How to Structure your Workout for Maximum Muscle Building

By: JessicaThomson

This is probably the most often asked question when it comes to weight lifting. How do I get big, what the secret? Well I start out by simply saying that there is no secret, but there are certain things that you should certainly do and certain things that you should certainly avoid.
Letstart with the things that you should avoid

- Almost anything promising fast results.

Did you ever hear the saying don believe everything you read, this statement holds especially true for anything health and fitness related. Everybody wants to promise you that their secret method will work better than everything that you ever tried so that you will buy their magazine or join their website or purchase what ever product that they happen to be selling. Don be fooled by false claims, the best Muscle Building workouts are often the simplest, with very little flash and no gimmicks.

- Training too much.

A lot of beginners can get overzealous in their training. Though it does take a lot of hard work and can take many hours in the gym to build the physique that you are looking for, you can get too much of a good thing. Over training can severely inhibit your progress as well as put you on the fast track to an injury that could have you out of the gym and making no gains at all.

So what do you do?

- First and foremost, be safe

To gain a serious amount of muscle, you are going to have to be moving some heavy weights. Always make sure that you warm up and that you lift with a spotter, sitting at home with an injury (or worse) certainly is going to help you get any closer to your goals.

- Use compound movements

a lot of guys refer to them as the big three, they are the lifts commonly associated with the sport of power lifting squats, dead lifts and bench press, and these movements should be the foundation of your program. Each of these movements will work several areas of your body when performed correctly.

I prefer a three day workout routine and using each of the big three as the main movement for each workout. Perform the daymain movement, and then follow up with a few exercises that will target each particular dayarea of focus. The three separate days could look something like this:

Monday will focus on the lower body. Start off with a light warm up to get the blood flowing then ittime to get to work. Perform squats for five sets of five repetitions each, increasing the weight until you are lifting as much weight as you can comfortably handle while using good form. Follow up the squats with two to three sets of six to ten repetitions each for a few supplemental exercises good choices would include: leg press, leg extensions, leg curls and calf raises. You can finish up the workout with some core work and a brief cool down.

Wednesday will focus on the chest, shoulders and triceps. Begin with a light warm up as you did on Monday, then jump into some bench press. Just as you did with the squats on Monday, perform five sets of five repetitions on the bench working up to the heaviest weight you can move comfortably in good form. Follow up the bench here with two to three sets of six to ten repetitions of some supplemental exercises since you are targeting three muscle groups here it wouldn't hurt to do a supplemental exercise for each. For chest it could be close grip bench press, dumbbell flies, incline press or decline press; shoulders could be military press or lateral raises; triceps could be French press, triceps extensions or triceps pushdowns. You can finish every workout with core work if you'd like, but if you're still a bit sore in the abdominal region then waiting until Friday might be advisable.

Friday will be for the back and biceps. After you warm up work the dead lifts for five sets of five repetitions, I want to post a quick word of caution here not nearly as many people are familiar with this exercise as should be; it is truly one of the most beneficial exercises that you can perform. If you have never performed this movement before, I urge you to learn the proper form before beginning. The dead lift sometimes gets a bad wrap because people do it with improper form and get injured learn to do it properly and you will get tremendous benefits with very little risk of incurring any injury. Good supplemental exercises for your Friday workout would be bent over rows, shrugs, pull ups and barbell or dumbbell curls.

These workouts, or variations there of, can be performed on any three non consecutive days, it doesn't necessarily have to be Monday, Wednesday and Friday and if you are unable to perform any of the exercises suggested than you can certainly perform alternate movements as necessary. This is merely a good guideline that can be modified to suit your needs.

You will certainly see other types of workouts that work as well as the example above. Instead of the 5 X 5 ( five sets of five reps) many people like a 3 X 3 workout with heavier weights and some will say that a 4 X 6 works the best. You may find that a 3 X 3 works best for squats, while a 5 X 5 works better for bench press, as long as you're working hard within that range of sets and reps, the results will come.

- Rest, rest, rest.

Your muscles actually grow while they are at rest, without adequate recovery you will have very little if any increase in size or strength. So relax on your days off and get plenty of sleep.

In summation, your big secret to building muscular size and strength is as follows: Work hard, get plenty of rest and eat well. If you are hunting for a quick fix, then you are probably wasting your time.

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