Your going to the gym and doing your usual training then coming back and resting and doing all that you need to do to presumably “get stronger”. you don’t see progress after 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, maybe even 1 year? Your starting to lose hope and thinking you’re always going to look good but never be as strong as you look? I understand that. I understand where your coming from because I was like this for a couple of months. But there’s a way to change all of the problems and overcome them roadblocks when you realise the real sets and reps and exercises you should be doing, training for strength will become like a walk in the park and one of the easiest things to do.
So firstly what we need to understand is training for strength is like a chapter in a book which in this case is the gym this is because you can train for multiple different things, for example, you can train for muscle mass and you can train for muscle endurance and what we are looking into now is training for strength. We need to understand these are different things and doing one can help the others but not great but will greatly affect the one you are aiming for, for example, I can train for muscle mass and I will grow muscle but I will also get stronger but in the smallest possible amount and you can also get muscle endurance to the smallest amount but what we are looking into today is how we can maximise muscle strength other than the others. Firstly to train for muscle strength we need to know the rep range we are aiming for, all the strongest people we know and are competing are using lower rep ranges to train from 1-5 reps this is because you want to lift heavy to the point that your muscles are being pushed to its maximum strength, this will also help build muscle but not great because it focuses on getting a specific muscle strong think of it as running. When you training for speed you want to run quickly but if you want to run for longer distances you have to find a slower pace that you can keep constant. Secondly to maximise training for muscle strength you need to make sure you are keeping the form perfect when performing the exercise for example if I use a bicep curl as an example you want to make sure you lift the weight up slowly controlling as it goes back down with the full range of movement, this is because you will be activating more muscle fibres in your arm which will then mean when your done more muscle fibres would have gotten stronger making it appear and feel like you have more strength than when you started. Lastly, to maximise muscle strength you will need to rest longer because muscle and strength are made when your muscles are resting and healing, this means you will need nothing less than a day before performing more exercises on that specific muscle.
In conclusion, the 3 major factors to get stronger are to lower your rep range and increase weight, perform the exercise to its max so that it reaches every muscle fibre and resting so that your muscle has time to grow back stronger.
You are probably someone that goes to a gym and train to build muscle/grow muscle but after a couple of months your thinking that you are not seeing progress or you not getting any bigger than what you started from them a few days back, weeks back or even months back. I understand where you are coming from because I was also like this and I was thinking all the efforts I was putting into the gym and time I was putting into the gym was all worthless and all going to waste. Well, building muscle/muscle growth is not something to be confused about or to be scared of, because muscle growth is very easy once you know what you are doing and following these 3 major rules I am about to explain to you.
So firstly to build muscle you need to understand the rep and set range you want to be doing which is the key to building muscle, you need to be doing reps between 6 – 12 maximum which means that the weight your lifting should be heavy enough to stop you from completing the 13th rep this is because if you do more than this you will be training to maximise muscle endurance and if you do less than this you will be training to maximise muscle strength. For example, if I am doing a bicep curl the weight I’m using would make it impossible for me to curl it as I reach 13 reps, doing this will train your muscle to grow. Secondly, another major rule of growing muscle is your diet, you want to be eating at a calorie in > out meaning you are at a calorie surplus. To create this you need to work out the minimum amount of calories you need for your body to function and add 300-500 calories to it, for example, if my base metabolic intake is 2000 calories I will need to be eating 2500 to create a calorie surplus big enough to maximise muscle growth it will also include eating a lot of protein so that it gets stored inside your muscles other than fat, this is because your body will use the extra calories for fat and muscle. To make the calories go to your body as muscle you need to monitor what you are eating which should be a lot of protein. Thirdly to maximise your muscle growth you will need lots of rest so that your muscles have time to heal, this is because muscle fibres are broken down during weight training so when you are resting the muscle fibre heal back stronger and bigger. At least one day is needed to rest a muscle so when you have finished training on a specific muscle you shouldn’t train it for a day at a minimum so or has time to grow for example if I train biceps on Monday I should avoid training biceps until Wednesday at the least so that it doesn’t work against my muscle growth because of stress.
In conclusion, the 3 major factors in building muscle are using the correct rep range specifically for the growth, correctly completing a calorie surplus and eating protein because it helps grow muscle and lastly to get enough rest in between training so you won’t stress your muscle and have a negative effect on its growth.