In order to build a healthier, stronger body, one must build up their muscle mass. While there are several theories, diets, and proclaimed “quick fixes” on how to do this, there is one way to do this reliably and healthily, for anybody of any age. There are several steps that must be taken to build muscle: having a realistic goal, eating healthily, exercising, and getting adequate sleep.
The first step to building more muscle is to set a realistic and healthy goal. Often, people make the mistake of making their goals too extreme or too harsh. This can result in a number of issues, such as losing stamina quickly, being unhealthy by overextending the body, injury, and a resulting burnout. When formulating a goal, it is important to keep in mind what is healthy for a person’s particular body type. For example, setting goals frequently with realistic deadlines is more advantageous than setting a too-short deadline with extreme expectations. Perhaps a person wishes to lift heavier weights more regularly; therefore, they should build up their weight stacks over time and start out with a lighter weight, rather than beginning with a too heavy amount.
The second step to building muscles properly is to eat healthily, thus providing adequate nourishment for the body. Many people believe that, when they are attempting to tone up or build muscle, that an extreme diet must be followed in conjunction. However, rather than isolating one’s menu to just a few select foods, it is best to eat a wide variety of foods, such as fish, red meats, lean meats, vegetables, and fruits. In addition, eating a high protein diet is essential to building muscle (Laidler 1). This protein should come from primarily meats, which aid in providing the body with healthy energy, and thus more muscle. In addition, it is often advised by nutritionists to eat smaller meals more often, rather than fewer, larger meals (Laidler 1). This boosts one metabolism, burning more fat, and also translating to a quicker building of muscles. Eating regularly and more frequently also encourages better energy levels throughout the day, so that certain time periods, such as the “afternoon slump,” are effectively avoided.
The third component to building muscles is exercising. Exercising is the single most effective entity in maintaining good health, preventing disease, and promoting longevity. Additionally, it is also highly effective when it comes to building muscles (Laidler 1). With a healthy diet, combined with effective exercising, one can target their muscles with weight training and cardio exercises, thereby toning their muscles, and hence leading to increased muscle mass, while decreasing overall body fat. It is important to vary one’s exercise routine, as exercising with the same routine repetitively will eventually not challenge the muscles, which means less fat will be burnt overall, and not build muscle. By varying one’s exercise regime, more muscles can be targeted and challenged more effectively, thus promoting the body to continually shred fat while toning multiple muscles.
Lastly, getting adequate sleep is essential to building muscle. Nighttime is the period when one’s body rejuvenates, the cells are turned over and replaced, and the muscles can repair themselves (Laidler 1). By not getting enough sleep, one’s muscles and overall stamina will be impaired, as inadequate rest translates to tired, overused muscles. Sleep is essential to all functions of life, and provides the critical resting period for the body’s tissues, organs, and muscles to regain their strength after the day, rejuvenating them for the next day.
In summary, there are a number of steps that can be taken to build muscle mass in the body. Setting realistic goals, eating healthily, exercising, and sleeping adequately are all essential components to this process. When these steps are followed, one is assured of not only building muscle, but also having better health overall.
- Laidler, Scott. “How to Gain Muscle Quickly.” The Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group, 2014. Web. 3 Nov. 2015.