Muscle Building Workouts

Components of Effective Muscle Building Workouts

Strategies for muscle building workouts here are designed to get muscle where it will be most appealing and functional. I started out having to believe in the pressure of "getting big" every time. Although this is a muscle building article, I am totally against excessive muscle.

I am one of those people who believe in a more functional, athletic and sleek look is much geared for "ordinary" people like you and me. It will look much much better in clothes or in the beach. In my opinion muscle building for a lean look has a different mindset, approach and strategies.

Rep Ranges Mean Almost Everything in Muscle Building Workouts

Studies have shown that rep ranges actually define muscle growth. Aiming for 12-20 repetitions or even higher will not improve definition but is more geared for endurance training. The 8-12 range is aimed for sarcoplamic hyperthrophy which is basically fluid in the muscles.

Notice when you workout and your muscles seem a lot bigger in the mirror and after a few hours it feels like it "shrinks"? It is caused by the fluid in the muscles if you aim for the "pump". Starting out I used to have this pattern. I did not feel attractive in the beach and ask to myself "where did all the muscle go?!".

Not cool.

The low rep range (2-5) with muscle tension through a slow pace will trigger muscle fiber growth, which is more permanent. This is the way to go if you want a more defined look.

You can a detailed explanation of Rep Ranges here : Sets and Reps – Long or Short Rest Periods?

Muscle Building Workouts: How Often?

Some celebrities may say that they workout almost everyday; which is something not everyone can do. I believe that there are many things to think about than to live in obsession of getting lean.

Brad Pilon, the creator of Eat Stop Eat noted that more than nutrition, maintaining muscle mass depends on resistance training.

My workout is typically four days a week, with an hour or less per session.

My Typical Workout Plan:

Day 1- Chest, Back, Abs
Day 2- Shoulder, Bicep Triceps
Day 3- Rest
Day 4- repeat day one
Day 5- repeat day two

Note: I wrote "day" instead a specific day of the week because it gives flexibility depending on what days I am available to workout; I just make sure I get my workout done without wasting much time resting.

Focus on the Lift; Not on the Weight

Permanent muscle gain and definition in workouts are not acquired by lifting heavy; but by the proper form and with the help of your nervous system. Many guys would fall for the trap of lifting heavy too soon that it makes them prone to injury. This is also caused by the pressure of getting bigger everytime.

Focus on the weight coming down, checking on form every time and the muscle being worked out. This avoids injury and gets the right muscle fatigue.

Beginners might think when it hurts, it's good. For some it would take days to recover. This is a muscle building workout myth. Your body is a good indicator of whether you are getting it right. If it hurts in different parts of your body other than the actual muscle you worked out, you must be doing something wrong

I have saved a lot of time, energy and money in my muscle building workouts just by following simple principles of rep ranges, muscle recovery and where to focus my efforts every gym session. Thanks to a little research and in-your-face fitness experts like Martin Beckhan, Rusty Moore, Craig Ballantyne and Brad Pilon, you can get the most out of your muscle building workouts using a little tweaks.

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