While the majority of people are on the lookout for a quick fix or the magic pill to make big gains in the shortest amount of time, those of us who have made meaningful gains know that it is a slow and sometime painful process with few shortcuts. That being said, there is no need to drag the process out longer than needed. Whether your goal is simply to be your strongest, pack on muscle or peak performance for your particular sport, we are going to share our top 6 tips so that we can help you avoid making mistakes and unnecessarily wasting time to get you to your goals sooner!
1. SMART AND PROGRESSIVE RESISTANCE TRAINING
If your goal is to get stronger or pack on muscle this rule needs to become the base of your training. In order to force your body to adapt and grow you need to continually challenge your body and place it under new and increasing stress. This is called progressive overload training: gradually increase the resistance/demand on your body so that the body adapts (gets stronger/bigger/leaner/faster). If you are always lifting the same weight there is no reason for your body to adapt and you will remain the same (no progress). Bonus tip: keep a training journal/log in order to track your progress and ensure you are increasing the demand on your body. To overcome plateaus try switching up the exercise choices, rest sets and tempo of your lifts.
2. PROPER NUTRITION
“You are what you eat” and “Garbage in = garbage out” are two adages that have stood the test of time. Athletes serious about their goals understand the importance of fueling their bodies with the right things to support growth and recovery. Choose whole unprocessed foods whenever possible to ensure that your body is healthy and functioning optimally for athletic performance.
3. ADEQUATE REST AND RECOVERY
The best athletes in the world are also those that know their bodies the best and understand the importance of rest and recovery. The better your ability to recover means the sooner you can get back into the gym for effective workouts. Prioritize sleep (minimum of 7-9 hours per night) in order to optimize hormonal function for enhanced muscle recovery, anabolic activation and insulin sensitivity.
4. SMART SUPPLEMENTATION
While proper nutrition needs to be a priority, hard training athletes do need to supplement their diets as the demands they place on their bodies are quite high. Leverage the power of science and supplement your diet in order to optimize your performance and enhance recovery beyond what you can do with diet alone. Just be careful, you cannot “out supplement” a bad diet or inadequate rest. That being said, if your diet and rest/recovery protocol are on point, the addition of supplements can help to increase performance and fast track your goals.
5. GET LEAN TO MAKE GAINS
This may seem counterintuitive but it works! If you have high body fat it likely means that you have low insulin sensitivity (the amount of insulin your body secretes in response to your blood sugar). Insulin is one of the body’s most anabolic muscle-building hormones so if you are able to better harness insulin’s anabolic potential through increasing your body’s insulin sensitivity, you are putting yourself at a physiologic advantage to grow more muscle.
6. YOUR TRIBE
There is a famous saying “you are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with” and this is especially true for successful athletes. Successful athletes surround themselves with other successful athletes to help motivate them when needed and to avoid others that may sabotage your goals because they are not aligned with their own goals. Surrounding yourself with the right people can also help pick up best practices and keep your spirits up if sick or injured – remember consistency is key so surround yourself with people that will keep you on track to progressing towards your goals!
Adopt these 6 tips as part of your lifestyle habits and you are sure to reach your goals and avoid any time-wasters and potential pitfalls that may prevent you from getting there!
– Team Revolution