Getting stronger is about more than just looking good. As early as our 30s, we naturally start losing muscle mass and function. Research suggests that inactive people lose around 3% to 5% of their muscle mass each decade after 30. Nevertheless, there is an easy remedy to this natural muscle loss. If you stay active, build strength, and maintain your endurance, you can easily fight the effects of aging. You can be the 60-year-old that looks 40!
These 5 rules are key to building and maintaining strength. In no time, you’ll notice an increase in muscle mass. This doesn’t mean that you’ll start looking bulky. On the other hand, raw strength will help you get that toned lean look.
1. Make sure you’re eating enough.
One of the main keys to getting stronger is not in your workout, but in your diet. When you don’t eat enough, your body can break down muscle for every, which will revert progress. Therefore, when your working to increase muscle and strength, it’s important you don’t skimp on calories. Now is not the time to diet. Check out our database for great recipe ideas made with healthy ingredients. We always list the nutrition information so you know what you’re putting into your body.
2. Add protein to your diet.
Another detail you need to watch in your diet is your protein consumption. When you work out, you tear muscle fibers in your body. Your body then moves to rebuild the muscle and make it even stronger, and for this it needs the amino acids found in protein. As a general rule, you want to consume 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight if you want to get serious gains. These 20 protein-packed recipes are a great place to begin.
3. Incorporate both high-rep and low-rep training.
High-rep training is when you choose a lighter weight and complete 10-15 repetitions per set. Conversely, low-rep training is when you try to lift the heaviest weight you can manage for only 3-5 reps. High-rep training improves your muscular endurance and helps keep you in shape, but it’s low-rep training that makes you stronger. However, low-rep training can also lead to burning out. If you practice low-rep training for several major muscle groups on the same day, chances are, you won’t be able to give it your all, and you might in fact be hindering your progress. In order to get stronger faster, combine low-rep and high-rep training.
4. Practice rows and deadlifts.
Exercises can be either push exercises (such as bench presses) or pull exercises (rows). Most trainers recommend incorporating more pull exercises than push exercises. This is because pull exercises require more raw strength. They’ll help you build muscle faster, and therefore will also help you increase weights in push exercises.
5. Focus on quality over quantity.
The most important rule for getting stronger is to prioritize quality over quantity. If you can’t complete your reps with proper form, it’s better to decrease your weights or try a different exercise while you build up strength. Losing proper form can put unnecessary strain on joints, tendons, and secondary muscles, which can lead to unfortunate injuries. If you’re unsure what proper form looks like, don’t be afraid to ask a trainer of look it up on the internet. Before you know it, you’ll be stronger than ever!