It’s more than just picking this up and putting them down. Here are nine reasons you can’t gain a pound.
#1. YOUR EXPECTATIONS ARE WACK
Building muscle is just like anything else in the world you want to get good at. It takes time and practice. You can certainly make great, noticeable gains within a couple weeks; not so much cover model status.
#2. YOU DON’T KNOW YOUR NUMBERS
Knowing how much you bench, squat, overhead press, and deadlift isn’t for the pissing contest with others. It’s a your personal status. You don’t need to be lifting more, or performing more reps with each session, but weekly gains (even if minuscule) mean you’re on the right track. If not, your program may need modification.
#3. YOU TRAIN ROGUE
Until you get to a certainly level of fitness, writing and programming your own workouts isn’t advised. Solid trainers know the appropriate amount of exercises, sets, reps, and rest you need to stimulate maximum growth. Bench pressing and curling all night isn’t a program, it’s a problem.
#4. YOU RUN TOO DAMN MUCH
If your goal is to build muscle and you’ve been lifting for weeks, haven’t gotten stronger, or gained a pound. Stop running, or get off the elliptical. If you’re afraid you’re not getting enough cardio, start doing circuits or supersets – it will elevate the heart rate enough.
#5. YOU’RE A STRESSED OUT LUNATIC
Your boss is crazy nut job, your girlfriend is one, too. You’d better get your emotions in check because it messes with your hormones, focus, and ultimately, your results in the gym.
#6. YOU EAT WAY LESS THAN YOU THINK
OK, great. Happy to hear you’re taking protein shakes. But do you have any idea how much you’re actually consuming? You don’t necessarily NEED to know how many calories you’re taking in, but at least be able to recite back what you ate in the day down to the serving amount. If you’re weight is holding steady and you can’t notice more bulk in areas like the arms, chest, shoulders, and back, then you might want to bump up your serving sizes slowly.
#7. YOU CHEAT… TOO MUCH
Partial reps, or half reps do have a place, but not if you’re doing it on the regular. Drop the weight back a bit and make sure you’re going the full range of motion on an exercise to activate as many muscle fibers as possible.
#8. YOU’RE AFRAID TO GO BIG
If you’re cranking out curls and kickbacks, but won’t go near the squat rack, you’re going to have a mass-building problem. Compound movements like squats, deadlifts, the bench press and overhead press recruit multiple muscle groups, and are what really stimulate growth. Suck up the thought of being uncomfortable and get it done.
#9. OR… YOU DON’T GO HOME
Try and stay awake for 24-hours and see how you feel the next day. Oh yeah, it would suck. Same goes for hitting it in the gym, if you’re spending hours and hours working out and not taking rest days, you’re going to wear yourself out. Or worse, get hurt.
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