Muscle Mass: What You Need to Know of the Science Behind It

A man working on building muscle mass in the gym

The Science Behind Building Muscle Mass: What You Need to Know

Are you ready to unlock the secrets behind building muscle mass? Whether you’re a fitness enthusiast or just starting your journey, understanding the science behind muscle growth is your key to success. Building muscles goes beyond lifting weights – it’s a fascinating interplay of biology, nutrition, and strategic training.

From the intricate composition of muscle fibers to the role of protein synthesis, we’ll break down the biology behind the gains. Get ready to discover how nutrition, recovery, and hormones impact your muscle-building engine. And that’s just the beginning. Let’s dive into the science that will transform your muscle-building journey.

The Biology of Muscle Building

When you’re on a mission to achieve your best body, understanding the biology of muscle building becomes your secret weapon. It’s not just about pumping iron; it’s about comprehending the intricate processes that fuel your gains. Muscles are composed of fibers, myofibrils, and sarcomeres – the building blocks of strength. But here’s the magic: satellite cells, your muscle’s unsung heroes, kick into action post-workout, repairing and even growing your muscle fibers.

Now, let’s talk about protein synthesis – the real muscle-making machinery. When you challenge your muscles through resistance training, your body responds by producing more proteins. These proteins fuse together to create muscle fibers that are stronger and more resilient. It’s like a construction crew rebuilding a structure to make it sturdier. So, every time you hit the gym, remember that you’re not just lifting weights; you’re igniting a cellular symphony that’s sculpting the physique you envision.

The Role of Nutrition in Muscle Growth

Welcome to the heart of your muscle gain journey – nutrition and meal planning. Your muscles crave the right fuel to reach their full potential, and that’s where your muscle gain diet plan comes into play. Protein takes the spotlight as the cornerstone of muscle growth. Think of it as the bricks used to build a sturdy house – your muscles being that house. Amino acids, the protein’s building blocks, are the MVPs here, with branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) taking center stage for muscle repair and recovery.

A balanced diet is the key to building muscle mass and overall health

But it’s not just about protein. Carbohydrates provide the energy needed to crush intense workouts, ensuring your muscles have the power to push through. Fats, often overlooked, play a vital role in hormone production, including those essential for muscle growth. And let’s not forget micronutrients – vitamins and minerals that act as the sparks to keep your metabolic furnace burning bright. So, while lifting weights is pivotal, remember that your muscles truly thrive when you fuel them with the right nutrients.

Hormones and Muscle Growth

Picture this: hormones as the conductors of your body’s orchestra, guiding the symphony of muscle growth. When building muscle mass, hormones play a pivotal role, and understanding their dance is key to achieving your desired physique. Testosterone takes center stage – the hormone that defines masculinity and drives muscle protein synthesis. Growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) join in, promoting cellular division and protein production, respectively.

Your body’s hormonal symphony is influenced by various factors -from genetics to your lifestyle habits. While you can’t do much about genetic factors, building healthy fitness habits such as quality sleep, stress levels, and nutrition can help you reach your goals.

For instance, ensuring adequate sleep can boost your testosterone levels, while managing stress keeps cortisol (the stress hormone) in check, preventing muscle breakdown. And yes, your nutrition choices have a say, too. Nutrient-dense foods support hormone production and balance, keeping your muscle-building engine running smoothly.

The Foundation of Muscle Gain

Imagine your muscles as a puzzle, and each workout is a piece that fits perfectly into the bigger picture of achieving your best body. This puzzle-solving approach is what progressive overload is all about – the cornerstone of muscle gain. It’s about systematically pushing your limits to encourage muscle adaptation and growth.

Recent research conducted by DubaiPT – Personal Trainers Platform has illuminated the effectiveness of progressive overload. By consistently increasing the resistance, whether through heavier weights or intensified workouts, you stimulate your muscles to strive for more strength. This triggers muscle fibers to repair and expand, resulting in the coveted muscle hypertrophy.

Gradually increase your limits to achieve the best results

But it’s not a race to the heaviest weights. The principle of specificity plays a vital role. Varying your exercises ensures a well-rounded development and prevents plateaus. So, when crafting your workout routines, remember that each session should push you a bit further than the last, but not too far.

Recovery and Rest

In the hustle and bustle of your muscle-building journey, recovery and rest often take a back seat. Yet, these unsung heroes are pivotal in achieving your best body. Just as your muscles need stimulation to grow, they also need time to repair and rejuvenate.

Every intense workout creates tiny micro-tears in your muscles, and during rest, these tears are repaired, making your muscles stronger and more resilient. Sleep, another crucial aspect of recovery, is when your body releases growth hormones, aiding in muscle repair and overall growth.

But here’s the kicker: Overworking your muscles without adequate recovery can lead to burnout and even hinder your progress. Hydration, proper nutrition, and stretching all play roles in ensuring your muscles are well taken care of.

Rest is as important as exercise

Avoiding Common Mistakes

As you stride towards your muscle-building goals, steering clear of common pitfalls is essential to ensure you’re on the right track. Let’s face it – we’ve all heard misleading advice that can throw us off course. One common misconception is the idea of “spot reduction,” where focusing on one area will magically melt fat. In reality, a holistic approach, targeting the entire body, is key.

Overtraining is another pitfall to sidestep. Quality trumps quantity when it comes to workouts. Pushing too hard without ample recovery can lead to injuries and hinder progress. Patience is paramount. Building muscle mass takes time, and expecting overnight transformations can be discouraging. Consistency in both workouts and diet is the true secret to sustainable gains.

Unveiling the Path to Building Your Best Body

Your journey to building muscle mass is a harmonious blend of science and dedication. From understanding muscle biology and harnessing the power of nutrition to embracing progressive overload and recovery, you’re equipped with a treasure trove of knowledge. Avoid common pitfalls, stay patient, and be consistent. Remember, each lift, each meal, each moment is sculpting your success.

Strength Training Program for Women Improves Your Health

The Role of Strength Training in Women's Health

Strength training program for women benefits your body in countless ways and plays a crucial role in improving your health. Therefore, it’s not limited to bodybuilders or athletes. By incorporating these exercises into your fitness routine, you can unlock many benefits that extend far beyond mere muscle building. Let’s take a look at some of these benefits and exercises that make them happen.

No. 1 Strength Training Boosts Metabolism and Burns Fat

Strength training is a powerful tool for weight management. Building lean muscle mass increases your body's metabolism, helping you burn calories even at rest. Incorporating exercises such as squats, lunges, and deadlifts into your routine can help you achieve a toned physique and reduce body fat.

Additionally, this strength training program for women promotes healthy weight loss by preserving muscle mass while targeting stubborn fat areas. So, whether your goal is to shed a few pounds or maintain a healthy weight, strength training is an effective and sustainable approach.

No. 2 Enhances Bone Density

Osteoporosis is a significant concern for women as they age. However, strength training can be a game-changer in combating this condition. It places stress on your bones, stimulating bone growth and increasing bone density. In fact, strength training can bulletproof your back and help prevent osteoporosis. By engaging in regular weight-bearing exercises such as lifting weights or using resistance bands, you actively work to prevent bone loss, reduce the risk of fractures, and promote overall bone health. It's never too late to start incorporating these exercises into your routine to safeguard your bones and maintain a strong, resilient body.

