Results in the gym, the complete guide
Working towards something and not getting results, in any activity, is frustrating, and the gym is no exception.
If you're not getting results at the gym, or you're not getting the ones you were hoping for, something is wrong, and it's probably not the weights' fault.
We've compiled a list of common, and less common, minor glitches that can have a big impact on your progress.
Let's start by addressing dietary problems, then training problems, and finally, some more general details.
I'm not gaining weight, I'm not gaining mass!
If the scale doesn't move, the mirror is the same and the measurements are the same, it means you're the same.
If time passes and you are simply the same in all aspects, when your goal is to gain weight and muscle mass, your problem is most likely a lack of calories.
When you are in caloric excess, even without training, you gain weight.
As simple as that.
If you combine a good hypercaloric diet, with a good workout, you will gain weight and muscle mass.
Of course, if you combine a high-calorie diet with a lack of training you will only gain a good amount of abdominal volume.
Okay, I gained weight, but do I think I became fat?
Unfortunately, it's a common mistake.
When you join a gym and they tell you that to gain muscle mass, you must eat this world and the next, if you take that to the extreme, what happens?
You end up having a calorie surplus that is too high.
Too high a caloric surplus, even if combined with good training, will lead to many gains in fat mass.
If you're gaining a lot of fat, it might be a good idea to lower your calories.
If you are only gaining fat, and very little muscle, the problem may be a lack of protein, or your training, which leaves something to be desired.
Don't know how much protein you should eat per day?
See This article.
I'm not losing fat
If at the beginning of a fat loss plan, you are not losing fat, it is very likely that you have too many calories in your diet.
However, don't expect miracles in a week, and it's important not to be guided only by the scales, or only by the mirror.
You may be losing fat and the scale won't change much.
It can also easily mislead you.
To evaluate your progress, the ideal would be to combine not only the scale with the mirror, but also take measurements of your belly, arms and legs.
Taking regular photographs is also a good idea.
I'm losing fat but the muscle is also disappearing
This usually happens to those who are in a hurry to lose fat, and is typical in the summer months.
Summer is at the same time every year, but there are certain people who forget that, therefore, they want the results that many people look for for months. In a few weeks.
If you are losing too much muscle in your fat loss plan, there are several factors that could be contributing to this, and only you can assess which one you include.
Simply put, the four main factors are:
If you lower your calories too much, and too quickly, you'll lose weight quickly, but a lot of that weight will be muscle mass.
Furthermore, it is essential to consume a good amount of protein to help you maintain lean mass.
Those in a hurry usually also add real cardio marathons to their plan.
Kilometers and more kilometers.
An even greater caloric expenditure, and consequently, more muscle that goes to life.
Weight training, even when the objective is to lose fat, should always be included, not only for its aesthetic benefit, but also for its metabolic benefit.
The more lean mass you have, the more easily you can burn fat.
Also don't forget that on low-carb diets, muscles appear smaller.
Not because you are losing muscle mass dramatically, but because you are storing less water within the muscle.
I was losing weight, but I stagnated
Stagnating in weight loss is common, and unfortunately, it's a tricky area to guess what's going on without analyzing the case in question.
Don't forget that as your body weight drops, your calories should also drop, as your daily calorie expenditure at your new weight will be lower.
Or, add a few more minutes of cardio.
It doesn't solve 100% of the cases, but it solves some.
Problem in Training
As mentioned above, when you want to lose fat, you shouldn't neglect weight training.
Fat loss is above all diet, and no amount of training can compensate for a poor diet, but good weight training in conjunction with some cardio will provide better results.
And faster too.
What is the best type of cardio for losing fat?
See the answer in this article.
Too much cardio, too much weight training, too much training
On fat loss diets, you absolutely need to consume fewer calories than your body uses daily.
This will lead you to lose fat, but it will also decrease your ability to recover.
When training weight training, it might be a good idea to lower the volume and not fail on a regular basis.
In cardio training, HIIT every day is a good path to injury, lack of progression or exhaustion.
HIIT training is a good training method, but it is very demanding, not only physically but also mentally, and sometimes low/medium intensity cardio ends up being a better bet.
This is not an excuse for not training, or training little, it is just a warning to adapt and program your plan to your goal and diet, in an intelligent way.
Number of weekly workouts
If your goal is to gain muscle mass, you should do weight training at least three times a week.
There are different approaches to bodybuilding training, but as a rule, the minimum is three workouts.
Anything less will hardly bring you the results you are looking for.
Unless you don't want results, in that case you don't even need to train.
To learn more about this subject, see the article How many sets and reps should I do?
There must be progression in training to make progress at a muscular level.
If you do the same exercises, with the same loads, the same sets, the same repetitions and the same rest times week after week, month after month, year after year, why should the muscle grow?
This doesn't mean you should make every workout an adventure.
Until changing gyms.
But there needs to be progression to be able to gain muscle mass.
Attention, progression is not just putting more weight on the bar.
This would be impossible to maintain for a long time.
Adding one repetition compared to last week's workout, with the same weight, is progression.
? What exercises did you do today Zé?
? Today I did a bit of biceps curls with dumbbells, I went to the peck deck to pump up my chest, and before I left I did some sit-ups while chatting with Margarida.
The great Zé went to the gym, but didn't do much training.
You should use compound exercises, exercises that intensely work your largest muscle groups completely, allowing you to lift good loads.
These are the exercises that will give you good results, not half a dozen push-ups with a back somersault.
What exercises are these?
Raisin here where you will find some of the best exercises for each muscle group.
The article is already long, and you've certainly had days where you slept little, or went straight.
Just one day with few hours of sleep makes you feel more tired, irritated, weaker.
If you are weaker and tired, your training will suffer negatively.
Your food choices will probably also be affected.
And your recovery?
Your recovery will be much lower, because it is during sleep that the body recovers.
Attention, you don't need to hibernate, nor should you, but point to at least six hours of regular sleep, and between 7 and 8 as the ideal number.
? I don't get results in the gym, I'm always the same, I'm fed up with this and I'm going to give up.
? Zé, but you only came here last week?
If in this story you are Zé, you have to stop being Zé.
A week, two weeks and even a month are nothing to see visible results.
You need time to achieve real results, and depending on your commitment and objective, it may take a few or many months to get there.
A bit like the time factor, consistency is essential to get results, and if you're not consistent, guess what will happen.
There will be no good results.
- First week = 4 workouts
- Second week = 1 workout
- Third week = 2 workouts
- Fourth week = 0 workouts
The month has thirty days, and you went to train seven.
What would happen if you only worked seven days a month?
Would you get rich?
? I'm not getting results and João is, this is definitely because he takes all those supplements!
Supplements help, but in the end, they are just a small help in a huge equation.
In addition to these supplements, there are some that bring small specific benefits, but are far from essential.
It's certainly not because you're not using them that you're not getting results.
If you still want more ideas for supplements, you have here some suggestions for fat loss.
If your goal is to gain muscle mass, go through here.
Reading this article will not bring you results, but correcting possible flaws that you identify with here will improve your progress in the gym and your image in the mirror.
In the game of gaining muscle mass, or losing fat, the most important piece are the calories, and the ideal would be to have some idea of how much you ingest.
O myfitnesspal It's a good tool to help you with this task, and a scale too.
Finally, if you want to get results, you need to have goals, and it is important that you define them in a realistic and concrete way.
Losing 20kg of pure fat in two months is relatively concrete, but unrealistic.
Lose 5kg of fat in two months because you want to show off your abs in Vilamoura in August?
It is concrete, real and possible. It just depends on you.