Build Muscle

Building muscle requires a combination of regular exercise and proper nutrition. Here are some key steps to building muscle:

  1. Resistance Training: Engage in regular resistance training exercises, such as weightlifting, bodyweight exercises or resistance band exercises, that target the major muscle groups. Aim to work out at least 3-5 times a week, with a focus on progressive overload, gradually increasing the weight or intensity of your workouts over time.
  2. Proper Nutrition: Consume a balanced diet that includes enough protein to support muscle growth. Protein is an essential nutrient for building and repairing muscle tissue, and is typically found in foods such as meat, fish, eggs, beans, and nuts. View our complete guide to nutrition.
  3. Adequate Rest and Recovery: Ensure that you are getting enough rest and recovery time in between workouts. This includes getting enough sleep, as well as allowing time for your muscles to rest and recover between workouts.
  4. Consistency and Intensity: Be consistent with your workouts and nutrition. Building muscle takes time and requires a consistent effort over weeks and months. Stay committed to your routine and be patient with the results. Train with intensity. If you put in 50% effort, you’ll get 50% of the results.

Please note: There is no such thing as a “hard gainer”. If you think you are a hard gainer then chances are that one of the above is off (normally point 2 in that you aren’t eating enough good food). Imagine building muscle like a

The best training split for building muscle mass may vary depending on individual goals, fitness level, and schedule.

Training Splits – Full Body

Full body workouts can be an effective approach for building muscle mass, particularly for beginners or those with limited time to commit to working out. A full body workout involves targeting all major muscle groups in a single workout session, typically performed 2-3 times per week.

Here is a sample full body workout for muscle mass:

  1. Squats: 3 sets x 8-12 reps
  2. Bench press: 3 sets x 8-12 reps
  3. Deadlifts: 3 sets x 6-8 reps
  4. Pull-ups or lat pulldowns: 3 sets x 8-12 reps
  5. Shoulder press: 3 sets x 8-12 reps
  6. Barbell curls: 3 sets x 8-12 reps
  7. Tricep pushdowns: 3 sets x 8-12 reps
  8. Ab crunches: 3 sets x 15-20 reps

The goal of this workout is to perform compound exercises that work multiple muscle groups simultaneously, such as squats, bench press, and deadlifts. These exercises recruit a large number of muscle fibres and stimulate muscle growth.

Training Splits – PPL

A common and more effective approach for experienced lifters is the “push-pull-legs” (PPL) split.

The PPL split typically involves three workouts per week, alternating between exercises that target pushing movements, pulling movements, and lower body exercises.

Here is a sample PPL split:

Push day:

  • Barbell bench press
  • Shoulder press
  • Incline dumbbell press
  • Tricep pushdowns
  • Lateral raises

Pull day:

  • Deadlifts
  • Pull-ups or lat pulldowns
  • Seated rows
  • Bicep curls
  • Face pulls

Leg day:

  • Squats
  • Lunges
  • Leg press
  • Leg curls
  • Calf raises

It’s important to note that the intensity and volume of each workout should be gradually increased over time, with a focus on progressive overload. Additionally, proper nutrition and adequate rest and recovery are crucial for building muscle mass.

Training Splits – Bro Split

The bro split, also known as the body part split, is a workout routine that involves targeting a single muscle group each day of the week. This is a popular approach among bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts, and typically involves working out five or six days a week, with one or two days of rest.

Here is an example of a bro split:

  • Monday: Chest
  • Tuesday: Back
  • Wednesday: Shoulders
  • Thursday: Arms
  • Friday: Legs
  • Saturday: Abs

Each workout session will involve several exercises that target the specific muscle group of the day. For example, on chest day, exercises such as bench press, incline press, and flyes may be performed.

The bro split can be effective in isolating specific muscle groups, allowing for more focus and intensity in each workout. However, it may not be the most efficient approach for building overall strength and muscle mass, as muscle groups are only trained once per week.

Rep Ranges

Different rep ranges in the gym can have different benefits depending on your goals and fitness level. Here are some of the main benefits of different rep ranges:

  1. High reps (12+ reps): Performing higher reps can improve muscular endurance and help develop muscular stamina. This rep range is often used for accessory exercises or as a finisher to a workout, allowing for a greater volume of work to be performed without overly fatiguing the muscles.
  2. Moderate reps (8-12 reps): This is the most commonly recommended rep range for building muscle mass. Moderate reps allow for a balance of muscle tension and metabolic stress, which are both important for muscle growth. This rep range is also good for developing muscular endurance and can lead to improvements in strength.
  3. Low reps (1-5 reps): Performing low reps with heavy weights is ideal for building maximal strength. This rep range targets the fast-twitch muscle fibers, which are responsible for generating explosive power. Low rep training is commonly used by powerlifters, Olympic weightlifters, and athletes looking to improve their explosive power.
  4. Mixed rep ranges: Combining different rep ranges in a workout can be effective for building overall strength and muscle mass. For example, performing heavy sets of 5 reps for a compound exercise like squats or deadlifts, followed by lighter sets of 12-15 reps for accessory exercises can be a good way to target both fast-twitch and slow-twitch muscle fibers, and improve overall muscular endurance and strength.

Training With Intensity

Training to failure, which means performing an exercise until you are physically unable to complete another repetition with proper form, can have both benefits and drawbacks. Here are some of the potential benefits of training to failure:

  1. Increased muscle growth: When you train to failure, you stimulate a greater number of muscle fibers than you would by stopping short of failure. This can result in increased muscle damage and a greater hormonal response, leading to more muscle growth over time.
  2. Improved muscular endurance: Training to failure can also improve your muscular endurance by pushing your muscles to work beyond their normal capacity. This can be especially beneficial for athletes who need to maintain high levels of performance over extended periods of time.
  3. Improved mental toughness: Pushing through the discomfort of training to failure can also help build mental toughness and discipline, which can translate to other areas of your life.

However, it’s important to note that training to failure is not suitable for everyone. It can increase the risk of injury and lead to overtraining if not done properly. Additionally, training to failure may not be necessary for achieving your fitness goals, and may actually hinder your progress if you’re not able to properly recover between workouts.