Want to add five pounds of muscle in only six short weeks? Not sure how to do it? The good news is that we do and we’re sharing all the info. The bad news is that you’ll have to do all the work.
So you want to get beefy and build some serious muscle. You’ve got the tools, the ability, and the drive, but maybe you do not have the greatest plan.
We have all the info you are going to need in order to pack on the pack, fling on some wings and build up the bod to muscle man (or woman) status in just six weeks.
Is this even possible?
I mean, seriously, that is a heck of a lot of muscle in just a little bit of time don’t you think?
Well, yes, it is a lot of muscle, and yes it is definitely possible it’s even possible to gain 10 pounds in one month, but only if you stay on top of things. You have to be dedicated. You also have to eat right, hydrate and, of course, work like crazy for it.
But, nothing worth having is ever easy.
Building muscle is not easy. We’re not going to lie to you. We all know it takes time, work and just the right kind of diet. But it’s totally achievable (that is obvious when you take a look around your local gym and see all the muscle boundness going on) and we will show you how.
The First And Most Obvious Step Is To Eat Protein
It doesn’t matter if you live at the gym and sweat your butt off daily, if you’re not consuming enough protein, then you are not going to make much progress at all. We are literally made of protein (also carbs and fat), and every cell in your body contains the stuff.
Simply put: You need it!
Protein is responsible for many processes that go on in the body. It helps bones grow. It also helps your hair, nails, skin and, of course, your muscles grow too!
So wouldn’t it make sense to eat a ton of the stuff?
Yes, it would.
You can get your protein through eating lean meats such as chicken, fish or turkey. You can also get it from eggs, milk, yogurt or cheese. As well, you can find the plant versions of it in foods like quinoa, beans, nuts and soy.
It’s highly likely that you may not be getting enough protein from just your diet alone and that is where a good protein shake would come in. A decent amount of protein that your shake should contain would be anywhere from 20 to 40 grams per serving and that is an excellent way to get your daily intake a bit higher.
Why do you need so much protein?
Well, that is the case because you are going to be working your glutes off (or putting some on really) and using up a lot of energy during your workouts.
The average sedentary (inactive) adult male requires a minimum of 46 grams of protein per day and the average sedentary adult female requires about 36 grams per day. Those amounts are needed just for your body to perform normal daily functions such as digestion, brain function, hormonal processes and more.
Those amounts do not account for any activity.
Add strength training, muscle mass, age and more to that mix and you are going to need to up your protein intake significantly. Try one gram per pound of bodyweight. That was the suggested amount of protein consumption for those who are trying to put on muscle, according to a study published by The Journal Of Applied Physiology.
Lay Off The Booze
If you’re serious about adding muscle, you might want to put down the alcohol for the time being or at least cut way back.
Not only does alcohol contain a load of empty and useless calories that can pack on the pounds, it also inhibits muscle growth.
If you’re the type to go out for happy hour after an evening workout, you should know that the alcohol you consume could make that time in the gym a big old waste. That is because alcohol slows down protein synthesis and may even halt it all together depending on how much you consume.
Protein synthesis is the process of repairing and building damaged muscle.
You know the ones you just ripped up in the gym?
Do not let the hard work be for nothing. If you are going to drink, do it on an off day and in moderation.
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Do Not Be A Dirty Bulker
Eating everything in sight from donuts to fried foods, burgers, and milkshakes to pack on some poundage is not exactly the best way to meet your daily caloric intake when you are trying to bulk up and build muscle. You are going to want to increase your calorie intake by about 500 past maintenance level during the time you’re trying to put on muscle.
Keep your diet as clean as you can. Stay away from crappy, processed, sugar-filled, greasy, packaged, weird unreadable ingredient having, fat-making, so-called foods. They are just no good for you. Eating clean is simple. You are going to want to eat foods in their original form. No, we are not talking about grabbing a wing flapping chicken and biting its head off. We simply mean you should be eating foods with the least amount of processing as possible.
Your body uses the nutrients of these types of foods much better and easier. Plus, you will not be getting all the added sugar and unhealthy types of fats that typically come with processed foods.
Eat a load of baked chicken, lean cuts of beef and pork, turkey, eggs, fresh fruits and vegetables (especially greens). You should also eat organic dairy such as cheese, cottage cheese and milk, and whole grains like brown rice, oatmeal, and barley.
Eat healthy fats, because you are going to need fat to increase the production of many muscle-building hormones. You can even take supplements such as fish oil which is packed full of omega-3s.