Additionally, this training improves joint stability and flexibility. You strengthen the muscles surrounding your joints by engaging in exercises targeting major muscle groups and supporting muscles. These exercises include squats, lunges, and planks. Adding strength helps stabilize joints and alleviate joint pain and discomfort, improving overall joint function and mobility.

No. 3 Improves Posture and Balance

These exercises target the muscles responsible for maintaining good posture and balance. You can improve your overall posture and stability by strengthening your core, back, and leg muscles, reducing the risk of falls and injuries. Exercises such as planks, bridges, and single-leg squats can help you achieve a more aligned and confident stance.

No. 4 Increases Strength and Functional Abilities

The exercises strengthen muscles and improve endurance, making daily activities easier and more enjoyable. Whether carrying groceries, lifting children, or moving furniture, having a strong and functional body enhances your quality of life. Include exercises that target major muscle groups, such as bench presses, bicep curls, and shoulder presses, to improve overall strength.

No. 5 Enhances Cardiovascular Health

Contrary to popular belief, the strength training program for women can also benefit your heart health. Combining strength exercises with high-intensity interval training (HIIT) can provide an effective cardiovascular workout. Incorporating bursts of intense activity into your training routine can elevate your heart rate, improve cardiovascular fitness, and reap the benefits of an effective cardio workout. Regular cardiovascular exercise can help lower blood pressure, improve blood flow, and reduce the risk of heart disease. So, don't underestimate the cardiovascular benefits of incorporating HIIT into your strength training sessions. It's a win-win for your heart and overall health.

No. 6 Manages Stress and Boosts Mental Well-being

Strength training releases endorphins, often called "feel-good" hormones, which can help combat stress, anxiety, and depression. The focus and discipline required during these workouts can help clear your mind and provide a much-needed break from everyday stressors. As you challenge yourself with exercises like deadlifts, squats, and push-ups, you'll experience a sense of empowerment and accomplishment. Pushing through barriers and achieving new milestones can be incredibly rejuvenating, boosting your self-confidence and overall mental well-being.

No. 7 Supports Hormonal Balance

Strength training can be vital in managing hormonal imbalances that women may experience throughout their lives. Regular exercise plays a significant role in hormone regulation. A consistent strength training routine can help regulate menstrual cycles, alleviate premenstrual symptoms, and promote hormonal balance.

Additionally, strength exercises can reduce the risk of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), a condition characterized by hormonal imbalances. By incorporating these exercises into your fitness regimen, you can take proactive steps to manage your hormonal health, leading to greater overall well-being and a better quality of life. Strengthen your body, balance your hormones, and thrive.

No. 8 Improves Sleep Quality

Regular strength exercises can contribute to better sleep patterns and overall sleep quality. Exercise helps release tension, promotes relaxation, and reduces insomnia symptoms. The physical exertion and increased body temperature during training stimulates the release of endorphins, promoting a sense of calm and well-being that can positively impact your sleep.

By incorporating a consistent training routine into your lifestyle, you can improve the duration and quality of your sleep. Achieving deeper and more restorative sleep will leave you feeling refreshed and energized, ready to take on the day with renewed vitality. Prioritizing physical activity and quality sleep creates a powerful synergy for optimal health and well-being.

No. 9 Boosts Confidence and Body Image

This training strengthens your body and enhances your self-confidence and body image. You'll gain a sense of achievement and self-assurance as you see improvements in your strength and physique. Embrace exercises that challenge you, such as pull-ups, push-ups, or weighted squats, and witness the positive impact on your self-esteem.

No. 10 Embrace the Health Benefits of Exercising Outdoors

Forget about the gym, and practice your strength exercises outdoors, which brings additional advantages for women's health. Exercising outdoors exposes you to natural sunlight, which helps your body produce vitamin D, essential for bone health, immune function, and mood regulation. The fresh air and open space of outdoor exercise parks in Miami offer some of the best areas where you can get fit and improve your well-being.


Strength training offers numerous benefits for women's health, including improved metabolism, increased bone density, better posture, enhanced strength, and cardiovascular health. By incorporating regular strength exercises into your fitness routine, you can experience positive changes in both your physical and mental well-being. So, grab those dumbbells, head to your nearest outdoor exercise park, and start reaping the remarkable rewards of this training.

Nutrients for Muscle Recovery: The Five Essential Nutrients

5 Essential Nutrients for Optimal Muscle Recovery

Colorful fruits and vegetables with nutrients for optimal muscle recovery

Welcome to the world of fitness, where understanding the right nutrients for optimal muscle recovery can make all the difference. In this comprehensive guide, we'll journey through the science of muscle recovery and explore five essential nutrients crucial for this process. Each nutrient has its unique role, offering a piece of the puzzle in our quest for achieving peak physical performance and health.

Understanding Muscle Recovery

Before we plunge into the specific nutrients, let's build our foundation by understanding what muscle recovery entails. After a vigorous workout, microscopic damage occurs in our muscles. It might sound alarming, but it's a natural and necessary process, setting the stage for muscle repair and growth. It's during this recovery period, as your body rebuilds these muscles, that they become stronger and more resilient.

This repair process heavily relies on nutrition. Providing your body with the right nutrients after a workout will not only speed up recovery but also enhance the efficiency of this process. Learning which nutrients to focus on can turn your post-workout meal into a powerful recovery tool.

The 5 Nutrients for Optimal Muscle Recovery


Among the list of nutrients for optimal muscle recovery, protein stands out prominently. Acting as the primary building material for muscle repair, protein provides amino acids necessary for reconstructing muscle fibers. Following a workout, your muscles are eager for these amino acids to initiate the repair process.

While animal products like chicken and fish are high-quality sources of protein, we can't ignore the value of plant-based sources of protein. Foods like lentils, tofu, quinoa, and chickpeas provide necessary proteins and additional nutrients, offering a wholesome recovery package.


Next up are carbohydrates, the body's primary energy source. Intense exercise depletes your glycogen stores, and its carbohydrates that step in to replenish them. By restoring these energy reserves, carbohydrates ensure that your muscles have the fuel needed to function and recover effectively.

For instance, imagine you've just spent the entire day moving to a new residence. The heavy lifting involved in this process is similar to an intense workout, and your muscles will be yearning for recovery. That's why our friends at usantini say that after a day of moving, they usually have a carbohydrate-rich meal, such as a bowl of whole-grain pasta, which provides them with the necessary fuel for recovery. This ensures you're ready for unpacking and settling in the next day.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids are well-known for their anti-inflammatory benefits but also play a significant role in muscle recovery. They can help reduce exercise-induced muscle damage and inflammation, allowing for a smoother and faster recovery process. To get a steady intake of these beneficial fats, incorporate fatty fish like salmon, walnuts, and chia seeds into your diet.

However, meeting the recommended omega-3 intake can sometimes be challenging, especially with dietary restrictions. This is where the benefits you get by using fitness supplements come in handy. Supplements can provide a concentrated dose of these essential fats, acting as a valuable addition to a well-rounded diet.

Vitamins and Minerals (With a Focus on Vitamin D and Zinc)

In the quest for recovery, it's easy to overlook vitamins and minerals. However, they play crucial roles in numerous biological processes related to muscle growth and recovery. Vitamin D, for example, aids in muscle protein synthesis, while Zinc plays a crucial part in immune function, a system that helps the body heal and recover.

