5 Possible Reasons You Are Not Gaining Muscle Mass
You are here and read this post which probably means that you are working hard to build muscle but you gained just a little muscle mass and it suddenly stopped and you are now wondering why. There are some possible reasons that might explain to you why are you not gaining muscle mass even if you train hard and eat a lot.
1. You are not consuming enough calories
Probably the biggest reason why your muscles don't grow. If you don't consume enough calories you can't build any muscle. You need to feed your muscles with macronutrients to make your muscles to grow.
One of the reasons why are you not consuming enough calories can be that you are afraid of gaining body fat and you want have shredded body, but you should know that by eating clean and training hard in the gym it is very hard that you will gain body fat.
To support muscle growth your calories intake should be between 18 to 20 calories per pound of bodyweight. If you eat only clean food and you are doing resistance training you can't get fat believe me.
Check out the list of foods you should eat for muscle gains:
If it is hard for you to consume all the calories that your muscles need then you should try with Homemade Mass Gainers, check out recipes on this site:
2. You are following a wrong workout routine
To make your muscles to grow your workout routine is very important. Don't try workout programs created by professional bodybuilders because they are probably not designed for beginners. Also, don't follow 6 days a week workout routines or even workout routines in which you must train every day. With everyday training plan, only steroid users can make muscles, not beginners and natural lifters. You need to let your muscles to recover in order to grow.
You need a workout routine that is mostly consisting of compound exercises to hit more muscle groups on every workout. You should also know that some workout routine can work for someone but not for you. You need to try new workout routines every month until you find one that is really making your muscles to grow.
3. You don't consume enough protein or you are consuming mostly proteins
Either way, your muscles won't grow. Protein is the most important macronutrient for muscle growth and you need to consume a proper amount of it every day, even when you rest. More about proteins importance and best sources you can read in my another post:
One of the common mistakes that many beginning lifters make is that their diet consists of mostly protein foods and they don't consume enough carbs and fats. You need to consume twice more carbohydrates that protein and you don't have to avoid good fats.
4. Too much cardio
Doing too much cardio training while trying to build muscle mass is a very common mistake. You are wasting a lot of calories and you might be in caloric deficit. If you are looking to gain more muscle mass then you need to strictly focus on resistance training and eating a lot to be in caloric surplus and gain muscle mass fast. Of course, do some cardio here and there but you don't have to include cardio in every workout.
5. You don't rest enough
Training in gym stimulate your muscles to grow, but muscles grow while you are resting. HGH (human growth hormone) levels are highest while you sleep and lack of rest and sleep can cause higher cortisol levels, and you don't want that. Cortisol is a catabolic hormone that can break down muscle and it is also linked with stress.
You should also check out which supplements are best to support your muscle growth:
Top 5 Supplements for Muscle Mass Gain
Old School Bodybuilding Tips by Joe Weider - Build Muscle Mass Fast
|Joe Weider and Arnold Schwarzenegger|
If you are a Bodybuilding fan you probably heard of Joe Weider. If you didn't, then you shouldn't consider yourself a Bodybuilding or Fitness fan. Joe Weider is literally "The Father of Bodybuilding" and on the most famous fitness icons. He made Arnold Schwarzenegger famous by creating Mr. Olympia contest which is still very famous around the world. More about Joe Weider you can read in my post:
Joe Weider built his physique at the time when steroids didn't exist and supplements and fancy machine exercises were not popular. He was a real old school bodybuilder and his training tips were a great guide for many legends of bodybuilding.
The Weider Principles:
Larger muscle groups first, smaller muscle groups after
Start your workout by training larger muscle groups first, then train smaller ones. Larger muscle groups require more energy and it is better to do them while you are freshest. For example, if you are following a training routine with Chest and Triceps day, start your workout by training chest first then work on your triceps.
Don't make excuses!
I know that there are many busy people everywhere, but should make some time for yourself, for your own body. Joe Weider said that if you want to build a great physique you have to make exercising a priority. There are no excuses in life and there are no excuses in bodybuilding.
There are many reasons for stretching like increased flexibility, increased blood flow into muscles and relief of the stress caused by tight muscles. Stretching cold muscles can lead your muscle joints to injury, so warm up first before stretching.
It is better to feel good than to look good
It is true that Joe Weider was dedicated to encouraging people to achieve their physical ideal, but he was always saying that there is no need to risk your health to achieve better physique. As Joe Weider himself said, there is no point to having a primed physique if you don't have the health to enjoy it.
