It takes time to grow muscle, but it doesn't take much time.
(Well, that's early in the article contradict myself!)
It takes months, if not years, of consistent effort to grow large amounts of muscle mass. This is where the long-time comes from.
But those consistent efforts, on a session to session basis, don't need to take long at all. You don't need to live in the gym.
"I don't have enough time to build muscle and improve my physique..."
Let me show you how it can be done in under two hours a week.
I'm certain you can spare that to improve yourself.
Click here to download a copy of the program straight away.
Your muscles are like a pot- plant.
Water them a bit every week and they will grow. They won't grow extremely fast, but over time they will grow. Watering doesn't take long. What counts most is that the watering is consistent.
Forget to water the plant and wave goodbye to it ever growing into a tree.
Your muscles need consistent stimulation to grow. They don't like growing. It's counter-productive to survival. A big muscle is costly for your body and requires many calories to stay big (read: you can eat more food and not get fat).
All muscles start small and with a little bit of persistent watering, will grow for you.
You don't need to smash yourself every session.
Muscles grow through a series of damage and repair. You'll learn a little more about this down below.
Just know that during a training session you cause damage to your muscles. Afterwards, between sessions, they repair themselves to be bigger and stronger than before.
The thing is, you don't need to completely destroy your muscles and damage them beyond repair. Too much of a good thing is often a bad thing. Excess damage will leave you ridiculously sore and is also completely unnecessary to cause growth.
A little bit of damage (what's called 'stimulating the muscle') is enough to grow.
Why spend $100 on a ticket to see IT at the cinema, when it only costs $20?
(that movie scared the bajeezus outta me... )
Overdoing it is pointless.
Consistent bouts of stimulation are where it's at.
In the beginning, it doesn't take much to get them growing.
When you first start resistance training in an attempt to grow bigger, your muscles are very sensitive to anything you do.
Sometimes, if you're very untrained, some pushups and bodyweight squats are enough to see an improvement in size. That doesn't last long though. It does mean that in the beginning, it's easy to grow muscle.
You might see those massive meatheads in the magazines boasting about their three-hour gym sessions every day of the week.
That ain't you.
They are at a point where their muscles need that much stimulus to even maintain their size. Consider yourself lucky you don't have to waste that much of your life to look exactly the same.
The following gym program will show you exactly how to build impressive muscle in under two-hours a week.
Just enough of what you need and none of what you don't.
Essentialist training at it's finest!
The 2-Hour Max Muscle Program
The program is split into three sessions per week. Each session is 40-minutes. This includes your warm-up.
This is by far the easiest and fastest way to grow impressive muscle mass without having to live in the gym.
Click here to grab yourself the 2-Hour Max Muscle Program.
You will see that will be training your whole body every session. Consistent watering, a little bit every time, leads to growth.
One key I will mention here is that you need to track your weights and reps. Writing them into the 'Notes' app on your phone is the easiest way to do this. Then, each session, you know what you did last time and can add a fraction more weight or push out one extra rep.
This slight improvement follows the principle of overload. It ensures that you're giving your muscles a reason to keep growing each session.
Why three sessions a week?
During a training session, you cause damage to your muscles. Little micro-tears are formed which get repaired afterwards. This 'muscle recovery' usually takes 48-72 hours.
Three sessions allows you to stimulate your muscles to grow as often as possible, while still giving them time to recover between sessions.
The cycle of damage and repair looks a little like this, with the red line being your muscle mass:
(impressive paint skills!)
You can see the damage done, and then the repair to bigger and stronger than before.
Two sessions a week can also have a similar effect. It won't be the same though.
Compare two men. Guy 1 lifts twice a week and the Guy 2 lifts three times.
Guy 1 lifts 104 times over the year.
Guy 2 lifts 156 times over the year.
Which guy is more likely to have more muscle mass?
How to make sure your muscles keep growing.
As you learned above, your muscles react to a new stimulus and rebuild themselves as bigger and stronger to handle it better next time.
