Uncommon Tips to Help You Build Muscle Easily – Best Ways to Increase Strength

We’ve all heard the normal advice when it comes to building muscle. All you need to do is eat a lot of protein, lift a lot of weight, and watch your muscles. Use these uncommon tips to help you build muscle with ease. 

Muscle health matters – source

Check out these 7 tips that can help you increase muscle definition. They are overlooked and underused, but highly effective for strength building and overall health.

Importance of Muscles

Muscles are the part of the body responsible for movement, posture, and balance. When people think about increasing muscle, they mostly refer to skeletal muscle. Your muscles contract to produce force and movement, making up about ⅓ to ½ of your body weight. Increasing the ability of your muscles is not about bodybuilding, it is about maintaining strength, mobility, and range of motion.

Exercising the muscles is about helping muscles stay healthy and useful. Motor neurons in muscles fire in order to accomplish any daily tasks, such as carrying groceries, opening a door, or moving furniture around. The average adult, if they don’t train the muscles, will start losing about 4 to 6 pounds of muscle per decade. 

What Builds Muscles

When muscles are exposed to stress, they experience small tears. In muscle training, these small tears are good as the injured cells cause a specific form of inflammation with cytokine molecules. This causes the immune system to repair the injury, in essence, filling in the tear. 

This eventually leads to stronger muscles. The more damage to muscles, the more your body repairs and reinforces. As you continue this cycle of stress, tear, and repair, your body adapts to more and more physical demands. This allows you to become stronger.

Everyday activity is something the body is used to and will not produce enough stress to induce the muscle-building process. Without exposure to resistance training, muscles will shrink. This is why we increase workload through tougher body weight exercises or heavier weight lifting.

Uncommon Tips to Help You Build Muscle

Here are some uncommon tips to help you build muscle, keeping you healthy and happy. Remember, if you don’t use it, you lose it. Muscle training is about maintaining your ability to move without pain, your posture, and your balance in everyday life.

1. Go Back to Basics

Sometimes, we can get caught up in rushing through to harder, compound movements that look cool but aren’t targeting the right muscles. In this sense, it is important to go back to the basics of strength training and retouch on those movements. This includes squats, push-ups, pull-ups, planks, and lunges. 

You can use easier variations to really perfect form, feel how the body moves, and then move on to more challenging variations. A squat can be made hard by doing them on one leg, a plank can be done with a single leg or arm, and so forth. These bodyweight workouts can also be made harder. You can add weight to them by holding dumbbells. They train huge muscles and can have huge benefits. 

2. Know Your 1RM

A lot of the time when we think about weight training, we think in terms of sets and reps. This means we tend to do 2 to 3 sets of around 10 to 15 repetitions of the movement. While it is not bad, another way to adjust training is to max out in 1 rep, aka 1RM.

1Rm, a 1-rep max is an indicator of overall strength. It lets you know the maximum amount you can light in one repetition of an exercise. 10 reps use about 75% of strength while a 1RM uses all of it. Knowing your 1RM can let you calculate reps and sets to increase workout potential.

3. Increase Time Under Tension

Time under tension is when the muscle is held in tension or strain during a workout. When you are doing a bicep curl, the time under tension is any point that is drawing the dumbbell towards you.

Increase time under tension of any weighted exercise to increase muscle-building activity in the body. This generally means moving through the exercise slower. In the same example, it would mean slowly curling the dumbbell toward you in a bicep curl. This keeps the muscle engaged for longer in any given workout, leading to more muscle growth.

4. Try Drop Sets

Drop sets are when you go below your usual set weight. For example, if you usually curl 35, you could drop down to 30 or even 25 for a set.

Drop sets are useful for when you feel like you are maxed out and cannot do another rep or set at your current weight. You most likely still have a bit of fuel left in the tank, so you can drop the weight to do a couple more sets. This can allow you to push past your limit, as you engage the muscle for longer.

5. Sleep More

Sleep is when a lot of muscle repair happens in the body. If you don’t sleep, you aren’t going to be building the muscle you want to. If you don’t sleep enough, your body will have a harder time healing you, even if you take the next day off.

Plus, remember that rest days are just as important as workout days, so make sure you are taking time to let your body heal!

6. Microbiota Health

The microbiota affects everything from metabolism to mental health. Is it so surprising that it can affect muscle growth as well? Many studies have found links between muscle health and microbiota health.

A balanced microbiome can influence fuel availability, exercise potential, and repairs done in the body after a workout. Increased microbiome health is associated with increased performance and ability too, so make sure you are taking care to boost gut health. Here is a guide to what to eat to increase microbiota health today!

The Common Tips

Here are some tips that you’ve heard before, but it’s always good to refresh!

  • Eat Protein – protein is needed for muscle repair, so make sure you are eating enough protein daily. Here’s a full guide to find out just how much that is!
  • Stretch – stretching can help reduce muscle soreness and will help with mobility during your workouts!
  • Drink Plenty of Water – water is necessary for the metabolic activity that fuels the body. Even slight dehydration is dangerous, so make sure you are drinking water.
  • Bodyweight Exercises – no access to a gym? No problem! Here’s a guide to bodyweight workouts that can also increase muscle mass.
  • Increase Intensity – as you get stronger, you are going to want to increase the weight or intensity of your workout to continue to increase strength and muscle mass.

The Takeaway

It is important to train the muscles to maintain strength, mobility, balance, and posture. These uncommon tips to help you build muscle can help anyone, from an experienced bodybuilder to a beginner trainee. Try them out and watch how progress improves! Remember all the basics of muscle building too, like eating enough protein, drinking water, increasing the intensity of a workout, and more.

Health starts from within, so eat well, work out, and care for your mental wellbeing. Try to take care of gut health as well! The microbiota affects the entire body, from metabolism, muscles, and immune system to digestion and more! Get all the resources you need about microbiota health for free here!

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