Over the years, we have all heard bodybuilding tips, which does not mean they are ‘bodybuilder’ only tips. Or that if you are to use these tips, you must be a bodybuilder. Many different sports can benefit from bodybuilding tips and training at different parts of their session.
If you have a goal of building muscle, you’ll need more than one tool in your toolbox. You’ll need to lift weights and keep progressing over time. It sounds so easy on paper; eat nutritious foods, get enough rest, and recover so your body can repair and build muscle. However, once we are in the gym and living real life, we tend to forget the basics and run off to the new trend that promises quick results with minimal effort.
Thre is no magical pill you can take to have your dream six-pack or 405-pound bench for reps overnight. However, if you apply these tips to your training program, you can keep progressing toward your goals.
Natural Bodybuilding Tips
#1 – Your Muscles Start With Your Diet
How often have you heard, “You are what you eat”? There is nothing wrong with eating clean and focusing on the macros needed for your goals; don’t go overboard.
When shopping at the grocery store, try to shop the perimeter. You’ll find the fruits and vegetable section, fresh and frozen meats, and other items you will need weekly. The center aisles are all full of easy-to-eat and probably not the best for your foods. Remember, processed foods are not bad overall. It is just that they tend to not have the vitamins and minerals like traditional foods.
Try going shopping when you are hungry and see what you buy. You might leave with a little extra than you had on your shopping list. Willpower comes into play when temptations surround us. If you don’t have it in your house, you will probably not eat it.
#2 – Learn to Cook
Ordering through an app is easy and convenient; it costs more than the extra money for the food. Cooking is a skill that takes time to learn but with patients, you’ll feel complete control over what you eat and your health.
Cooking can be easy if you have the right tools and learn from helpful sources like YouTube or Googling. Get yourself a set of knives, a pot, and a pan. Explore a variety of flavors with each meal and try someone new.
#3 – Train with Intensity
To maximize muscle growth, you need to train with a certain level of intensity. This means performing reps and going about your workout isn’t enough – you need to bring your A-game when it comes to training. Having the ‘best’ workout plan or newest supplements won’t make up for the lack of intensity in the gym. If you want your muscles to grow, you need to be pushing hard enough to cause growth and adaptation.
To achieve high-intensity workouts, you’ll need to train near failure, rest frequently, and push yourself hard. Remember to keep safety first, but the goal of every workout is to push yourself as intensely as possible.
Intensity is the key to all successful workouts. There are millions of workout programs, but many cannot work if you do not train with enough intensity. Push yourself to get quality reps with a challenging weight.
#4 – Try a Full-Body Workout
Full-body workouts are not anything new nowadays. CrossFit has made these extremely popular with their WODs. You don’t need to be a bodybuilder to benefit from a full-body workout.
Full-body workouts are much different from the old standard bodybuilding training, where only one muscle group is trained daily. You’ll want to make sure you are training all body parts equally. That means training the lower body with the upper body, yes, legs. These workouts are a different feeling than a standard chest day and are great for helping get into shape.
#5 – Train Legs
Look, we all get it; training legs is just hard. There is no way around that. It does not matter if you are looking to be in a physique bodybuilding competition; you will still need to train your legs.
Stronger legs mean you have a more muscular overall body. Bench press needs leg drive, push press needs leg drive, you need to hold weight while you shrug, and do we need to give more examples? IF you are looking to take your workouts and body as far as possible, you need to train your legs. Additionally, our legs are enormous muscle groups. When you are looking to use a massive amount of calories, having some nice legs helps this.
Old school lifters loved the squats, but that does not mean you must train squats every leg day. You can use the hack squat and leg press; just don’t forget to squat now and then.
#6 – Progressively Overload
So you have your intensity, and you are pushing yourself hard every workout; what now? Do you keep doing the same workout every week and trying to add more weight to the bar?
This is where progressive overload is essential. What is Progressive Overloading & how does it work? To make your workout more effective, you need to increase one of the variables: your weight, reps, sets, time under tension (TUT), and rest periods. Increasing the number of repetitions, lifting heavier weights, or using a slower lifting tempo will overload your muscles and help them grow.
Training the same weight for three sets of ten reps does not mean you found the secret to training success. After a while, your body will adapt to that weight, and it is time to add more weight to the bar if you wish to continue making gains.
#7 – Log Your Workouts
Do you have any idea what you did last week for your workouts? What about a month ago? By logging your workout as you go, you can track what exercises, the sets, reps, and the weight you have done.
You can use a journal and take notes or your phone with an app. If you can record your form, you can use this to note any minor adjustments you may need. Experiment, analyze, and improve your training methods to keep progressing. If you want to see what your workouts are doing for your long-term goals, you need to keep track of them.
#8 – Quality Reps Over Quantity
Force reps and feeling the burn are all part of training. However, if you struggle to perform quality reps and focus on the sheer numbers of reps, think if this is best for your fitness goal. If you are trying to build size, slower and controlled eccentric phases with a maximum concentric contraction will give better results versus just trying to perform the reps.
Quality reps are what build muscle. Don’t waste your time with junk reps.
#9 – Use Compound Lifts
Focus most of your energy on compound lifts if you want to burn calories and build muscle. These exercises work multiple joints at once. On the other hand, isolation exercises that only use one joint also have their place in training, but if you want to see results, you should put most of your efforts into compound lifts.
Here are a few examples of compound lifts: Bench Press, Squats, Deadlifts, Military Press, Rows, Bent Over, and Barbell Row
If you don’t have much time to work out, doing a few sets of compound exercises will help you get a great quick workout in.
#10 – Try Different Rep & Set Types
There is more to workouts than doing the traditional three sets of 10 reps.
Supersets, Compound Sets, & Advanced Weight Training Techniques allow you to train differently in less time and can help keep your heart rate elevated. They will also add extra intensity, focus, and pace to your training. A little cardio conditioning will be needed for effect as you fight through the multiple sets with no breaks.
Try to switch up your training if you are looking for a new training style.