Diet Tips & Nutrition

Tip 1

Do not repeat the same workout every training session. Avoid your body getting used to exercise and overworking your muscles, which could result in an injury and muscle fatigue. If you feel like your progress has reached its plateau, it is most likely that your body got too used to the specific exercise and is no longer responding to the workout. Try periodising your training and train different muscle groups during every workout. This way you will achieve different, albeit related goals, including muscle growth, strength and definition.

Tip 2

Most men need to consume an additional 2,500 to 3,500 calories a day to gain one pound of muscle per week. If you do not augment your training efforts with enough food and fluids, the laws of human biology and simple mathematics dictate that you will not gain any muscle mass.

"When it comes to gaining muscle, the most important thing is eating enough calories to fuel both, your exercise and the metabolic processes needed to build muscle," says Susan M. Kleiner, Ph.D., R.D., author of Power Eating. "Most guys who have trouble gaining weight and strength simply are not eating enough."

Tip 3

"When it comes to gaining muscle, the most important thing is eating enough calories to fuel both, your exercise and the metabolic processes needed to build muscle," says Susan M. Kleiner, Ph.D., R.D., author of Power Eating. "Most guys who have trouble gaining weight and strength simply are not eating enough."

Tip 4

Rest. Many people do not know how much time they need to rest between the sets. Some people think they know, and finally there are some people who actually do know. Every single person, every single body is unique, therefore you have to feel yourself, if you have rested enough. Usually it is somewhere between 30 seconds to 2 minutes, but it also depends on how intense your exercise is and how many reps you do. When you put your weight down after the set, listen to your heartbeat, check how fast you are breathing, how tight your muscles are at that particular moment. Rest until your heart beat decreases a little, your breathing calms down, and your muscles are no longer tight.

Tip 5

Stretching. There are a few different opinions on when you should stretch. Most of those opinions will say that you should stretch right after the workout to avoid soreness the next day. But professionals know, that if you work out regularly, you almost never get sore. In our opinion it's not a good idea to stretch right after work out and here is why:

  • The muscle is composed of subunits called fascicles. Fascicles are bundles of individual muscle fibres. Each fibre is one elongated cell that may extend for the length of the muscle. Each muscle fibre cell has several nuclei (unlike most cells, which have only one), and is segmented into distinct sectional bands. Within each muscle cell are numerous myofibrils, which also extend for the length of the muscle cell. Sarcomeres are the basic contractile subunit of myofibrils.
  • A muscle cell does not necessarily go back to complete relaxation right away. It can remain contracted through a series of stimulations. This process, called summation, increases the total force of muscular contraction. When the stimulus is great enough, many sarcomeres in many fibres are "recruited" and the muscle as a whole contracts. This is why we can lift or push varying amounts of resistance, more or less cells are recruited, and to a greater or lesser extent. At the end of your workout your muscle is very tired, you feel that you cannot lift for much longer, or your muscle will just fail. Muscle failure occurs at the point where the maximum number of fibres are being stressed to their limits.
  • And now imagine that right after workout you are stretching the fibres that are already pretty much stressed to the limit.
  • As a result, you might end up slowly damaging your muscle tissues, instead of benefiting them with a good stretch.
  • Stretch before the workout, but make sure you warm up properly first. Stretching "cold" muscles is not a good idea. You can stretch after your workout, but do not do it immediately – do it about two hours later.

Tip 6

Drink Water. A young male athlete's body is about 75% water, while a young female athlete typically boasts about 70%. Nearly two-third of the water shows up in the muscles, while the rest can be found in the bloodstream. Both men and women may find themselves "in a constant state of dehydration." Generally, athletes wait for their sense of thirst to signal that it is time to drink. However, thirst is sensed only after dehydration has started. More importantly, once you are dehydrated, it may take as much as 48 hours to properly rehydrate. This is why so many athletes, unknowingly, are in a constant state of dehydration. As blood volume becomes diminished, blood flow along with oxygen and other nutrients to the muscles is significantly reduced, rendering them less functional. You should drink at least 2 litres of water every day.

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