How To Build Muscle
You’ve finally made the decision to get back on track with your training. Problem is, you have lost a significant amount of muscle mass from being stuck in your home office.
Or, on the flip side, you’ve been training consistently for some time now, and are struggling to see improvements.
This leads me to the topic of today’s blog; how exactly do we grow muscle?
This process can be quite complex; however, I will start by explaining the 3 proposed mechanisms under which muscle mass is developed.
This is when resistance or load is applied to the muscle through range and is one of the most effective ways to build muscle.
- 85-90% of your 1RM
- Leaving 1-2 reps in reserve (meaning you could perform 1-2 more reps prior to failure)
- OR taking the muscle to failure (this is where you physically fail the rep)
- Adding tempo work (increasing the time under tension)
This is where stress is put on the cells through metabolites, H+ and lactic acid production. This increases the pressure within the cell (a process known as cell swelling). It has been theorised that the increased pressure on the cell membrane triggers a protective response which causes the cell to adapt. This chronic cell swelling leads to hypertrophy of the cell, and ultimately, of the muscle itself.
- High rep ranges
- Short rest periods
- Drop sets
- Superset (same muscle group)
This process occurs through microdamage/trauma to the muscle. This creates an inflammatory response within the cells which leads to repair and adaptation of the muscle tissue as a protective response.
- Eccentric exercise
- Unaccustomed activity
- Change in stimulus/load/intensity