Written by Jack Boardman
Mass Muscle Gain
The average Christmas dinner consists of 7,000 calories. But wait! Before you put down that mince pie this Christmas, if you’re after those serious gains, consider taking advantage of all that protein and carbs this holiday season.
There is no secret to mass muscle gain, it is facts and dedication – except, perhaps the secret at Christmas is getting up from the sofa.
The best ways to increase muscle size include calorie, vitamin, fat and protein consumption, the amount of cardio you include in your workout day, the amount you lift and how you lift.
So, to justify that extra portion of turkey you know you’re going to have anyway let’s look at the virtues of the average Christmas dinner and how you can make it work for you.
Make Your Caloric Intake Work For You
If you want to see your muscles grow then it is a fact that you need to increase your caloric intake. To achieve bigger muscles you need to achieve a state of caloric excess. If you’re looking to burn off all you’ve eaten this Christmas you’re in the wrong place; what we’re talking about here is bulking up while reducing energy expenditure – sounds like Christmas time to us. If you’re looking to lose your Christmas weight, the opposite is true: cut the calories and increase your energy output.
If there’s one thing we know about at MyProtein it’s the benefits of protein consumption and all the many ways it is a bodybuilder’s best friend. Protein is the building blocks of muscle and there is a distinct correlation between the amount of protein you ingest and the amount of muscle you can gain.
Good news this Christmas, white turkey meat is the leanest animal protein source you’ll find. Second servings, anyone?
Fats Are Not Bad
Stop think of fats as something as a foe. Consider fats in terms of the best kinds to suit you. Essential fats from sources such as olive oil are fats that your body doesn’t manufacture on its own. If you restrict your intake of fats this will have a negative effect on growth because your consumption of fat affects your testosterone levels. Heavy weights, boxers, MMA fighters – this goes for you.
Take Your Vitamins
You know by now that vitamins are key in staying healthy and vital to your workout. Along with supplements, the best source of vitamins is in food and, if you’re serious about those gains, you need to be serious about your vitamins. Think of all that natural goodness you’ll be taking in from those Boxing Day cold cuts.
Use Your Rest Wisely
If there’s one other thing Christmas is good for, along with all the food, it’s the relaxation and hibernation of the winter season. You’re an avid gym-goer, though, and you’re serious about your gains, so it’s understandable that sitting idle does not make sense. However, rest has to be factored in to your routine. This is both to allow growth and repair, but also so that you can replenish from muscle failure for the best muscle gain results. What do we mean? Well, take the chest, for example. For the most effective chest workout you will need fully-rested triceps and delts. If you’re likely to be committing a massive faux pas by heading into the gym on Christmas Day, unable to skips traditions on Boxing Day or Christmas Eve, count this as your rest time. Then, take this one step further and consider what you will work on following that rest time – make it an exercise involving muscles that you’ve rested.
More good news: if you want to gain mass, limiting your energy output and cardio is essential. Well, that justifies watching all that Christmas TV, doesn’t it. You’re not being lazy, you’re easing up on excess running – and it’s cold outside anyway…
Stick To Effective Muscle Gain Exercises
Following your rest, start a session by working on the muscle you most want to target. Limit your movement and focus on the main bulk areas you want to work – the chest, shoulders, back and quads. Add on the weights, use your gym partner to help you maintain technique while increasing the amount you’re lifting – it’s Christmas after all, so why be unsociable while working out.
Rest, repeat and eat – sounds like Christmas to us.