If you always use the same stimulus, your muscles see no need to grow. They stagnate even though you're still training hard.
Remember how your muscles are like a pot plant?
Eventually, after consistently watering it for a while, your plant will get too big for it's pot. At this point, more watering won't help it grow. You need to find a bigger pot.
This goes the same for your muscles. Your program, which worked amazingly well to start, will stop working. This point is usually 4-8 weeks. Your muscles have grown but reached the limit of their growth on the current program. They have fully adapted. Now it's time to progress.
Progression can come from large or small changes.
Larger changes include:
Changing all the exercises.
Changing the rep ranges of your exercises.
Adding in intensity methods to your program.
Changing your workout split. (Eg. instead of full body each time, splitting sessions into one day only upper body and the other days only lower body)
Adding sets to your exercises.
Smaller changes include things like:
Decreasing your rest times.
Changing grips on an exercise.
Altering the order of the exercises in your workout.
Changing the tempo (speed) which you lift weights.
There are many ways to progress, but don't change too much. You only need to change enough so that your muscles receive a new 'novel' stimulus.
As a bonus, it also makes things a bit more exciting for you. You get to mix it up and try new ways of exercising. I couldn't imagine doing the exact same program for the rest of my life...
Can you grow impressive muscle at home?
Yes, for a while.
You will eventually reach a point where you need some sort of external resistance to challenge your muscles.
You are able to grow a solid base of muscle mass at home using your own bodyweight as resistance. Soon, though, you'll find that results start to slow down. Your muscles aren't being stimulated enough.
That said, if you want to get started at home, the best bodyweight exercises are:
Having access to a few weights, a TRX and some resistance bands will greatly increase the amount of muscle you can grow in the comfort of your own home.
When your main goal is to grow impressive muscle in under two hours a week, the gym should be on your priority list.
The benefits of to a gym there are two-sided.
1. You have access to unlimited ways to stimulate your muscles. There's barbells, dumbbells, bands, kettlebells, medicine balls and a wide variety of machines. In the gym, your progress will never stagnate.
2. You separate the gym and home. Some people find this beneficial in the same way you try to separate work and home. Having a place where the only goal is to improve yourself makes it easier to focus, stay undistracted and build a routine out of it.
In short, you can grow muscle at home, but it will grow faster in the gym.
What else can I do to maximise my results?
Two words. Sleep and nutrition.
Sleep, I won't go into. You know how much you need and you could probably do with a little more. Eight hours is seen as the golden standard, but some people get by fine with seven or even six.
I'll leave you with one thought. Sleep is better than steroids.
Onto nutrition. It's a massive subject which is way out of the scope of this article. The only thing I'll get into here is protein intake.
Protein must be your number one priority. Your muscles are made of proteins. They are the building blocks to your castle. When you cause damage to your muscles during a training session you need protein to help them recover.
Try to eat 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight. That's 2.2/kg for you metric friends. That will ensure you get the maximal benefit from this muscle growing nutrient.
Protein also helps you lose body-fat. A nice little bonus.
Should I use protein powder?
If you wish. It's up to you.
Whey protein powder is simply milk protein developed into a powder form. The protein is simply protein. It's no different to protein in chicken or eggs. It won't instantly bulk you up, the same as a steak won't instantly turn you into the Hulk.
It's easier to add a scoop of powder to water than it is to cook a chicken breast on the grill. Both give you protein, but which would you prefer to do post-workout when you're rushing to work?
Protein powder is a cheap and convenient way to get more protein into your diet.
Not having enough time to grow muscle shouldn't be a common complaint anymore. You can do it in under two hours a week. The real complaint is that you don't want to. And I can't change that.
Are you done with being both skinny and pudgy at the same time? If you're ready to commit to improving yourself, then download the PDF workout and start tomorrow.
Download the 2-Hour Max Muscle Program Now.
If you need help with any of the exercises you can email me here. I enjoy coaching so I'd be glad to offer a hand.
That's enough reading. Crack on and grow!