There are many ways to skin a cat however I feel that there are some fundamental errors people make with their training, especially when muscle mass is the goal. Whilst some ‘’freaks’’ will parade around the gym in a casual manner, look at the dumbbell rack and grow most won’t. With that said there needs to be some basic things in place to get you on the track to growth!
Here are 4 MUST DO points I will share with you in order to grow!
1 – Progression
Using a plan with solid periodization markers in place is a must. In short you are creating a plan which over X amount of weeks sets out to make you stronger within the same rep range. The idea is simple, over time you are increasing the load your muscles are working against which in turn forces them to constantly adapt. The adaptation is of course growth! Every 8 weeks I would suggest you need to be lifting slightly heavier weight within the same rep ranges as before.
2 – Fire It Up!
High threshold motor units (HTMUs) are a much undervalued tool amongst those looking to gain mass. If you can ‘’fire them up’’ you can recruit up to ten times more muscle fibres during maximal lifts with heavy weight. Of course this leads to better overall muscle stimulation – excellent!
To do this focus on starting your workouts with heavier sets, in the rep range of 3-5 with nice explosive form. Be powerful and get your HTMUs on standby!
3 – Variation
Too many people follow the same training plan week on week. The body gets used to this and it adapts quickly – as a result the body doesn’t need to ‘’develop’’ anymore to cope with the stress. I would recommend changing your workouts, volume and intensity over a 3-4 week cycle so the body doesn’t know what’s around the corner. Keep it on its toes!!
4 – Isometrics
Beyond ‘’good’’ form pay more attention to the second isometric contraction (after the concentric or ‘’lifting’’ phase). If you can spend more time in this phase (1-2 seconds) occasionally you can help stimulate the HTMUs and in turn more muscle fibres. In short the entire process of building muscle is to stimulate muscle fibre populations. The more you can do this the better your results will be.
There are 4 quick snap points to follow in order to add mass!