Perform Heavy Compound Lifts
Compound lifts are multi-muscle, multi-joint lifts such as deadlifts, back squats, bent over barbell rows and bench presses. By performing these types of heavy exercises, you will build a huge amount of strength and increase the body’s testosterone levels for even more muscle growth.
Aside from adding more muscle, these types of lifts help to rid the body of extra fat.
Sounds good, doesn’t it?
Go For Higher Sets Not Reps
Adding more volume to your training is definitely something you need to be doing if you truly want to grow some muscle. Normally, the average lifter may increase their reps from the 10 to 12 range up to the 12 to 15 range, while keeping each set count at around three. The problem with this is that in order to reach that many reps, you will not be able to add much weight and make for some heavy lifting.
Instead, you will want to keep your reps heavy and between four to eight. Then increase your sets to somewhere between 6 to 12. Ten sets of five reps is 50 reps total, which will keep you at your target volume but ensure that you are bringing your muscles to failure during the last rep due to the amount of weight you are using.
Why bring your muscles to complete failure this way?
The reason is because studies show that bringing your muscles to failure increases activation and raises the muscle building hormone (HGH, testosterone) levels. Of course, you can still build muscle with higher reps and lighter weights, but this will not increase your strength much, burn as much fat or hyper boost your testosterone levels.
Get Your Sleep
When you’re trying to increase muscle, you not only have to increase your calorie intake, but also the weight you are lifting, your protein intake and your willpower to say no to junk food. You will also now need to increase the amount of time that you sleep each night.
Building muscle is no easy task for the body. It goes through a lot to perform the process. And everything happens during the time your head hits the pillow and you fall into a deep and restful slumber. Even though your body can produce HGH during the waking hours, the majority of it is produced during the night while you are sleeping. The same goes for muscle repair. That kind of magic can’t happen while you are awake. So do not deprive yourself of sleep. It will only work against your ultimate goal of gaining muscle.
You should get, at the very least, eight solid hours of sleep each night. This can be pretty difficult for most people who have a family, a job, workout, have friends and are all sorts of busy. But, the fact remains that if you want it bad enough, then you will make time for sleep, just like you make time for your social life and working out.
Do This Workout To Gain Five Pounds Of Muscle In Six Weeks
Now that we got all the other stuff out of the way, it is time to get down to business and sweat it out. This workout is a four-day split plan. You will be working two days followed by a rest day, then another two days followed by the weekend off. Don’t forget: Use heavy weight, lower reps, and higher sets.
Day 1 Is For Shoulders And Triceps
Clean and press 4 sets X 6 reps
Standing dumbbell press 5 sets X 8 reps
Dumbbell lateral raise 4 sets X 6 reps
Skullcrusher 4 sets X 8 reps
Triceps pulldown 4 sets X 8 reps
Triceps extension 5 sets X 8 reps
Day 2 Is For Back And Traps
Deadlift 4 sets X 6 reps
T-bar row 4 sets X 8 reps
Bent row 5 sets X 6 reps
Barbell shrug 4 sets X 8 reps
Behind the back barbell shrug 4 sets X 6 reps
Day 3 Is For Rest
Day 4 Is For Legs
Rack squat 4 sets X 6 reps
Leg extension 5 sets X 6 reps
Leg press 4 sets X 6 reps
Calf raise (weighted) 5 sets X 8 reps
Hamstring curl 4 sets X 8 reps
Day 5 Is For Chest And Biceps
Incline bench press 4 sets X 6 reps
Flat bench press 4 sets X 8 reps
Dumbbell flye 5 sets X 6 reps
Hammer curl 5 sets X 6 reps
Preacher curl 4 sets X 8 reps
Chin-up 5 sets X 8 reps
Day 6 Is For Rest
Day 7 Is For Rest
Do not forget to cool down and hold some stretches after you have worked your muscles. Stretching is extremely important and also aids in muscle growth and recovery.
There you have it. Now you know all the keys to successfully adding muscle in only a very short amount of time. It truly can be done. Get serious about your food, your sleep, and your routine so that you can get the most out of it. Stay dedicated and use the plan we just outlined over the course of four to six weeks. After that, try increasing the weight you are using in order to keep advancing.
You may add more or less muscle during the plan, but that’s because every body is different. The average person can expect to add about one pound of muscle per week with the right nutrition and workout program. So if you want results, stick with it and give it everything you’ve got! Success is waiting for you.
By Heather Neff, CPT
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