By Karen Sessions NSCA-CPT
There is much confusion about how to really build muscle. Many people are under the impression that all they have to do is get a gym membership and workout to build muscle. While you can build some muscle slinging iron around aimlessly, your growth potential is limited. Knowing and capitalizing on a few key factors can create faster muscle gains than you will ever believe.
Author of Iron Dolls - Female Bodybuilding Secrets
Ladies, are you pounding away at the iron, yet not showing much muscle improvement? Today there is so much bodybuilding information plaguing the fitness magazines and Internet it's literally exhausting to filter through. What's worse is that current bodybuilding data is so grossly lacking of a scientific system. It's come to the point that anyone who can get a free website thinks they are a fitness expert.
In this article you will find there is much more to muscle building than just what the newest trainer on the block just copy/pasted from another forum, or read in an article written by a teenager who has been training for a solid 8 months.
Discover what you need to do to blast muscle gains like you've never imagined, with an all natural approach. This is nothing new or revolutionary. It's simply forgotten and overlooked basic essentials. By law, you can build dynamic muscle.
Female Muscle Growth Law #1 – Find Your Starting Point
Many ladies training to induce muscle growth fail miserably because they disregard finding their unique starting point. Your personal starting point will differ than your friends. Your starting point should be based on your body type and/or shape, as well as your stats, activity level, current diet and exercise program.
If you don't know your personal body status, how will you find your nutrition and training starting point? You won't. Do some homework and find your starting point and build a training and nutrition program based on that.
Female Muscle Growth Law #2 – Implement Progressive Overload
Far too many ladies are not challenging themselves when they enter the gym. If you want to build muscle you have to stimulate your muscles, and you have to challenge them on a continual basis.
Going to the gym three times a week and doing the same exercise for the same number of sets, and reps will only burn calories. Your object when weight training is to build muscle. To build muscle you must progressively overload your muscles. This can be done with increased poundage, varying sets and reps, and even changing exercises.
Always keep your muscles off guard and always challenge them.
Female Muscle Growth Law #3 – Employ Proper Form
Just because you are weight training doesn't necessarily mean you will sprout muscles. Two sets of proper curls will yield far greater results than two sets of curls with bad form. There is a technique to every exercise and knowing how to properly execute each will catapult your muscle gains in record time.
Female Muscle Growth Law #4 – Confused Personal Goals
I find far more female bodybuilders than male bodybuilders having trouble with this one. Many ladies think they want to build muscle, but when muscle weight on the scale goes up, they freak out, thinking they are getting fat. Out of the “weight gain fear” they change their goal back to fat loss. Then they decide that they indeed to want muscle and keep going back and forth between building muscle and losing fat goals. This type of goal confusion will not produce results. Goals are only good when followed.
The scale is unable to distinguish between bone, muscle, water, fat, and organ weight. The scale weighs your body as a whole. To find your muscle building progress you need to be taking your body fat composition.
Stop focusing on numbers ladies. The fine details of intricate weight fluctuations are irrelevant when you want to build muscle.
Female Muscle Growth Law #5 – Information Overload
Most newbie's and many intermediate level bodybuilders struggle with information overload. Information overload is simply having so much information available that the reader is incapable of assimilating it, or feels so overwhelmed to absorb any of it.
Many bodybuilders get in this state by reading every conceivable piece of information in magazines and the Internet. The downfall to this is they don't really understand the basics to know how to sufficiently sift through it all to find the true information.
One way to overcome this dilemma is to find one person to listen to, or one set of ideas to focus on. Gather your information on the concept and get a thorough understanding. Once you are able to successfully understand the information, you can move on to other notions.
You will find much greater information reading books written on kinesiology and other works by scientists and doctors in the field of sports nutrition, and natural healing. You just won't find true information in hyped-up muscle magazines.
Female Muscle Growth Law #6 – Track Your Progress
If you are not tracking your muscle gaining progress, how will do you know you are progressing?
For paramount muscle growth, track your training days, exercises, poundage, sets, and reps. By using this information weekly, you can build on it with progressive overload to ensure muscle gains.
Female Muscle Growth Law #7 – Neglecting Weaker Body Parts
Come on. We are all guilty of this at one time or another. Really… I mean what kind of ego is behind working a weak body part that you aren't very strong at?
Most bodybuilders tend to train their strengths; for one it's ego boosting and it's more fun. However, the true bodybuilders train their weaknesses harder. Improving your weakness makes it a strength and creates balance.
One example is my legs. I had very skinny legs my first few years in bodybuilding. They were obviously weak so that made it just that much harder to want to train them. After a few contests and judges feedback, I literally built massive and powerful legs in just 8 months by using these Laws you are now reading. View my leg advancement .
Female Muscle Growth Law #8 – Defining True Intensity
A large percentage of lifters are confused about what intensity actually is; this can be a problem if your goal is to build the best muscular physique you can.
A true certified personal trainer can tell you the difference between aerobic and anaerobic intensity. Aerobic intensity is based on time factor. Anaerobic intensity is based on poundage used.
So, is doing more exercises, sets, and reps higher intensity? Sure, if you want to build your cardiovascular system, and muscle endurance. However, if you want to build muscle, stick with 2-3 exercises (including one compound exercise), and 3 sets, in the 6-8 rep range.
For intensity purposes, if you can't get 6 reps then the weight is too heavy and if you can do more than 8 the weight is too light. Find YOUR intensity level and progress on that.
Female Muscle Growth Law #9 – Trusting the Latest “Breakthrough Supplement”
The supplement industry is over a $15 billion dollar market. Each year they introduce nearly a thousand new supplements, including “improved” ones. Supplement companies prey on your hot buttons. Most use persuasive advertising or promotional hype to pull you in to buy their product.
Most supplements are useless. If you do your homework and read the science of sports nutrition, and human physiology you'll understand why some supplements are useful and the rest are just plain garbage.
Along with the quality supplements comes proper timing. While quality supplements are effective, they work better when timed properly with nutrition, training, and/or cardio.
Female Muscle Growth Law #10 – When You Just Can't Do It, Get a Coach
There are times you may be too overwhelmed or just need personal guidance or direction in your muscle building efforts. Some of the best professional bodybuilders have someone to coach them. Having a qualified coach takes the guess work out of your training program and eliminates costly mistakes.
Also, paying attention to how your trainer is structuring your program over the course of several months is a lot of information. Pay particularly close attention to the outline format.
You have the facts outlined. Read through them thoroughly and examine your own bodybuilding approach to tweak it for the better. The worse thing you can do is lie to yourself. Use every step to bring you closer to the attractive physique you want.
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Karen Sessions NSCA-CPT