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STRENGTH AND POWER TRAINING INFORMATION FOR THE SERIOUS ATHLETE!
Muscle mass-the holy grail of strength
How do I get bigger? What can I do to get stronger? I have been asked these same two questions so many times over the years that my response has almost become a short elevator speech. If you don’t care to read any more then here is the short and sweet of not only gaining more mass but also to increasing your strength.
Summary: steps to more mass:
1. EXERCISE the major compound muscle groups
Pretty simple huh? The trick is to manage the eating, exercise and resting to derive the greatest benefits from the three to actually grow bigger and get stronger.
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Eating a pile of food that is setting in front of you will certainly add the calories and weight but are you getting them in the right proportions and at the right times? An over reliance on supplements or high protein foods will not pack on the muscle as well as a well balanced natural food diet.
But the supplements can help keep the calories high enough to continue to grow at a faster rate. These can be expensive though and there are better ways to eat than just out of a glass. The alternative to this conundrum of natural versus supplements is to intersperse the two throughout the six meals a day. Yes I did say six meals. Not every one will be 1500 calories though, in fact none of them will be. You’ll have to take your anticipated caloric needs for increased growth and repair and divide the total number by six to arrive at the amount needed for each meal or snack. Whoa I said snack.
Yes snacks have a place in the dinner bucket of the healthy lifter. Calories do count, contrary to what some trainers may say. They can be a good, and that is a relative term for what ever you can stomach, in the way of several carbohydrate/protein bars a day with a large glass of milk to wash the taste away. Some of them are just plain foul tasting. Sometimes you do what you have to do. You have to eat big to get big. But you also have to lift big to get big.
Spending time in the weightroom should be productive. If not then why be there in the first place? Multi joint exercises are the ticket day in and day out; they cannot be beat for effectiveness in building muscle. But they are hard to do with heavy weight you say, if you want to get strong you gotta do them. Squats, benches, rows, presses, and deadlifts are at the very foundation of the strength building program.
It is a proven scientific fact that the larger the cross sectional area of a muscle the more force it is capable of producing. It is this force that moves the heavy weight. This is the reason for building mass in the first place.
However just lifting heavy weights day after day will eventually wear you down and your progress will come to a grinding halt. That is if you don’t get hurt in the process. A systemized schedule based on proven results will provide direction and sanity to the program. That is where program schedule periodization enters the picture.
Percentage based routines on a periodized schedule equates to success. Once the lifting is over it is time to consider restoration of the organism.
Recovery takes on many forms. It can be simple rest, nutritional help or mechanical assistance via massage or electro modalities. Whatever means you may decide to select stay with them for short periods as your body will accommodate to the method just as it does to the repetitions and exercises over time. Once this happens growth begins to slow and then moves backward.
There is a science to getting bigger and stronger. This all takes time to learn and time to apply. If you don’t have the time to learn all of the ins and outs on your own, then following the plan laid out in a mass building manual is the way to go.
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