 reps for maximum muscle growth. Research shows that mixing it up is more effective. You can do low, medium, or high combinations, such as 3 to 5, 6 to 14, and 15 to 21 respectively.
Working out the body parts
The old rule was to focus on one muscle group once a week. For example, shoulders today, chest tomorrow, back next, and so on. To gain greater size however, you better work the same muscle three times a week. You can focus on two or three muscle groups each time you go to the gym to maximize your time.
People would often advice about performing a set until failure, or until you can no longer lift the barbell, for example. Now, overtraining is prevented by having specific number of sets a person is comfortable with.
Before, people would do cardio exercises on an empty stomach, thinking it burns more fat. The truth is, the body will burn the same amount of fat, whether the person has fed or fasted. You can eat something light one hour before going to the gym because it will give you energy and prevent you from quickly experiencing fatigue.
Eat at least six meals a day to get ripped was the old saying. As long as you reach your calorie and protein goals however, it doesn’t matter if you only have three meals a day.
You would see a lot of people checking out the scale in the gym. That’s fine, of course, but bodybuilding is not about weight gain. It’s about adding lean muscle weight, which is light compared to fat. Therefore, the scale may not tell you what’s really happening. Have a regular weigh in, but in terms of evaluating success, the mirror will be more honest.
Myth of Muscle Soreness
Yes, it may mean you have achieved a higher level in your workout, but using it as a measurement tool should not be the case, since it’s unreliable most times. Think about the first time you hit the gym. Your arms or legs or hips became sore after one to two days (caused by small muscle fiber breaks), but that did not mean the workout was actually effective.
You’ll also notice that the more you hit the gym, the less soreness you experience. This means your body is getting stronger, and not because the workouts are becoming ineffective.
It’s Not All About the Program
There are tons of good programs out there. Fitness First, for example, has a lot of great programs, classes, and trainers. But if you don’t go there regularly, then you are only wasting your time. Get the results by performing the exercises with confidence, enthusiasm, and consistency.
If you are committed to reaching the results, then don’t skip out. Know the right exercises for your body type and keep doing it. Over time, you will gain enough experience that will allow you to discover the perfect program. Start with the basics and then level up after a while.
When More is Not Enough
More reps are not the way to go when building mass. To bulk up the shortest time possible, do shorter sessions with less reps, sets, and exercises. Choose heavy weights that you’re comfortable with, and then do few reps and short sets. If they’re heavy enough, you’ll get fatigued easily enough, anyway. Incredible results were seen by experts who stuck to a 4-6 rep range when lifting heavier weights and less exercise routines.
Training Longer Isn’t Necessarily Better
The key to achieving remarkable results are short and intense workouts. Others would spend two to three hours in the gym, but you can get the same or better results even if your stay is only for an hour. Of course, don’t waste time on unnecessary activities like watching T.V. or checking your phone or chatting with a friend. That whole hour needs to be spent working out, with little breaks in between. Do compound and complex exercises because they will hit different muscle groups simultaneously.
When it comes to health and bodybuilding, there is still so much to learn. There are tons of resources available online to help you learn about different techniques, postures, and effectiveness of different workouts.