Sourcing Vitamin D and Zinc isn't too complicated. Exposure to sunlight can boost Vitamin D, while fortified foods offer another option. For Zinc, meat and seeds are excellent sources. Again, if these sources aren't feasible due to dietary restrictions or availability, supplements can come to the rescue.

Hydration (Water & Electrolytes)

Finally, the importance of hydration in muscle recovery can't be understated. Water and electrolytes are crucial in maintaining fluid balance in the body, preventing dehydration—a major contributor to muscle fatigue and cramps. For optimal recovery, maintaining an adequate intake of fluids and ensuring electrolyte balance is vital.

Integrating These Nutrients into Your Diet

Now that we've got a grip on these essential nutrients, the real challenge lies in successfully integrating them into your diet. Remember, it's not just about the nutrients; it's about when and how you consume them.

For example, you might prepare a post-workout meal with grilled chicken (protein), sweet potatoes (carbohydrates), and a side salad topped with seeds (zinc). Aim to consume this meal within a 45-minute window after your workout to maximize muscle recovery. This is when your muscles are most receptive to these nutrients.

Of course, individual dietary restrictions must be considered. For individuals with allergies or those who follow specific dietary preferences, it's crucial to find suitable nutrient-rich alternatives that fit within these restrictions.

The Role of Sleep

Beyond nutrition, sleep also plays a fundamental role in muscle recovery. During sleep, your body releases growth hormones that help repair and build muscles. Additionally, adequate rest reduces inflammation and assists in replenishing energy stores. So while a diet rich in essential nutrients is crucial, ensure you're also getting plenty of quality sleep to facilitate optimal muscle recovery.

The Effect of Stress

Equally important is managing stress levels. High-stress levels can impede the muscle recovery process by disrupting hormonal balance and negatively affecting sleep patterns. Techniques like deep breathing, yoga, and meditation can help manage stress, supporting faster recovery. Alongside a diet rich in essential nutrients, maintaining a low-stress environment and mindset contributes to better recovery and overall physical performance.


To wrap up, proteins, carbohydrates, omega-3 fatty acids, selected vitamins and minerals, and hydration form the five pillars of nutrients for optimal muscle recovery. Implementing these into your post-workout routine can significantly enhance your recovery, providing you with better results from your fitness journey. Always remember that nutrition is a key player in the recovery process. Harness its power to complement your workouts and help you reach your fitness goals.

Best Nutrients to Help Build Strong Muscles

Best Nutrients to Help Build Strong Muscles

Building muscles is not as simple as just going to the gym. Beyond the workouts, you need to get a good night’s sleep giving your muscles time to repair. In addition, you need to eat healthy nourishing food to feed your body and muscles. And, you have to make sure to regularly take the best nutrients for building the strongest muscles.

Best Nutrient - Beta-Alanine

Beta-Alanine is a non-essential amino acid that helps prevent muscle cramps. And, Beta-Alanine does this by helping to produce carnosine. Indeed, carnosine balances the pH in muscles. Consequently, carnosine restricts the buildup of lactic acid. Most noteworthy, lactic acid buildup leads to fatigue and cramping.

And, the way to get this best nutrient is by eating animal proteins and plant foods like asparagus, edamame, seaweed, turnip greens and watercress.


Biotin helps convert carbohydrates, fats, and proteins to energy.

Most of all, the way to get this best nutrient is by eating peanut butter, oats, egg yolk, hazelnuts, and almonds.

Best Nutrient - Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates or carbs are the best building blocks of muscles. In fact, carbs support muscle growth and repair. Especially relevant, carbs help form glycogen, which helps fuel your workouts and rebuild muscles after your workouts.

And, the best way to get carbs is by eating whole grains, vegetables, fruits, beans and other legumes.


Calcium helps build strong bones. Also, calcium helps trigger muscle contractions. Most of all, muscles are made of two protein filaments known as myosin and actin. In fact, when muscles contract, these filaments slide over one another to convert Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) to energy. And, the more you exercise, the more ATP your body needs to move your muscles.

Especially relevant, research shows that with insufficient calcium, the body releases calcitrol. In fact, calcitrol is a hormone that causes you to store fat.

Moreover, the way to ingest this best nutrient is by eating yogurt, fortified milk, fortified cereals, cheese, tofu, spinach, almonds, sesame seeds, and sardines.


Copper helps protect the cardiovascular, nervous, and skeletal systems. In addition, copper also strengthens the tendons needed to lift weights.

And the sources of this best nutrient are peanuts, sardines, crab, and sunflower seeds.

Best Nutrient - Glutamine

Glutamine is a conditionally essential amino acid that helps repair muscle tissues, including the lining of the digestive tract, especially after intense workouts. In addition, glutamine helps maintain gut functions and boost your immune system.

Furthermore, the best way to get glutamine is by eating chicken, fish, beef, dairy, eggs, spinach, Brussel sprouts, and fermented foods.

Best Nutrient - Iron

Iron helps build red blood cells. Most noteworthy, red blood cells bring oxygen from the lungs to muscle tissue. And, without enough iron, your red blood cells can’t carry enough oxygen to the muscles and tissues that need oxygen. In addition, iron also helps regulate metabolism and promotes a healthy immune system. Finally, iron helps metabolize protein and fats for use in muscle building and repair.

Most of all, the best sources of iron are dried apricots, leafy greens, lean beef, venison, poultry, fish such as sardines, eggs, and fortified whole grains.


Magnesium is essential for relaxing muscles and preventing muscle cramps. And together with calcium, magnesium helps to reduce blood pressure. Most noteworthy, magnesium is found in muscles, soft tissue and body fluids.

Indeed, magnesium helps muscles contract and, also boost your energy levels. In addition, magnesium helps reduce fatigue. Finally, magnesium helps improve sleep. And sleep is important because that is the time when your body works to repair damaged muscle tissue from your workouts.

The way to get this best nutrient is by eating leafy greens, squash, garlic, nuts, seeds, whole grains, bran, beans, and other legumes.

Omega 3

Omega 3 fatty acids improve blood flow and helps the heart become and stay healthy. In addition, these fats suppress hunger which helps you lose weight.

Also, the best way to get these fatty acids is by eating brazil nuts, flaxseed oil, salmon, mackerel and walnuts.


Potassium is a key electrolyte that helps muscles contract. In addition, potassium helps carry nutrients such as water to the muscle cells. Finally, potassium helps your kidneys flush out excess sodium in the body.

Moreover, the way to get this best nutrient is by eating bananas, squash, sweep potatoes, broccoli, chicken, and salmon.

Best Nutrient - Protein

Because they contain amino acids, proteins are needed for muscle growth and repair. Most of all, you need to eat proteins after a workout to restore muscle building macronutrients. Indeed, proteins are a core part of enzymes and hormones that help communicate with the body to repair itself.

The best way to get proteins is from dairy, lean meats, seafood, soy, eggs, beans, and other legumes.

Riboflavin Also Known as Vitamin B-2

Riboflavin helps the breakdown of proteins, carbohydrates and fat, which are transformed into energy. In addition, riboflavin supports antioxidants in the body.

Also, the way to get this nutrient is by eating cornflakes, spinach, eggs, and chicken.


Selenium helps boost your immune system and fights damage from free radicals resulting from weight training.