Whatever you are looking for, you won't find it in a pill
You can't achieve your fitness goals with any pill or with all supplements in the world. You have to work hard and take care of your nutrition. Supplements are only the addition to your diet plan.
Joe Weider's Exercising Tips for Muscle Building
Number of Sets - You don't have to always stick only with three to four sets, sometimes try doing 1 set of each exercise and perform at least 12 exercises for one muscle group.
Number of Reps - 8 - 12 reps is the best rep range for muscle growth, but sometimes try to shock your muscles by doing 100 reps for example. You need to shock your muscles sometimes in order to make them grow. Doing everything same on every workout won't get you far.
Exercise Choice - Alternate exercises in every workout, this one of the best solutions for muscle confusion.
Rest Period - Don't make long pauses between sets, and sometimes avoid them at all by doing drop sets and supersets.
Rep Speed - Try doing reps slower and make small pauses at contractions to increase the time under tension that will stimulate your muscle growth.
Joe Weider's main advice is not to stick with one routine, but to shock your muscles every time by changing rep range, the number of sets or rep speed. Confuse your muscles, they won't grow if you don't make them grow. Monotonous workout routine won't help you to build your muscles.
Top 5 Exercises You Should Do to Build a Bigger Chest
What most of the lifters want? Bigger pecs.That is the reason why many people in the gym working on their pecs on Monday, and chest day usually leads off the training week. In every gym across the world, Monday is known as the Chest Day on lifters' calendar.
What you need to know for building any muscle? Strength is the best shortcut for size. Focus more on doing barbell and dumbbell workouts and lift heavy weights. For more about building muscle mass read another article on this website:
You will need to know some basic principles for building muscle mass in order to build the bigger chest.
Also, it is very important not to work on your ego more than you work on your chest. You need to lift heavy weights but don't lift heavy weights with a bad form, that won't get you bigger chest, and you can also get yourself an injury. Focus on lifting with a rep range 8 - 12 and from 75% to 85% 1RM (Rep Maximum). What else you should know is that your chest grows when you rest, not when you train them. Don't train the same muscle more than twice a week because you don't let your muscles to recover and grow if you overtrain them.
EXERCISES YOU NEED TO DO TO BUILD BIGGER CHEST:
1. Barbell Bench Press
Most famous chest exercise and absolute king of all of them. Bench Press is the best exercise for building chest mass and also to increase strength. The bench press is also very dangerous exercise for shoulder joints so perform it with a proper form. Don't do bench pressing to your neck or with your elbows out, it is dangerous and it can probably lead to an injury.
2. Incline Dumbbell Fly
One of the best exercises for Upper Chest gains. By performing incline dumbbell presses and flyes you are targeting your upper pecs, which is very important for building a wider chest.
3. Incline Dumbbell Press
Doing Incline Bench Press with dumbbells allows you to increase your chest growth by stretching your pecs on the way down. You can't use as much weight as with barbell but it is a great exercise for building bigger and thicker chest.
4. Decline Barbell Press
Apart from Incline and Flat Presses, you should also perform Decline Bench Presses. Many fitness and bodybuilding recommend doing decline presses for better chest development and to focus on the lower portion of the chest.
5. Clap Push-Up
Recently I added this exercise to my training routine and I recommend it to everyone as the last exercise on a Chest Day. It is the best exercise that you can do without the weights for bigger chest and also to improve your bench press.
Use those 5 exercises in your Chest Workout Routine and you will see how your chest grows more every week. Also, eat a lot of healthy foods to fuel your muscles for growth and give your chest time to rest. That is a great rhyme, isn't it? Check out the list of foods you should eat to build muscle mass:
How to Gain Muscle Mass Fast - Tips for Beginners and Skinny Guys
Many skinny guys, mostly hard-gainers, are looking for an answer to a question how to build muscle mass. It is hard for many guys to add muscle mass on their skinny body, mostly because of genetics or probably because they don't follow right diet and training plans.
Okay, so you've been in a gym couple of times and you saw many big guys and you are starting to lose hope for gaining muscle mass. Or, you maybe never stepped into a gym and you want to learn some tips for gaining muscle mass for skinny guys like you before you start lifting. If you are one of these guys then continue to read these tips for gaining muscle mass for skinny guys.
The most important thing is that you eat a right amount of healthy foods. If you are a hard-gainer you will have to eat a lot, eat every three hours. Your diet plan should consist of three big meals and at least three snacks. Those snacks won't small as you might think, it is just named snacks because it should be a fast meal that is smaller than those three big meals.
