It is never too late to start your fitness journey, but when you have a lot of other pressing matters demanding your attention in your day-to-day life then it can feel like a mammoth task to start working out regularly.
Having said this, it is very doable once you know the tips and tricks to gain muscle no matter how busy your schedule is.
Set Achievable Goals
Also, keep your goals in mind. Consider where you’re starting and how much time you have available. Starting a training regimen with twice-daily workouts might be unrealistic if you struggle to find time to work out.
To begin, try to fit in a 20-minute workout three times per week. If you’re currently overweight and physically active, start by setting a realistic weight-loss goal of one to two pounds per week — and as your fitness improves, keep moving your goal.
Or, set a more specific goal like lifting a particular amount of weight or becoming more toned. Setting intermediate process goals along the way can be extremely beneficial and motivating.
You don’t want to be so sore after every workout that you cannot walk, but your workouts should feel like work. A little soreness the day after a workout indicates that the muscles are growing but again, you need to make sure you aren’t so sore that you cannot do your next workout.
You want to work out hard enough that your muscles are exhausted by the end, but not so hard that you cannot write your name. The way you fatigue your muscles is determined by the type of resistance training you do and the length of time you do them.
If your goal is to strength train for maximum strength, such as in bodybuilding, you should focus on more weight and fewer repetitions, gradually increasing the weight to increase the intensity of the workout.
If you’re strength training for endurance, such as long-distance runners do to protect their ankles, knees, and other joints, you should focus on lighter weight and more reps.
Do Cardio And Strength Training
Resistance training promotes muscle growth and definition. But you’ll also need to do some cardiovascular exercises, which raise your heart rate and burn calories to shed those layers of fat between the skin and the muscles.
The right mix depends on your current fitness level and body type, but the general idea is that you’ll need to add to your workout routine over time if you want to continue to see results.
It takes time for our bodies to change. On a cellular level, changes in protein synthesis in the muscles could be seen as soon as six hours after a workout.
However, it can take weeks or months to see visible changes in the mirror in your bedroom or locker room, so don’t be discouraged if you don’t see any results in the first few weeks of starting a new program.
Your muscles do not become stronger while being challenged. Contrary to popular belief, this occurs afterward, when your body repairs the muscle. This repair process occurs during periods of rest, so it is critical to include rest days in your workout routine.
Finding Time In The Day
If you are a parent, mornings are probably one of the most hectic times of the day. However, if you plan the night ahead by preparing breakfasts, packed lunches, and other things your children may need first thing in the morning then it might leave you with some time to squeeze in a workout.
You may need to wake up a bit earlier so that you have at least 20 minutes of free time but the energy boost that the workout gives you will wake you up immediately. This is a great way to start the day!
Your lunchtime at work may not be very long but that does not mean that it should be spent sitting down. You can harness this time to go for a brisk walk which can not only energize you physically but also mentally.
If you expect you will get a bit sweaty then you can even bring some extra clothes to change into or body spray to cover any odor.
When you get back to the office, choose a healthy lunch such as raw vegetables, a meal bar, or a protein shake.
By becoming a bit more active throughout the day, you may find that your appetite is increased but be careful not to eat too much extra food as this will hinder your fitness journey.
After a long day of work, sorting out the kids, cleaning the house, and making dinner, the last thing you probably want to do is work out.
However, you must dig down and find that motivation to do a workout as it can help you wind down and sleep better at night, as well as, keep you moving in the right direction with your fitness.
If you want to gain lean muscle, both nutrition and physical activity are essential. Physical activity is important for challenging your body, but without proper nutritional support, your fitness progress will stagnate.
Protein-rich foods are essential for muscle gain but carbohydrates and fats are also required sources of energy.
Chicken breasts are a popular staple for muscle gain. It is because they’re high in protein. Each three-ounce serving has approximately 26.7 grams of high-quality protein.
As well, chicken breasts contain high levels of B6 and the B vitamins niacin, which may be especially important if you are physically active.
Vitamins such as these help your body work properly during physical activity which is important for optimal muscle gain.
Furthermore, some researchers suggest that higher-protein diets with chicken may help with fat loss.
This fish is a wonderful source of protein which benefits overall health as well as building muscle.
Each three-ounce serving of salmon contains approximately 17 grams of protein, 1.5 grams of omega-3 fatty acids, and a variety of B vitamins.
Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for muscle health and may even boost muscle gain during exercise programs.
Eggs are high in healthy fats, protein, and other essential nutrients, such as choline and B vitamins.
Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. Eggs are high in the amino acid leucine, which is especially important for muscle growth.
B vitamins are also essential for a number of bodily processes including energy production.
Half a cup of cooked soybeans has 16 grams of protein, healthy fats, and a range of vitamins and minerals.
Soybeans are especially high in iron, vitamin K, and phosphorus.
Iron is required for the storage and transportation of oxygen in your muscles and blood and not having enough iron can impair these functions.
Menstruating women can be particularly vulnerable to iron deficiency due to blood loss during their cycle.
Immature soybeans are referred to as edamame. These growing beans come in pods and are used in a variety of meals, especially those of Japanese origin.
One cup of frozen edamame contains approximately 18 grams of protein and 8 grams of fiber. It also has a lot of vitamin K, folate, and manganese.
Among other things, folate assists your body in the processing of amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein.
Indeed, folate may be necessary for optimal muscle mass and strength, especially in older adults.
While a healthy diet should emphasize whole foods, sometimes, dietary supplements can be useful.
If you struggle to get enough protein from foods alone, consider incorporating protein shakes into your daily routine.
Whey and casein are two of the most popular dairy protein powders. Other protein powders contain soy protein, pea protein, beef protein, or chicken protein.
It may seem impossible to fit in a workout when you already have so many things to think about such as work, running after children, cleaning, and commuting.
However, if you really make the effort into making room for your workout in your day and sticking to the points that we mentioned with setting realistic goals and remaining patient, then it should feel like second nature before you know it.