Tips To Increase Lean Muscle Mass
By Eric leader-Owner/Personal Trainer
Looking to get fit and build lean muscle? It takes more than regular weight lifting to achieve the muscular physique you’re striving for. It requires lifestyle changes that need to work together to help you bulk up. What you eat, how much you sleep, and the types of exercise you do can all make or break your fitness journey.
Here are three important ways to increase your lean muscle mass and get the body of your dreams.
Eat Protein Building Foods
Consuming enough lean protein foods will ensure that your body is able to make lean muscle. Lean protein foods are not fried or coated in carbs or butter but are low in saturated fat. Good sources of lean protein foods include:
Almonds and Other Nuts
Not only will lean protein foods contribute towards your muscle production, but they’ll keep you satisfied until your next meal and give you the energy needed to power your workouts. If you’re in a pinch, you can make a protein shake or reach for a protein bar, but try to get your protein from natural foods whenever possible.
Get Enough Sleep
There’s a reason why top-performing athletes just as Tom Brady and LeBron James get a lot of sleep: they know it helps their game. But getting enough sleep won’t just ensure you have enough energy to work out; it’s also imperative if you want to build lean muscle.
That’s because after lifting weights—which causes tiny tears in our muscle fiber—deep sleep is needed to repair these muscles and help them grow. You need enough hours of sleep to allow your body to progress through all of the sleep stages because it’s during both the REM (rapid eye movement) and non-REM periods that restorative muscle repair and building takes place. Your body releases the human growth hormone that contributes to this, and your muscles also relax while blood flow increases to encourage healing.
Another reason you need plenty of sleep when you work out regularly is to prevent weight gain. When you’re, you crave extra calories—usually in sugary and processed foods—because the hormones that regulate your appetite are out of whack. In fact, a lack of sleep has been linked to obesity.
Do what you can to get the recommended eight hours of sleep per night for adults. You may need to establish a bedtime routine that helps you wind down and relax, or you may need to check out a mattress guide for advice on buying a new mattress, as old and saggy ones can affect your sleep.
Skip the Machines; Lift Free Weights Instead
Lifting free weights gives you greater flexibility and makes more areas of your body work harder versus using gym machines that take away the need for your body to support itself. Free weights also allow you to add on additional weight as you get stronger, and give you more options for various moves to work different muscle groups.
Give Yourself Rest Days
Allowing yourself a day off from exercise in between regular workouts will help your body recover and bounce back. You’ll give your muscles a chance to relax and will enjoy greater energy during future workouts.
One additional tip: remember that you cannot create a new body overnight. It takes discipline, consistency, and time to see real results. Follow these tips to help build lean muscle mass and reduce your body fat.