If you’re putting the effort in, you want to get the results and these tips will help you make the most of your strength training – read on.

Increase Your Training Volume

The primary determination of hypertrophy or muscle growth is your training volume or the number of reps multiplied by the number of sets. When you want to increase this volume, you will generally need to go lower in weight. The weight reduction may be more than you originally think.

During the hypertrophy stage of training, the intensity is going to drop off and sit at around 50 to 75% of the 1RM which is the maximum weight you can lift in one rep. This is very different to the strength training phase. In order to get the muscle volume that you want, you need to perform each of your lifts for 3 to 6 sets with 10 to 20 reps in each set.

Focus On The Eccentric Phase

When you lift any weight, you will go through the concentric and eccentric phases which are the hard and easy phases respectively. An example of this will be a squat where the eccentric action is the lowering into the squat. When you move to standing, you will be completing the concentric phase. According to research in the European Journal of Applied Physiology, the eccentric work is better for triggering hypertrophy.

There are 2 things that you can do to increase the eccentric efforts of your workout. The first is to slow down the eccentric phases of the exercise that you perform. The second is to integrate an eccentric only variation of the exercise into your routine.

When looking at the squat, to make it eccentric-only, you will lower to the floor and end the exercise there. If you are going to complete eccentric exercise only, you need to increase the weight you use. This is due to the fact that muscles are stronger when moving eccentrically compared to concentrically.

Decrease The Between Set Rest Intervals

If you are touching your phone between sets, you need to set a timer for 30 to 90 sections. When lifting to increase muscle mass, a rest period of 30 to 90 seconds will encourage the quick release of muscle-building hormones. You will also ensure that you really fatigue your muscles when doing this.

The Journal of Applied Physiology published research which suggested that fatiguing your muscles is the prerequisite for hypertrophy. This was shown regardless of the rep and set scheme used. This means that you should not be afraid to feel the burn.

Eat More Protein

Training will break down your muscles and protein will help to build them back up. The harder your workouts the more protein you are going to need to eat to recover.

Research done at the University of Stirling found that weightlifters should eat 0.25 to .30 grams of protein for every kilogram of body weight each meal. This means that a 175-pound person should be getting 20 to 24 grams of protein with each meal. This is not actually hard as it equates to a scoop of protein powder, 3 to 4 eggs or a cup of Greek yogurt.

Focus On Calorie Surpluses

This is something that can take a bit of getting used to, particularly for people who are used to counting calories in an effort to lose weight. However, to effectively build muscle, you need to consume more calories each day. This is due to the fact that your body can sense a calorie deficit.

When this happens, you will not be getting enough calories to cover what you burn. This results in the body reducing the tendency to build new muscle. This is based on the fact that your body thinks food is in short supply and getting ripped will not be its main priority.

To avoid this, you should look at eating 250 to 500 extra calories each day. To ensure that you are gaining weight from muscle, the bulk of these calories should come from protein. A study by Pennington Biomedical Research Center found that people who ate a diet high in calories which was rich in protein stored 45% of the calories as muscle. Those with a low-protein diet stored 95% of the calories as fat.

Snack On Casein Before Bed

Casein has long been popular with bodybuilders  and is a protein which is slowly absorbed into the bloodstream. This means that the muscles are fed with amino acids  for longer than with other types of protein. A study found that consuming casein immediately before bed can boost the levels of amino acid circulation for 7.5 hours in men. To get some of this, you should look at eating Greek yogurt, cottage cheese or milk.

Get More Sleep

While the right nutrition is important, muscle recovery needs more. Time is needed and you should dedicate around 8 hours to recovery every night. When you sleep, your body will release the human growth hormone which facilitates muscle growth. It will also keep the levels of stress hormones in check. Additionally, it has been found that sleeping for 5 hours instead of 8 each night will cut the muscle-building testosterone levels  by 10 to 15% in a week.

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