And, the best way to get selenium is by eating fresh tuna, sunflower seeds, wholemeal bread, and brazil nuts.

Vitamin B-12

Vitamin B-12, also known as cobalamin, helps build red blood cells. In fact, red blood cells contain hemoglobin which binds to oxygen. And this oxygen is delivered to the muscles. In addition, vitamin B-12 assists in metabolizing proteins and fat. Indeed, the amino acids produced when protein is metabolized helps repair and build muscles. In the meantime, the fat is a source of energy. Finally, vitamin B-12 helps the brain and muscles to communicate efficiently, which helps muscle growth and co-ordination.

Because, vitamin B-12 is an essential nutrient, you must get it from food. However, if you must get it from supplements, the recommended dosage is 2.4 micrograms per day. In any case, your body can only absorb at most 10 micrograms from a 500 microgram B-12 supplement.

Most of all, the best food sources of vitamin B-12 are poultry, meat, fish, eggs, and dairy.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps metabolize carbs for fuel and also protect the body from oxidative stress. In addition, vitamin C helps the body absorb iron. Furthermore, vitamin C helps fight inflammation in muscles due to excessive exercise. Finally, vitamin C helps with muscle repair because vitamin C supports production of collagen.

In fact, the best food sources of vitamin C are green peppers, broccoli, blackcurrants, and citrus fruits.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D helps build strong bones, glutes, and biceps. Also, vitamin D helps healthy hormones like testosterone, which helps muscle maintenance and growth. In addition, Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium and phosphorus. Meanwhile, calcium helps muscles contract. While phosphorus helps in the synthesis of ATP, the useable form of energy in the body.

Most of all, according to the Institute of Medicine, you need 15 micrograms or 600 international units (IU) of vitamin D daily.

Also, the best food sources of vitamin D include fatty fish like salmon and sardines, fortified yogurt, milk, orange juice, mushrooms, olive oil, sunflower seeds, and eggs.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is a nutrient that helps protect your cells from harmful free radicals. When we exercise, we create oxidative stress or free radicals. And, vitamin E helps remove these free radicals. In addition, vitamin E helps flush out metabolic waste. Finally, vitamin E needs fat to dissolve in your body.

And, the recommended daily dosage is 15 milligrams or 22.4 international units for anyone over 14 years and older.

Meanwhile, the best food sources of vitamin E are sunflower seeds, safflower, wheat germ oils, corn, and soybean oils. Also, asparagus, avocado, and nuts such as almonds are good sources. Finally, breakfast cereals, fruit juice, and margarine are also other sources.

On the other hand, cholesterol drugs called statins may not work as well with vitamin E if you also take selenium, vitamin C, and other antioxidants. Finally, vitamin E may even interfere with cancer treatments like chemotherapy and radiotherapy. If you have any doubt, always good to check with your medical provider.

Best Nutrient - Zinc

Zinc enables your body to produce muscle-building testosterone. Also, zinc promotes recovery from workouts while increasing the number of infection-fighting T-cells.

Most noteworthy, zinc contributes to muscle growth. In fact, the zinc in your cells is incorporated into hundreds of different proteins. And, one of the proteins regulated by zinc is the growth hormone. Especially relevant, this growth hormone promotes protein synthesis in muscle cells. Therefore, healthy growth hormone is essential for muscle growth.

If you must, according to the Institute of Medicine, men should take about 11 milligrams and women about 8 milligrams of zinc every day.

On the other hand, the best food sources of zinc include red meat, eggs, pulses, pumpkin seeds, and cheese.

How to Help Sore Muscles Get Better

How to Help Sore Muscles Get Better

First and foremost, newcomers or even regular participants of strength training, face the realities of sore muscles. So, it’s best to know how to recover quickly in order to get back to building muscles.

Treatments for Sore Muscles

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    First, apply Ben-Gay or other similar products over the area that is sore. Meanwhile, the three active ingredients of Ben-Gay include menthol, camphor, and methyl salicylate. And these ingredients create sensations of warmth and cold. So, when these sensations reach the nervous system, they compete with and helps to block pain signals from sore muscles.
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    Next, a 2014 study showed that massage therapy improves general blood flow and alleviates symptoms of sore muscles.
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    Also, a 2015 study showed that massaged muscles contain more blood vessels that those not massaged. As a result, recovery improves.
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    In addition, massaged muscles showed only fifty percent of the scar tissue as non-massaged muscles.
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    Or, you can topically apply ice to ease sore muscles. In fact, ice reduces inflammation in sore muscles. By the way, the current thinking is that build up of lactic acid doesn’t cause sore muscles, but rather inflammation. Consequently, it’s better to reduce inflammation.
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    In the meantime, you can also treat sore muscles by massaging them yourself. Moreover, you can also massage yourself hard to reach areas such as your back. Furthermore, when you do massage muscles yourself you can apply the right amount of pressure. Meanwhile, massages relax and stretch sore muscles to relieve tension.
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    Next, lightly exercising sore muscles can help reduce their severity. For example, stretching, doing core strengthening workouts, or low intensity cardio such as walking helps.
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    Finally, taking protein supplements or eating more protein containing foods may help.

Exercises to Help Sore Muscles

Now, the following exercises may help your sore muscles get better.

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    First, if you are familiar with yoga, use it.
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    On the other hand, if yoga is not your thing, try stretching your muscles. For example, if you have a resistance band, or you go to a gym, use the resistance band to stretch your sore muscles.
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    Also, walking can help. And, if you have a treadmill, you can use that to walk.
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    Next, if you have easy access to a swimming pool, try swimming.
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    Finally, if cycling is an option, try easy cycling. In addition, if you go to a gym, you can gently use their stationary cycles.

Muscle Growth

Most of all, it’s our desire for muscle growth that usually results in sore muscles. Now, there may be misconceptions among some that muscle damage (and hence sore muscles) is needed for muscle growth. However, research shows that muscle damage is not needed for muscle growth.

Meanwhile, getting sore muscles doesn’t mean there is muscle damage. In fact, research also shows that getting sore muscles is not a reliable indicator of muscle damage. So, while there may be no muscle damage, sore muscles may interfere with your strength training program.

Muscle Repair

Most of all, strength training usually results in microscopic tears in muscle, or even a breakdown in muscle tissue. So, in response to these microscopic tears, the body uses satellite cells to repair the tears and build up muscles over time. In addition, muscles get protected against future damage.

Furthermore, to help your body repair and grow muscles, it’s important to have enough protein in your diet. Finally, your muscles need rest for this process to succeed.