To gain lean muscle mass you have to be in caloric surplus, which means that you need to consume more calories than you spend. And it has to be like that every day. Warning, that doesn't mean that you have to eat junk foods and a lot of sugars, you are looking to add more muscle mass, not body fat.
TIP: Eat a lot of protein foods to build muscle, but consume twice more carbs for more muscle gains. Many guys make mistake by focusing only on proteins. Proteins are the most important nutrient for building muscle, but carbs and fats are very important too. Your meals need to contain all three macronutrients, proteins, carbohydrates, and fats.
Check out what foods you should eat to gain muscle mass:
Also, at least one of your meals should be your post-workout protein shake. Give homemade mass gainers a try, they are healthy and high in protein, carbs and fats calories. They will make your muscle mass building easier and faster:
Together with your diet plan, you will also need a good training routine to follow to build lean muscle mass. If you never lifted a weight, I advise you to start working out at home for some time before you start going to gym. Bodyweight exercises are great for beginners to gain some muscle gains and strength before starting to lift heavy weights in the gym.
Try one of the Bodyweight Workout Programs:
I also recommend to all beginners to first find a workout to increase their strength and follow that routine for at least one month and after that start making gains with hypertrophy (muscle growth) workout routines. One of the most popular workout programs among bodybuilders is Reg Park's 5x5 Workout that is great for beginning lifters to make some muscle mass and strength gains.
Now, if you followed these two training tips you are ready to aim for muscle hypertrophy. Ideal rep range for muscle growth is 8 - 12, and the number of sets doesn't need to be higher than 4. I recommend Full-Body Workout Routines to gain more muscle mass than with Split Routines. Exercises used in full-body workouts are compound movements that are best for building muscle mass and with full-body workouts, you will target all muscle groups which results in more stimulation for muscle growth.
Focus more on compound exercises and don't waste your time with isolation and machine exercises. You won't go so far with them. Best muscle-building exercises are heavy compound movements like Squats and Bench Press.
The supplements are at the 3rd place after diet and training. You can't build muscle mass by consuming supplements every day but without consuming a right amount of nutrients. But, supplements can be a great addition to your diet plan and support your muscle growth. Don't waste your money on every supplement that is advertised. Most of them are unnecessary and won't help you to build muscle mass.
Some of other factors that are important for building muscle mass are quality rest and testosterone production. They are also very related, without quality rest you can't produce enough testosterone levels for building muscle mass. Rest is very important, you are gaining muscles while they recover. So, don't train every day. Training every day is only good for steroid users, they can build muscles all day long. Give yourself a quality rest after a workout and at least one day rest between training days. It is recommended to sleep at least 8 hours every night to let your muscles recover and grow.
Also, boosting your testosterone levels will help your muscles to grow, so check out these tips for naturally boosting testosterone levels:
If you try following this guide I promise you that you will see your muscle gains for at least two months. Be very persistent, and don't lose motivation. You want to make a change that will positively affect your life so don't ever give up and there will come a reward after a hard work. Good luck!
6 Best Muscle-Building Back Exercises
It is very stunning to see a man with a well developed and wide back. The back is a huge part of the body and you can't build a perfect physique without building back muscles. Back as a muscle group is consisted of four important muscles:
- Latissimus dorsi (Lats)
- Erector Spinae
For building a wide back and popular V-shape you will need to do a lot of pull-ups and pull-downs for bigger lats. You also need to focus on building lower, middle back and trapezius for the full back development.
Building a big back can be a very hard challenge for sure. So many people can't feel the back muscles working when they train, they feel more pump in the biceps and the best thing to do is to focus on activating your back muscles as much as possible. Just try to make more stress on your back than on biceps, but you can't do back exercises and avoid the effect on biceps. That is same with triceps and chest exercises.
When it comes to back training, many people tend to train back and biceps on the same day and that makes sense since the biceps is already activated with back exercises. It is recommended to train back separately from large muscle groups like chest, shoulders, and legs. You can even train back and triceps, and chest and biceps together which will provide more arms training.
What exercises to use in your routine to build massive back?
1. Pull Ups
3. Bent-Over Rows
4. T-Bar Rows
5. Seated Cable Rows
6. Lat Pull Downs
Perform these 6 exercises with a rep range 8-12 that is best for muscle growth. These exercises are the best for building all back muscles. It is enough to train your back one to maximum two times per week and to have at least one or two rest days between back workouts. I advise training one muscle group only once in a week to fully recover your muscles. But, if your back muscles are lagging behind other muscle groups you can add one more back workout but don't train your back more than two times a week.
