Are you unhappy with the results you’re getting? Failing at building muscle can depend on various different factors, so here are five reasons why your muscles may not be growing the way you want them to:
You’re not getting enough sleep.
Sleep is a detrimental aspect of muscle growth, since most of it takes place during. You should be getting at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep every night in order to give your muscles time to heal and grow. Not getting enough sleep can also lower testosterone levels, which in turn makes it harder to build muscles. So hit the pillows and give your muscles the recovery they need!
You’re simplifying your workouts and exercises by using the momentum of your body weight.
If you’re starting to use your bodyweight to push through, or you find yourself starting to swing in order to get your last reps in, chances are the exercise is too difficult for you. If you do catch yourself starting to get sloppy and lose form during the exercise you’re performing it may be time to adjust. Try simplifying the exercise, for example doing pushups on your knees, or simply do fewer reps until you gain more strength. Fewer coordinated reps will still get you better results than lots of poor ones. It’s quality over quantity!
You’re not taking in enough protein in your daily meals.
Protein is made up of amino acids, which are the building blocks of your muscles and body, which is why adequate protein intake plays such a crucial role in increasing muscle growth and losing fat. Recommendations state that you should be consuming between 1.7 to 3.3 grams of protein per kg of bodyweight per day, depending on the level of daily activity and how much you’re working out. Try writing down your daily meals for a week to get an idea of your approximate nutritional values and get a feeling for what and how much you should be eating. You know what they say, abs are made in the kitchen!
You’re not getting enough carbs in your daily meals.
Lots of people tend to focus only on their protein intake, but it doesn’t end there. Carbs play an essential part in rebuilding muscle tissue and should be given just as much attention. Not only do they fuel you with energy for your workouts, but they also help you gain mass by upping your entire calorie intake. Make sure to incorporate carbs in your meals instead of cutting them out. We recommend complex carbs such as oats, brown rice and whole-grain pasta as they don’t raise your blood sugar as fast as high-glycemic carbs.
You’re not being consistent with your training and nutrition.
There may be days where we go workout but then end up spending the evening going out or binge eating fast food and sweets with our friends. But consistency is key when it comes to obtaining better results. Whether it’s skipping your workout routine or making bad food choices, try to incorporate an 80-20 approach. That means being on track 80% of the time by eating healthy and making sure to get your workouts in, but also giving yourself a little free space (the 20%) to have a treat every once in a while. And if you know you’re going to be tempted in an environment, try coming up with some healthy alternatives. For example when it comes to snacking, instead of picking chips or candy, try swopping it for fruit or dark chocolate. Or try meal prepping before ordering take-out, by cooking in advance for the lazy days.
All in all, if any of these apply to you, it’s perfectly easy to turn things around and make changes in your life. After all, it’s just a matter of habit. Even a small change will bring you closer to your goal!