Good Eating and Drinking Habits Helps Prevent Sore Muscles

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    First, to stay hydrated, drink water before you start your workout. Also, sip water intermittently throughout your workout. Finally, drink water at the end of your workout.
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    Also, it appears that because of the electrolytes it contains, it’s even better to drink raw coconut water after a workout. Indeed, the electrolytes in coconut water help prevent muscle cramps.
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    Next, to further alleviate chances of cramped muscles, eat a banana one hour before a workout. In fact, the potassium in the banana curtails lactic acid build up, which, by the way may cause muscles to hurt.
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    Furthermore, research shows that tart cherries have anti-inflammatory properties. Indeed, these properties significantly help reduce inflammation in the body. In fact, the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports published a report on their research about tart cherries. And, they reported that marathoners drinking tart cherry juice before, during, and after a marathon had low occurrences of sore muscles. By the way, tart cherries are rich in anthocyanins. In addition, tart cherries are believed to reduce excess inflammation. Therefore, to get these benefits, all you need to do is to drink tart cherry juice twice a week. Meanwhile, you can make your own fresh tart cherry juice using a blender, masticating juicer, centrifugal juicer, or a smoothie maker.
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    Finally, many studies show that caffeine consumed before a workout helps reduce sore muscles and fatigue. Furthermore, a study in the Journal of Pain reported that caffeine consumption resulted in a forty-nine percent drop in sore muscles. By the way, caffeine is an analgesic with pain-killing properties. Also, caffeine hydrates as well as water. Therefore, drinking caffeine is a good idea before a workout.

Proper Warm Up and Cool Down to Avoid Sore Muscles

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    First, do five to ten-minute warmup and stretches before a workout. In fact, the warmup helps muscles get warmer, which prepares them for the workout. By the way, walking is a fine way to warm up.
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    Second, stretching is an excellent way to cool down after the workout. In fact, research shows that static stretching performed before or after exercise helps reduce sore muscles.
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    Or, do a short cardio to really warm up the muscles. For example, if are home, you can do the short cardio on an elliptical stepper, recumbent cross trainer, compact elliptical, or a long stride elliptical machine.
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    Next, stretch intermittently during the workout. By and large, stretching helps cut back on buildup of lactic acid and therefore helps prevent muscle cramps.
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    Also, a few hours after the workout apply a heating pad to muscles. In fact, the heating pad stimulates blood flow and loosens sore muscles. As a result, the healing process speeds up.
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    Meanwhile, don’t forget to give your muscles time off. Now, strength training may cause tiny tears in muscle tissue. While these tears aren't harmful, they are important for muscles to grow stronger as the tears are repaired. In addition, always give your muscles at least forty-eight hours to recover before your next strength training session.
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    Finally, a 2012 study reported on women who performed a 20-minute low to moderately intensive cycling workout following their strength training workout. Meanwhile, the study reported that these women had reduced muscle pain along with added boost in strength. By and large, the light workout increased blood flow. Which, in turn, naturally decreased inflammatory processes such as lymphatic draining, removing immune cells, and clearing inflammatory mediators.

Exercising Muscles

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    First and foremost, know how far you can exercise before it starts to hurt. Moreover, avoid going over that threshold.
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    Also, the following day, work on a different muscle group.
  3. 3
    Meanwhile, keep challenging muscles by slowly increasing weight or resistance. Also, the right weight for you differs depending on the workout. So, choose a weight that tires the targeted muscle or muscles by the last two repetitions while still allowing you to maintain good form. However, if you can't do the last two reps, choose a lighter weight. On the other hand, when it feels too easy to complete, add weight (roughly 1 to 2 pounds for arms, 2 to 5 pounds for legs), or add another set of repetitions to your workout (up to three sets). In the meantime, if you add weight, remember that you should be able to do all the repetitions with good form and the targeted muscles should feel tired by the last two reps.
  4. 4
    Next, stick with your routine — working all the major muscles of your body two or three times a week is ideal. For example, you can choose to do one full-body strength workout two or three times a week, or you may break your strength workout into upper- and lower-body components. In that case, be sure you perform each component two or three times a week.
  5. 5
    In the meantime, use a foam roller to relieve any knots in muscles and soft tissue. For example, rolling your hamstrings and/or quads over the roller will help remove any knots. In addition, massage pillows can also help get rid of knots.

Proper Form to Avoid Sore Muscles

  1. 1
    In the first place, use a proper posture during the workout. Also select weights based on your form or condition.
  2. 2
    Most of all, focus on form, not weight. So, align your body correctly and move smoothly through each exercise. Meanwhile, poor form can cause injuries and slow down your gains. Also, when learning a strength training routine, start with no weights, or very light weights. Furthermore, concentrate on slow, smooth lifts and equally controlled descents while isolating a muscle group.
  3. 3
    Next, working at the right tempo helps you stay in control rather than compromise strength gains using a fast tempo. For example, count to three while lowering a weight, hold, then count to three while raising it to the starting position.
  4. 4
    Finally, pay attention to your breathing during the workout. For example, exhale as you work against resistance by lifting, pushing, or pulling and inhale as you release.

How to Strengthen Muscles and Avoid Sore Muscles

How to Strengthen Muscles and Avoid Sore Muscles

First and foremost, the last thing you want to see, as you strengthen muscles, is sore muscles. In fact, sore muscles can potentially put you on hold as you eagerly wait to recover.

Causes of Sore Muscles

  1. 1
    Overuse – First, an overuse injury is a type of muscle injury such as tendinitis or stress fracture that’s caused by repetitive trauma. Moreover, this injury can occur when you try to strengthen muscles too quickly.
  2. 2
    Repetitive strain injuries – Next, a strain is a stretch or tear in a muscle or a tendon. By the way, tendons link muscles to bones.
  3. 3
    Sprain – Meanwhile, a sprain is a stretch or tear in a ligament.  By the way, ligaments are bands of fibrous tissue that connect bones to bones at joints.
  4. 4
    Tension – Next, muscle tension is a condition when muscles stay semi-contracted for an extended time period. Furthermore, it is usually caused by physiological effects of stress and can lead to back pain.
  5. 5
    Muscle cramp – Now, muscle cramp is a strong, painful contraction or tightening of a muscle that comes on suddenly and lasts for a few seconds or several minutes. And, it often occurs in the legs.
  6. 6
    Hypothyroidism (or underactive thyroid) – Next, hypothyroidism results in muscle aches, tenderness and stiffness, especially in the shoulders and hips. Also, hypothyroidism results in stiffness, weakness, cramps, and aching muscles.
  7. 7
    Finally, medications, especially cholesterol medications, known as statins, can cause sore muscles.

Signs of Overuse as You Strengthen Muscles

  1. 1
    First, sore muscles are a sign of overuse. While it is not unusual to get sore muscles after a day of vigorous strength building workout, if muscles are sore longer than a day, it’s a sign that they may be overworked. So, continuing to work the same muscles may make matters worse and lead to an injury.
  2. 2
    Second, failing to allow your body to take a rest between workouts to strengthen muscles, will make you feel sluggish and fatigued.
  3. 3
    Third, you may find yourself not motivated to do your workouts. So, take a break or workout on some other muscle group.
  4. 4
    Next, overtraining can cause difficulty falling asleep. Or, you may find yourself oversleeping often. Or, you may want to sleep even after sleeping a full night. Above all, difficulty falling asleep means your sympathetic nervous system is still working even when you are resting.  And, this means your stress levels are high when you need them to be low so you can sleep.
  5. 5
    Or, you may suddenly feel more anxious and agitated. In addition, you may feel more irritable, or struggle to concentrate on important tasks, work, or hobbies.
  6. 6
    Also, you may be regularly failing to complete your workout. For example, if you have difficulty lifting weights you were previously used to, it probably means you are working out too hard.
  7. 7
    Next, if you are strength training and you feel pain in the limbs with the weights, it is important to take a break and let the body recover.
  8. 8
    Finally, the body tends to crave sugar when your cortisol levels are high or when your glycogen levels are low. So, if you get that urge for sugar, you know your body needs rest to recover.

