Bulking up to get the muscles you’ve always wanted isn’t as simple as you think. Most online personal trainer professionals will tell you that there’s plenty of controversy surrounding the concept of “bulking” to get big. After all, some experts say that if you want to get big muscles, then you need a big appetite. On the other hand, some professionals say that this doesn’t add up.
At the end of the day, if you want to gain muscle fast, then you should expect that you’re going to have to gain some fat too. Most of the time, the aim in bulking up is to gain muscle and fat at about an equal rate. While some people will gain slightly more fat than they do muscle, others will experience the other end of the spectrum.
Why Eating More Matters to Your Muscles
The science of building muscles is complicated – but it pretty much boils down to this: whether your body can build muscle will depend on how much food you eat. Simply consuming plenty of protein isn’t enough. If you want big muscles fast, then you need to eat plenty of calories too.
The reason for this is that your body burns the energy you consume through the day in activity. This leads to a relationship known as energy balance. If you feed your body less energy than it burns, you create a calorie deficit that causes you to lose fat. Unfortunately, this process also reduces your body’s ability to synthesise muscle proteins, and reduces anabolic hormone levels, while boosting catabolic hormones.
On top of all of that – your workout performance is reduced. While it’s possible to gain a little strength towards the beginning of your workout routine when in a calorie deficit – most people start to experience slight strength losses when they diet.
So How Much Do You Have to Eat?
Deciding how much you need to eat to build muscles can be where things go a little awry in many bodybuilding classes. A good personal trainer in London will advise that you should have a slight caloric surplus for building muscle. This means that you need to eat around 10% more calories than your body burns. However, if you eat more than that, you increase your chances of gaining large amounts of fat alongside your muscle.
Unfortunately, this excess fat not only ruins your body shape – it also accelerates fat storage and reduces muscle growth. The reason for this is that when body fat levels rise, estrogen levels rise, and testosterone levels drop. At the same time, your insulin sensitivity drops too. These changes accelerate fat storage, and hinder muscle growth – making your perfect body even hard to achieve.
How Can you Do it Right?
The truth is that bulking can work to improve your muscle gains if it’s done correctly. Unfortunately, most people don’t know what the right process involves. Following, we’ll give you an insight so that you can upgrade your strength training program.
Step 1: Manage a surplus of calorie intake up to 10% when bulking. This should help you gain around 1 pound a week.
Step 2: Ignore cheat days. Too many people lose their fantastic gains with cheat days that allow them to massively over-eat.
Step 3: Have the right body fat percentage. If you’re a man, and your body-fat percentage is over 15%, you’ll need to reduce it to 10% before bulking. If you’re a woman with over 25% body fat, you’ll need to reduce to 20% before bulking. This will help to prevent hormonal imbalance and insulin sensitivity.
Step 4: When you reach 15-17% body fat for men, and 25-27% body fat for women, start reducing body fat levels and stop bulking.
As you move through your gaining process, you’ll need to juggle bulking and cutting processes until you reach the size that you want.
Remember, when it comes to getting the body you want, the right expectations and a little patience are just as important as the matters we’ve discussed so far. If you’re clinging to unrealistic muscle growth goals, then you’re setting yourself up for failure.
Bulking is easy to do right if you follow the right rules:
- Maintain the right calorie surplus
- Don’t cheat on your diet
- Don’t let your body fat percentage go to high
- Train hard
- Emphasize compound heavy weight lifting
- Sleep well, and set realistic goals
Personal Trainer London
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