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10 Ways to Gain Muscle

Rachel Cosgrove Men's Fitness 10/12/2009 20:10
10 Ways to Gain Muscle - lifestyle - fitness - men


Get the rewards for your efforts by following these must-do principles.



1. FUEL UP
Start reading food labels to get a sense of how many calories you're already eating. Then add 500 to that number and start eating that many calories every day. Aim to take in about one gram of protein per pound of body weight each day.

2. LIMIT CARDIO
You can do up to two days of light jogging on the treadmill, but keep it to around 30 minutes per session. To lose fat while sparing muscle, you'd do even better to perform sprint intervals—for instance, running all-out for a minute and then backing off to a light jog for two minutes. Do this for 30 minutes, three times a week.

3. DO LESS
Do no more than 20 sets per muscle group—closer to 12 is even better. Your reps should be between six and 12 per set for the most muscle growth, and your workouts should never last much longer than 45 minutes. In lieu of more volume, use heavier weights and move through each rep at a controlled speed. Your sets should last between 40 and 70 seconds—any less, and you're not tensing your muscles long enough to shock them into growth.

4. USE FULL-BODY WORKOUTS OR A SPLIT ROUTINE
You'll get the best results from your workout by either training the whole body in a single workout or concentrating only on the upper body in one session and the lower body in another. There are advantages to each setup, but both are better than trying to iso- late one muscle group in a single session. Concentrate on lifts that involve lots of muscles at once, such as squats, deadlifts, presses, rows, and pullups.

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