Consequences of Excessive Training

  1. 1
    First, when you overwork your muscles, your body is devoted to recovering from the excess training. As a result, the body doesn’t spend resources necessary to prevent you from falling sick. So, if you see that you are feeling sick more often than usual or taking a longer time to recover from a sickness, it’s a sign that you are overworking your muscles.
  2. 2
    Moreover, repeated stressing your muscles without rest doesn’t give your body time to repair the minor strains and injuries that accumulate while working out muscles. In addition, when there are no rest days, these small injuries grow into major problems. Also, overexertion aggravates older injuries.
  3. 3
    Lastly, training, to strengthen muscles, should make you lose weight and increase your lean muscle mass. However, when you work out too much, the calories you burn come from glucose, glycogen, and your muscle stores. As a result, you crave for sugary and fatty foods to replenish the depleted glucose and glycogen levels. Which, in turn, increases fat storage.  In addition, working out too much can lead to higher cortisol levels, which prevent you from getting good sleep. As a result, once again, you crave sugary, fatty foods, which, in turn, leads to more fat.

How to Recover

  1. 1
    First, get more sleep.
  2. 2
    Second, listening to relaxing tunes helps you recover from excess exercise. In fact, the slow relaxing music helps reduce you heart rate.
  3. 3
    Third, sore muscles occur because muscles and fascia get knotted. Therefore, using foam rollers helps remove the knots. However, a far more effective method is to use deep tissue massagers or back massagers. Meanwhile, use a foot massager for sore feet.
  4. 4
    Also, you can use a massage pad while in the office, sitting on a couch or chair, or while driving.
  5. 5
    And, if you can afford it, a massage chair can do wonders.
  6. 6
    Finally, leave two days between workouts of the same muscle groups. So, switch muscle groups on alternate days.

Other Ways to Recover

  1. 1
    First, research shows that consuming a light, protein rich snack before bed helps your body repair muscle tears during sleep.
  2. 2
    Second, eat a breakfast high in proteins to help muscles rebuild themselves and reduce your cravings later in the day.
  3. 3
    Third, drink chocolate milk after a workout. By the way, the proteins help muscle recovery and the carbs decrease the amount of time the body needs to get ready for the next workout.
  4. 4
    Fourth, drink water. Indeed, the water helps remove metabolic waste from a heavy workout. Also, the American Council on Exercise, recommends drinking eight ounces of water 30 minutes after exercise.
  5. 5
    Also, eat a little protein before a workout. In fact, research has shown that eating a little protein before working out can trigger your body to start repairing and building more muscles during and after strength training.
  6. 6
    Finally, eating proteins and carbs, like homemade bread, after a workout helps the body repair itself. So, drink milk, yogurt or a peanut butter sandwich within two hours after your workout to help your muscles recover and restore glycogen levels.

Schedule your Muscle Workouts

First, there are six muscle groups:

  1. 1
    Group 1 muscles are made of chest muscles.
  2. 2
    Group 2 muscles consist of the back muscles.
  3. 3
    Group 3 muscles include the arms.
  4. 4
    Group 4 muscles include the shoulders.
  5. 5
    Group 5 muscles consist of the legs.
  6. 6
    Group 6 muscles are the calves

And, research shows that training each muscle group every 5 to 7 days is best for building muscles.

Multi Joint Exercises – Tips to Strengthen Your Body Joints

Multi Joint Exercises-Tips to Strengthen Your Body Joints

Joint pain is a common complaint that can significantly affect your day-to-day life. The most common injuries are due to sports, arthritis or age-related wear and tear. Joint pain can also be caused by workplace injuries, poor posture, or even illness. When you experience joint pain, it can make life difficult. However, there are some things that you can do to relieve your joints. Described below are things you can do that will help strengthen your body's joints and prevent injury.


Joint pain is difficult to live with, and it can be debilitating. The most common joints affected are the knees, hips, and lower back.

The Importance of Exercise

One of the best exercises for joint pain is a multi-joint exercise. Multi-joint exercises are great because they work out your whole body, rather than just one set of muscles. The most common examples of a multi-joint exercises include: Push ups, squats, lunges, and jumping jacks. These exercises will strengthen your joints and make them more resistant to pain.

Exercising regularly can help decrease the frequency and severity of joint pain. Exercise also helps improve balance and flexibility, which are both key components in injury prevention. Healthy habits like exercising are essential for long-term joint health. Light exercises that are pregnancy safe can reduce the chances of birth defects and keeps your baby away from surgeries like hypospadias surgery and many more.  Exercising regularly will enable you to maintain active joints that provide stability and mobility along with strong joints that can handle large amounts of pressure.

Exercises to Strengthen Your Joints

- Stretching exercises: 

Stretch your arms and legs by standing upright with feet shoulder width apart and stretching your arms up to the sky as high as possible without pain in your back or shoulders. Repeat this up to ten times before moving to the next stretch.

You can also bend over at a 45-degree angle from hips with hands behind knees and push down until you feel a stretch in the hamstrings or quads. Do this for 10-20 seconds.

- Strengthening exercises: 

Strengthen your joints by using weights, resistance bands or just body weight if you don't have any weights available. There are many exercises that target specific muscles but some of the most effective are squats, lunges, step ups, planks, and calf raises. Keep in mind that you must wear easy clothes like jogger jeans, so that you can feel comfortable. These exercises strengthen muscles which will help give stability to your joints so they don't become injured again.

Other Tips for Joint Pain Relief

Protect your joints. Regardless of the cause of your joint pain, it is essential to take care of them. This includes things like doing low impact physical activity, avoiding quick movements and making sure you use proper body mechanics when lifting or bending. If you have arthritis, you might also need to change your activities and find ways to stay active without causing your joints more pain.

Increase mobility. Joints that don’t move on a regular basis will become stiff, which can lead to more serious problems down the line such as osteoarthritis. Make sure you stretch and move throughout the day in order to keep your joints limber and healthy. You may want to try standing on one leg for 60 seconds at a time or doing some gentle yoga stretches for 5-10 minutes two or three times per day.

Consume healthy foods. Joints require nutrients just like any other part of your body. Therefore, if your diet is deficient in these nutrients, it can cause joint pain! To help prevent this from happening, make sure you consume plenty of fruits and vegetables. They are high in vitamin C and omega-3 fatty acids. Also, consume broccoli, kale, spinach, sweet potatoes, oranges, and salmon (to name a few).

Take care of your back with back stretches! Back pain is another common complaint among adults who work a sedentary job all day long in front of a computer screen. Also, sitting hunched over all day doesn’t allow proper circulation. In fact, poor circulation can affect your joints and cause cramping and stiffness in your muscles. Your legs and arms might ache more, particularly when you’ve been still for a while. You may notice the pain more when you warm up, and blood flow is improved.

1. Motivation is key

Whether you have joint pain or not, it’s important to stay motivated. Motivation can help you stick with a workout routine and improve your overall health. When you work out, your muscles contract and produce natural chemicals called endorphins. These chemicals make you feel good, which will help motivate you to continue working out.

2. Drink plenty of water

Water is the most important component for strong joints. When your body becomes dehydrated, your joints will suffer. Water helps to lubricate your joints, which in turn reduces pain and inflammation.

