When I started with bodybuilding, I did not know what to eat not mentioning training but all I knew was that, I want to gain some strength, muscles and improve my quality of life. You probably know that, bodybuilding is much about lifting heavy weights, multiple times a week, protein shakes, a lot of supplements, eating all the time and often toilet visits too 😀 These are few of many gym stereotypes. It all depends on how effective you want to achieve your goals, setting the right goals and your budget.
I personally find people saying “I want this and this” but not willing to make sacrifices to achieve it. I cannot teach people hard work because that is something life ingrained in me but I can show you and guide you through the process, and inspire others by spreading the positive energy of bodybuilding. And I am glad that, I managed to find people of same mind and above all inspire others to follow “like a domino effect.”
Everything worthwhile in life takes time but it is important to start right and never stop no matter what. To give you some advice: Find the right environment with people willing to support you with your decision and if not find a new people probably at gym (no excuses). You can also try some motivational platforms to get more inspired and stay on the track or Self-discipline.
When it comes to the process, first half of the year is the most important phase where noticable changes seen during 6-8 weeks of correct meal and training plan implementation. Instead of asking yourself how long, focus on few things and make it progressive than find another to follow. I suggest not skipping the meals and sleeping at least 8 hours routinely.
You probably know by now that, you can achieve your goals more efficiently by training twice a week for 1h or even once a week for 1h. This requires understanding the laws of bodybuilding and breaking the rules because you do not need supplements, protein shakes, overeating, too much weight or steroids.
How much weight and how many meals?
Quality over Quantity. Eating junk food only depletes your body of essential nutrients and makes you more hungry to eat more as insulin is higher, thus cravings for sugar or junk food higher. Also improper sleep increases the cravings. When your body does not get the right nutrients it usually takes it from the bones which causes osteoporosis and we need a strong bones.
It is also a matter of setting the right goals whether losing or gaining. It is suggested to do 5-6 meals a day but this can be also minimized by effective eating (3-4 meals) where using more quality source of energy “Fats.” Eating and Training effective also decrease the amount of cardio needed (min 30 min of physical activity per day suggested).
When it comes to weights you must be always progressive to achieve muscle hypertrophy but do not always need heavy weights. You either want to get strong, build muscles or both. There are many techniques to help you overcome mood swings like supersets (different exercises no break between), drop sets (lowering weights no break), increased number of repetition (failure-pump), negative reps (big weights), positive reps (better focus), intensity, incremental sets and many others (no excuses).
Which supplements and exercises?
You do not need any supplements you can get it all from the foods but it helps though. Quality over Quantity (ecologic). If you are not so serious about bodybuilding and want just get fit I suggest multivitamins and fish oil. Quality multivitamins make sure that you have everything covered and Omega 3 fatty acids are inevitable for right body functioning (fish is must on the table).
No need for many exercises. If you intend to get strong, fit or build muscle effectively focus on compound exercises (deadlifts,bench press, squats …) where you apply more muscle groups – creating more strength and stress on more muscles at the same time. These exercises are very effective as you use those movements everyday (balance and coordination). You can build a nice physique and add some isolation exercises depending again on what you want to achieve. You also do not need many sets per exercise as long as you make it progressive your muscles are getting used to it (change training plan every 3-4 months).
Talent vs. Hard work
It is not about genetics but hard work. You visualize what you want to achieve then make it happen. I suggest focusing on lower weights and constantly increasing while achieving better pump (through pain) so you can feel each training on the following day. If you can do that and provide muscles with right food (wholefoods), sleep right, then you have nothing to worry about. I found myself often worrying about the look and heavy weights focus on the pump and few things around (meals and sleep) and stay progressive.
Mind is a very powerful tool which is the most important aspect of succeeding. I would not make it without finding my drive (decide with heart) and listening to soundcloud (top bodybuilders mindset and advice, gym music). I also made a few friends doing gym routinely.
Lastly, you do not need that much stretching as long as you do it consistently, the same goes for gym and eating, If you learn not to skip your meal and gym you are creating impressive work-ethic even your workout is shitty. Find your purpose and stay consistent – once you see improvements you stay driven.
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