If you are planning to train back together with biceps, you can check out exercises that are best for building a big biceps:
Workout to Build Bigger Biceps
How to Get Big Arms Fast - Build Bigger Triceps and Biceps Fast
Having big and muscular arms shows everyone that you are strong and fit. Wearing T-shirt becomes more exciting and you are able to lift many heavy things as home furniture. But, to build bigger arms you have to gain more overall muscle mass, which means that you have to lift heavy at least three times a week and eat a lot of healthy foods.
One of the biggest mistakes that lifters make is that they train their arms too much and they don't leave time for their arms to recover from hard training. Keep this in mind, your muscles grow on rest days when they recover. Training same muscle groups very much can just lead to overtraining and losing muscle mass.
One very important thing is that you build your arms with Chest, Back and Shoulders exercises. Every heavy barbell that you lift from the bench on a chest workout day is also building your triceps and shoulders. Pull ups are the best exercise for lats but it also works your biceps, so as other pulling movements. So, you don't have to train your arms more than one or two times a week.
When it comes to building bigger arms, you also must take care of a form to get maximum benefits from your workout:
- Start with arms fully extended, not bent
- Don't use momentum, lift with controlled movements
- If it is too heavy for you to do at least 8 reps, pick a lighter dumbbell so that you can perform workout with a proper form
In order to build muscle you need to perform exercises in a rep range 8 - 12, so don't lift heavy weights for 5 or 6 reps or too light weights for more than 12 reps. You need to stimulate your triceps and biceps to grow.
Some of the best exercises for arms are curls, you need to do a lot of them for bigger arms. Also, many bodyweight exercises are great for building massive arms, like weighted dips and chin ups.
More about the exercises for building big biceps and triceps you can find on this site:
That is all about how to get big arms, pick a right exercise with a proper weight and form and with a rep range from 8 - 12. Don't overtrain your arms, but also don't skip training. Keep training hard and eating right and you will get big arms until summer.
The Bodybuilding Guide to Build Muscle Mass Fast
Building muscle mass isn't so easy to achieve and it wouldn't come very fast as you probably think. It is not achievable, not without using steroids. Building lean muscle takes some time and you can't gain 50 pounds of muscle mass in one month, you can only gain body weight like that, and that means mostly body fat.
First, you have to remember that if you want to build muscle you have to get stronger. To get stronger you have to lift heavier weights in the range of 6 - 10 reps and you will also get bigger. For totally new lifters I advise that they should first start with bodyweight exercises and gain some strength and muscle growth before they start lifting heavy weights. Pull Ups and Dips are very good Muscle Mass Builders, those exercises should always be in your workout routine.
Also, besides getting stronger, to gain more muscle mass you have to eat more healthy foods every day, you have to consume a lot of proteins, carbs, and fats. For tips on which foods to eat and what amount of calories to eat you can read my other posts:
Together with the workout routine and diet plan for muscle growth, supplements can be very helpful for building muscle mass. They are not necessary but will make muscle building easier and faster.
Read more about supplements for muscle building:
Compound exercises which work more muscle groups are best for muscle building. Your muscles won't grow with a workout that is consisted of machine and isolation exercises. You need to boost your testosterone levels and increase muscle growth with hard and heavy loaded workouts. Performing these exercises in the rep range 8 - 12 is the best for muscle hypertrophy.
Read which exercises are the best muscle builders:
Now, all that you need is good Mass-Building Workout Routine and your muscles will start growing and you will see results after the first month of training. When it comes to muscle building workout routines, you can choose between Full-Body and Body Split workouts. I recommend you to try one of the full-body workout programs if you are a beginner:
One of the most famous workout programs in Bodybuilding is Reg Park's 5x5 Workout Routine. Many bodybuilders like Arnold Schwarzenegger used this workout to gain more muscle mass and strength. It is very recommended for beginners and it is also a full-body workout program:
Now, you have all information about Gaining Muscle Mass, the last tip for you is to be persistent and don't just waste your precious time in the gym. It is better to train one hour hard than two hours of slacking. Muscles won't come so fast, but if it is that easy to build muscle, everyone would do it and it wouldn't be some great thing. Just keep training hard and eat a lot of healthy foods and muscles will come in some time.