3. Use heat and ice therapy

Heat and ice therapy are two of the best ways to soothe aching joints. Both heat and ice can be used to reduce swelling or inflammation. Heat therapy is typically applied for 15-20 minutes at a time, 3-4 times per day. Ice should be applied for 10-15 minutes at a time, 2 times per day for the first 48 hours.

4. Medications and supplements

Medications and supplements are a good place to start. There are many over-the-counter medications that can help relieve pain and inflammation caused by arthritis or other conditions. You can also take supplements in order to help ease inflammation as well. Some supplements that have been known to be helpful in reducing joint pain are turmeric and chondroitin sulfate.

5. Know your limits

It is important to know what your limits are. Once you start experiencing joint pain, it might be tempting to push yourself further, but this can actually make the problem worse. Take caution when engaging in any physical activity that may cause injury and only do as much as your body can handle.

Things to Avoid when Working Out

11 Things to Avoid when Working Out

First and foremost, working out requires a lot of mental and physical exertion. Indeed, the thought of knowing that you will be involved in a vigorous activity like grabbing cold iron and then lifting it until you are tired can be refreshing for some while stressful for others. However, lack of knowledge and stress can result in loss instead of gain. Therefore, unless you equip yourself with some important knowledge and principles you will not have a successful workout. So, to help you succeed, what follows are things to avoid when working out or after a workout.

What you need to know prior to a workout

First, it is necessary to know that working out is a serious endeavor. So, before starting any exercise or workout program it is good to consult your doctor. Indeed, the doctor will advise you on what to do in case you have any underlying health conditions. Also, the doctor helps you identify possible health risks and provide appropriate advice.

Furthermore, it is important for anyone, coaching you, to know about any drugs that you might be taking. And, assuming this is the case, to then direct you to the appropriate professional, who would then be able to recognize if the workout regime is good for you. Also, in addition to all these, there are some things you are supposed to avoid when working out.

So, listed below are eleven things to avoid.

Things you should not do when working out

Not warming Up or stretching

First, one of the things to avoid when working out is not warming up or stretching. In fact, it is important for you to stretch or warm up your body before a workout. Also, one of the things to avoid after a workout is not stretching. So, get somebody to tell you the best way to correctly stretch and warm-up. By doing so, you prepare your body for an intense and vigorous workout session.


Next, one of the things to avoid when working out is overdoing your workouts. In fact, your body requires time to build or create its own strength. For example, you may begin with amazing energy and maybe work out for 40 minutes or more. But unfortunately, you may not be able to work out the following day. Therefore, it is advised that you begin slowly and increase your workouts moderately as time goes by. For example, increase your weights and workout time by ten percent each week.

Also, another mistake is to lift excessive weights. Incidentally, your back is a perfect indicator for lifting excessive weights. So, in case your back hurts, you have to start with lower weights and increase weights gradually.

Completing non-aerobic workouts too quickly

Don't complete non-aerobic workouts too quickly. In fact, start slow and increase momentum gradually. This is important because it will allow your body to slowly adapt to the pace. This is especially true for workouts to build muscles.

Likewise, take a rest of around 1.5-2 minutes between sets to allow your body to adjust.


By the way, one of the things to avoid after a workout is not drinking water. Water is important when working out because your body needs water. So, have a bottle of water with you and take sips regularly. However, avoid cutting edge sports drinks. Also, adding a touch of salt in the water and eating a banana before the workout will work best.

Don't waste time

Next, the gym is a place for working out. It is not really a place for gossiping or having long conversations. Regrettably, if you persist, you won't get a good workout. In fact, you will rest far too long between sets and your body will have started to cool down. So, your workouts will suffer. Which is not the most ideal way to get a strong, vigorous workout.

Don't use too many machines

Doing bodyweight workouts or working out with free weights is more effective than working out on a machine. Free weights will make you strain more than a machine and this makes you exercise better.

Make sure you do not neglect any body part

The best and most effective workouts don’t focus on specific body parts or muscle groups. You may have days that you neglect specific body parts, but make sure you don’t avoid them completely. When you focus on specific muscle groups there is a likelihood that your body does not get a balanced workout.

Don't choose dumbbells over barbells

Try not to pick dumbbells over barbells, especially if you are new or even an accomplished weightlifter and especially if strength and muscle growth is your objective. The extra interruption of attempting to adjust and settle the weights can cause a critical reduction in the general absolute poundage that the individual can lift. This will bring about reduced muscle and strength growth.

An important guideline to follow is this: in case you lift more weight with a barbell than you can with dumbbells independently, go for barbells.

Don’t avoid heavy weights

Try not to avoid heavy weights. It is imperative to keep your joints bent through the whole range of movement, particularly when performing low rep, heavy weights sets. In fact, flexing your joints protects you from the likely risks of relaxed muscles. Here is the problem with loosening up your muscles during a set: if the muscle is loosened up it isn't supporting weight, but instead the weight is being supported by non-contractile tissue, such as tendons and bones in the joints, which can cause injuries.

Don't wait too long to ingest post-workout nutrients 

By the way, one of the things to avoid after a workout is not eating nourishing foods. In fact, you will waste an incredible opportunity to increase muscle mass through Advanced Anabolic Recovery if you wait longer than 30 to 45 minutes following a workout to consume carbohydrates. So, make sure you eat carbohydrates like home made bread (possibly with peanut butter), and quality proteins.

Incidentally, instead of eating solid foods, the post-exercise foods ought to be a drink (using a blender for example) comprising of proteins and starches (both basic and complex). By the way, there are many studies that point to positive anabolic effects characterized by increase in muscle mass and increase protein amalgamation.

Never, never, never experiment with steroids 

In addition to the fact that steroids are important, their effects are terrible and enduring, if not perpetual. Also, the use of supplements is simply useless at this phase of your development. In fact, the right exercise routines and a healthy diet is all you need to manage your weight and build muscles.


Since you have your home gym set up, you are ready to do your workouts. Incidentally, you should set a goal for the amount of weight loss that works best for you. Then, if you properly follow your coach's advice, there is a high probability of you achieving your weight loss goal. However, remember to be cautious when working out since accidents that injure you are likely to occur. And these accidents can be an obstruction to achieving your fitness goals.

This is How Pre-Workout Caffeine Helps You in Your Training

This is How Pre-Workout Caffeine Helps You in Your Training

Without a doubt, caffeine represents the most consumed stimulant substance in the world. Either through coffee beans, herbal teas, or other types of alternative routes, its consumption is commonly related to an improvement in the sports and cognitive field, especially pre-workout caffeine. In fact, it is good for a pre-workout  with low caffeine.

But what is really true about it? Today we tell you the effects of caffeine on our metabolism and how it can affect our sports performance and fat burning. This is how caffeine helps you in your training.

The stimulating role of caffeine and its physiological effects

As we mentioned, caffeine, consumed properly and in the recommended doses, has been related to stimulating properties on the central nervous system (CNS). It has been studied that this direct relationship with metabolic activation is translated into an increase in heart rate and blood pumping itself.

Due to these reasons, it is not surprising that many athletes resort to its consumption as an aid for fat burning or to improve sports performance.

After its ingestion, and within approximately 45 minutes to an hour, the stimulating physiological effects of caffeine begin to appear, interaction with the nervous system that will continue for at least four hours later.

