Building muscle is not easy, but with the right approach it is possible. In order to build muscle tissue, certain exercises have to be done using specific repetition ranges for a total amount of sets. The amount of repetitions and sets completed is called volume. How heavy a weight is compared to your 1RM (one rep max) is your intensity. So if someone can bench press 300 pounds just one time, that is their 1RM. If this person bench presses 30 pounds for 10 repetitions, that is not intense because 30 is just 10% of 300. Also, to build muscle your muscles have to be pushed to exhaustion during multiple sets in order to recruit as many muscle fibers as possible. Some exercises and machines are a waste of time if you are trying to build muscle like: the inner thigh gadget.
This inner thigh gadget is not intense enough to build muscle and I know, you know, it won’t burn fat from your inner thigh either. If you want to target the inner thighs, you’re probably better off doing sumo squats.
Let’s talk building leg muscles. It’s simple. You must lift intense and do some of the following exercises once or twice per week.
Back squats (called so because the bar is on your back).
Front squats (the bar is in front). The front squat forces your body to stay more upright during the movement, and this causes you to recruit muscles of the thoracic spine to keep you upright. Great for posture!!!
And my favorite, the dead-lift. The dead-lift is really a full body exercise, but it is an excellent leg muscle builder too.
These are the muscles used during the dead-lift.
Don’t worry ladies you won’t get buff doing dead-lifts, but you might get strong.
And men, you will gain muscle with dead-lifts because of a hormone running through your body called testosterone.
To build the upper body, push-ups and pull ups are your friends.
If you can’t do push ups or pull-ups, this is where machines come in. Lat pull downs are a good back and arm builder.
And the bench-press will definitely build your chest, anterior shoulder muscles, and triceps. You can start light.
The overhead press is also an excellent exercise to strengthen the shoulders, triceps, and core muscles.
Anyone who trains with me, or has talked to me about strength training programs, knows that I am a big believer in free weights, and some cable machine exercises in order to get the most bang for your buck. If you don’t know how to do the above lifts correctly, you should hire someone to teach you, or you can go on YouTube and look at multiple instructional videos on how to do a given lift with proper form.
Please keep in mind that lifting weights is just the stimulus for building new muscle tissue. To honor and complete the stimulus you must eat correctly and get your rest. We don’t run on batteries you know, or caffeine.