Quality Muscle Mass

When we think of a big muscular person we generally think of that person as being strong. This obvious thought is not always true. What may seem obvious, can be very confusing and misleading in the fitness world. Quality muscle mass is a strange title. Most people would assume all muscle mass is the same. However, this is not the case at all. Muscle mass can be of low quality and high quality. Scratching your head? Just bear with me. First, let’s define what high quality muscle mass is.

To have high quality muscle it needs to serve a function, it needs to be maintainable, and it needs to be partnered with strength. Examples of high quality muscle mass can be found in multiple sports including wrestling, football, Olympic weight lifting etc. On the other hand, low quality muscle mass can be defined as having very little function if any, not being maintainable and not coinciding with strength. An example in this form of muscle mass is some forms of bodybuilding.

I say some bodybuilding because there are bodybuilders who are not just massive, but strong as well. Trust me; I have seen big looking bodybuilders who could not deadlift 135lb without hurting themselves. Simply put, they lack functional muscle mass. The mass they have is highly unstable. If the bodybuilder finds himself injured he will not maintain the muscle he put on. This article will outline some of the guidelines for putting on functional muscle mass. This article is not intended to go to deep into the “mechanics behind the scenes”. For a more in depth look at quality muscle mass check out this my site.

Before we get down to it, let’s make sure we are on the same page. The guidelines I am going to outline are for those who have an understanding for exercises and have been in the gym before and know the difference between a barbell and a dumbbell.

In order for the human body to alter its composition enough stimulus needs to be loaded on it to make that happen. This is usually an overload placed on the body. The overload will guarantee strength with muscle mass (when used correctly). Following these guidelines you will get big fast and be strong to boot. Also, these are not all the guidelines, but they will help a great deal:

1. The number of reps dictates the training effect: For muscle mass and strength we will need fewer reps, which will allow for greater intensity. Please do not confuse time under tension with the amount of intensity (weight) being used.

2. The weight being used has to be lifted as fast as possible. Lowering (eccentric motion) weight slowly is great and when used correctly can increase strength and muscle mass quick. However, lifting weight in a slow form is highly questionable in its effects on muscle mass and strength. Most studies have pointed to quick lifting (concentric motion) as a superior form of training for strength and muscle mass. The actual time it takes to move the weight is not as important as the effect of a person lifting as fast and controlled as the can possibly lift. For example, if it takes a person four seconds to bench press a certain weight instead of one or two, the time it takes doesn’t matter as long as he has bench pressed the weight as fast and controlled as he possibly could.

3. Keep the intensity high by keeping the weight heavy: I touched on this already. Many people get intensity confused with high volume. They are not the same. Typically, the higher the volume is the lower the intensity must be. For example a person may be able to squat 225lb for thirty reps. Even though, the body may be fatigued afterwards the intensity was still low. On the other hand, if the same person were to squat 325lb for ten reps the intensity would increase and the volume would be lowered. This would allow for a higher strength and muscle mass gain.

4. Quality muscle mass is gained between 70-80{70bf3f0de345653d44762dc26ff670ad140dd79bcbd9067b668b28c6672699c3} RM (rep max): What this means is the weight being used should not be able to be lifted more than twelve times and no less than six times. Different muscle groups will call for different RM. To get a more in depth look at this, check out this.

5. The newer and younger a lifter is the more repetitions will be needed: This is because of the maximum potential is not yet reached. So to release higher levels of growth hormone, use more muscle fibers per movement and to gain better neuro-efficiency; the newbie will need higher reps.

6. Rest needs to be higher when more intensity or muscles are being used in an exercise. The rest can also be lowered when to opposite exercises are put together in a workout (superset).

Okay, that’s a few guidelines to give you a better workout in the gym. Good luck with your fitness endeavors.