Once you’ve nailed down the basics of diet and exercise it’s time to add in some more advanced tricks, enabling you to take your muscle growth one step further.
In this article you will learn 7 advanced methods you can apply today which will turbo charge your muscle growth. Here we go:
1.Use Advanced Training Methods
Once you’ve mastered the basics of tempo, rest, sets etc. it’s time to take your training a step further with these advanced methods. Here’s a list of principles you can start applying into your regime:
Supersets: Perform 2 exercises back to back without rest. You can do this for the same muscle group, for example, a dumbbell chest press straight into a cable fly. It’s also great for separate muscle groups, making your training sessions more time effective, metabolic and allowing for more total work volume. Dating back to the days of Arnold, he would superset muscles like chest and back or bicep and triceps. This is my personal favorite way of training, as it allows for more total frequency and volume per muscle, 2 key drivers of muscle hypertrophy.
DTP: DTP is Kris’s famous method of hardcore training and, well, the results speak for themselves. Learn more about DTP HERE.
Dropsets: Dropsets are another popular advanced training method which extend the set and drop the weight 2 or 3 times. This gives you a crazy pump and helps you lay down new muscle due to an increase in metabolic stress and cell swelling.
Rest Pause: Rest pause sets allow you to maximally recruit all the muscle fibers and lift heavier, for more reps than you would, compared to a standard straight set. As the name suggests, you will perform X amount of reps, rest briefly then go again. Some people will breakdown 5 reps into 5 single reps with a 5-10 second pause. Others may hit their 10 rep goal, then rest 10-20 seconds before performing 5 more bonus reps.
Intra-Set Stretching: Intra-set stretching is a newer form of training which requires you to stretch the working muscle under load after the main set. This causes a large amount of cell swelling and muscle damage, 2 key factors in muscle growth. To perform this, simply blast your normal rep scheme out, such as 8 or 10 reps and then hold in the stretched or lengthened position for 30 seconds before resting. The best exercises to do this on are chest cable flys, incline bicep curls, overhead tricep extensions, pull ups or lat pull down as the muscle can be fully loaded in the lengthened position.
2. Take a Well Designed Pre-Workout Such as PRE-KAGED
Although the basics of training and diet are fundamental when starting out, once you have mastered these, a good supplement regime is almost vital to optimize your muscle building potential.
A well designed pre-workout such as PRE-KAGED is going to enhance every aspect of your performance in the gym, while also reducing muscle breakdown and increasing recovery. There’s really no reason why you would pass on the pre-workout, especially when all the specific ingredients in KAGED MUSCLE have over 1000 studies combined testing their effectiveness and benefits for performance.
You can learn more in the full articles below, but here’s a re-cap of the benefits:
- Time to exhaustion
- Strength, 1 rep max etc.,
- Amount of reps performed per set or workout,
- Muscle Damage following the workout,
- Perception of effort / intensity, making your training feel easier, so you can go harder,
- Amount of muscle you grow,
- Energy, focus, motivation and more…
Click HERE to learn more about PRE-KAGED!
3. Sleep More
Although this tip may not seem as advanced or sexy as some of the other points, it’s extremely important for it to be emphasized.
Far too often people will be maximizing their training and diet and forgetting the 3rd key variable, sleep and recovery.
We all know that you grow after the gym, not in it; therefore, ensuring your sleep is on point should be a vital priority, especially if you are training hard and pushing the boundaries of performance.
Aim for at least 7 hours of sleep per night, or more if you feel you need it. Ideally, try to hit the pillow around 10/11pm and no later, as this is when your body produces the key hormone, Growth Hormone. Poor sleep cycles or hitting the bed too late can mess up with your body’s natural GH production.
There are numerous strategies you can use to enhance sleep, including blocking out blue light from electronic devices at night, taking supplements such as Melatonin or 5-HTP and investing in a high-end mattress and pillows.
4. Increase Your Protein
While you may be on a “high protein” diet, there could still be room for further increases to maximize your muscle building potential.
Most people will tend to eat around 150-250 grams of protein per day, which, while it’s certainly sufficient, may still leave room for even higher increases, especially when you are dieting or training twice a day or doing extra-long workouts.
Several research studies have started to investigate this, finding that an extra 100 grams or so (taking you to above 350 grams) can help you add pure lean muscle and even drop body fat.
The main takeaway point is that you should never under eat on protein, and, it’s always better to overshoot rather than under consume. After all, every individual’s protein needs, protein turnover within the body and protein absorption rates are very different. So, following a generic “150 grams” of protein may be ok for 8/10 people; however, what if you are in that 20% that needs more?
There’s really no reason not to consume more protein; apart from damaging your bank balance, it’s going to only enhance your physique and health.
5. Take BCAA or Protein Between Meals
If you only manage 3-4 meals per day then another great strategy is to consume BCAA or a Whey Protein shake in-between these meals.
This is based on new research which showed that, after around 3 hours, Muscle Protein Synthesis (MPS) will start to decline and return to baseline levels. MPS is the key biological mechanism behind muscle growth.
When MPS is up, you grow.
When MPS is down, you don’t.
As you can see, our goal is to keep MPS elevated throughout the day. Based on this, new research has shown that just taking 10 grams of BCAA with a small amount of carbs (20grams) from an apple or something can stimulate MPS and keep it elevated to the next meal.If you are eating 5-6 times per day this is likely to not be a problem; however, if you are only eating 3-4 times per day, a scoop of RE-KAGED or BCAA 2:1:1 and Hydra-Charge could be the perfect mid-meal strategy to keep you growing all day long!
6. Increase Your Training Frequency
Another foolproof way to grow is to increase the amount of times you train the priority muscle groups.
Many studies have now shown that only training each muscle group once per week is sub-optimal for growth, especially as you become more advanced.
In fact, as we discussed the importance of MPS above, research has shown beginners may have enhanced MPS levels for 3-4 days after training a muscle group such as legs. However, advanced athletes on the same protocol were back to baseline after 12 - 16 hours.
This means, after this time, that muscle had recovered and probably wasn’t growing. If you only hit legs or any other muscle once per week, you are missing out on a LARGE opportunity to grow.
While it’s obviously impossible to train each muscle group daily, just increasing your frequency to training each muscle twice or maybe three times per week can go a long way and fast forward your results.
Here’s an example PPL overview where you train each muscle group twice a week:
Tuesday: Push (chest, triceps, shoulders)
Wednesday: Pull (back and biceps)
Friday: Push (chest, triceps, shoulders)
Saturday: Pull (back and biceps)
7. Stay Consistent, Every day.
Probably the most crucial part of reaching any physique or fitness goal is consistency.
Even if you train like a pro, if you only do it 5 days a week then hit the weekend like a college kid on spring break, then you can’t expect to grow or come close to optimizing your results.
Muscle growth is a marathon not a sprint, you must buy in and adopt the lifestyle, making it a daily part of your routine and staying consistent year around. Of course, this isn’t to say you can’t eat the odd pizza or have a few beers once a month; however, you should be focused and sticking to the plan 90% of the time.
For the next 3 months aim to never miss a session, unless you are ill, injured or under recovered, you can always make time for the gym. Even in a hectic life, if you want the end result you can get out of bed an hour earlier, or, skip the hour in front of the TV at night.
Keep consistent with your diet, supplement and training regime and see how far you can go in just a few months, you may surprise yourself!