Building and keeping muscle strength becomes more challenging with age. The loss of muscle mass can actually begin in your thirties. There are, thankfully, measures you can take to speed up the process of gaining muscle.
When and how does muscle growth occur?
One of the most malleable forms of muscle tissue is skeletal muscle.
You can expect to see this muscle grow in size as you engage in rigorous exercise. Muscle hypertrophy refers to the process of increasing muscle size and strength.
Muscle fibers hypertrophy in response to trauma. The condition promotes the activation of satellite cells located along the muscle fiber’s periphery.
Damaged muscles will be addressed by these satellite cells. Increased muscle fiber size is a result of this process, and it will help the muscle to better withstand strain in future physical endeavors.
Hormones like growth hormone and hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), which regulate satellite cell activity, also contribute to muscle development.
Muscle-building amino acids are produced during this hormone’s activation of the body’s metabolism of protein.
Every person has a unique timeframe for the muscle-building process. Age, gender, and genetics may all play a role here.
It takes time for exercise and a healthy diet to show results in the form of toned muscles, however.
A critical component in achieving muscular development
When you go to the gym on a daily basis, you don’t really need to focus on muscle gain. Actually, you only need 20-30 minutes of weight training, three times per week.
Nonetheless, during your weekly workout, you should hit all of your major muscle groups twice.
Here are some important things to keep in mind during your training program if you want to increase your muscle mass.
1. Be sure to eat enough protein.
Gaining muscle requires an increase in protein intake.
Protein’s amino acids, along with those from other foods, will help your body repair, strengthen, and build muscle.
Amino acids are essential for the development and repair of muscle tissue.
Leucine, one of the essential amino acids obtained through food, is required before muscle growth can begin.
In order to gain muscle mass while minimizing fat gain, try consuming three glasses of low or fat-free milk per day and 0.08 kilograms of low-fat protein sources per day.
Other sources of protein that can be used by muscles include:
- chicken eggs
- skinless chicken
- beef, low-fat
2. Utilizing carbohydrates as an energy source
Carbohydrates are a good source of energy and another nutrient your body needs when trying to gain muscle.
If you don’t get enough carbs, your performance and muscle growth will suffer.
Glycogen is a compound made from carbohydrates that are used for energy by the muscles and liver. Glycogen is a storage form of energy that muscles use during physical activity.
Depleted glycogen levels affect blood sugar levels and muscle mass if the body does not receive an adequate supply of carbohydrates.
Foods high in complex carbohydrates include, for example:
- wheat pasta
- brown rice
3. Choosing healthy fats
Multiple nutrients, including protein, carbohydrates, and fat, are needed for muscle development and growth.
Muscles use fat as their primary source of fuel during physical activity.
The amount of fat needed by each person varies. Fat should make up 20%-35% of your daily calorie intake.
Focus on healthy fats, like those found in:
- Nuts such as soybeans.
- Vegetable oils such as olive oil.
- Fatty fish such as mackerel and tuna.
4. Cardio exercise
You should also incorporate regular exercise into your routine; cardio exercises like jogging, cycling, and swimming are great ways to get your heart rate up and burn calories.
Intensifying the heart’s and lungs’ work is a goal of cardio exercises. In fact, it has been established that this method of training promotes muscle growth and efficiency.
However, inactive older adults tend to show this effect.
Scientists publishing in Exercise and Sport Science Reviews advocate performing this type of physical activity at an intensity level equivalent to 70–80% of one’s reserve heart rate.
At least four or five times per week, cardio sessions should last for 30 to 45 minutes.
Muscle development can also be aided by engaging in resistance training, such as weightlifting.
This form of muscle strength training may appear elementary, but it is essential for optimal results.
Find a weight that forces you to work hard, and aim for 12-15 repetitions.
If you feel the weight is too light, gradually increasing it will allow you to push your muscles to their absolute limit.
Many bodybuilders find that a maximum-weight set of 12 weights is more efficient at building muscle than three sets of lighter weights.
Easy tips on exercises to build muscle
At first glance, it may seem like a lot of work to put in the effort required to implement any of the aforementioned strategies for muscle gain. Not to mention, after a workout, when you feel your muscles start to ache.
Not infrequently, this state causes many people to lose motivation and abandon their plan.
Knowing the following advice will make it much simpler for you to gain muscle.
- A warm-up of 5-10 minutes is recommended before beginning any workout..
- For this exercise, you should do three to eight sets of 12 reps.
- Use weights heavy enough that 8-15 repetitions will cause muscle fatigue, and then build up the weight and the number of repetitions from there.
- Make sure your muscle-building routine remains challenging by mixing up the exercises you perform.
If you need further assistance, see a medical professional or fitness instructor.