The cells of our body respond with the release of adrenaline, thus increasing the heart rate, the blood pumping to the muscle tissues, and the respiratory rate. A metabolic activation that puts us "alert".

Effects on fat burning: in addition to its satiating level and its thermogenic effect, studies conclude on a lipolytic effect of caffeine, through consumption of 4mg caffeine/kg of body weight, observing a consequent increase in basal metabolism and the use of free fatty acids (FFA) as an energy source.


Research has concluded that this mechanism will be especially effective in those workouts in which the intensity maintains the EPOC effect above 60 minutes. In this type of training with high muscular and metabolic impact, even if initial glycogen consumption is required, the subsequent prolonged fat burning will benefit.

Effects on sports performance: it has been investigated that the effect that caffeine has on the central nervous system, generating the blockade of adenosine receptors, translates into less transmission of the sensation of pain and fatigue during training, which it translates into an improvement in both endurance and intensity of training.

In addition to this, the release of adrenaline and the increase in dopamine after the consumption of caffeine, gives our body an extra motivation that will also positively influence the increase in sports performance.

Getting the Most from Caffeine

Based on the fact that caffeine, as a stimulating substance, can cause a certain addiction, it is very possible that if it is taken continuously, our body can get used to its effects and we do not perceive the benefits at the sports level that we have mentioned.

For this reason, it is advisable to take a cycled caffeine intake, resorting to its consumption on occasions when we are more fatigued or when we are going to perform more intense and demanding workouts.

Best Time to Drink Caffeine

When is the best time to drink caffeine: pre or post workout? It is generally advised that caffeine intake occurs about 30 minutes before training begins. Studies have shown that pre-training caffeine intake is related to an increase in subsequent sports performance and a lower perception of muscle pain, proven benefits, especially in the short term. Despite this recommendation, the truth is that benefits have also been observed in post-workout caffeine consumption. In this case, the supplementation after training, together with the hydrate recharge, increased the synthesis and the glycogen reserve, promoting better muscle recovery. As a general rule, its pre-training consumption is recommended to visualize an improvement in sports performance, although its post-training consumption has also been proven to have muscle recovery benefits. Both options, or even a "pre-drink" hours before resistance training, along with a carbohydrate intake, can be effective alternatives to benefit from the effects of caffeine.

Plant-Based Protein – Benefits when Working Out

The Benefits of Using Plant-Based Sources of Protein when Working Out

Over the years, plant-based protein sources have become an increasingly popular form of nutrition for those looking to maintain a healthy lifestyle. By incorporating plant-based protein into workouts, many are finding significant improvements in overall health, body composition, and performance. In this blog post, we'll explore the benefits that plant-based sources of protein have to offer exercisers and break down some tips for integrating them into any routine. With this type of protein, you can maximize your workout performance in a more natural and sustainable way, improving your overall health in the process.

What is Protein?

Protein is an essential component of every cell in your body. Amino acids serve as the structural building blocks for proteins. As one of the three primary macronutrients, the other two being carbohydrates and fats, it plays a crucial role in cellular maintenance and development. Protein is not only crucial for proper bodily function but also serves as a major source of energy. In general, the amino acid makeup of a protein determines its type. As protein is digested, it is broken down into specific amino acids. And, these specific amino acids play a wide range of roles in the body. Getting the right amount of protein each day is crucial, especially for athletes.

In What Ways Does Protein Contribute to Physical Fitness?

As we've said, protein is a crucial macronutrient. It is necessary for life, good health, and fitness, not only for athletes. In fact, proteins serve several purposes in the body. These purposes include mending broken cells, boosting the immune system, transporting chemicals, and carrying out instructions encoded in DNA. Moreover, all of these processes contribute to keeping your body in good shape. Those who regularly engage in physical activity, such as weight lifting or high-intensity cardio, have greater protein needs than those who lead sedentary lifestyles. Why? The answer is simple. Muscles actually tear a little bit every time we work out. Once we ingest protein, our body uses it to repair that damage.

The Difference Between Animal and Plant-based Protein

Animal-based protein sources, such as eggs, milk, fish, and lean meats, provide an excellent amount of energy and calcium. On the other hand, plant-based sources such as legumes, soy products, whole grains, and nuts also provide a lot of protein. However, they are low in some essential vitamins. For example, plant-based proteins are not typically considered to be complete proteins. This is because they don’t contain all nine essential amino acids. However, what they lack in amino acids, they make up for in minerals and fiber. That said, combining different plant-based protein sources can make up for this disparity in amino acids.

Another thing we need to mention is that animal proteins like beef tend to contain unhealthy fats, while plant proteins do not generally have any saturated fat. Ultimately plant-based proteins are a healthier alternative for those concerned about the moral implications of consuming animal products. And are more beneficial for overall health because they likely provide lower levels of fat grams compared to animal proteins. With that said, here are the three biggest benefits of using plant-based sources of protein.

1. Muscle Growth and Weight Loss

Plant-based proteins, like beans or chickpeas, may help with muscle growth and repair in the same ways that animal-based proteins can. In fact, combing these two foods may be just as effective as whey protein for gaining muscle and strength. It is also great for recovering quickly from workouts. That said, one of the greatest advantages of plant-based protein powders is the high fiber content they typically have. A diet high in plant fiber has been shown in studies to help with constipation and inflammation.

The protein found in plants may help speed up your metabolism. Because of the fiber content, plant-based proteins have a slower metabolic rate. When you consume plant-based protein and give your body time to metabolize it, you increase your metabolism and, in turn, your body's ability to burn excess fat. Plant-based protein powder serves two purposes: it aids in weight reduction while also providing a substantial amount of protein and fiber.

2. Alkalizing Properties

Plant-based proteins offer a host of health benefits and are particularly beneficial for those exercising while in addiction recovery. We all know that exercise can keep you healthy, but if you are unable to recover properly, it can be dangerous. That said, plant-based proteins are rich in alkalizing properties. They help to combat acidosis, an imbalance that exercise, diet, and certain medications cause. The intake of plant-based proteins aids the body in digesting food more efficiently and helps to ensure that the proper nutrients are absorbed by the tissues. Moreover, due to their low calories, fat, and sugar content, plant-based proteins are ideal for those looking to maintain a healthy weight during times of recovery. For individuals seeking to maintain overall well-being and good health during recovery, regularly incorporating alkalizing plant-based proteins into one’s diet is highly advisable.

3. Healthy Fat

Believe it or not, in order to lose fat and be healthy, you shouldn't avoid fat. That said, you need to eat the right type of fat. In fact, in moderation, saturated fats may help with weight control. For those looking to trim down, coconut oil is often considered a top choice. Coconut protein powder is a healthy option since it includes saturated fatty acids that help with weight control. Proteins found in plants are excellent for meeting your post-workout objectives. Plant-based proteins help with weight loss, muscular growth, and satiety without sacrificing nutrition. If you're still debating whether to or not to include plant-based protein in your diet, we highly recommend beginning your quest toward a healthier lifestyle by purchasing a plant-based protein powder.


Overall, plant-based sources of protein are an excellent source for those seeking to gain muscle without consuming animal products. Plant-based sources not only provide easily digestible nutrients and plant compounds, but they have also been shown to improve overall health and muscle growth. That said, even if you are not on a plant-based diet, it is a good idea to have at least a couple of plant-based protein sources with every meal.