You don’t have to hit the gym to bulk up. Even as you stay at home while the pandemic rages on, do not make compromises on your fitness goals. All you need is a great workout plan with the right diet to support it.
Here are some useful tips to build muscle and bulk up in the comfort of your home.
Plan Your Workout
The most common misconception about gaining weight or bulking up is that you need to lift heavy weights to get results. While it is true that higher weights are helpful to build muscle, they are not the only option for you.
When it comes to building muscle, there are some basics about working out that you must understand. The concept of progressive overload will help you immensely when combined with the right muscle building foods. Progressive overload means challenging your muscles progressively so that they become stronger and grow more in volume. There are different ways to do this:
- Increasing weights
- Increasing the number of repetitions per set
- Working out more often
- Reducing the rest between your sets
- Increasing the difficulty level of the exercise
- Slowing down the movement
- Holding a position instead of repetitions
This is applicable even to bodyweight exercises that you can perform at home, like the ones mentioned below:
- Push-ups: Works on your chest muscles, core and back.
- Pull-ups: Ideal for your lats, shoulders and biceps.
- Squats: Bulk up your quads and glutes with bodyweight squats.
- Lunges: Another easy variation for your quads that also engage your core effectively.
- Step-Ups: A few step up repetitions can challenge and strengthen your hamstrings, glutes and quads
- Crunches: For a strong core and ripped abs, crunches have always been the go-to exercise.
- Planks: This is the ultimate workout to stabilize your core and build those muscles in the abdomen.
How to use them to bulk up:
- Perform these exercises in a circuit starting with the upper body, moving to the lower body and ending with a good ab workout.
- Keep increasing the level of difficulty as mentioned above to get the results that you want.
- Always remember to start with a warm-up and end with a few stretches to cool down.
An effective bulk-up plan needs a good diet that gives you a calorie excess. The thumb rule of bulking up is to eat more calories than you burn. Make sure you get this excess calorie count from healthy muscle-building foods that are rich in protein, carbs, vitamins and minerals. Here are some tips to prepare and follow an easy bulk up diet:
- You need to increase the consumption of protein for mass gain. This can be achieved by adding protein-rich foods like eggs, poultry, meat, fish, legumes, nuts and fruits. Supplementation is key to ensuring that you get your daily required intake of protein. Healthy protein shakes like Healthkart 100% Plant-Based Protein are rich in their nutrient content and extremely convenient to use.
- Load up on your carbs to bulk up faster. Carbohydrates give you a rich calorie source and are also necessary to give you the energy that you need to stay consistent with your workout plan. Complex carbs through whole grains and starchy foods like sweet potato are ideal for bulking up. To get your carb and calorie load on the go, choose a reliable mass gainer like ON Serious Mass.
- Break your diet into smaller, more frequent meals. This helps you ensure your daily required calorie intake without feeling too heavy after each meal. Add healthy snacks that are rich in calories. This includes protein bars, smoothies with ingredients like peanut butter, creamy salads, cheese, yoghurt and other calories rich, healthy foods.
- Top up on calories whenever possible. In order to build muscle, your calorie intake may have to be as high as 4000 calories per day, depending upon your body type. Topping your meals with calorie-rich foods like nuts, seeds, peanut butter, cheese, butter, ghee and bananas make sure that you never miss an opportunity to load up.
Whether it is eating the right muscle building foods or working out, here are some tips to help you stay committed:
- Schedule your meals even when you are at home.
- Fix a time to work out and stick to it.
- Wearing the right workout attire keeps you motivated.
- Prepare a playlist of your favourite songs to keep you going through your training session.
- Choose easy and convenient sources like shakes and smoothies to get your share of protein for mass gain.
- Find a workout buddy.
- Get an online personal trainer or coach if you are just starting your fitness journey to ensure safety.
Don’t forget to get enough rest and de-stress to ensure that all the effort you are putting into your training gives you the results you want.