Results at the gym, the complete guide
Working for something and not getting results in any activity is frustrating, and the gym is no exception.
If you're not getting results in the gym, or you're not getting what you expected, something is missing, and it's probably not the weights to blame.
We've compiled a list of common, and less common, minor glitches that can have a big impact on your progress.
We'll start by addressing food issues, then training issues, 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 too, it means you're in the same way.
If time goes by and you are just the same in all aspects, when your goal is to gain weight and muscle mass, your problem is most likely lack of calories.
When you are in excess of calories, even without training, you gain weight.
As simple as that.
if you match a good high calorie 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 good abdominal volume.
Ok, I gained weight, but I think I got fat…
Unfortunately, it's a common mistake.
When you walk into a gym and are told that to gain muscle mass, you must eat this world and the next, if you take that to an extreme, what happens?
You end up having too high a caloric excess.
Too high a caloric excess, even if combined with a good workout, will lead to many gains in fat mass.
if you are earning a lot fat, maybe it's a good idea to cut the calories down.
If you are gaining only fat, and very little muscle, the problem may be lack of protein, or training, which leaves something to be desired.
Don't know how much protein to eat each 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 just the mirror.
You may be losing fat and the scale is not changing much.
It can also mislead you easily.
In order to assess your progress, the ideal would be to combine not only the scale with the mirror, but also take measurements of the belly, arms and legs.
Taking regular photographs is also a good idea.
I'm losing fat but muscle is also disappearing
This usually happens to those who are in too much of a hurry to lose fat, and is typical in the coming months of summer.
Summer is at the same time every year, but there are certain people who forget about it, so they want the results that many have been looking for for months. In a few weeks.
If in your fat loss plan, you are losing too much muscle, there are several factors that could be contributing to this, and only you can assess which one to include yourself.
Simply put, the four main factors are:
If you lower calories too much, and too quickly, you will lose weight fast, but a lot of that weight will be muscle mass.
Furthermore, it is essential to have a good intake of protein to help you maintain lean mass.
Those in a hurry often 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 goal 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 easier it is to burn fat.
Also don't forget that on low carbohydrate diets, muscles look smaller.
Not because you're losing muscle mass dramatically, but because you're storing less water inside the muscle.
I was losing weight, but…I stagnated
Stagnating weight loss is common, and unfortunately, it's a tricky area to guess what's going on without analyzing the case at hand.
Don't forget that as your body weight drops, calories should also drop, as your daily caloric expenditure with your new weight is lower.
Or, add a few more minutes of cardio.
It does not solve 100% of cases, but it solves some.
As mentioned above, when you want to lose fat, you shouldn't neglect weight training.
Fat loss is above all diet, and no training can compensate for a bad diet, but a good training with weights together with some cardio will provide better results.
And faster too.
What is the best type of cardio to lose fat?
see the answer in this article.
More cardio, more weight training, more training
On fat loss diets, you necessarily need to consume fewer calories than your body burns on a daily basis.
This will cause you to lose fat, but it will also decrease your ability to recover.
In weight training, it might be a good idea to turn down the volume and not crash 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 mentally, and sometimes low/medium intensity cardio is a better bet.
This is not an excuse for not training, or training too little, it is just a warning to adapt and program your plan to your goal and nutrition, 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 several approaches to bodybuilding training, but as a rule, the minimum is three workouts.
Less than that will hardly bring you the results you are looking for.
Unless you don't want results, then 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 for there to be progress at the muscular level.
If you do the same exercises, with the same loads, the same sets, the same reps and the same rest times week after week, month after month, year after year, why should your muscle grow?
This doesn't mean that you should make every training an adventure.
Even change gyms.
But there needs to be progression to gain muscle mass.
Attention, progression is not just about putting more weight on the bar.
That would be impossible to maintain for a long time.
Adding a rep 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 with dumbbells, I went over to the peck-deck to swell my chest, and before I left I still did some sit-ups while talking to Margarida.
Big Zé went to the gym, but he didn't do a great workout.
You should use compound exercises, exercises that intensely work your biggest muscle groups completely, allowing you to lift good loads.
It is these exercises that will give you good results and not half a dozen push-ups with a back somersault.
What exercises are these?
The article is already long, and you've certainly had days when you didn't sleep much, or did it straight.
Just a day with few hours of sleep makes you feel more tired, irritable, 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 less, because it is during sleep that the body recovers.
Attention, you don't need to hibernate, nor should you, but aim for at least six hours of regular sleep, and between 7 to 8 as the ideal number.
– I don't have results in gym, I'm always the same, I'm sick of it and I'm going to give up.
– Joe, 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 is nothing to get visible results.
You need time to get real results, and depending on your commitment and goal, it can take a few or many months to get there.
A bit like the time factor, the consistency it is essential to get results, and if you are not consistent, guess what will happen.
There won't be 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 were to work only seven days a month?
Did you get rich?
– I'm not getting results and João is, this is for sure because he takes all those supplements!
Supplements help, but in the end, they're just a little help in a huge equation.
In addition to these supplements, there are some that have small, specific benefits that are far from essential.
It's certainly not because you don't use them that you aren't getting results.
If you still want more supplement ideas, you have on here some suggestions for fat loss.
If your goal is to gain muscle mass go through on here.
Reading this article will not bring you results, but correcting possible flaws that you identify with here will improve your gym progress and your mirror image.
In the game of gaining muscle mass, or losing fat, the most important piece is the calories, and the ideal is to have some idea of the amount you ingest.
O myfitnesspal it's a good tool to help you with this task, and a scale too.
Finally, if you want to have results, you need to have goals, and it is important that you define them realistically and concretely.
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's concrete, real and possible. It just depends on you.