Muscle building requires three main ingredients-discipline, consistency and hard work in the right direction. If you mess up even anyone of these three no matter how much time and effort you put in, you won’t build muscle as best as you can. Here are five mistakes that are not letting your muscles grow.
- Doing too many sets
The idea of the more the better is common within gym circles. The harder you work on something, the more successful you will be in it. Sadly though, it doesn’t work that way for building muscle. Muscle growth occurs as a response to the stress provided in the gym. If you stress your muscles too much, muscle breakdown will be greater than what the body can recover from. The idea is to touch the Maximum Recoverable Volume (MRV) for an individual but not exceed it. Performing too many sets will only bury your recovery capability of being a natural lifter.
- Training one muscle group a day
Training one muscle group a day is called the bro split. It’s very common, especially in India. Everytime you lift weights, you trigger a reaction called protein synthesis. This is what causes your muscle tissues to bind to amino acids and grow bigger in size. Now, protein synthesis begins to fall back after 36 hours. Training a single muscle group just once a week is not optimal and you comprise on the gains you can make. Hence for natural lifters it is a great idea to train every body part at least twice or thrice week.
- Blindly following elite bodybuilders
What’s the best way to get big legs or arms like a professional? Copy their workouts from their latest article in a bodybuilding magazine, right? Wrong Elite athletes have years of training under their belt and a lot of anabolic steroids in their system due to which they can withstand high training volumes. Most beginners-intermediate lifters cannot. On top of it they have a near perfect nutrition plan and supplements, which further boost their recovery if you want to learn something from the pros, study their principles, not their workouts . Else it’s a recipe for overtraining.
- Not tracking your loads and overloading
The most fundamental principle in strength training is of progressive overload. No matter what form of training you perform –cross fit, powerlifting or building, lifting weights is simply a stimulus to your body and the increment in strength and size is in response to this stimulus. The first step to progressively overload is to know where your current strength levels, which require you tracking your loads so that you don’t lift weights randomly.