I follow a lot of Trainers, Nutritionists, PT’s and Gurus on twitter and have contacted a lot of them to try and share some ideas, thoughts and training programs for you James Haskell Body Fit lovers. One company I came across were LDN Muscle, famous for their “Chest Sunday”work outs. They have put together a great starter guide on how to build muscle in the gym. You need to read this if you want to gain some good size. check out their site www.ldnmuscle.com
As always this is one point of View, and as you will see from my past blogs there is no right or wrong (apart from poor technique, and the other big no’s of eating clean and training dirty) way of doing things, no method is completely guaranteed to get the results you want. of course because of my job, i.e a rugby player i cant always do the same things as someone who doesn’t play professional sport. i will always include my sessions and what i do, but with a mix for the Civilian.
I hope you enjoy
Who Are LDN Muscle?
We’re 4 brothers from SW London, having trained together for years – each with a slightly differing background but the same goal: A natural, lean and aesthetic physique. As a group, we have all been heavily involved in weight training and promoting general health & fitness. Specifically, we are all passionate about natural bodybuilding. We all have our own positive and negative experiences to draw on when providing practical advice and opinions about training and nutrition. This valuable knowledge, gained over years of experience will help you reach your training goals and develop the lean and natural looking muscular results we all strive for. With advice and tips to suit people from across the board.
Under the LDN Muscle brand, we have joined forces, pooling our knowhow & expertise to enable us to help the wider training community to lose body fat, gain lean muscle, prevent injury, improve technique and get the body they work so hard for, quicker. No matter what their background or their daily life entails.
How we build muscle naturally: in the gym!
Ask any experienced gym-goer this one question: ‘Do you wish you did more research before you started lifting weights?’, and I guarantee 9 out of 10 times they will say yes. Very few people new to the gym are guided and educated in such a way that they make great progress continually throughout their first year of lifting. This gym fact, when teamed with the complexity of proper training, becomes a barrier that separates the determined from the disillusioned, who quit when results slow after 4-6 months of training.
This article will try to act as a brief and simple ‘go-to-guide’ for anyone looking to build muscle, and improve their knowledge of resistance based training for aesthetic purposes.
Training Frequency (weights sessions):
There are lots of different opinions and theories on how many times you should, or should not, train with weights a week. This is a hard issue to argue clinically about as people do recover and build muscle at a varying range of speeds, but for most people with average genetics; lifting at least 4 times weekly will bring gains in size and strength.
The most beneficial, and applicable, amount of resistance sessions a week for someone who has a full time job and social obligations, we believe, is between 5-6. For example, from the four members of LDNMuscle; two operate a 4 days on, 1 day off split, whilst the other two operate a 6 days on, 1 day off regime regarding weight training.
Duration of sessions:
This is another hotly contested area of discussion within the fitness industry; with some highly qualified professionals fiercely preaching that if you’re in the gym any longer than 45 minutes you’re doing more harm than good, however other equally qualified and accomplished people spend up to 120 minutes in the gym per session. A mid-ground stance is most favourable regarding this issue- being that if you are resting between sets for the correct amount of time you shouldn’t be in a gym for 90 minutes, but then again, unfortunately you are never going to be able to fit in a safe warm up, effective weights session and cool down within a 30 minute period (even if the gym was empty!).
Generally the optimum amount of time per session, under the most common circumstances, is between 45-75 minutes. Programs that try to sell people extremes of minimal time for maximal gains are not going to work, the greater percentage of the time, for the average person trying to build some muscle mass.
We’ve read up on a whole host of combinations claiming to bring the greatest gains in muscle mass over years of training, and like you (probably), have sampled most and found our favourites. With training muscle groups you have to find what works for you, i.e. from the four members of LDNMuscle; two have sessions for purely biceps, and purely triceps- as they find these muscle groups hardest to stimulate into growing, whereas the two remaining members pair biceps with back, and triceps with chest.
As stated in the previous paragraph you’ll have to find what works for you; as working all body parts equally- when some may increase in size at different speeds- could result in your body becoming out of symmetry and out of proportion. Below is the link to an example training split featured on our website, ideal to add structure to a workout schedule:
Training methods and rest periods:
Changing your style of lifting to hit muscle fibres in a different way, shocking them into hypertrophy. Mixing the lifting style used frequently, doesn’t allow the body to adapt to the style of training, resulting in continued muscular gains and reduced training platues of no gains in strength or size. It is therefore, very beneficial, to be able to call upon a wide range of training methods; in order to keep your muscular and nervous systems guessing, and also increase the adaptability of your own training within the gym.
Styles of lifting we utilise:
- · Hypertrophy sets (60 seconds rest between sets)
- · Strip sets/drop sets (60-90 seconds between sets)
- · Supersets (60-90 seconds)
- · Giant sets (120-180 seconds)
- · Rest-Pause (60-90 seconds)
- · Pyramid work (60-90 seconds)
- · High volume (60-90 seconds) http://www.ldnmuscle.com/lbs-inspired-leg-workout/
- German volume training (60-90 seconds http://www.ldnmuscle.com/german-volume-training/
- 6-12-15 method (120-240 seconds http://www.ldnmuscle.com/the-6-12-25-workout-protocol/
We find it very useful to rotate between lifting styles; sticking with one for a 2-4 week period before substituting in another style of lifting. This isn’t to say that we won’t mix up styles of training within one workout though, as you may have to adapt to conditions within the gym, i.e. time constraints, availability of equipment, other members, etc.
The previous sub-headings are the main issues you need to get right if you’re serious about gaining muscle and building an aesthetic physique via resistance sessions in the gym. There is a wealth of smaller subjects you need to master first, such as: correct form, nutrition, rest, etc, which will enable you to begin to build muscle at a greater speed. Luckily you can find a catalogue of articles to help you improve your knowledge and form on our website www.ldnmuscle.com