Fighting Fit – Five tips to lift more at the gym - MMA - TheMacLife

Fighting Fit – Five tips to lift more at the gym

Want to move up a weight class? Here’s how to do it.

By John Balfe - 13 May 2019

Perhaps unlike some other elements of life, your goals in the gym should be pretty straightforward. Some are there for cardio, others are there to lose weight but one thing that unifies almost everybody who pays a gym membership each month is a desire to add muscle to their frame. 

And there’s really only one way to do this: hard work, good nutrition and to keep lifting heavy things in pursuit of that sweet, sweet endorphin rush. But how best to get a little bit bigger and add a few KGs to your PB? Read on…

WORK ON YOUR FORM

It can be incredibly tempting to add a whole rack of weights to your lifts and really test your limits from the off. This, however, is a common rookie mistake. You can carry the weight of two men on your shoulders but if your form isn’t correct you won’t be fully accessing the correct muscle groups and, more importantly, you will run an elevated risk of doing some serious damage to yourself. Get your mechanics down before you start to push.

WARM UP

Whoa, slow down there! Still a little eager to get stuck into some hard work? Not without warming up first, you’re not. As we all know, the muscle groups that you soon intend on engaging will need to be warmed up before you do anything to help minimise the risk of pulling this, or snapping that. Your warm-up should be dynamic and fluid. Foam rolling can be a good way to do this and if you have difficulty, don’t be afraid to look into acquiring the services of a personal trainer which will most likely be available at your gym.

KEEP IT UP

If you are in any way serious about wanting to add some bulk to your frame, have good form and are taking care of your diet one of the only things that can hold you back is failing to adapt your new routine into your schedule. They say that it takes around three weeks to form a new habit, so make a point of being tough on yourself when your brain is trying to persuade you to spend another evening on the couch rather than getting a sweat going. You want your muscles to be overloaded regularly in order for them to rebuild themselves fitter, happier and more productive, as Thom Yorke might say.

ACTIVATE YOUR MUSCLES

One of the more common mistakes can be failing to fully engage yourself when you are lifting. Are you looking to develop your biceps? Don’t forget to clasp the bars tight to work on your grip strength at the same time. Is it shoulders day? Engage your core, keep your back straight and be conscious of your leg muscles. A little more effort and a bit more concentration can go a long way.

 

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EAT WELL

Much of the above will count for naught unless you’re supplying your body with the fuel it needs to actually build new muscle. Want more muscle? Stimulate and feed the ones you already have and things will look after themselves to a certain degree and that means that you should consume around 0.7 grams of protein for each pound of bodyweight. You can incorporate these into your regular diet, or go the supplemental shakes route. Either works, so long as you do it right.

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