Results will vary from person to person!

Spending endless hours pumping iron but not seeing the gains and results you’d like?

There’s often many reasons why people don’t build muscle as efficiently as they could be and in my experience it generally comes down to three main areas.

Here goes…

1. You don’t have enough FATTY FOOD in your diet! How can your body build muscle if you don’t give it the nutrients it needs? Fats have lots of muscle building nutrients that are crucial for your body. However, you have to eat the right types of fats. One good source of fat comes from fatty fish such as salmon and mackerel. And other foods that contain good sources of fats are avocado, olive oil and nuts. Make sure you have enough fat in every meal

2. You use too many advanced exercises. With all these front cover magazine ‘advanced workouts’ and exercise equipment out there, most people end up doing all the new exercises which don’t work as well. And the reason so many people are skipping the old school basic lifts like squatting, deadlifting, rows and so on is because they are TOUGH. I’m not saying to ignore new training methods, but if you want to build quality muscle, always start with basic compound exercises. Here are the exercises that should make up the bulk of your routine:

Legs – Squats, Lunges, and Stiff Leg Deadlifts
Chest – Press ups, Incline/Flat Bench Presses, and Dumbbell Bench Presses
Back – Pullups, Deadlifts, Bent Over Barbell Rows, and Dumbbell Rows
Shoulders – Military Presses
Arms – Skull Crushers, Close Grip Bench Presses, Dumbell Curls

3. You need more TESTOSTERONE! This is the most important one of all. If you don’t have high levels of testosterone, it doesn’t matter how hard you train or how good your diet is, because without enough testosterone, you cannot make gains and will not see results. The way the testosterone hormone works is that it signals your brain to build muscle while also controlling how much fat your body burns. So for people who have more testosterone in their body, the signal to build muscle and burn fat will be much stronger than for those with low testosterone. And if you haven’t been seeing the results you’re looking for it’s most likely because of your low testosterone signals.

How do I increase my Testosterone?

Lift weights

Testosterone levels are at their highest 48 hours after lifting weights according to a study at Baylor University in the US and the harder you train, the more you increase your natural levels of testosterone, so base your training around the compound exercises I mentioned earlier (squats, bench presses and seated rows using heavy weights.)

Eat good fats

By ‘good’ fats I mean the mono-unsaturated and omega 3 type – found in avocados, nuts and oily fish – that help your body preserve protein. A study in the Journal Of Applied Physiology found that men who ate recommended amounts of these foods had the highest testosterone levels.

Eat eggs

Eggs improve levels of healthy HDL or ‘good’ cholesterol (boiled or poached), an important building block needed for your body to manufacture testosterone. They are also loaded with protein and have plenty of testosterone-boosting zinc. Plus Paul Newman looked pretty manly when he ate 50 of ’em in Cool Hand Luke!

Don’t overtrain

Excessive exercising increases cortisol, a stress hormone that competes with testosterone and breaks down muscle. Researchers at the University of North Carolina found that overtraining can lower your testosterone levels by as much as 40%. Resting isn’t slacking off – make sure you take time out.

Get enough sleep

Poor sleep quality and having less than seven hours a night can slash your testosterone levels by more than 30% and dampen growth hormones, restricting your muscle-building potential.

Don’t booze

Happy hour can wreak havoc on your manly hormones. Numerous studies have found that alcohol consumption reduces testosterone levels for up to 24 hours. It also increases cortisol and lowers growth hormone levels.

Eat more seeds

You may feel like you’re munching bird food, but seeds are full of vitamin E and zinc, which send your testosterone levels soaring. They’re also bursting with protein and monounsaturated fat.

Get some sun

Exposing the skin to sunlight for just 15-20 minutes can raise your testosterone levels by 120%, says a report from Boston State Hospital in the US. The research also found that the hormone increased by a whopping 200% when genital skin was exposed to the sun. Stick to the privacy of your own garden though – we don’t want any arrests.

Struggling to Build Muscle? By The 4D Personal Trainer in Clapham

Click here to find a trainer in Clapham: http://4dfitness.com/personal-trainer-clapham-common-sw4/

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